I hope that everyone is having a good weekend so far, loaded with arcade goodness if at all possible. Let’s get to our news:
Rocket Amusements Launches First Game, Crazy Claw – We see many stories of new arcade venues opening their doors but the news of a new developer or manufacturer comes along with much less frequency. Still, there is a solid market for new arcade games to be sold to and with that here is new of a new company that has opened their doors in Texas by the name of Rocket Amusements.
Founded by industry veteran Ron Siller, he brings experience from operating arcades to doing sales and marketing at Nichibutsu’s USA division in the 80s and more. So far their website is not packed with information and they have a single product to show off, a new concept for videmption gaming called Crazy Claw. As the name implies, this is a video claw machine (purporting to be the world’s first) that sports a 55″ HD screen and support for simultaneous 2 player action. As the page promoting it on their website shows, they also have a lot of operator features in mind for it including easy access features, “super duty components” and thumb drive or internet update features. You can watch embedded videos there (I tried to embed here but the site didn’t like the file). As this picture here shows, at least one FEC-looking location has the game on-site and perhaps we’ll see more at IAAPA 2015 a month from now. [Rocket Amusements Website]
ESPN’s Sarah Spain Hosting The 2015 Big Buck World Championships – As the first eSports event in the arcade industry, the Big Buck World Championships have been carving out their spot for that market for a few years now. The cash prizes have been getting bigger along with the general pool of players. This year, the cash pot is up to $75,000, making this the biggest and most lucrative arcade tournament someone can compete in on the planet. Adding to the prestige of the event is the addition of a TV personality from the ESPN Network, Sarah Spain, who will be the Official Emcee for the event. If you are not familiar with her, check out this link for a bio; this link has the PR that showcases her part in the event. The 2015 Big Buck World Championship will take place on October 23rd and 24th. If you can’t make it to the event, you can watch it live at twitch.tv/bigbuckhd. I won’t be able to attend as my money needs to be saved for IAAPA 2015.
UNIS IAAPA Line-Up Unveiled – Speaking of IAAPA, Universal Space (UNIS) is the first manufacturer I have seen to unveil their line-up for that trade show, which is just about a month away now. They are not taking any pure video games like last year with Armed Resistance, with the focus continuing on their strong line-up of redemption and kids games. One of the more interesting products they have is called Bandit Express, which is a combination train ride with a light-gun shooting game – that features both virtual and physical targets. Supporting up to 8 players, this is the product that the company is looking to win a Best New Product Award at the show.
UNIS will also be debuting new kiddie rides and a new line-up of crane games including the pictured Roto Grab:
Pop’N Music 23: éclale Location Test Report – Right after I published this post, I was sent a tweet about this write-up on Facebook about the recent location test for Konami’s latest entry into their long running bemani game series. It is a great article that details down to what happened at different times. So if you are curious as to how this new game works (or how a Japanese location test tends to work), check it out.
Street Fighter V Arcade Hint – Shoryuken has the story with SF producer Yoshinori Ono about the upcoming console game Street Fighter V “not being impossible” for arcades. Of course there is no technical hindrance to such a thing. Just Capcom’s money and desire. I am curious how many Japanese arcades would want to get sloppy seconds on a fighter though so I imagine for a short time they’ll give the Arcade Edition something like a unique character or two until they release those for consoles as well.
Beatmania IIDX 22 Pendual and latest Dance Dance Revolution are in Thailand – Thanks to John Chiok for the tip, the arcade’s Facebook page with these games is found here.
Pinball Expo Coming Up – Just as a reminder, the Pinball Expo in Chicago, IL is happening next week from Oct. 14th – 18th. There are some expected announcements including Alien Pinball by Heighway pinball and Pat Lawlor’s long awaiting original pinball design.
Name That Game #60 – Good guesses last week as you guys got them right 😉
This week shouldn’t be too hard: