In North America, our winter nightmare has come to a close with Spring finally here. For the arcade business, in my particular situation, that has seen the typical slowdown that occurs when people can go out and do activities they were not able to do for the past several months. For news, I suddenly have a ton of stuff to share today!
Amusement Expo 2015 – I will find myself at another arcade trade show this next week, the annual Amusement Expo held in Las Vegas, NV. Among games we know will be there: Time Crisis 5, Jurassic Park Arcade, Big Buck HD Wild, Star Wars Battle Pod, and Allied Tank Attack v.3. I have a hunch that Raw Thrills will have a new motorcycle racing game to show that I heard about last year (but have not seen any photos/videos of) but beyond that I am not sure what new video games we will see. We will certainly see new videmption content, which may or may not get a general release (like BattleShip last year). Stay tuned to the AH Youtube channel later next week for videos from the event!
Pink Panther Jewel Heist – Thanks to Jdevy for the tip on this. The Youtube channel Arcade Warrior came across a location test for a new ICE videmption game that is based on old Pink Panther cartoons. The gameplay is very similar to some game styles I have seen on retro consoles where you have to run between holes in the moving levels to reach the bottom without getting stuck at the top. In the case of this game, it has a lazer you have to be on the look out for. I imagine we will see this at Amusement Expo as well.
Up-Down Arcade Coming Soon To Kansas City – (Thanks to Kent Fund for the tip) – Pitch.com has an article looking at the development of a new arcade/bar location in Kansas City, MO. Called Up-Down Arcade, it looks like they are going the classic game route and will have a decent sized space (3300 sq. ft. for the “main room”). No complete game roster exists yet but they do have a location in Des Moine, IA (pictured below) so I imagine that it will be similar, with a mixture of 80s/90s video games and pinball. At the moment they are busy sorting out the location build and hope to open in late April or early May. We wish the best of luck to them in the process!
Safari Ranger Rising On The Charts – UNIS sent out a release to spotlight their new Safari Ranger videmption game, which we have covered on the blog in the past. With the game out in the wild, it is reportedly is beating out the super hot videmption game in the industry, Fishbowl Frenzy at one location in Florida (I say super hot as apparently there is a backorder of 1000+ units on FF due to impressively high demand). I always find it interesting to see what it is that people are playing although the cost per play is different between the two and SR has 4-player ability, which is always a bonus. As I have no redemption in my location (a KeyMaster excepted), my top game week-in and week-out is Fast And Furious Super Cars.
First Whoa Nellie! Pinball off the assembly line – Showing the proof that the game is “immediately available”, here is a video from Stern Pinball showing the first EM-style pinball game they have done in years roll off the line:
Narerunda Kamen Rider Driver Arcade Released In Japan – When JAEPO 2015 hit I had only read about this in title only and didn’t really know what it was about. Now that Bandai Namco has released it in Japan this week, they have a promo trailer which shows it off. It is a pretty neat kids concept, using motion capture and graphics overlays onto the player, making it an Augmented Reality game. The only thing that seems to be awkward about it is the viewing angle but otherwise I imagine that kids would love this game.
Cineplex Starburst and Brady Join Forces – We don’t really get into distribution stuff on the blog here but there has been *a lot* of talk within the industry about Brady Distributing over the past couple of years as they try and sort out their financial troubles. Around EAG 2015, word on the street was that Betson was going to buy them out but that deal fell through and instead Brady has gone to Canadian distributor Cineplex Starburst to merge. It is too early to say how this will shake out for the industry at large but it sounds like few, if any, jobs will be lost in the transition.
New Ghost Squad Guy Video – It has been a while since we have seen something from “Ghost Squad Guy” and as videos of him seem to get copied and reshared a lot it can be difficult to find the original source but it is always fun to watch him act these scenes out. We need Ghost Squad Guy holograms for every arcade out there to drive traffic 😛
Name That Game #40 – From last week’s games, I actually have never played Brave Firefighters although I certainly have known of it and I haven’t seen one at an arcade in years. The other two games were a bit mroe obscure, especially the last one. 😉