Geek out: A guide to Baton Rouge’s passionate gaming and comic communities

Emma Johnson still remembers escaping into superhero comics for the first time about a decade ago. She discovered them when the Supergirl television series premiered in 2015, while she was growing up in San Antonio.

Now, fellow readers will find her behind the counter at Louisiana’s Double Play, one of Baton Rouge’s locally owned comic book stores. Dressed today in a Marvel T-shirt, the bubbly, blond-haired Johnson is happy to share her enthusiasm for comic books with anyone who walks into the Sherwood Forest Boulevard shop. No matter where they are in their fandom, she’ll walk them through the shelves of comics and sports and gaming cards.

Emma Johnson has worked at Louisiana’s Double Play for two years.

Johnson, who has worked at Double Play for two years, says it’s wonderful to see fathers coming in with their daughters to buy comics of the same characters she felt represented her during the early days of her own fandom like Supergirl, Harley Quinn and the Scarlet Witch.

While her clientele at Double Play is mostly older men, she feels there is representation for diverse voices in newer comics, specifically ones that reflect her as a woman and member of the LGBTQ+ community.

“(Comics are) a way to bring people together,” she says.

Johnson is one of many Capital Region residents who have found community in groups and shops for gamers, comic book readers and cosplayers.

A recent LSU grad and aspiring filmmaker who directed a short film with local indie production company Chateau Rouge Cinema, comic books are one of her chief inspirations as a screenwriter. She says she often references Gotham City in her writing.

Located on Sherwood Forest Boulevard, Louisiana’s Double Play stocks comics, sports cards and gaming cards.

“(The film industry) is a very similar energy to working in a comic book store, of really loving what you’re around and loving talking to people about the equipment and camera techniques,” Johnson adds. “It’s very similar to the rants people go on at the store about their favorite characters.”

Across town, Robert Ross has centered his career around gaming.  As the co-owner of BR.cade on Government Street, he spends his days pairing pop culture-themed cocktails with a rotation of nine pinball machines and 30 arcade cabinets.

“It really brings people together,” Ross echoes. “That’s what arcades do; that’s what they’ve been doing forever.”

He grew up playing games like racer Pole Position and Super Punch-Out!!, a cabinet version of the Nintendo Entertainment System classic. He and his partners took over the former home of Pop Shop Records to open the arcade bar in 2022.

File photo by Ariana Allison
Cave Daughdrill, Casey Wells and Robert Ross opened BR.cade, pictured right, on Government Street in 2022.

Ross says the games at BR.cade are meant for both the novice and the pro who’s been playing since the ’80s. He takes pride in sourcing and restoring original cabinets from fellow local gamers and feels that making the systems accessible is the best way to pique interest in the hobby.

While attendees have to pay a cover to enter the bar, once they’re inside, the arcade games are free to try at no additional cost. During Sundays and certain happy hours, the bar even waives cover and offers free arcade play.

“(BR.cade) gives people a chance to find something they didn’t know they liked,” Ross says. “There’s people who had never tried pinball, and now they come in all the time and it’s their hobby.”

Mid City Micro-Con, the Capital Region’s comic convention, has also provided an outlet for gamers and comic fans since its 2018 launch.

In its first year, the East Baton Rouge Parish Library-hosted event was themed around platforming diverse voices in the cosplay space. The inaugural theme became the ongoing mission for the gathering, which doesn’t charge admission for guests or fees for the over 60 vendors it hosts, says Josh Hill, the event’s initial organizer.

After a brief hiatus this year, Hill is currently helping to plan the 2025 return of the annual event. Formerly EBRPL’s community program and outreach librarian, he’s transitioning to a new role as a data librarian, but says he does not want to lose sight of the importance of creating a safe space like Mid City Micro-Con for fans, young and old.

“I think the people that we’ve connected with over the years, that’s what gets me passionate,” Hill says, “whether it’s kids doing their first cosplay contest with some costume they made themselves, or a creator who has a booth for the first time who is nervous as all get out but they’re showing their comic for the first time.”

Local comic shops

Louisiana’s Double Play

2834 S. Sherwood Forest Blvd.

Southeast Cards & Comics

1152 S. Acadian Thruway

Gaming stores around town


3131 College Drive, Suite A

6401 Bluebonnet Blvd., #2012 (Mall of Louisiana)

Little Wars

7543 Jefferson Highway, Suite B

The Rogue Games

10330 Airline Highway, Suite 10B

Gamers Paradise

11222 N. Harrells Ferry Road

Game X Change

9450 Airline Highway, Suite D

Know a shop we missed? Tell us at [email protected].


Find your fandom

Meetup groups to connect with around town

Baton Rouge Gamers

This Facebook group, a division of the Louisiana Game Collecting Guild, welcomes members to buy, sell and trade with fellow gamers in Baton Rouge. Find it on Facebook

USS Corsair

The Baton Rouge chapter of STARFLEET, the international Star Trek fan association, brings together about 300 Capital Region Trekkies to exchange theories and discuss all things Star Trek.

Krewe Du Who

The Baton Rouge branch of New Orleans’ Doctor Who fan club gives Whovians a place to dissect their favorite depictions of the titular Doctor.

The Baton Rouge Society of Miniature Gaming

This group connects players of Warhammer 40,000 and other miniature tabletop games. Members of this group can share model painting tips and arrange meetups to play various games at Little Wars.

Screenwriters Down South

Have a script you just can’t crack, or want to find peers who live and breathe movies? This writer’s fraternity boasts more than 900 likeminded members.

Let’s play trivia

A multitude of trivia nights has popped up lately. Each venue has its own range of rotating topics, but expect themes about gaming, Disney, movies and more.


(Irregular pop-up; every other Sunday)

2963 Government St.

City Slice

Tuesdays at 6 p.m.

124 W. Chimes St.


Wednesdays at 8 p.m.

660 Arlington Creek Centre Blvd.

The Overpass Merchant

Mondays at 6 p.m.

2904 Perkins Road


Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m.

4225 Nicholson Drive, #101


Wednesdays at 8 p.m.

6353 Bluebonnet Blvd.

The Smiling Dog

Mondays at 8 p.m.

4215 S. Sherwood Forest Blvd.

How to find more trivia nights

Follow groups like Suspense Games and Let’s Get Quizzical Trivia Nights on Facebook, where you’ll find updates on themes and schedules.

This article was originally published in the July 2024 issue of 225 Magazine.