(Pictured cabinet is not the one that was auctioned)
As an update to something I mentioned on the blog not long ago, that eBay auction for that official Fix-IT Felix Jr. cabinet has sold. I kid of course when I say it’s just a “mere” $20,000 but for those who can’t believe that this went for that much (I figured it would go for about $6000 but I was dead wrong), here is the current link to the ended auction.
So what can we take from this? One one hand it could be seen as someone willing to pay a premium for something that is essentially a movie prop. On the other, I think it shows the wasted opportunity the arcade industry had in working better with Disney to get something like this out the door in better quantities. Kevin Williams sent an open letter to the industry about that back towards the end of May this year but if any action was taken on that, it was done behind the scenes and obviously didn’t really get anywhere, unless you want to count the home console port (which would have happened anyways).
Now we don’t know how well these WIR cabinets did on location exactly but one trend that is out there, this year especially is that of the retro/nostalgic arcade. It’s anyone’s guess as to how long the nostalgia fuel will last but it is there and it has driven the success of films like Wreck-It Ralph. On the modern arcade side, we have not seen a lot of new developments that try to capture that spirit of classic games but it is there to a small degree. From what I can tell, games like Pac-Man Battle Royale appear to have sold pretty well and the one I have at my location has sometimes given my Terminator Salvation a run for its money. We do have some simpler classic style games coming along in the form of ported mobile games but sadly the prices on most these is out of whack, being closer to the latest simulator driving or shooting game than a simple and straightforward retroesque kind of game should be. I have increased the number of classic games at my location and they get played. No not as often as some of the new stuff but that is in part because people have been playing some of them for 30+ years and they aren’t anything really new. I believe that an arcade focused on classic type gaming perhaps would pick up some newer games that fit this bill – if getting a single one didn’t cost the same as filling up their arcade with 30 older cabinets. Granted, anything new is not going to cost the same as a used Galaga. Of course if we had something like NESiCAxLIVE or ALL.NET + Multi game downloading platforms available here, that could solve a good portion of this problem since it would make it very easy to get these kind of games back into arcades and give arcade operators of any type more content to enjoy that is fresh.
So what are your thoughts on this? Let’s do a poll! In fact let’s do two, one about the creation of new classic style games and the other about the multi-game download platforms. And please, feel free to offer your feedback on the yeah or nay about these ideas as I think that they are worth debating.