5105 Leary Ave. N.W., 523-2273, cardkingdom.com
Located near the heart of Ballard, Card Kingdom offers a huge selection of board games, ranging from family games to more intricate ones for the experienced gamer. Now you might be saying to yourself, “But I can just buy my board game online; why would I drive all the way to Ballard?” To that I say, “Clearly you’ve never been to Card Kingdom.” The space is decorated thoughtfully with gamers in mind, including a Magic the Gathering chandelier, and the staff is friendly and very knowledgeable. Like crazy knowledgeable. When you get in a fight over the rules to any game, you can be sure one of them probably knows the answer. But Card Kingdom is not just a place to buy games; they encourage you to play games there, and often hold tournaments in their back rooms or on the beautiful terrain tables (for miniatures). To top it all off, they have games there to play while hanging out in the adjoining watering hole, Cafe Mox. Brothers Damon and John founded Card Kingdom with the mission of creating the best game store in the world. Gentlemen, mission complete.