Archive for June 2009

Sega releases a smaller HUMMER (arcade version of course)

June 30, 2009

hummersmall

stinger

While the HUMMER brand doesn’t seem to have a lot of like in it yet (it was being sold to a Chinese company last I had heard), Sega is squeezing a little bit more out of their arcade title HUMMER by releasing a standard version of the game housed in a Sega Rally 3 standard cabinet. This reminds me a little bit of what they did with RaceTV and R-Tuned in reusing the cabinets there but this is obviously a little bit different since HUMMER had been released with a motion base in mind. Who knows, perhaps this standard version will work out a little better since it will be more affordable than the larger deluxe version so we’ll have to keep an eye out for it.

[Via AM Net Blog] [Discuss on the Forum]

Looking to open up an amusement facility? This article is for you

June 30, 2009

In case you are one of the many individuals out there who are looking to open up your own arcade or other out-of-home entertainment facility, it is always helpful to read about the experiences that other people have had in pursuing the same idea. While every person will have a different experience in opening up their facility, there are a number of issues that will be encountered by just about every small business owner as they fight to establish their center.

The St. Petersburg Times of Tampa Bay Florida has posted an interview with the owner of an entertainment facility in that area called Xtreme Fun Center, which is owned by Steve McCabe. Steve discusses some of the challenges he faced in opening his facility (such as frequent hurricanes), what is was like transisitioning from a ‘day job’ to running a small business and more. In looking at their website they offer several entertainment options from laser tag, batting cages, an arcade, karaoke and more. Here’s a commercial for the Xtreme Fun Center and you can visit their website by clicking on the link below.

[Xtreme Fun Center] [Via TampaBay.com] [Discuss on the Forum]

Namco introduces the "Namucoin" payment system in Japan

June 29, 2009

namcocoin

stinger

When it comes to experimenting with different ways of paying for your arcade game, Japan certainly leads the way when it comes to introducing new ways of doing so. The latest payment system called Namucoin is a proprietary system that Namco is trying out, which uses chip embedded coins to keep track of credits, much like card-based systems as far as I can tell. The system will be rolled out in Namco-owned arcades in Japan, we will have to wait and see if they do the same in other Namco-owned entertainment facilities in other territories down the road.

[Via Gpara] [Discuss on the Forums]

Namco introduces the “Namucoin” payment system in Japan

June 29, 2009

namcocoin

stinger

When it comes to experimenting with different ways of paying for your arcade game, Japan certainly leads the way when it comes to introducing new ways of doing so. The latest payment system called Namucoin is a proprietary system that Namco is trying out, which uses chip embedded coins to keep track of credits, much like card-based systems as far as I can tell. The system will be rolled out in Namco-owned arcades in Japan, we will have to wait and see if they do the same in other Namco-owned entertainment facilities in other territories down the road.

[Via Gpara] [Discuss on the Forums]

Arcade Heroes Week-in-review podcast #3 (w/ Kevin Williams)

June 29, 2009

In this weeks podcast, I was able to figure out how to get a guest recorded and with that I had Kevin Williams of The Stinger Report on the program. We discuss a variety of topics that are either directly or indirectly related to the arcade industry in some way, from the death of Michael Jackson to upcoming arcade releases. This show is actually a little bit longer than the previous two so bear in mind the slightly larger filesize of 62MB

Click on this link to download the podcast

[Discuss on the Forums]

Parents file lawsuit over a Turret Tower at a Gameworks in Miami

June 27, 2009

If you have kids then one of those things you will worry about as a parent is them getting hurt. If you are a business owner and in particular an arcade operator, then you have to worry about kids getting hurt when perusing a game on the premises as you can be held liable in the event that something goes wrong. Such is the case with a Gameworks in Mttoweriami, where four different kids have somehow injured themselves on the machine in the past three years and now some parents are suing after a child’s leg was broken.

According to the article describing the injury of one particular child, somehow the leg of the child was caught between the chair and the card-swiper and it broke the child’s leg. I have seen a Turret Tower before but I have never played one and I do not know for sure how it is setup for taking credits and whether or not this particular Turret Tower is modified from the norm. It just seems slightly strange that there would be anything inside to allow for catching limbs while the game spins around. It obviously makes sense to have the mechanism for inserting coins or credits inside of the machine because stopping to get outside of the cabinet to continue can be troublesome (although the article goes as far as to say that it’s done to sucker kids into dumping all their cash into the game solely due to it’s position. Obviously they have never played TT as it’s not THAT great of a game) but what I would like to know is how common are injuries in Turret Tower machines and how many of those are due to a design flaw (either by the game or by modifications) and how many are due to user error. I’m not meaning to downplay the child’s injury at all, that obviously is bad but this game has been around for five years now and these games are tested beforehand to ensure that things like this don’t happen.

[Via Miaminewtimes] [Discuss on the Forums]

E-Spot Gaming Xtreme to bring licensed PC titles into coin-op arena

June 27, 2009

playglobal

stinger

At this past ASI in March, I finally got to take a look at the Game Gate VU, a coin-operated kiosk that would allow operators to place an Xbox 360 or a PS3 on location and they could legally place certain games in said kiosks. I do not believe that it is available yet but it already has some competition coming along, promising to do virtually the same thing but with a different platform – the PC.

Called the “eSpot Gaming Extreme”, this is a coin-operated cabinet that will allow people to surf the internet and play several licensed PC games from companies like Valve, Ubisoft and more. Initially they plan on having 27 titles available, including Left 4 Dead, Far Cry 2, Hawx, CounterStrike, and others. They have an agreement to include most EA titles on the platform, minus titles like Need For Speed and PGA Golf which are licensed for coin-op amusement with GlobalVR. Right now they are promising to distribute the game in Europe, Russia and the Middle East with the possibility of a release in North/Central/South America and Asia later on.

[espot Gaming X-Treme site][Discuss on the Forums]

RIP, Michael Jackson, King of Pop and Arcade fan

June 26, 2009

By the time you read this, you have probably already heard of the death of Michael Jackson, who died just a few hours ago of a cardiac arrest.  While fans will pay tribute to his musical career (which is undoubtedly one of the most influential career’s in music of the modern age), Kevin Williams of The Stinger Report has penned a tribute to the King of Pop that also focuses on a lesser known aspect of the man – his love for arcade games and in particular of Sega-made machines. In fact he even starred in a couple of arcade titles, one was Michael 056-05Jackson’s Moonwalker, made by Sega and the other is discussed below. You might remember that it was only a couple months ago when an auction company was going to sell off his entire arcade collection, but that fell through as he wanted to hold on to it. While he was embroiled in controversy in recent years, people will certainly remember him more for his music than anything else.  RIP MJ

Here’s Mr. Williams arcade tribute to MJ:

The sad news of Michael Jackson’s passing at 50 years old marks the loss of an influential star in the music universe – but also an individual that was shaped by his loves. One of his loves being video amusement.

Michael Jackson’s links to the amusement and attraction scene had been a constant, a love affair started when he was younger having been denied gaming when in the Jackson Five – never growing up, he started to feed his craving to play after leaving the group.


After starring in the Walt Disney 3D film attraction ‘Captain EO’, in 1986 (closed in 1994), Michael had followed the latest amusement titles having amassed a major collection over the years – a bone of contention as this collection was attempted to be auctioned, along with much of his property from the NeverLand personal theme park he created.


Michael had established a good relationship with key executives at Sega over the years, and it was obvious that they would try and put him into their games. He was first immortalized in the 1990 arcade title ‘Michael Jackson – Moon Walker’. A game with a unique style that continued the MJ cult based on the film of the same name, having his direct input in the development of the eclectic title.

However less well known, Michael Jackson was the lead character in the SEGA Advance Simulator-One amusement experience ‘Michael Jackson’s – Scramble Training’ launched in Japan in 1992/3 for the JOYPOLIS series of venues. The innovative AS-1 interactive simulator a unique game experience – in 1993 the game was re-edited with Michael Jackson’s removal.


At this time there were rumors of other games having been developed based on the Michael brand, but no others materialized and his involvement with the JOYOLIS venue (and Disney) was dropped, all this after allegations of abuse started in late 1993.

Whatever your feelings over his music or lifestyle – a major African American celebrity with an influence on video games has passed. RIP MJ


Galloping Ghost relaunches site, adds more pics of Dark Presence; also launches Support Your Local Arcades effort

June 25, 2009

darkp

In March of 2008, we found out about a new arcade fighter called Dark Presence that was in development by an indie dev studio known as Galloping Ghost. We have followed the progress of this game since then and it’s been a little while since there was anything new to report until today where the developer re-launched their website and has provided more screenshots of this game, which is quite different from other fighters out there today since they have taken painstaking efforts to digitize actors into the game, much like what we saw back in the 90′s but with 1000′s of more frames and in high definition (some extra details on what this game has can be found here). We’re still waiting to see how this game looks in motion as well as how it plays but GG is promising some in-game footage soon and when the game is about ready to go they will go on a tour around the US, showcasing the game at different arcades so people can get a hand on it before release.

[New Galloping Ghost website]

In addition to the new site, Galloping Ghost is launching an effort called “Support Your Local Arcades”, where the goal is to do their part to help revitalize the industry. They actuallygalloping_ghost_supports arcades have worked hard to list all the arcades in their area onto Aurcade.com (one of the sites you can use to find an arcade near you) and the staff at GG have gone out of their way to help their local arcades where possible, which is pretty cool of them to do in my view. They actually plan on expanding this idea into something larger that more people can become involved with, so we will let you know when that happens.

[Support Your Local Arcades]

[Discuss on the Forums]

Fascinating interview with Rusty Dawes, ex-Atari Games employee

June 25, 2009

rdawe

stinger

If you are like me and you enjoy delving into stories of what creating arcade games is like, then this interview is for you. Coinopspace has posted a raw transcript of an interview they did with ex-Atari employee, Russel ‘Rusty’ Dawes. Rusty worked on a slew of Atari arcade titles over his ten year stay with the company, including titles like I, Robot, Cloak & Dagger, Paperboy, Rampart and more. He discusses those games as well as some that never made it to the light of day, easter eggs that can be found in a few games and more. It’s fairly long but full of fascinating information that is worth reading. Hit the link below for the full thing.

[Rusty Dawes Transcript @ Rotheblog] [Coinopspace] [Discuss on the Forums]


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