In the year 1977, geeks around the nation were created with a wave of technology and media. Atari released the first popular gaming console, the Atari 2600, and the gaming revolution began. Sick of playing silly “Pong,” the system promised eye-popping graphics and insane fun. 

Forty years later, “Pac-Man” and “Space Invaders” could be played on cell phones. And the gaming industry has expanded to nearly $3 billion a year — with an increasing amount of LGBT players. 

For some in our community, not only have the games become more gay-friendly, such as “Mass Effect,” “Dragon Age,” and “The Sims,” they’ve also become more socializing, giving players another option bsides bars and clubs. 

With the latest systems, developers took a different twist and are marketing the social aspects of gaming. PlayStation, Xbox, and Nintendo all have LGBT online groups to chat right through the systems themselves. You can add friends and join a game together. With added video cameras, you can see each other play and talk through headsets. This is an excellent start for those seeking friendships, or perhaps even relationships. But there are even more avenues to meeting others.

Popular media sites are popping up online for LGBT gamers. Facebook Group “Gay Geeks” has over 47,000 members and counting. There, you can read other memes and videos. Also you’re free to chat and add friends. 

On Reddit, visit r/gayming for the latest in news and overall fun posts. And don’t forget to visit #gaymer on Twitter for like-minded users. You can even use Craigslist to make gaymer friends, but we HIGHLY recommend using the “Strictly Platonic” category.

But what about meeting locals into some serious gaming in person? Instead a night out drinking and clubbing, there are alternatives for meeting and socializing. Latinos Salud, located in Wilton Manors, hosts a monthly party for all LGBTQ with video systems and also board games. Even Gym Sports Bar sets up game systems on Monday nights for fun and drinks. 

But not only gay establishments are coming on-board the gaming revolution. Gay-Friendly places like Versus Gaming Center in Pompano Beach offer all day access to PCs, Xbox, and PS4 and even hold tournaments. 

Tenth Level Tavern, right across from Funky Buddha, is a fantastic bar with some of your old favorite arcade games and great drink specials. And for the more intense action-packed gaymer in you, try Xtreme Action Park on Powerline Rd. They not only have an incredible amount of games, but also rock climbing, go karts, and bowling.