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.
‘Relearning to Supply a Service – The BlazBlue location test debacle’ – By Kevin Williams
The situation was less than ideal – the final cabinet used was not a VEWLIX but a well worn 1999 CRT (none HD) system, with wonky audio and controls. The machine suddenly become overwhelmed by intense interest from frantic gamers making the trip especially to the basement venue to see the game – soon the cash-box was overflowing, and then…Bang!
Yes, you guessed it. After installing the machine in the worst possible cabinet for just over a day and the Type-X2 hardware was broken, partly due to overheating, partly due to over use of inadequate hardware. Hopes are that the board will be up and running soon but this is just one of recent examples of how the amusement trade seems to act as if they don’t want to survive!
It is in this climate that the fans seem to have taken the responsibility to offer the arcade gaming they want in a package they can play. In this new world we are now seeing ‘player run arcades’, and the direct approach of developers to get their hands on games circumventing the amusement trade! Where the trade dose not want tournament – we have player run competition generating big profits and publicity.
A situation where players’ demands have now caused a reverse in plans with Tekken6, now to be launched outside of Japan – seeing Japanese management countermanding their appointed sales team, who claimed there was no interest! This mirroring the weird situation of sales executives trying to stop players playing the game when exhibited, in order to prove a misguided opinion!
The amusement trade seems to have lived too much on squandering the support of the people that paid their wages – ignoring CUSTOMERS wants, and avoiding direct marketing opportunities. It is as if the amusement trade has lost the ability to support their customers. An ability it will have to re-learn quickly if it dose not want to become extinct!