After three years of hard work and investment things started to look bright.
We managed to turn a lowly local dive bar in Zagreb, Croatia, into a haven where gamers can play for hours without being charged for or harassed, where there were more often talk about DnD or GURPS games than sports, popular movies and TV shows discussed, birthday parties celebrated and bachelor/ette parties thrown, where quizzes about superheroes and boy wizards were being held and many tournaments took place, from Pokemon Go and Overcooked to Mortal Kombat and Tekken.
We became the place where like-minded community came together and thrived. New friendships were being made, new player groups formed, new ideas came to being, new businesses started.
Perhaps even a new romantic relationship or two, we hope, because the Black Cat Caffe is a kind of a place where you could find a soulmate if you were a fan of books, movies, TV series and games in any form imaginable.
We have even hosted one of the biggest LARP conventions in this part of Europe and were getting ready to do so much more.
And then the plague struck.
Just like many other bars, restaurants and alike establishments, our Black Cat Caffe was closed down for business starting March 19. Our revenue stream went to zero virtually overnight. It is uncertain for how long the COVID-19 lockdown will last. Croatian government has floated cautiously June as a possible deadline but it is far from certain.
We can not hold out that long. The Croatian government has issued a relief programme to help business retain employees. It will help us greatly but unfortunately won't be enough to keep our business afloat. We are still looking for any options that will help us survive this crisis and keep our community together.
We are ready to fight tooth and nail but we’re precariously near the end of our rope. The beacons are lit.
We’re asking you, our fellow players and gamers, our geek and nerd brothers and sisters, all of you who feel they belong to this tribe of imagination, creativity and untold wonders, to come to our aid in this time of need.
Please donate as much as you can and help spreading the word. Every little contribution will help. We will appreciate it and remain eternally grateful.
Here’s what we offer in return. Perks are transferable so consider giving them as a gift, too.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who are you guys?
Oh, right. Yes. Hello! We’re Lucija, Matija, Miroslav and Vatroslav, a team of live action role-playing designers called the Terrible Creations, stationed at Zagreb, Croatia, European Union. Our good friend and one of the Terrible Creations’ co-founders Noel Basa, now a resident of Ireland, has graciously offered help to make this project come alive.
By a peculiar turn of events in 2017 we took over a local dive bar Crni mačak (The Black Cat Caffe) at the Podolje 10 street in Zagreb. Since then, with a lot of love and hard work, we have turned it into a unique haven for people who - just like us - love games, books, TV shows, movies, creativity and playfulness in general.
Why are you doing this?
Because we need help to keep our business going. We are still exploring all possible avenues and will continue to do so but so far we’ve exhausted almost all our own resources and reserves. We have cut all the costs we could but have no revenue stream at this point and won’t have it for the foreseeable future.
We want to keep our essential and invaluable staff and our suppliers, to be able to keep rent and utilities bills. And last but not least - to be ready for you, our friends and customers, once things get back to normal.
How can I help?
You can, of course, choose to pay for any or multiple perks we’re offering with this campaign. Every donation will be greatly appreciated. But it would also help us if you spread word about the campaign in any way you can and invite your friends, relatives and co-workers who can chip in to do so.
And, of course, you are all very welcome to come to the Black Cat Caffe once we’re open for business again, bring your friends and have a bunch of drinks and a good time.