Store Tour & Interview: Level Up Games! Canterbury, UK

Retro-Gaming-Shops-Level-Up-Games-Canterbury-UK

Whilst on the way to GEEK2014 a few months ago we stopped by Canterbury on the day for a surprise visit to Level Up Games!

Navi had pointed us in the vague direction of the store and after two loops of the area, I drifted around the corner and pulled into the nearest car park (It had been a long journey and I needed to avoid using a continue, so thought it best to verify the exact location). After a swift telephone call to the Level Up Games crew, we had established that I'd parked in the correct town and would you believe it.. The nearest car park to Level Up!

All I had to do to finish the journey was complete a brisk walk around the corner, and with this news I commenced my walk. Or at least I would have, had I not stumbled across a flickering CRT TV sat in the middle of the road! Obviously I jumped on it, giving me limited use of some speedy trainers to run off on my way with. A minute or two later I arrived outside Level Up Games and was instantly offered a preview of what was in store for us (gaming merchandise was filling the windows of the shop, like it was trying to escape into our arms)!

Once inside I was warmly greeted by slightly shocked Alex (he put that T-Shirt on himself, honest!) and was introduced to Gemma, we had a quick get to know you and a brief chat about GEEK2014 amongst other things.

Here's a little more insight into Level Up Games, and their world as they know it!

Interview with Level Up Games

Retro-Gaming-Shops-Level-Up-Games-Canterbury-UK-Owners

Give us a brief description of Level Up Games:

We are Level Up Games, started up four years ago by Gemma and Alex, based in Canterbury, Kent. We deal almost exclusively with pre-owned video games, their consoles, and most merchandise/accessories for all of them. All ages and eras of video gaming are catered for (sorry not PC games or equipment though) We also cross into Japanese media with Anime, Manga and Figures.

Do you do telephone/internet orders? What's the best method of contact for you regarding purchases & enquiries:

We can and do take regular telephone and internet orders. Interestingly we've found Facebook and Instagram to be a much faster way to reach interested peoples for our wares. Our website exists pretty much as a photo gallery, contact details and mainly as a portal to the Social Networking. Also we are to be found on eBay and Amazon, but only really selling the very obscure/collectable items as that is best for those.

Best way to find out about us is to check our Facebook wall and ask questions!

We regularly post new collections of stock and can post info on any particulars on request.

Phone : 01227785002

email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

FB: https://www.facebook.com/levelupgamescanterbury

What is Level Up Games most requested system?:

It's so seasonal as to what our customers want!

Bestsellers currently are N64, SNES, Gameboy Colors and Sega MegaDrive! It's good to see the MD make a comeback! They've been slowish for the past two years, but now everyone is after them again!

The stores most requested game is?:

Pokemon! any of them! We had a long chat about this: Zelda? Final Fantasy? Conkers Bad Fur Day? little kids wanting GTA? But good old (specifically actually) Pokemon tops this list - the original titles first then the GBA ones coming in second place.

We always have some of them in stock! But such is demand they're constantly coming and going - from tatty cart only to mint boxed versions - just depends on the day as to what we have in.

Most requested Accessory?:

Playstation 2 controllers - they've always been in demand, but a good condition FULLY working one is getting harder and harder to get hold of. -Take note folks: we want them if you're selling!?!?

What are your favourite systems?:

Gemma: In terms of favourite system of sentimental value, that would have to be the Super Nintendo. I think that was because I discovered the joy that RPG's brought to my life by playing games such as Zelda: A Link to the Past, Terranigma, and Secret of Evermore. Ever since then I have pretty much exclusively played RPG's. The Playstation 1 and 2 also ranks up there as I felt like I made good friends with the characters in the games I played on those systems, which helped tremendously during the difficult early teenage years most people experience.

Alex: I'd have to go for Sony as a whole here. But I love the old PS1 best - it was the first gaming system I owned for myself! I'd been playing on friends video games machines since the late 80's (NES, Master System, SNES, MD, Amiga allsorts..) but didn't own any myself until 2001!!

There are too many varied and interesting games that came out for it to not be top of my list.

There can only be one! Pick your favourite game?:

Gemma: Well most people know me as a Persona 4 nut. I have a large collection of merchandise surrounding this particular game since the characters and story are so well fleshed out. I can't tell you how many hours I have sank into that particular game in total. In general I love pretty much anything with an in depth story line where I can slowly learn about the protagonists companions, in fact I was obsessed with Dragon Age: Origins for quite a few months after developing a little crush on Alistair...Alex was not impressed to be replaced by a pixel I can tell you! (until she found out what the voice actor looked like! that ended that pretty quick - Alex-)

Alex: Has to be We Love Katamari for PS2. I could roll forever... and that soundtrack!!!

Your favourite gaming accessory?:

Gemma: I recently became the proud owner of a Playstation 2 Slime Controller (made by Hori) that was fashioned to literally look like a slime from Dragon Quest VIII (another favourite title of mine). It is so pretty and the feeling of cutting open a sealed collectors item filled me with utter joy!

Alex: Namco G.Con MK1 - really nice and solid - not as nice as the arcade one on the Point Blank Machine, but I really like them :) Me and my mates broke quite a few basic PS1 pads using them as the 'duck' button on TimeCrisis back in the day!

If we owned a shop we'd probably get very excited about all those lovely and intriguing trades... What is the most interesting item you've had in-store?:

Gemma: Alex knows how much I do not like Sponge Bob Square Pants so the day a Playstation 2 controller that was made to look like his starfish friend (Patrick?) came in was a dark day in the Level Up Games household indeed...

Alex: It has to be the Sega Nomad - never before has so much instant interest been created over a single item! One of the local collectors tried it out and by the end of the day word had got around the we had one... Chaos!

Retro-Gaming-Shops-Level-Up-Games-Canterbury-UK-Owners-and-Katsu

Great to finally meet up with you both, we can't wait until next time. Until then, all the best!


Last Updated ( 22 April 2014 )  

Katsu

Katsu is RetroCollect's indestructible bullet hell spaceship! With a love of all things Shmup, Fighting, Arcade & 2D. When he's not out delivering retro related challenges at gaming events? He'll most likely be scouring the site or twitter, whilst playing 4 Pokémon games simultaneously!?

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Comments 

(Link to this comment) TheGebs24 2015-05-14 19:34
Awesome interview with Gem and Alex. We recently took a trip down to Level Up from Derbyshire and it was definitely worth the journey :)

Cheers, Gemma

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