Pau hana gaming


POSTED: Friday, January 15, 2010

It started off as an idea four months ago to help boost a usually slow Monday night of business. Now with the holidays over, two downtown watering holes restart in earnest what they hope will be a video game league that will grow in popularity.

Bar 35 and O'Toole's Irish Pub will once again invite teams of bar patrons to join them on the virtual field of play generated by the Nintendo Wii system, mainly using the popular “;Wii Sports Resort”; game bundle.

But since the league is still in its infancy and not officially approved by Nintendo, Bar 35 manager and league co-coordinator George Seabolt is erring on the side of caution by dropping the second “;i”; and calling the event the Wi Open Team Challenge.





        Where: Bar 35 (35 N. Hotel St.) and O'Toole's Irish Pub (902 Nuuanu Ave.)

When: 6 to 8 p.m. Mondays (practice starts at 4 p.m.)


Cost: Free


Call: 537-3535 or 536-4138


Bar 35:


Irish Pub Hawaii:




Speaking during a boisterous warm-up “;bowling”; session this past Monday at the bar—with players throwing their virtual bowling balls using the Wii MotionPlus accessory—Seabolt said that video game competition is the logical successor to other popular group bar activities like darts and billiards.

“;The competition will last eight weeks, with the team with the highest resulting point total winning grand prizes like interisland airline tickets,”; he said. Weekly prizes will also be offered. There will be three rounds of play of different sports games each week, like the aforementioned bowling, tennis, golf, etc.

With the help of O'Toole's general manager, Joe Felix, teams will alternate competition between bars every Monday until an ultimate champion is declared. Carrying over from before the holidays, the league currently has six four-person teams—two teams apiece from each bar, and two made up of employees from local advertising agency Nella Media Group.

By his calculations, Seabolt said that up to 15 teams could be accommodated by the two bars. He hopes that other bars in Honolulu, including Waikiki, will grab onto the video game league idea and join in on the fun.

With the competition beginning after work, Seabolt hopes professional pau hana groups downtown like bankers and lawyers will come down to the bars and start their own teams.

“;I think that the video gaming in this league, while it's in the spirit of competition, is just as much about social interaction and networking,”; Seabolt said.