Archive for the ‘Arcade Growth’ category

Stride gum launches a Save the Arcades initiative

August 13, 2009

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[Thanks to everyone who sent this in!]

When it comes to saving arcade companies across the US, I never would have thought that a gum company would be spearheading an effort to save them. So I am quite surprised and pleased to see this effort that STRIDE gum is taking to save one of four arcades by running a contest where you can play an online game they are hosting and contribute your score to an overall tally that is tracked for each of the four arcade companies. You pick the arcade you want to support and your score is added to the tally. I have to say that in this age of big business bailouts it’s great to see one business coming to the aide of smaller businesses like this (especially where it doesn’t require taxpayer dollars to accomplish).

Two of the arcades that are on the list are ones we have featured here on Arcade Heroes in the past (ArcadeUFO and Game Galaxy) and I am surprised to see them on the list as struggling and I hope that all of the arcades on the list will weather the storm of the tough economy whether they win this Stride contest or not. At the time of this writing ArcadeUFO (which is in Austin, TX) is leading the pack with over 41 million points; the three other arcades in the running are Game Galaxy (Nashville, TN), StarBase Arcade (San Rafael, CA) and Star Worlds Arcade (DeKalb, IL). Naturally if you live close to any of these businesses, be sure to drop in and give them your support by buying some credits and playing some games. Don’t forget to get some Stride gum next time you have a chance to as well.

You can support your favorite arcade via Stride by going to this page and playing Zapataur.

[Help Save The Arcades With Stride] [Some press related to this - Kotaku / Gamewit] [Discuss on the forums]

Indie arcade game Get Outta My Face at SXSW

March 21, 2009

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We reported about the new indie arcade game Get Outta My Face making an appearance at the tech show known as SXSW in Texas a couple of weeks ago and now we have some pictures of how it went, thanks to the game’s creator, Will Brierly. The game even got a very brief mention on an NPR news show that was discussing SXSW. Will reports that “The games had a crowd around them for the whole weekend. I was truly amazed by the response!” A few pictures of those crowds are below, just click on the thumbnails to enlarge.

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Even Master Chief was seen with the game:

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Thanks to Will for sending us these pics, and we are eagerly looking forward to the upcoming release of this game for arcades everywhere to enjoy!

[Snow Runner Productions] [Discuss on the Forum]

Students in India start-up new company to make arcade titles

February 16, 2009

When it comes to places where arcades are bucking the downturn trend, India is one place that is making waves on that map, as we have previously reported. And perhaps thanks to that, arcade development in that country is also starting to increase, as seen in this story where two students spent all of their time building an arcade gamamachine for a contest instead of studying. They won the contest with a motorcycle racing game that used pnuematic controllers for realistic movement but when they couldn’t find a partner to create that, they went on to create a coin-operated type of kiosk that could easily convert any third-party PC game into an arcade title they call GaMa. Their first new game to use their idea is based upon T20 cricket (which is some sort of format for cricket adopted by the Indian Premier League) and it is currently testing at a few FECs in India.

It should be interesting to see how arcade development continues to grow in India. While the games we’ve seen come out of there so far have been made to cater to players in that country, I imagine that it won’t be long before we start seeing Indian developers making a push to sell their product internationally.   

[Full story @ LiveMint.com] [Discuss on the Forums]

Paul's Billiards and Arcade opens in Ocean City, MD

January 21, 2009

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A small new arcade has opened in Ocean City Maryland and even though it is still relatively small (with 2 pool tables and 19 arcade games total, which includes redemption and pinball) it has already gained a following with the locals. They even have an unofficial mascot, with a dog named Ralph and patrons are requesting more games, including a Nintendo Wii setup.

We wish the best of luck to the success of Paul and his new small business, it’s always good to see new arcades opening up because it has the effect that I have talked about before – the more arcades that are out there, the more customers arcade makers have to sell to, which sales should translate into more development and in turn more enjoyment for players who get more games.

[Info and pic via Delmarvanow.com] [Discuss on the Forum]

Paul’s Billiards and Arcade opens in Ocean City, MD

January 21, 2009

pauls

stinger11

A small new arcade has opened in Ocean City Maryland and even though it is still relatively small (with 2 pool tables and 19 arcade games total, which includes redemption and pinball) it has already gained a following with the locals. They even have an unofficial mascot, with a dog named Ralph and patrons are requesting more games, including a Nintendo Wii setup.

We wish the best of luck to the success of Paul and his new small business, it’s always good to see new arcades opening up because it has the effect that I have talked about before – the more arcades that are out there, the more customers arcade makers have to sell to, which sales should translate into more development and in turn more enjoyment for players who get more games.

[Info and pic via Delmarvanow.com] [Discuss on the Forum]

Article: Will 2009 be the year of the arcade?

December 13, 2008

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When this decade started, things weren’t looking terribly rosy for arcades. But they have held on thanks to a few companies sweating it out and continuing to bring us games; that and some lcoations have remained dedicated to their palyer base, importing if they had to and providing something that players would be hard-pressed to find elsewhere. While I still think that we have a ways to go, from recent news of different game releases and a number of new locations popping up all over the place (whether they are FEC or not), I think that 2009 is going to be a fine year for arcades overall, especially if the games we saw at IAAPA live up to providing a fun and exciting experience.

UK gadget website T3 has just released an article that takes an overall look at arcades and with ATEI coming up with the promise off showing off even more arcade releases for ’09. The article is very optimistic, which contrasts starkly with the standard ‘arcades-are-dead’ fare. They discuss many of the new releases that are expected to make an impact on the scene and they will also be attending ATEI and providing some coverage of the event there for more people to see.  Of interest in that article, we find our friend Kevin Williams of The Stinger Report making an interesting revelation:

The Stinger Report man teases T3 with talk of “a brand new concept in game platforms for public space in 2009” debuting at ATEI, “with the first ‘Game Gate UV’ cabinets on display that bring consumer gaming into a Pay-for-Time package.”
He adds that a number of major arcade players “have signed up to support a machine, which opens a brand new chapter in the amusement industries history.”

So has someone finally managed to create something like the Xbox 360 powered T2 arcade machine without all of arcadepic_4_w500those legal troubles? It sure looks like it (as you can see it pictured to the right there) but we’ll have to wait until next month to see what it is all about. If several arcade companies are part of the deal that is also very interesting news and it should be cool to see how it all pans out.

[Article: Will 2009 be the year of the arcade - T3] [Discuss on the Forum]

Virtual-Kade opens up in Kentucky with focus on VR and exergaming

December 8, 2008

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We’re happy to report new of yet another new arcade facility opening it’s doors to the public, although this one is a little different as they don’t appear to have any coin-operated arcades (except for the LightSpace floor, a device we talked about a while back but that is on freeplay) and instead are focusing on ‘virtual reality’ and ‘simulation’ type games. That also includes a number of game consoles  that are lined up along the walls that play from a variety of games they can switch out (which I imagine have to be attended constantly to refreshkadeavoid theft or the changing out of a game). It looks  like a couple of those also have a motion seat for the player to get comfy in.  I also think they have one of Trio-Tech’s 3D theaters although they do not mention it by name or show any pictures of the unit, they just say that it’s a 4 person virtual theater.

They also have some exerbikes with a game installed called Game Bike Pro. We’ve discussed something similar to these where an exercise bike is essentially the game controller. I hadn’t seen any amusment facilities pick them up until now so it will be interesting to see how they do outside of a gym.

Finally they have a game called Makoto – you stand in this area with up to two friends and there are these polls that have sensors which will light up and you’re supposed to hit it with a soft bat, competing for the high score. It’s an interesting game that I hadn’t seen before but in the brief appearance this game makes in the video below it looks like the sensors weren’t lighting up very fast.

With a refreshment area, golf simulator leagues, GLO Wii Bowling and a pretty cool environment at night they will easily reach their target market of college age kids. It would be cool if they got a couple of proper arcade machines   in there too but for now it certainly looks like they have enough to keep people quite entertained.

BTW – VirtualKade is located in Murray Kentucky.

[VirtualKade website] [News article about VirtualKade via Kentucky State & Regional wire] [Discuss on the Forum]


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