The arcade presence at PAX East

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When it comes to indie game development, one annual show certainly tops the rest in bringing the spotlight onto such games and that is the Penny Arcade Expo or PAX for short. The events of PAX East have been grabbing some headlines, especially the demonstration of an official sequel to Midway’s Hydro Thunder called Hydro Thunder Hurricane (Specular Interactive was not involved in the development of this title but a small independent studio was; Microsoft now owns the rights to Hydro Thunder BTW). But beyond the console gaming stuff, there was a small arcade full of rare games to be seen at the show. We were promised some pics of that arcade but as they haven’t been sent to us yet, I’ll have to point you to a gallery on Kotaku for now. (If we get those pics, I’ll update this post)

There also was this article on Wired.com covering the arcade there and in particular a rare laserdisc arcade game I had never heard of before called Us. Vs. Them. Released as a conversion kit for MACH 3 machines and programmed by Warren Davis who also did Q*Bert, Us. Vs. Them is a shmup that features action similar to MACH 3, with sprites overlaying video images that play in the background. It also includes a number of cut-scenes that pop in during each level, showing different people reacting to the battle you are waging against aliens overhead. I found a video of the game in action, not from PAX though.

Other rarities at PAX’s real arcade included Joust 2, Spy Hunter Pinball, Quantum, Leprechaun, and Crazy Otto.

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6 Comments on “The arcade presence at PAX East”

  1. twinturbo2 Says:

    Hydro Thunder: Hurricane looks awesome. Here’s the game’s Facebook page, with screenshots and video.

    http://www.facebook.com/pages/Hydro-Thunder-Hurricane/337059928238

    I can’t wait. Hopefully, MS puts up the original in XBLA or Game Room as well.

  2. Brent Silby Says:

    Nice! I remember Us vs Them. I quite enjoyed that game…particularly the two styles of gameplay. It was faster paced than Mach 3.

  3. BDD Says:

    OHH! Crazy Otto! I need to see video of that…

  4. Nick Says:

    All of the arcade games were from the American Classic Arcade Museum from FunSpot. I spoke to the manager Gary last weekend and he told me he was taking the truck down with 20 games. So I had a chance to play some of the games before they had them at PAX.

    The Crazy Otto hasn’t been seen for a few years. They took it out at the 10th FunSpot tournament and it broke down, I was able to get a decent score and because of that I’m in the top 10 on Twin Galaxies.

    Us Vs. Them was the final surprise game that Gary unveiled at last year’s tournament. They took all the laserdisc games and got them all on Daphne and now they all work great.

    Wish I was able to make it to PAXEast, but I had heard it was really crowded and most panels required you to wait an hour and a half to just get a seat.

    • ACAM Gary Says:

      Hi Nick,
      We never had Crazy Otto at the museum. This boardset is the property of GCC, the company that designed it and the first time we had ever seen it in action was last weekend. Are you confusing it with another game?

      Gary
      The American Classic Arcade Museum


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