Players Ready: but are you? Discover the games pub taking Warsaw by storm!
The Nowy Świat addy is a deception. Find Cybermachina not on the main high street but rather behind it on ul. Gałczyńskiego. Set in a labyrinthine basement unit just past the very decent Teheran restaurant, old-timers might remember this as the home of the rather naff Rocky-style Tiger pub owned by the former heavyweight champ Dariusz ‘Tiger’ Michalczewski.
Good question. The easy answer is a games pub, but describing it as such is a bit of a disservice: there is nothing typical about Cybermachina, so boxing it under such a catch-all term doesn’t do it justice. This place is bonkers!
Mostly, for the sense of fun that it exudes. Illuminated with neon lights depicting legends such as Pac-Man, find glass cabinets filled with helmets and rubber masks, a mannequin of Mortal Kombat’s Scorpion and a urinal that announces “You’re Breathtaking” in glowing 3D lettering.
Hell yeah. Best of all is a side room that’s been designed to evoke an 90s-style Polish living room. Featuring wood paneled walls and parquet flooring, the highlight is a wall unit whose shelves house treasures such as a vintage boombox, a groovy KK-628 calculator watch, the works of Terry Pratchett, a Pegasus gaming machine and vases of plastic flowers. It’s a living museum!
Smoke and Holba beers are on tap, whilst in the fridge find an array of crazy craft beers from breweries like Deer Bear (e.g. pink guava, passionfruit and nectarine pastry sour). True, at zł. 22 per can, these do not come cheap. Elsewhere, liquid amusements come via house drinks such as Robert Unicorn Attack (a non-alc. cocktail made using banana, blackcurrant and blue curacao syrup).
Back to the booze, and shots include Angry Bird (their take on the Polish ‘mad dog’), and ‘Multiplayer’ options such as Dragon Balls (raspberry vodka, mango syrup, lemon juice).
Yes, many. There’s a big screen for tournaments, and a pile of retro games such as Worms Armageddon and Deluxe Ski Jump. Exploring, find also a room for Guitar Hero, consoles strategically spread around, and shelves filled with board games like Talisman, Dixit, Catan and Neuroshima Hex.
Of course not. Popular with foreign exchange students, TEFL teachers, nerds, couples, girl gangs (yep, that surprised us), and IT types, the average age is probably mid-20s, but the atmosphere is such that everyone feels welcome. And really, if there’s one thing we love is that it doesn’t have the ear-piercing racket you’ll find in other gaming bars. On the contrary, it’s super chill with plenty of corners for quiet conversation while music from the X-Files pipes all around.
Honestly speaking, we thought this place would be a nightmare. As it turns out, it was the platform for one of the funniest nights we’ve had in ages. Quirky and amusing, there aren’t many places in Warsaw that share the same mood. Make that none – it’s extraordinary!
ul. Nowy Świat 54/56, facebook
(Photos: Kevin Demaria)