A NEW café that combines the world of board games with pizza and coffee hosted a special day for one of the biggest dates in the gaming calendar.

Gamers made a beeline for Slice and Dice, in Churchgate, for International Table Top Day on Saturday, where they met friends and played their favourite board games.

The eatery-cum-gaming hangout gives board game lovers a space to either play their own games, try out the store’s demo games, or buy a new game.

Games on offer include everything from traditional favourites like Monopoly, Yahtzee and Jenga, to gamers’ classics like Caton and Carcassonne.

And among the more popular current titles are Risk Legacy, DragoBorne and Splendor.

The gamers haunt is the brainchild of Craig Price, who lives just a stone’s throw away, in Bolton town centre.

The 28-year-old said he was hoping for his busiest day since opening earlier this month.

He said: “Unfortunately my customers don’t tend to give me a lot of feedback – they either turn up in one big herd or all at one time, but it will definitely be a big turnout.

“We had a full shop for a tournament of a game called Blood Bowl.

“It’s kind of a niche industry, it’s huge but it’s not mainstream. And you’ve got Gencon in America (the largest tabletop gaming convention in the USA) which gets 60,000 people.”

The cafe is the realisation of a dream for Mr Price, who is a huge gaming fan.

He said: “I had the idea years ago. I was standing in a games shop in Manchester and realised the only time customers left was to get food. Some were there for six-to-eight hours, they’d go to find food and then come back.

“I thought, a food and a game shop, could that work?

“Literally everyone else seems to have got the idea a few years later. But when I went to get a bank loan they said ‘board games and a food, isn’t that a bit weird?’

“But it’s only the same as the day someone proposed putting a coffee machine in a book shop!”