Welcome to your gaming room; your private oasis from the organic, real-time world. Here, you can kick back, close the door and the curtains, and immerse yourself in thousands of virtual worlds that are all way better than the one outside that door. So how do you make the most out of your gaming room? Furnishings, that’s how. You don’t need a lot of furnishings in your little Fortress of Solitude, but arguably, one of the most important pieces you need is the place where you’re going to plant your bottom while you’re playing.
Seating is an incredibly personal choice. Your butt is going to be in that seat for potentially hours on end, so whatever makes your rump happy is the best choice for you. But, I humbly suggest that you consider multi-function furniture, especially if your gaming room may be pulling double duty as a guest room.
To this end, I present the futon. It’s a couch. With low to moderate effort, it’s also a true, lay-flat bed. What’s not to like? This rec room staple has been a hit since the 1970s, and with good reason. Let’s say that, for whatever reason, you decided to have a friend come over for some beers and multi-player time instead of playing online like normal people. Hey, whatever. You do you. After many bouts and many beers, your field sobriety test tells your friend that driving himself home at this hour is probably not a good idea. So, where’s your friend sleeping? All spooned up with you in your bed? Heck no! After a few artful twists, turns, and curse words, you and your inebriated friend have turned the couch you were sitting on all night into a reasonably comfortable bed! Sleep tight, buddy.
But how do you choose the right futon for your gaming room? Good question. In most cases, the futon chooses you. Think about it. Has anyone ever actually bought a futon for themselves? Or were they all just gifted whenever someone moved out of a dorm room? It’s like the fruitcake of furniture.
If you do somehow find yourself in the position of wanting to buy a futon, there are a few things to look out for.
First, obviously, is the price. This is going to be a piece that you’re going to spend a lot of time on. Whether you’re sitting on it or sleeping on it, you’re going to want to invest in a piece that will hold up to extended use. While the most expensive futon you can buy isn’t necessarily going to be the best futon, it’s probably a safe bet that it’ll be better than the bargain basement option. Your time is as valuable as your money, so wasting it on looking at cheap futons you’re going to hate isn’t going to help anyone. Start at the mid-range for your budget and work your way up from there. Your butt will thank you.
The second most important thing to look for is comfort. Futon mattresses are notoriously thin, lumpy and generally uncomfortable. This is less of an issue if you’re younger, but with the Nintendo Generation getting uncomfortably close to middle age, finding a futon with a nice, thick, supple mattress is going to make that last hour you have left in your day after the kids go to sleep that much more pleasant. You also want to watch out for metal frames. Many a colorful turn of phrase has been uttered when an already aching head has suddenly and violently met with the unyielding metal arm of a futon.
Third, ease of operation. Though it’s convenient to have a piece of furniture that is both couch and bed, in most cases, it’s a little bit of a chore to make the darn thing change from one state to the other and back. The couch to bed conversion also gets exponentially more difficult as the number of beers in the case decreases over the course of the evening. Flipping, folding, pressing little buttons that always pinch your fingers. Who needs that? What’s true for cars is also true for futons – fewer bells and whistles means less hassle in the long run. When shopping, look for the simplest mechanism to convert your sofa to a bed that you can find. Drunk you will greatly appreciate it. For the truly lazy, there are even motorized futons on the market these days that convert with the touch of a button.
Other than that, it’s a matter of personal preference, taste and style. Surprisingly, there are a lot of options available to fit many different types of décor. If you haven’t inherited one, there’s a futon out there for you. Good luck on your quest.