1. Where are you?
Eclectic Games can be found halfway down Union Street, in the heart of Reading Town Centre. The pedestrianised street runs between Friar Street and Broad Street, and is also known by locals as Smelly Alley, for historical reasons dating back to the 14th century...
2. Why does postage cost £5.95?
Our delivery charge is a flat rate of £5.95 for parcels up to 10kg. This is because we use DPD Local as our courier in most instances, and £5.95 is the rate they charge us for a next working day delivery, with a one hour delivery slot notified to the recipient and full tracking. (£5.95 is actually the headline rate, which does not include the 11% fuel surcharge, VAT, and any other surcharges such as the London Congestion charge which we are liable for. It also doesn't cover any of the cost of packing materials needed for delivery). Having looked at the volume of parcels we send out, the service levels offered by various delivery companies, and the complaints levels/customer service satisfaction reports, we have concluded that this is the best option for our business at present.
Periodically, we review our options regarding the best way to get games to our customers, and as we increase our volume with DPD Local, we may be able to get better rates from them. Please be assured that we do not generate revenue from our delivery charges! We only pass along what it costs us to send your games to you.
3. What events do you run?
Eclectic Games is the centre for a number of different communities of gamers in Reading, and has always hosted events of many types to support the games we sell. We have thriving scenes for Pokemon, Magic the Gathering, Yu Gi Oh, Digimon, Star Wars X-wing, Blood Bowl, and Warhammer Underworlds, on both a casual and competitive level, and covering all age ranges. Our 2000 title board game collection supports our regular, in store boardgames evenings and days, and we are adding assorted RPGs to the calendar.
4. Can you recommend me a game? How about if I can't get into the shop to talk to you?
Our central reason for existing in a world that contains Amazon and other online shopping platforms, is our product knowledge and tailored recommendations. This is most easily done face-to-face in store, but is by no means limited to that venue. We are happy to talk you through options over the phone, via email, or if necessary in the online communications world of video-conferencing, whether via Discord, Google Meet, or similar.
Phoning us is just a matter of dialing our number. A video conference would be booked in advance, since the technology requirements need a little more setup time.
To recommend a suitable game to you, there are a few things we need to know. (It's all very well declaring a fantastic party game for 6 people is the best thing ever, if there's only 2 of you to play it, it's a waste of your money and time!)
We need to know the number of players in your group. There are options for pretty much any number of players, from solo to 'lots and lots', but games generally have a 'sweet spot' and sometimes a hard upper limit.
It is helpful to have a feel for the age groups likely to be playing. There are games that are universal in appeal and audience, games that are specifically designed for children, games that are more or less complex in the rules and interactions required to play, and of course the ones that come with a Parental Advisory or 18+ sticker.
Some indication of 'how long you want to be playing for' helps narrow the choices. Is this a fifteen minute game to play while you wait for dinner to finish cooking, or a whole afternoon epic to while away a wet Sunday? Or anything in between.
Finally, giving us a list of games you have played and enjoyed, or games that you really didn't like, is really useful for zeroing in on your tastes. This is even easier for us if you can tell us what it is about the game you liked or disliked. Do you hate the random element of throwing lots of dice? Are co-operative games a favourite solution to an over-competitive player or two? Are zombies or spiders in the game a deal-breaker for you?
After that, it's a matter of showing and explaining games until we find the right one for you.