Tomorrow I head off for Las Vegas to attend the annual amusement industry tradeshow IAAPA. This will be the first time I will have a chance to visit this particular show – I have previously visited other arcade-related shows such as AMOA and ASI but from what I have always heard, IAAPA is much larger than either of those two shows. I will be capturing pictures and videos from the event and I also hope to record a podcast at the show with Kevin Williams of The Stinger Report (which is one reason why I’ve been waiting to do another podcast).
UPDATE: I am updating a few things here with what I have seen so far. No videos or pictures to upload yet as I don’t have the right USB cable to plug my camera into at the moment. I have seen some VERY interesting things so far however.
As for what I expect to see at the show, here is a rundown of that in alphabetical order:
I did see a press release that made a brief mention of Andamiro launching a new Pump It Up Jump (PIU for kids) at the show so I expect to see this and some of their redemption items here.
I don’t see GlobalVR listed in the exhibitors so then must have decided to sit this one out for some reason.
GlobalVR has a booth after all, most of it is dominated by their new Twisted racer which I haven’t had a chance to play yet but graphically it looks really good.
While Konami will be at the show sharing a booth with Betson, I have not heard anything about the line-up of games that will be there. DDRX is something I expect and if we are lucky perhaps Metal Gear Arcade will be making an appearance as well but my hopes may be too high for that to be showing up already (even though the cabinet has been revealed and screenshots seen).
UPDATE: Konami is not showing off anything new – not even DDRX this time around.
IT doesn’t have a large booth from what I can see on the map but I do expect them to be showing off all the games they have produced this year including the new Golden Tee and perhaps we’ll see or hear something more about the new Silver Strike LIVE.
UPDATE: I haven’t had a chance to visit the IT booth yet.
We should definitely see Tank! Tank! Tank! making an appearance at the show and perhaps some of their other 2009 releases such as Razing Storm and Nirin. Whether we will see any other products like Dead Storm Pirates or another rumored racer from them, I’ll know tomorrow.
UPDATE: Namco’s was the first booth I saw as it’s right there when you walk in. They have four Tank!Tank!Tank! units and I got to play a round of free-for-all on this one. It is a lot of fun, the forcefeed back is pretty cool and the generous destruction make this a really good game. Not crazy about the price though.
Namco also decided to bring Dead Storm Pirates over which I haven’t played yet but I did watch some people play through some of the wheel turning scenes and it looks like they implemented that idea very well. It’s also a very colorful game, should turn some heads.
We already know that Terminator Salvation will be at the show and I also expect to see the new Big Buck Hunter Open Season there and H2Overdrive. Hopefully we’ll also see something else that is new that we haven’t heard about recently (last year they showed off American Idol at IAAPA which was canceled a couple months later).
UPDATE:The main attraction of this booth is Terminator Salvation, with four cabinets setup. They even have a full-size Terminator robot there which is a nice touch. The marquee topper to the game is very cool and should look even better in a differently lit room. The software on this is still in beta form but what they are offering gives you plenty of gameplay. It’s a sleek game and the best part about it is that you have A LOT of robots to blast. It almost feels like a Dynasty Warriors game simply due to the number of targets you have to mow down at certain points.
They also have BBH Open Season there, which I haven’t played yet but I was told that some people from the LA Zoo played the game and were horrified by Safari in particular. They also have Guitar Hero Arcade (with updated software) and H2Overdrive available.
I have heard that Sega Racing Classic will be at the show and if we are lucky I’ll be able to find out more about what Sega’s plans are for the game formerly-known-as-Daytona in arcades. I haven’t heard if anything else that is new will be there but I expect to check out Sega Card Gen (which was at AMOA) and Hummer std and some of the other games we have seen at other shows.
UPDATE: I didn’t see Sega Card Gen at the booth but they have plenty of other games there including a setup of four Sega Racing Classic machines, a Tetris Giant (not sure why it’s not being called Giant Tetris), Hummer standard, Hummer Deluxe, SR3 standard and deluxe and some video redemption.
I can’t find Stern on the interactive exhibitor’s list I’ve been looking through so I am not sure if they will be there or not. If they are, then hopefully it will be the first time they will have shown their Big Buck Hunter pinball to the public.
UPDATE: Stern has a very small booth with an NBA and Shrek pinball setup there. Haven’t heard anything yet about Big Buck Pinball
While Taito won’t have a booth at IAAPA they will have at least one game represented there at the ICE booth which we discussed the other day, Panic Museum. If something like Elevator Action: Death Parade just so happened to be there, I’d be happy to see that as well.
UPDATE – UNIVERSAL SPACE
One company that surprised me at the show is UNIS or Universal Space. They are a Chinese company that has an impressive offering of games at great prices and they have introduced a coin-op version of Cooking Mama at the show. It’s a touch screen fare that’s for kids but it’s in an attractive cabinet. They also have a very interesting game that controls exactly like Namco’s Panic Park but it’s in a sleek cabinet with a 46″ monitor for $4600. They also have an IGS game party game involving pandas but the name escapes me right at the moment. I caught a video of the booth and will be posting it as soon as I can.
I will be adding more later as soon as I can start uploading videos/pictures so stay tuned!