Featured Official Tournament Store (OTS)
Heroes and Villains Store
4533 E Broadway Blvd
To local residents of Tucson, Arizona, Heroes and Villains is a four time winner of Tucson Weekly’s Best of Tucson but to us, they are our February Featured Official Tournament Store (OTS)!
Heroes and Villains began its endeavors in 2003 as a dedicated comic book store, but as times got tougher they decided to add games to their inventory. Since then, the OTS saw a steady increase in demand for that category. “The momentum for gaming never stopped. We saw a lot of similar stores struggle through the recent recession. But somehow, our store continued seeing positive numbers,” happily stated the owner, Mike Camp.
With that kind of steady growth, Mike needed an expert to lead the charge, so he brought on Javid Sarkhosh. Adding the Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG was an impulse addition for them, but within a couple years, Heroes and Villains had made Yu-Gi-Oh! a priority; and that led them on their journey to becoming an Official Tournament Store. “The game [Yu-Gi-Oh!] added a positive effect on the store, so it was only natural that we integrated it deeply into our store and built a community around it…” explained Javid.
"... focus on the fun of the game versus the winning of the game"
- Mike Camp
Mike and Javid realized early on that cultivating a positive environment was necessary to their success and started to “focus on the fun of the game versus the winning of the game,” explained Mike. While there were some that didn’t seem to want to change with the times and the new type of environment being cultivated, the new focus helped their store and player growth tremendously. Slowly, the OTS saw their Yu-Gi-Oh! community flourishing as players began to invite beginners to play with them. Parents found themselves more and more involved with their kids’ gaming habits. “At first the parents would just leave the kids here. Now I see them learning how to play or actually playing Yu-Gi-Oh! with their kids,“ stated Javid happily. The OTS made a conscious effort to target families. “We realized parents who are heavily involved with their kids at our store tend to spike our sales!” said Mike.
Mike and Javid also attribute their success to the openness and dedication of their staff and the people around them. There will be times that their staff would stop in the middle of something just to show a customer how to play with a demo deck. “We never shy away from teaching someone Yu-Gi-Oh! the minute someone asks them,” explained Mike. This OTS has striven to change the community’s way of thinking of how the game is played. “While some stores may love the competitive scene, we try to teach our audience the fun aspect of Yu-Gi-Oh! and thinking out of the box on what they have versus trying to keep up with every Duelist,” states Javid.
From changing the culture of their Yu-Gi-Oh! community to the way that they approach their customers, Heroes and Villains exemplifies the best of our OTS community. We commend Mike and Javid for showing us what an outstanding OTS they’ve become and we are proud to honor Heroes and Villains as this month’s Featured OTS.