Limber up and loosen your shoulders – iPONG’s space-aged arcade bar is almost here
Attention all sharpshooters and hawk-eyed bullseye bandits – there’s a new haunt in town that is shaping up to be the perfect place to show off your impressive marksmanship. iPONG is a futuristic arcade and bar that is bringing Brisbane its first taste of the latest range of digitised games – pong and darts. If you’ve got a competitive spirit, or are simply looking for a fun hangout spot for you and your crew, search for iPONG’s Tron-inspired facade when it officially opens on Saturday March 9.
It’s no secret that Brisbane is deep in the midst of an arcade resurgence, as evidenced by the influx of gaming dens all over town. The latest entrant to the scene is taking a slightly different approach to interactive entertainment, offering an electronic spin on classic pub and party favourites. iPONG is the name of the forthcoming futuristic-inspired joint, located deep inside an industrial estate off Mains Road in Macgregor. Owner Pierre Kaw has operated similar gaming-centric venues overseas, where the following is growing exponentially. Pierre decided to introduce Brisbane crowds to the concept, which is centred around digitised darts and throw pong, but with some fun quirks that truly impress. Don’t let the obscure surroundings fool you – inside the doors you’ll discover a neon-lit playground complete with a fully equipped bar, a kitchen, an upstairs function space and several games to play with friends. The interior has been purposefully designed with a space-age aesthetic in mind, complete with galactic murals, neon strip lighting and modular furniture.
Upon launch, iPONG’s gaming selection will be divided into two areas – darts and pong. Both streams boast heaps of interactivity that enhances the play options available while taking the guesswork out of gaming. The pong machines will be familiar to those who’ve watched their fair share of frat-based comedies or have been to any party with an overabundance of red solo cups. Commonly known as beer pong, iPONG’s PONGConnect consoles require players to toss ping-pong balls from their end of the table into the cups of their opponents. Before we continue –no, these cups cannot be filled with beer, so there will be no sculling here. Each cup is monitored by the console, which will keep track every time a ball finds its mark and alert you to killer combos and challenging new rules. To use the machine, players need only download an app and sign up – from then on each game will be tallied and your accumulated record will be entered into a global scoreboard. Over on the far wall is a set of DartsLive2 consoles, where players are able to take on up to eight friends at once tossing soft-tip darts at the illuminated board, and also connect to those playing simultaneously around the world. Darts Live cards are needed to play, allowing you to start an account much like PONGConnect’s app. If you have friends in countries where Darts Live 2 is popular, rope them in for some cross-ocean gaming (you can even see them playing using built-in webcams). Competition knows no bounds!
The food and drink
It’s so easy to get caught up in iPONG’s competitive atmosphere to be oblivious to the fact that you’re hungry or thirsty. Don’t fret though – this place covers all bases when it comes to food and drink. While you can’t incorporate drinks into the games themselves, iPONG Angels will be monitoring the floor to offer you drinks between turns. If you’re not actively participating, then the bar stocks plenty of libations to satisfy. Various mainstream beers are available off tap or in bottles, while groups can opt to go in on a beer tower. Cocktails are also a big part of the offering, with various concoctions available to sip solo, or in a cocktail balloon (a dispensing apparatus akin to the beer tower) for those sharing. An on-site kitchen keeps bellies full with a selection of bar food – we’re talking burgers, fish and chips and much more.
iPONG will softly open to the public on Saturday March 9. Those keen to check it out can also attend the launch event on Friday March 15. For location and contact details, seek out iPONG in the Stumble Guide.
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