Posts Tagged ‘games’

ABC’s Favorite Reads 2013, part 6: Pleun, Jouke, Tiemen

Thursday, December 19th, 2013

It’s my favorite part of the blogging year: our favorite reads! The ABC staff has looked through all the books and magazines they’ve read over the past year, or games they played, or stationery they used, and picked out their top 5 (or 4, or 8). Every single item in these posts comes highly recommended, and we hope to add some ideas to your 2014 reading list.

Of course, we always love reading tips ourselves, too, and so we hope you will send in YOUR favorite reads of 2013 to us. They don’t have to be books published in 2013, just read in 2013. Please mail your Top 5 (and why these books were so good) to by December 31st, and don’t forget to include your home address so we can send you an ABC gift certificate in the new year as a thank you. As has become a tradition, your Top 5s will be published in January.

This sixth Favorite Reads post comes courtesy of



ABC’s Gift Ideas: Non-Books

Friday, November 15th, 2013

The gift-giving season is upon us – hooray!

The ABC Staff has rummaged through their sections and order lists, and come up with another year’s worth of wonderful gift ideas for you: from fiction to history to cookbooks to children’s books to travel to non-books and onwards.

In a series of blog posts and recommendation lists throughout the coming month, you will find what we think will make great gifts, whether you celebrate Sinterklaas, Christmas or just like giving books to people. And since we’re a bookstore, these posts will be alphabetical by subject. :-)

Today you’ll find gift ideas for some of the Non-Books we carry, such as Games, Calendars, Stationery, Magazines, Audio Books and other Merchandise, as picked out by section buyers Ester, Simone, Jouke, Agnes and Sophie. Bear in mind that this is just the tip of the iceberg – come to either one of our stores to browse many, many more titles in any of these subjects.

We are ready as ever to be your personal shoppers again this year, and hope you will find our selections useful and inspiring!

You can find our gift ideas from previous years here (scroll down a bit pas 2013), and be sure to have a look at our ABC Favorites, too.


Magic the Gathering tournament at ABC Treehouse on May 26th!

Friday, May 17th, 2013

ABC is hosting another official Magic the Gathering tournament on May 26th: The Two-Headed Giant sealed deck battle!

You’ll be playing with the three sets from the Retun to Ravnica Block: Dragon’s Maze, Gatecrash and Return To Ravnica.

Players sign up in pairs of two. Every 2-headed team receives 8 boosters so you are able to make two decks of 40 cards. Your team will play against a different two-headed team every round. You’ll be playing four rounds.

Per team we’ll enter 4 boosters in a prize pot. We’ll have some goodies to give away as well.

The ABC Treehouse opens at 11.30. The Tournament will start at 12.00.

  • Date: Sunday, May 26th
  • Place: ABC Treehouse, Amsterdam
  • Time: 12 – 18.30 hrs
  • Cost: € 35,- per team
  • Special Note: Please reserve your team spot by making a reservation (here, top of the page, right) and please include your DCI number if you have one in the extra info section.
  • Contact info: Jitse Verwer, 020-6255537

It will be fun, so  join us for another Sunday full of Magic!

To read more on the Two Headed Giant format, click here.

Gift Ideas: Graphic Novels, Manga, Art, Games

Tuesday, November 13th, 2012

Let us be your personal shoppers!

ABC’s booksellers don’t just sell books: as well as being voracious readers, almost all ABC staff members are personally responsible for buying the books for one or more sections in the stores. That means you’ll always find someone who can put exactly the right book in your hands when you need it. We asked our buyers for their tips for the best gifts for the upcoming holiday season, and they came up with some great ones: new books, classic books, magazines, games, merchandise, and stationery.

Today you’ll find gift ideas for Graphic Novels & Comics, Manga, Art and Games as supplied by Ester, Martijn, Jitse and Jouke.

Even more gift ideas can be found here and here!


Staff Review: Extra Lives: Why Video Games Matter by Tom Bissell

Thursday, March 29th, 2012

I just finished reading Extra Lives: Why Video Games Matter by Tom Bissell. It is a curious book: part gamer memoir, part behind-the-scenes interviews at various game studios and part ponderance on the medium of video games. Bissell’s love of video games is obvious and infectious and his reminisces about playing various games are entertaining. The fun of games is obviously primarily in the playing, but there is also satisfaction to be found in analyzing how they work and why they affect you in the way they do. I am not sure that Bissell answers the question he references in the title though, and the various chapters don’t form a whole that is greater than its parts. Anyone not already interested in games is unlikely to be converted by this book, but then again: these people would not be reading the book to begin with. Gamer enthusiasts who pick up Extra Lives will likely smile in recognition at well-worded observations, but are unlikely to learn anything new.

Being a writer, Bissell is mostly fascinated by the narrative possibilities and limitations of video games. You can tell a beautifully crafted, carefully paced story, but this will tend to severely limit the freedom the players have to create their own experience. The more you allow them to shape their own narrative, the more unforeseen variables come into play, meaning you have to loosen your grip on plotting and pacing. There is an ever-present tension between narrative control and player-induced chaos. The book doesn’t provide a solution to this conundrum, as there doesn’t seem to be one. Still, it is an interesting topic which resurfaces a few times and is discussed at length.

Conclusion: if you are a gamer who has a candle or flashlight at hand during a power outage, this is a very good book to keep you busy until you can fire up your pc or console again.

Staff Review by Steven

If you want to read more reviews by Steven (not just of books, but also of movies, games, and more), visit his blog