Featured Official Tournament Store (OTS)

Paladins Game Castle

Curtis Lusk 6225 District Blvd #301 Bakersfield CA, 93313


With winter right around the corner, a warm and welcoming Official Tournament Store (OTS) is the perfect place to shelter you from the harsh weather. There’s no better place to find that comfort than with our November Featured OTS, Paladins Game Castle!

Curtis Lusk and his family love trading card games, and when he and his brother had seen an article about a game store, they decided it would be a fun venture. They started their first store in 2003 and “they didn’t know anything at first,” reminisced Curtis, “it was trial by error.” They moved forward through the learning experiences, trying to improve their business every step of the way. Through hard work and perseverance, the third iteration of the Paladins Game Castle is a gaming hub for Bakersfield, California.

“Paladins Game Castle host a number of ‘Learn to Play’ events in-store and at local conventions to draw in new players. They also encourage their judges to meet and greet new players and offer them a helping constructive hand with deck-building,” explained one of their KONAMI Registered Judges (Judges), Desmond Blackstone. “The parents here at Paladins always communicate with our judges and staff, ensuring their child is having a fun time at our events. In some cases, parents take a greater interest in their child's hobbies and begin playing as well.”

Paladins Game Castle’s focus is to be family friendly. Because multiple generations in the Lusk family were interested in trading card games, it was easy to foster a community modeled after family values when their own family grew up playing at the store. They prioritize a safe, fun, friendly, and clean environment so that their players can enjoy their gaming experience to the max. Because of this combination, everyone from children to parents come to enjoy the Yu-Gi-Oh! TRADING CARD GAME (TCG) at Paladins. Curtis describes his Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG community as self-nurturing, and attributes a lot of that to the relationship Paladins Game Castle has built with their players over the years.

“You should take care of your Judges. If you have Judges that are willing to put in the effort, it makes it a lot easier on you, and your store will be more respected in the community.”

-Curtis Lusk (owner)

By reaching out and showing how fun the Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG can be, their playing community consistently grows. Paladins Game Castle participates heavily in community outreach. They contribute to demo programs at both their local libraries and schools; they also actively participate in the school’s after-school gaming clubs. Between a welcoming community and the exciting Duels, Paladins Game Castle is constantly growing their player base.

If there is one key factor that has contributed to the success of their store, Curtis explained, “it is that it is really important to foster people into the Judge Program.” Becoming an OTS incentivized Judges in their area to become more active and help guide their Yu-Gi-Oh! community in the right direction. Curtis was adamant that “you should take care of your Judges. If you have Judges that are willing to put in the effort, it makes it a lot easier on you, and your store will be more respected in the community.” Paladin Game Castle is lucky enough to have a very activate Judge group that take a big part in helping run their events and getting the word out. Judges are a great resource for any OTS, and Paladin Games Castle is lucky enough to have Judges that are willing to go above and beyond.

Paladin Game Castle is an exemplary OTS. By really getting to know their players and promoting strong values, everyone is excited to get their game on. We are happy to welcome Paladins Game Castle as our Featured OTS for November!

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