Archive for the ‘Location Test’ category

Seen on location test: GRID Arcade by Sega Amusements Europe/Codemasters

June 23, 2010

There is a new racing game set to enter the arcade market this year and this one is coming from Sega Amusements Europe and Codemasters.  It’s one console gamers may already be familiar with, GRID (or as it’s called on consoles Race Driver GRID). Thanks to a tipster who only calls himself Bill, we have your first detailed look at the game (we also contacted Sega first to ensure that it would be OK to go ahead with this as we had ran a post on this some weeks ago and were asked to remove it) as it was seen on location test at the Trocadero in London, UK. As you can see from the pictures, they are reusing the Sega Racing Classic cabinet, but have greatly improved the lighting to draw more attention to it. Here is what we know about it so far:

GRID features event based Racing – You chose and event and then chose a car from a selection of 4 per event.

3 Game Modes

Multiplayer – Quickrace

Single Player – Quickrace

Single Player – Championship: 3 Tiered competition, come 1st, 2nd or 3rd to move to the next tier. (Come first to unlock a special event in the next tier)

Many licensed cars to chose from including: Dodge Viper, Saleen S7, Aston Martin DB9, Bugatti Veyron, Pagani Zonda, Jaguar XKR

Real world environments including – Washington, San Francisco, Milan, Nurburgring, Donington

Full damage – Great fun in Multiplayer, damage is only visual and does not affect the handling of the cars

Reset button – puts you back on the track facing the right direction almost immediately so you get straight back into the race after a smash

I have not personally played GRID on consoles or PC so I’m not sure if it’s the kind of game that can just be dropped as-is into arcades or if they will be needing to change it a bit. I imagine that there will need to be some changes made and hopefully they are also enough to make the game stand above it’s console cousin. The addition of the arcade cabinet is already a plus but we’ll have to wait a little longer to find out more. Fortunately, we will have more exclusive information on GRID in the near future as it nears a release, with many more details(beyond the Stinger update below)

UPDATE: As soon as I posted this I checked the e-mail and Kevin Williams of the Stinger Report also sent me some additional information on the game(including a little hardware talk), along with pictures. Here’s Kevin’s deeper look at GRID

Name: ‘GRID’
Manufacturer: SEGA Amusement Europe
Developer: Codemasters

SEGA Amusement Europe (SAE) held a special LocTest for their in-house developed racing title – ‘GRID’; marking the first time consumer game publisher Codemasters has dabbled in the amusement scene – approached by SAE to license the game for coin-op. A location in London played host to two cabinets shown in a 70 per cent completed state. The prototype cabinets displayed were a version of the same system used to house ‘SEGA Classic Racing’ (now painted black).

The arcade version of the of the original ‘Race Driver: Grid’ – a consumer street racing game launched in 2008, based on the Codemasters ‘TOCA Touring Car Championship’ series started in 1997. The arcade version featured a scaled down version of the original PC game running on a new PC architecture created exclusively to run the Ego game engine (this was not the SEGA Europa-R architecture).

The popular racing game in its arcade clothes includes both a ‘Championship mode’ and a ‘Quick Race mode’ – with the conventional game cockpit layout including ‘Recovery’ button, Up – Down gear shifter and force feed-back steering.

The prototype colourful neon-light ‘blinged’ cabinets were networked for two player racing, and included a ‘Race leader’ light for the audience. The final cabinets are being developed by SAE, and will support six-player simultaneous racing competition (but with no online or tournament support). The game following in the mould of the last SAE release (‘SEGA Rally 3’ in 2008) – though sources suggested that a special deluxe configuration is being considered for release.

The game is expected to be released in fall of this year, though it seems unlikely that a Japanese release will be considered. However sources revealed that SEGA USA will be testing a US specific content version of the game (following the same track as seen with the SAE developed ‘Ford Racing’). SEGA US/UK hoping to make the squeeze on a crowded amusement driving scene, competing with – Namco’s still to be launched ‘Dead Heat Street Racing’, Taito’s ‘D1 GP: Arcade’, Konami’s ‘GTi-Club’ and to be launched ‘Road Fighter’, Global VR’s ‘NASCAR Team Racing’ and ‘TWISTED’ and InjoyMotion ‘Street Racing Stars’.

More pics by Kevin Williams

UPDATE #2 : AH reader RJAY sent us a video he took of the game from the location test.

Robo-Basho gets an upgrade, now testing in the Chicago area

March 26, 2009


In lieu of the robotic arcade goodness I posted about the other day, I am happy to receive a tip about one of the games I mentioned in that post, Robo-Basho(tm), has been upgraded and is currently testing in the Chicago area. v2.0 of the game features several improvements over the previous version that had been tested about two years ago and if testing continues to go well, we have been told that Robotic Amusements (creators of Robo-Basho) hopes to have a release for the game in place soon. As such I will put Robo-Basho on the list of Upcoming Titles for 2009 and we will be sure to inform you about when it becomes available for purchase in the US and maybe even Europe.

Robo-Basho involves two player-controlled robots (instead of the three used int he previous version) that duel against each other in a battle where you attempt to knock the other player’s robot over. It is a form of robotic sumo wrestling you could call it and the robots can get back up by themselves once knocked over.  Gone from V1.0 of Robo Basho is the rising platform and the console-like controllers – in are more arcade-like controls (which have been fine tuned to be more precise and simplified for players so that even small children can enjoy the game), better reliability, a big LCD screen for the scoreboard and a lower price. Check out the very short videos below for a better idea of what to expect.

[Robotic Amusements] [Discuss on the Forums]

Pre-ATEI buzz – Tekken 6 rumors and BlazBlue tested in Europe

January 12, 2009



In a build up to ATEI within the next few weeks, Europe has seen a location test of the new fighting game BlazBlue (pictured above), with a big turn-out of players only hampered by the fact that the cabinet used was a hatchet job of a CRT and other parts that gave up the ghost after hordes of players came down to check the game out. It’s good news for Europe that the game is coming to the UK and it should be seen at ATEI but if the effort put into the testing is going to use a converted cabinet instead of a Vewlix or something more official then it is certainly not going to help increase enthusiasm for the game. As Kevin Williams pointed out when he sent us this story: “when a successful opportunity exists for the amusement sector to save at least some credibility – it drops the ball at the last moment.” Location testing could be used to build the hype for the game in addition to seeing how a game will handle in the marketplace but we constantly see opportunities for such a thing passed by, with DJ Max Technicka being a notable exception.For Kevin’s review of the BlazBlue Europe debacle, hit the post break below.

In other fighter news for Europe, rumor has it that Bandai Namco will debut Tekken 6: Bloodline Rebellion at ATEI. This would be the second time T6 has shown up at ATEI and hopefully this time we won’t see another scene where players are arguing with execs over the game. Stay tuned for more info and discuss it on the forum.


More test locations for DJ Max Technika in CA.

December 24, 2008


This is a couple of days old already but if you live in California and missed a chance to check out the new arcade title DJ Max Technika then you will have a few more opportunities to djmaxaicatch it before it reaches it’s street release date. There are three locations where the game can be found on test – one at GolfLand USA in Sunnyvale (old home of Atari), one at Arcade Infinity (Rowland Heights) and one at Howie’s Game Shack (Mission Viejo). On top of that Michael Yum of PM Studios has confirmed for BemaniStyle that the game will soon be testing in New York although details on the location have not been divulged as of yet.

I am curious as to how many locations DJ Max Technika will end up testing in once all is said and done but it certainly will have made more rounds than many other arcade titles that we know about in recent memory.

[Via Aaron Auzins of BemaniStyle] [Discuss on the Forum]

More Konami love at the Trocadero – GTi Club location testing in the UK

December 24, 2008




We’ve been waiting for some more news on Konami’s GTi Club and it’s finally here with a location test of the game at the Trocadero in London. The Stinger Report sent us some ‘spy’ shots of the game in action and from these you can tell that it’s certainly running in HD and the cabinet itself is very attractive. I am still curious to know what hardware this is using but that information has not yet been revealed. Seeing how this is showing up at the Trocadero now however, I am guessing that this is one of the many new games we’ll have the pleasure of seeing at ATEI in just a few short weeks. Check out the thumbnails below and stay tuned for more!

gticlub2 gticlub3

[Discuss on the Forum]

UBeat testing at the Trocadero, London

December 16, 2008


If you’re going to be dropping by the Trocadero in London anytime soon then here’s something to keep an eye out for – Konami’s UBeat. The Stinger Report sent us some pictures of ubeat2the two units they have there but for how long they will be in place is anyone’s guess. The game should be showing up at ATEI however so if you miss it here then there is always another chance to see it at the show (along with DDR:X and CastleVania).

[Discuss on the forum]

Final location report on DJ Max Technika; release period mentioned

December 11, 2008


Phil Ver 0 on our forums has completed his location test report on DJ Max Technika. In the final report he talks about how the card system works and how that will give players access to more options and a leveling up feature, future additions to the game such as missions and online play and he talks about a few downsides to the game such as lag, you can just slide your finger to the notes along with a few other minor issues (which of course could be resolved before the final release). He also makes a few more points about the differences between this and Konami’s UBeat and how they might be received by US players. Overall it’s a good read and you can check it out by clicking on the link below.

PM Studios is looking to release DJ Max Technika to the US sometime towards the end of January, beginning of February.

[Phil’s final DMT report on the forums]

DJ Max Technika Location Test report

December 5, 2008


[Thanks to Phil Ver 0 on our forums]

The new game DJ Max Technika has been testing in California and thanks to one of our readers, we have information on how that has been going down. Now we previously reported that there are two machines testing in CA, one at an arcade at UCLA and one at a regular video game store where the owner knowns some of the people involved with DJ Max and so he pic-0342is promoting the game heavily.

Phil has posted his impressions on the game along with pictures on our forums but here are some highlights from his report:

What’s good about this game is how everything is base on a touch screen which presents many challenges for the player to get adjusted to. The player, at times, would need to have a certain technique in order to hit some of the notes, as well as good eye coordination because if you blink you might miss a note or two or three.

The Grading system seems to be the same with older music games with 5 timing systems of MAX (Perfect or Flashing Great), COOL (Great), GOOD (Good), MISS (Bad), and Break (Miss).

This game already have a lot going over UBeat and a lot better, in my opinion, than UBeat itself. I will bring more this coming Thursday with Pro, Cons and final thoughts and how will it do in this market

It would be interesting to see a UBeat and a DJ Max Technika game put next to each other to see how they would do, even though the games do share some striking differences.

Bemanistyle is also reporting that PM Studios (the company behind the game in the US) has announced some contests in relation to the UCLA location test which are aiming to promote the game beyond just a simple test. While I understand and respect the decision by most arcade companies to do low-profile testing of a game, since you need an idea of how a game does by itself, I also think that there is great value in high-profile location tests and that every arcade game should do them in addition to prior low-profile testing. One thing that we should learn from console gaming is that hype works. While I don’t really care for hype as it will often create incorrect expectations, hype + arcades can be a good thing for all of us in the industry as we all still have to deal with that issue where people think that arcades are dead.  It’s not just that – when it comes to console hype, most of that is generated by a few journalists who are paid to talk about games (and in some cases, paid to create hype) where as arcade location testing gives anyone in the area a chance to play the game and if hype comes out of that, I’d feel far more confident about it since it’s coming from players.

[Phil’s DJ Max Technika Report]

DJ Max Technika location testing in the US

December 3, 2008

[Via Aaron Auzins of]coinz

We heard that DJ Max Technika would be coming to the US a couple of weeks ago and we’re happy to pass along the news that the game is currently testing at two locations in the Los Angeles area, and there will be more location testing going on in other states and countries soon. The current locations include Coinz, which is at the UCLA Ackerman Union and Game Play, which is in Long Beach, CA.

I have found a little bit of feedback on the tests there and so far it sounds like players have really enjoyed the game. I do wonder how PM Studios will go about distributing this game but either way it’s great to see another company giving some love to US arcades like this.

[Discuss on the Forum]

Castlevania Arcade – Video & Photos

November 7, 2008

As promised, above the video I got of Castlevania Arcade and below the pictures that I took of Konami’s new game as well as the rest of the Hollywood Bowl arcade, which is a pretty good arcade as they go. They have lots of new games like Mario Kart GP 2, Sega Rally 3 and Silent Hill Arcade (although that been there for a while now. Other games on site where Deal or No Deal, Time Crisis 3, Outrun 2, Superbikes and Let’s Go Jungle. Definitely worth a visit as there is also a VUE cinema, Pizza Hut, Nando’s and a Chimchanga in the same complex.

[Discuss on the Forum]