A common complaint I hear about new arcade game releases is that “the game isn’t anywhere near me.” It’s valid in many situations but in case you live near a Dave & Busters, then it’s becoming less of a phrase one can use. It’s not been a secret that Dave & Busters has been able to flex their muscle when it comes to promoting new arcade content across their 57 locations across the US. They served as a launch platform for Adrenaline Amusement’s Infinity Blade FX as well as Namco’s Pac-Man Battle Royale Deluxe. Now they are allowing players to experience ten new games at all of their locations. This includes redemption content like LAI’s Speed of Light, Benchmark’s Monster Drop, ICE’s Ice Age, and Jennison Entertainment’s SpaceBallz, it includes one video arcade title and a neat air hockey table we’ve discussed before. The game is Raw Thrill’s Dirty Drivin’ and the air hockey table is Barron Game’s Quad Air that has been skinned specifically for D&B. If you have a D&B near you then this is a great opportunity to get a chance to play one of these new games.
Speaking of Dirty Drivin’, here is a new review of the game that has already garnered a nice bit of attention, by Classic Game Room. He is going to be reviewing several other Raw Thrills games in the near future. also in case you have forgot what the Quad Air is, I’ve also included a video of that below (although at the time I filmed it, it was called Pirate King)
Actually as I was typing this I caught that CGR just added a H2Overdrive review to their channel. May as well share that here just ‘cuz.
Dirty Drivin is pretty fun I played it at my local D&B they even have a special if you add chips when you are there you get two rounds to play for free.
The only major thing missing just like H2Overdrive is Coin UP online connectivity. Even if just used for universal login at any onilne machine and online leaderbards. Of course true online play would be icing on the cake.
I haven’t been to a D&B in ages (wait for it: there’s not one near here) but the problem, at least then, was that you *needed* to be either 21 or have someone that was 21 to vouch for you, which seriously cuts down on one of the biggest segments of the audience you’d want to capture: teenagers.
(I live near Funspot, but the downside is, of course, that they care so little about their business–and I’m in that area so infrequently (it’s about 50 mins from here)–that I’m not making a special trip just to find out all they have is Galaga. Maybe you should get them on the Arcade Phone (shaped like a Discs of Tron stick), and get those clowns to actually, you know, promote their shop.)
Try Pinball Wizard Arcade. How far is Pelham from you? I’ve been hearing that they have been on top of getting new stuff in as well as plenty of great old stuff (and pins). They at least have a Pac-Man Battle Royale, not sure what other new stuff they might have though
It’s too bad Dave and Busters isn’t making a deal with Namco to promote Tekken Tag 2 in the arcades.
I would imagine something like Tekken isn’t exactly the first game people that go to D&B would be lining up to play, for good or ill (mostly ill, alas).
(I could be wrong, of course, but whenever I went there, it was always the racing/gun/dancing games that were mobbed.)
Anywhere that has a Tekken Tag 2 before the console release will draw players in like a politician is to tax money. After the console release though, that’s different. I know some Tilt’s got Tekken 6 in back in the day but AFAIK Namco is only quietly doing Tag 2, they are not pushing the arcade version at all outside Japan currently.
The TTTC2 mess is getting to be a bit of an embarrassment. It would seem that the test venues may have to turn off their machine as the plan for the US launch has been shelved for the time being, and they do not want any contradictory player data circulating (in other words they don’t want to repeat the SFIV scenario when the game earned good numbers when Capcom claimed there was not arcade interest).
This is such as mess that even D&B could not save it. I have tried to get a straight answer from NAMCO US but they are now avoiding answering any questions. Lot at anger out there – and we have no idea what the future holds for the amusement division in the West – they really need a plan!
Just lile Maximum Tune 4, Namco is really missing it. Max Tune 4 could easily become the top earning driver, but wait, we must be afforded the oppoetunity to prove that. Our checkbook has been ready to make that buy, come on Namco, the one thing we want from you we cannot have.
@Bill, I have been spending the last few years trying to see the situation from NAMCO US’s position.
MT4 would require the following to be applicable in the US:
– US translation
– US hardware stiffening
– US network unlocking
– US hardware certification
– US marketing material
I feel that without the network the game dose not stand on its own two feet. So the best possibility would be for a US specific ALL.Net version.
But lets be frank, NAMCO executives do not have the focus to look at what would be needed to create an installation of MT4 let alone TTTC2!!
You caould not be more honest with that statement. Namco executives are missing the boat, I spent a half hour pleading with them on the trade show floor in Vegas. Explained how their product could be our best video on the route. They could care less it seems. My gosh, in a time when it’s hard to push video product, I would be all over it if I were them. Crazy.
I have had to evaluate the Japanese operations subsidiaries over the years and am surprised by what I have seen over that time.
I wonder if there is a feeling by the Japanese executives to just leave it to the Western executives and take what you get as it is too complicated to understand how to move forward.
I use Konami as an example (and to avoid having the NAMCO guys complain). The Japanese at Konami left the Western planning to their US division team ‘exerts’ and they in tern depended on Betson to represent their product – and then were surprised when Betson spent their time pushing Raw Thrills and ignoring DDR!
I just wonder that when the new Public-Space scene matures what will be the fate of the Japanese factories US executives?
Well, a little chair rotation with those exec’s would be a welcome thing in my eyes. Here we are, willing to purchase video, even though redemption is doing so much better for us. But in video, it seems those few nich market games are what brings the players/cashbox. At one of our locations where we have four Max Tune 3DX cabinets, the players just turned in to me a petition with 332 signatures, stating they want version 4. I cannot explain enough to them, it’s out of our control. Tole them to mail it to Namco America. Speaking of, I have given up talking to Namco America. several phone calls over two months time ALL went unaswered. Completly blown off. Wow, great customer communication. Meanwhile, very little play on the other new American release videos of late. The one they want, and we cannot happily spend the big bucks to have one. What a joke.
Well your petition is not the only one being handed in by customers. I have heard of petitions for SFIV, for ID6 and for TTTC2 from loyal players.
You will end up having to emulate what the Japanese branded bowling facility (Round One) in California did and import your own machines and ignore the factories US representatives. I think they have a MT4 just installed?
That attitude has placed the US executives for the factories under the spotlight, and they are VERY uncomfortable that Round One can achieve what they had claimed to their boss there was no interest in.
If I hear one more executive claim there is “no interest in setting up a ‘Western’ version of their various network infrastructures” then I will explode. If they keep allowing the ‘traditional’ operators/distributors to dictate business, then they will all be out on their ear before the end of the year!
[Note – I use a little rule of thumb at the moment… the amusement trade is the only entertainment executive pool that think that the people who pay their wages are the operators/retailers… not the players/customers. Till they recognize the reality then the further this trade will crumble!]
I like the overall direction of bringing in these new games, i just hope it’s not too little too late. Last time i went to a D+B they had the same busted Derby’s Owner Club from like 5/6 years before… it still had players but obviously an update would replenish the player pool, instead you have an 8-seater with at least half of the seats taking up space (at least it seemed that way to me)…
i plan to stop by one in a couple of weeks though, hopefull we’ll be pleasantly surprised.
60Hz what you have noticed is all part of the East vs West. In Japan there is an updated version of DOC 2008 Feel the rush. But as best I can tell this version has not come in any translated form to the West.
See the link below in the comments is says there were no plans to bring the 2008 update to the US/Canada. Which is strange because most people that play are pretty dedicated and spend lots and lots of cash on thier horses.
@60Hz and Tom,
A little story, DOC was so successful when it came out in the West that some operators would pay anything for new card sets and spares for their machines.
A SEGA US executive was leaving the company under a cloud and asked to have the exclusive sales rights over DOC in the US – he started forcing operators only to buy through him and blocked any Grey Imports. He made so many people unhappy that even though the game was a big earner they boycotted the system for operation.
An example of what we have to go up against in the US / UK amusement scene – even when we have a success the greed of some executives will ruin the opportunity and sully the possibility to make big money!
Regarding DOE 2010 (last big update) with no US card sets, or ALL.Net link, it can’t leave JP.
That is an interesting story and its too bad things like that are allowed to stagnate the industry and that none stood up and said you are killing arcades by not allowing a proven earner. One of my friends used to work at a D&B and he would watch people come in and spend $30 – $40 dollars per visit and only play that one game. What other game gets that kind of play and this was without there being regular or more importantly online tournaments.
Another point you bough up is ALL.Net, what hapened to it in the US/Canada? It was released as far as I know for one one game Extreme Hunting 2 in 2006. But then it seemed to have all but dissapeared.
Specular interactive is an epicly godly arcade company, they need to make more arcades games, their racing games did very well, so they should make more driving games, most notably with supercars, import tuners aka NFS underground( NFSU arcade version sucked), or even Rush 2049 inspired. Nothing beats the experience of getting behind the wheel, feel like a action race driver and beating your friends in epic race competitions, damn good ol’ times!
I agree with you!! I love multiplayer competition!