JACKSON TWP.  Crit Hit Gaming on Portage Avenue Northwest sent gamers of all ages back to school in style after hosting its first ever Back To School SMASH! which included free-to-play gaming time on Aug. 17. The event was open to students and adults for video game play.

A few days before most students in the area returned to school, Crit Hit owners Jason Pratt and Rebecca Lustig decided they wanted to send all their gamer fans back to school with one big smash. They came up with the idea for a Saturday night filled with playing video games for free from 6 p.m. to midnight.

“We really wanted to offer students and gamers of all ages an opportunity to come in and get to know the center and spend the evening playing video games,” Lustig said. “We have close to a full house tonight and we hope everyone has a great time.”

Crit Hit Gaming, Stark County’s only video game LAN Center, opened its doors in late January 2019. There are 24 cutting edge gaming computers for hourly rental, loaded with 25 of the most popular video games. Lustig said she and her husband and business partner are avid gamers and decided to open the center to meet the demands of the current generation of gamers.

It also offers six additional gaming computers in a private room, for Esports practice, parties and more. Lustig said gamers can enjoy Esports tournament broadcasts which are offered daily. They are also offering High School Esports.

Gamers can rent by the hours starting at $6 and will receive a price break for multiple hours or they can select from all day rates.  There is also a loaded snack bar, with a variety of low-priced snacks and beverages to help gamers refuel in between games. There is also a lounge area with two televisions for esports and there is a Nintendo Switch set up in the Retro Esports Lounge for Super Smash Brother Ultimate free play and a NES for some nostalgic free play.

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