Archive for October 8, 2007

Impressions on America's Army

October 8, 2007

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I just returned from my local distributor and upon visiting their location I had a chance to give America’s Army a round. Since I am considering picking this game up for my arcade in a couple of weeks, I figured it would be useful to “try before I buy”. Not only that I was curious about this game to see how it played.

The game cabinet will be perfect for street operators – it has a small footprint but the overall design is attractive with a large marquee and good side art. The price is attractive as well, coming in at under $4000. The guns are green and felt sturdy although the recoil was pretty light. Perhaps that can be adjusted by the operator (heavy recoil guns in arcades always seem to burn out quickly). America’s Army is fun and reminds me of Area 51: Site 4 with the various stages of shooting activities the player(s) can participate in. Before each event starts, the Drill Sargent fills you in on what the objectives are and what you need to do (although the instructions can be skipped by hitting Start). I was able to try out most of the exercises, minus the Sniper Course. I first played the Point Man course and failed initially so I decided to try out some of the other events. The Shoot House was  pretty fun although I expected it to last a little longer than it did. Shotgun Training was a blast as well as a good challenge; Mover Target was probably the most challenging of the bunch that I played as you have to avoid hitting civilian cardboard targets as the enemy target paces along a track. I didn’t get a good chance to try out theaa_screen06.jpg Grenade Course as someone at the store began talking to me about my arcade although I noticed that it worked out a lot like the grenade launcher in Aliens: Extermination minus the fact that you have a longer distance to worry about.

Hit the post break to read more as otherwise this will fill up too much of the page!

(more…)

Impressions on America’s Army

October 8, 2007

aa_main_banner.jpg

I just returned from my local distributor and upon visiting their location I had a chance to give America’s Army a round. Since I am considering picking this game up for my arcade in a couple of weeks, I figured it would be useful to “try before I buy”. Not only that I was curious about this game to see how it played.

The game cabinet will be perfect for street operators – it has a small footprint but the overall design is attractive with a large marquee and good side art. The price is attractive as well, coming in at under $4000. The guns are green and felt sturdy although the recoil was pretty light. Perhaps that can be adjusted by the operator (heavy recoil guns in arcades always seem to burn out quickly). America’s Army is fun and reminds me of Area 51: Site 4 with the various stages of shooting activities the player(s) can participate in. Before each event starts, the Drill Sargent fills you in on what the objectives are and what you need to do (although the instructions can be skipped by hitting Start). I was able to try out most of the exercises, minus the Sniper Course. I first played the Point Man course and failed initially so I decided to try out some of the other events. The Shoot House was  pretty fun although I expected it to last a little longer than it did. Shotgun Training was a blast as well as a good challenge; Mover Target was probably the most challenging of the bunch that I played as you have to avoid hitting civilian cardboard targets as the enemy target paces along a track. I didn’t get a good chance to try out theaa_screen06.jpg Grenade Course as someone at the store began talking to me about my arcade although I noticed that it worked out a lot like the grenade launcher in Aliens: Extermination minus the fact that you have a longer distance to worry about.

Hit the post break to read more as otherwise this will fill up too much of the page!

(more…)

What We Are Playing This Week…..

October 8, 2007

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Think we missed last week, too busy playing Halo 3. Shaggy and I managed to hook up online and play some double team. Won the first 5 matches, then lost 3 on the trot, dammit!

Above, one of the many kills we racked up together.

[Discuss on the Forum]

Is it a console? Is it arcade? Is it legal?

October 8, 2007

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Now this is interesting, not necessarily because of what it is, but what this would mean if this kind of set-up was OK’d. Check out the video and read on for a run down of the machine. Also head to the Console Planet website for more info.

Personally I don’t see the appeal of putting £1 in a machine to play a game I have at home. At least with real arcade games you are getting an experience you can’t get at home; proper lightguns, proper steering wheels, and motion bases for example.

Also The Stinger Report has a big feature about the legality of this technology.

“FragIsle has patents pending on several technologies around the arcade style of console gaming which drive additional revenue through the cashbox, and beyond. Where arcades have had dramatic pains associated with console or in home gaming devices, we have embraced them and developed entertainment specific to the genre and social demands of a console gamer.

Featuring a high definition 42″ LCD screen in 16:9 aspect ratio is a requirement, and bundling with a premium sound system drives to the pulse of the console gamer. We also embrace their desired method of playing games with the standard game controllers. Sure, an arcade solution would seem to be better suited to joysticks, trackballs, and buttons. But one doesn’t need to look to far to see where this change had been attempted with limited success.

We further the experience by including a touch screen monitor to activate game play. However, this touch screen is much more active than just pushing a player button. Based upon Console Planet connected to the internet, this is the central location for maximizing the value to the customer, the location, and the operator. Those familiar with Xbox, Playstation, and Nintendo, may be aware of the large segment of competitive gaming or tournaments. FragIsle utilizes the touch screen as a player interface to participate in online game play, and a central location for tournament registration, payment, and recording of standings.”

[via The Stinger Report]    [Discuss on the Forum]

Space Ace HD coming this fall to PC, coming next year to HD-DVD and Blu-Ray

October 8, 2007

Digital Leisure has announced the release of Space Ace HD for PCs, with a release set forsahdpc_large.jpg sometime in 2008 to the new optical formats HD-DVD and Blu-Ray. Thanks to modern technologies the game has been fully remastered in 1080p, with a new 5.1 surround sound channel mix. Also improved (like with Dragon’s Lair HD) are things such as response time, allowing for a more seamless experience. All versions will also include a new making-of featurette with Don Bluth, the games animator and watch mode, where you can just watch the game unfold (in the correct manner) and enjoy the high-def experience. It appears that all versions will retail for a somewhat steep $50 with the PC version coming in November and the HD-DVD and Blu-Ray versions coming ‘sometime in 2008′.

What would be interesting is if they could release some sort of coin-op kit with the new versions in hand. I think having an HD version of Dragon’s Lair or Space Ace at the arcade itself would turn a few heads and provide a truly authentic arcade experience (as no matter what they tell you, playing games made for the arcade can never be experienced in just the right manner at home). Of course these games have been released on so many different consoles at this point that it’s probably known less as an arcade game by your average gamer. Digital Leisure also plans on brining Dragon’s Lair 2 to all of these formats sometime next year, so we’ll have to wait on that one.

[Digital Leisure Space Ace HD press release] [Details on HD-DVD and Blu-Ray versions] [Discuss on the Forum]


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