Time for some more location news! We’ll start with the good news first with another pinball-centric arcade opening its doors in Fargo, ND USA. Called Tilt Pinball Arcade, they are brining some pinball-only goodness to the downtown area. They don’t have a massive collection at the moment but starting small can work if other business costs aren’t high. That selection includes: The Addams Family, Big Guns, Bride of Pinbot, Comet, F14 Tomcat, Fish Tales, Fireball Classic, Fun House, Gorgar, Nitro Ground Shaker and Terminator 2. They use a membership system for 24-hour access to the location; non-members will have to make a visit on specific ‘open to the public’ days. It’s an interesting model and I am curious to see how it works out for them. Here’s an embedded video, you’ll have to pause/shut off any AdBlock software to see it or visit the news source here.
Here’s a news item from my neck of the woods, that later this year Gameworks will open a location in Salt Lake City at the Gateway Mall (separate link for The Gateway here). This particular mall decided that it was going to do an “open-air” concept in a city where it is rather cold for a good chunk of the year. Having visited it once in the middle of January, it wasn’t very pleasant to stroll around outside when it was 15° outside but its also a little out of my way so I don’t visit very often. To make matters more difficult, not long ago a competitor opened up a short distance away called City Creek that one-upped the Gateway by installing a retractable roof so that it can be open-air when its warm and feel like a standard high-end mall when its cold. They also brought in some big names so its been a very competitive mall atmosphere in downtown SLC for the past couple of years. The Gateway had a barcade kind of place there called the Skybox but I guess that closed and now Gameworks has announced that they will move into the space in the Fall of this year. We don’t know yet what the game selection will be but I’m sure we’ll find out once the grand opening is about to take place. [Gameworks website]
There is some Japan location news spreading about English sites again but as per usual, attention is given to closures when new locations opening there usually go unnoticed. Namco has announced that they will close 20 stores out of their 220+ locations in Japan, in part due to new consumption taxes that take effect starting in April. From some of the chatter I’ve heard, it sounds like this tax has a lot of arcade centers spooked. I imagine these 20 are the lowest performing locations in the company but it’s still unfortunate to see. However, Namco has just opened a new location over there a few weeks ago so I’m sure they can always open some old location if the market situation improves. (Apologies to the tipster, apparently I accidentally deleted the email with the tip as I was cleaning out some automated messages from the site so I can’t recall your name for the credit, but thank you all the same!)