Archive for April 10, 2010

Cool footage from an arcade convention in Chicago from 1982 (updated)

April 10, 2010

Long ago, arcade shows were much bigger than they are now, which was due to the arcade market itself being much bigger than it is today. What would it have been like to visit one of these shows at the height of the golden age? Thanks to some footage that has been posted to the internet from the AOE convention in March 1982, we  get a pretty good idea – many new games, ideas and tons of people there to check it all out. I haven’t seen any footage like this before and it makes me wonder how much more video from expos like this are out there. In checking on the website, it looks like all of this comes from a program in the 80′s called Wired In which covered different technological trends from that decade, which of course means we get to see plenty of arcade stuff.

Some gems you’ll see in the 1st video from the convention (Wired In #24) – a young and shaggy Eugene Jarvis(pictured right) checking out Robby Roto; an interview asking about how Robby Roto might compare to Pac-Man;Zaxxon when it was new;  Pac-Man pinball; a cool plexiglass cabinet used to show off how to switch games out(give me something like this with some LEDs to spruce it up further);  the dual screen setups used on games and more.

I can’t embed the video here but here are various links showing the whole event:

Wired In Raw #24 (Zaxxon, Robby Roto, Jarvis interview, Pac-Man pinball CVS,more)

Wired In Raw #25 (More Robby Roto with Jay Fenton, Pac-Man merchandise, a kids motorcycle racing game called Babydromo which is kind of cool; interview with a booth guy asking about Pac-Man Fever, showing off the small table-top Pac-Man games)

Wired In Raw #26 (More convention interviews, including a Garrett Vandenburg who talks about the science behind attract modes; talking with an operator about the earnings at an arcade back then)

UPDATE: If you search “Wired In” on that website you can find many other videos from them, including this one showing some people playing various games in an arcade back in ’82. Also here is one where they are at CES ’82 and 12 min in they show the Coleco arcade which was at the show with a pretty awesome setup. It’s a nice treasure trove of footage worth watching when you find the time.

[Via KLOV Forum post]

Sega location testing Let's Go Island at Club Sega in Akihabara

April 10, 2010

The only disappointment I had at Amusement Expo this year was I went in expecting to see an actual cabinet of the new Sega shooter Let’s Go Island and instead they only had a video preview of the game running on a screen there. The same thing happened at EAG so we’ve all been wondering when an actual cabinet of the game would be showing up. Sega has finally unveiled the new game at their new Club Sega entertainment venue in Akihabara Japan and while there is no video I can find of the game in action yet, AM-Net’s blog happens to have the first picture of the motion cabinet in all of it’s glory. The technology they are using for this looks just like what they are using on their new Hummer Mini-Motion cabinet (which we saw at Amusement Expo) and Kevin Williams of the Stinger Report has already pointed out that the game reminds him a  lot of Sega’s old Rail Chase arcade title. No word on a release date just yet but if the game is this far along then I imagine that we’ll be seeing it come out this fall sometime worldwide.

For previous Let’s Go Island coverage you can see here (Amusement Expo); (some game details) (EAG) (Game announcement)

Sega location testing Let’s Go Island at Club Sega in Akihabara

April 10, 2010

The only disappointment I had at Amusement Expo this year was I went in expecting to see an actual cabinet of the new Sega shooter Let’s Go Island and instead they only had a video preview of the game running on a screen there. The same thing happened at EAG so we’ve all been wondering when an actual cabinet of the game would be showing up. Sega has finally unveiled the new game at their new Club Sega entertainment venue in Akihabara Japan and while there is no video I can find of the game in action yet, AM-Net’s blog happens to have the first picture of the motion cabinet in all of it’s glory. The technology they are using for this looks just like what they are using on their new Hummer Mini-Motion cabinet (which we saw at Amusement Expo) and Kevin Williams of the Stinger Report has already pointed out that the game reminds him a  lot of Sega’s old Rail Chase arcade title. No word on a release date just yet but if the game is this far along then I imagine that we’ll be seeing it come out this fall sometime worldwide.

For previous Let’s Go Island coverage you can see here (Amusement Expo); (some game details) (EAG) (Game announcement)

Let's talk some virtual golf

April 10, 2010

Sega's Go Go Golf

Via

When Kevin (Stinger Report) sent me this particular link, I wasn’t really sure how to best approach but as it’s a pretty slow news day, I figured I’d take a crack at it anyways. That and the Masters is taking place and there is plenty of talk revolving around that mostly due to Tiger Woods’ involvement so let’s talk some golf.

Or more specifically golf simulators, which have been covered on this site to some degree before. This recent article which popped up on G4TV talks about some high-end golf simulators and how they have developed over time but it seems to miss the point – while there certainly are some individuals who could be prone to picking up something like this for themselves, golf simulators like the one discussed in the article have plenty of application in out-of-home entertainment venues. One such venue which is known to feature golf simulation is Dave And Busters; I have heard of some other FEC’s which also feature either a golf or some other sports simulator; as pictured above, Sega produced Go Go Golf for entertainment venues a while back; there also is a company called Visual Sports which has a simulator setup which has a version of their equipment which is specifically tailored to coin-op, Visual Sports. These also can be great for stores which sell golf equipment, as the simulator lets the customer try out the equipment in a virtual environment before they buy. And of course if you want to downsize from there we have system’s like Golden Tee, Power Putt, Putt: Championship Golf and X-Putt which do allow people to experience a virtual golf experience without plunking down thousands of dollars to do so.

The writer states:”more specialized golf simulators and games have been been developing almost in a separate universe from mass-appeal video games since at least the 1980s”. Which is true but why would they develop in a separate “universe” from mainstream games? Because certain media outlets choose to ignore them because they can’t be bought at a local retailer. I can understand the lack of appeal in covering simulators on a daily basis but there are plenty of perfectly good golf games which are routinely ignored in the same manner as their larger simulator cousins, simply because they are coin-op. Just because you can’t find these games on the Wii doesn’t change the fact that they are big business (especially Golden Tee) and have contributed to gaming in their own way.

You can see an example of what I am talking about this in the article as they link to a video called “X-Play’s Top Five Golf Games.” They pick five golf games and talk about how influential they are, all while acting like Golden Tee doesn’t exist. And whether you like GT or not, you cannot ignore the fact that it literally has millions of fans who have been playing it for 21 years. GT is consistently one of the top-selling coin-op games out there, making far more money for the company who produced it (Incredible Technologies) and subsequent locations who host the game than any of their top five picks could ever hope to make for their respective publishers. But to wrap it up, no one can make the point more forceful than IT themselves, who has already taken on that segment of gamers who ignore/mock/misunderstand the influence of GT in the past.

Aside from that what are your own thoughts on virtual golf simulators?

Let’s talk some virtual golf

April 10, 2010

Sega's Go Go Golf

Via

When Kevin (Stinger Report) sent me this particular link, I wasn’t really sure how to best approach but as it’s a pretty slow news day, I figured I’d take a crack at it anyways. That and the Masters is taking place and there is plenty of talk revolving around that mostly due to Tiger Woods’ involvement so let’s talk some golf.

Or more specifically golf simulators, which have been covered on this site to some degree before. This recent article which popped up on G4TV talks about some high-end golf simulators and how they have developed over time but it seems to miss the point – while there certainly are some individuals who could be prone to picking up something like this for themselves, golf simulators like the one discussed in the article have plenty of application in out-of-home entertainment venues. One such venue which is known to feature golf simulation is Dave And Busters; I have heard of some other FEC’s which also feature either a golf or some other sports simulator; as pictured above, Sega produced Go Go Golf for entertainment venues a while back; there also is a company called Visual Sports which has a simulator setup which has a version of their equipment which is specifically tailored to coin-op, Visual Sports. These also can be great for stores which sell golf equipment, as the simulator lets the customer try out the equipment in a virtual environment before they buy. And of course if you want to downsize from there we have system’s like Golden Tee, Power Putt, Putt: Championship Golf and X-Putt which do allow people to experience a virtual golf experience without plunking down thousands of dollars to do so.

The writer states:”more specialized golf simulators and games have been been developing almost in a separate universe from mass-appeal video games since at least the 1980s”. Which is true but why would they develop in a separate “universe” from mainstream games? Because certain media outlets choose to ignore them because they can’t be bought at a local retailer. I can understand the lack of appeal in covering simulators on a daily basis but there are plenty of perfectly good golf games which are routinely ignored in the same manner as their larger simulator cousins, simply because they are coin-op. Just because you can’t find these games on the Wii doesn’t change the fact that they are big business (especially Golden Tee) and have contributed to gaming in their own way.

You can see an example of what I am talking about this in the article as they link to a video called “X-Play’s Top Five Golf Games.” They pick five golf games and talk about how influential they are, all while acting like Golden Tee doesn’t exist. And whether you like GT or not, you cannot ignore the fact that it literally has millions of fans who have been playing it for 21 years. GT is consistently one of the top-selling coin-op games out there, making far more money for the company who produced it (Incredible Technologies) and subsequent locations who host the game than any of their top five picks could ever hope to make for their respective publishers. But to wrap it up, no one can make the point more forceful than IT themselves, who has already taken on that segment of gamers who ignore/mock/misunderstand the influence of GT in the past.

Aside from that what are your own thoughts on virtual golf simulators?


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