IAAPA Day 1: Impressions on Daytona 3, Cruis’n Blast, The Walking Dead, Maximum Tune 5 & More

arcadehero November 14, 2016 29
IAAPA Day 1: Impressions on Daytona 3, Cruis’n Blast, The Walking Dead, Maximum Tune 5 & More

Hello fellow arcaders! The biggest week in arcade gaming is upon us and I have been able to get some hands-on time with some of the games! Let’s get to it:

IAAPA 2016 First Game Impressions

Click on any image below to see a larger size!

Space Invaders Frenzy

It’s mainly a videmption game but it’s interesting. It throws tons of enemies at you and gets frantic pretty quickly (hence the “Frenzy” in the title). The giant screen feels a little bit like sitting in front row at the movie theater but they raised it up so you can see your base at the bottom. Bombs will float onto the screen to help and there are some enemies that break down into smaller ones. After I played, I saw them loading up a new software build that adds bases and enemies shooting at you. I’ll check that out later.

The Walking Dead

I played the latest zombie shooter but I need to mention that I have never watched the show so characters mentioned in there or any other references go over my head. As it is, I look at it as an arcade zombie shooter. This has a lot of “bullet time” sequences where the action intentionally slows down to allow you a better shot. Unlike some online who think that the game suffers frame rate problems, that is not the case at all. It runs at a smooth 60fps. Getting headshots is fun but they also break that up by throwing in melee sequences and such. The controller is great, easy to use like any mounted gun. The overhead light effect is neat – there is a part where you are inside a dark building and as soon as you open the door to go outside, the lights above you flare up so it makes it feel a little more realistic. So far, thumbs up on this one but I need to play it more.


Cruis’n Blast

The latest entry to the Cruis’n series does play like FnF however, I can see what was meant by the races being more ‘battle’ oriented. There seems to be more crashing through objects (stands, structures, etc) and there is a noticeable engine “growl” and rumble in the seat. An announcer also throws in some commentary every once in a while. The sound engine certainly helps this stand out from FnF; graphically it also is much better than Super Cars but don’t expect it to be exactly on the level of the latest Forza or Gran Turismo. That said, it looks nice and colorful, runs at 1080p60fps.

Just like Dirty Drivin’ there is no brake, just the gas.

One new touch is that the drifts and airtime “build up” on a gauge. If you get enough drift or airtime, it will give you an instant boost. Like in FnF though, the boosts don’t really give you as much speed as it feels like but the effect is much improved. Speaking of FnF, tuning up your car has changed – you do not “trick out” your car with giant engines, it simply lets you upgrade the body, engine and paint on each car for slightly better performance.



The camera operates like the “NamCam” arcade cameras – take your picture for your avatar at the start of the race and you’re done with that. The resolution is a bit low on that – or is isn’t handling the bright LEDs very well when taking the picture so you can see compression artifacts. The “hidden” cars are easily accessible by pressing the Tunes button although I haven’t been able to find out yet if there are any codes to unlock more.


I think this will do very well on the market as FnF games have but could potentially do better with the sleeker presentation. I would like to see a couple/few more tracks though.

Wangan Midnight Maximum Tune 5

Admittedly I’m a noob when it comes to Maximum Tune – I’ve covered it on the blog for years but never come across a cab in my travels except for a WMMT3 at a trade show 8 years ago. So for 5, I’m approaching this fresh. I started by going to the kiosk and getting my Banapassport card:


I then went to the game and played the Story mode for a single race. There are a ton of real licensed cars to choose from, reminding me of the selection you often find on console games. There is a bit more to read in this game than other arcade racers so I can see how this isn’t exactly the game for casual players to enjoy but if you give it a chance, there is a lot of depth to get into between the story, the multiplayer, the online mode, many cars and tuning them up. As you race, text from the characters pops up (particularly during the straight road parts I noticed) so you get that story but there is no voice over.

Granted, the main thing for this game is racing against other players as well as the online ghost battle mode (racing against your former races). I haven’t played it multiplayer yet so I’ll have to wait. It looks great (although could use some anti-aliasing), the music is excellent and the controls felt solid.


This cabinet is based on the Dead Heat/Mario Kart GP DX cabinet design. Some of the parts are the same (which reduces costs for oeprators) and the screen is 42″ in size instead of the 32″ that the Japanese cabs have(per Nate at Namco). They also raised the game up by adding more to the base of the monitor portion and the seat.

Namco does hope to eventually get the latest version of WMMT5 so that it is on par with the versions that players in the East enjoy. That will most likely depend on sales so hand tight WMMT fans!

Daytona Championship USA 3

The game I’ve been getting the most tweets about is Sega’s return to Daytona. Yesterday a pic leaked showing the 8 cabinet setup that amusingly had myself and a Sega staff member there discussing the game. So you might have seen that. But today, with Sega’s permission, I got to grab a couple of pics as well as getting a chance to play the 3 available tracks. There will be six in the final but only three available for the show.


It is important to note that this is still essentially a beta game so many changes will take place between now and the release based on QA and player feedback. A couple of potential changes to the cab were mentioned but we’ll wait and see.

Sega has 8 cabinets here but they are only linking the two groups of 4 for now. The game is slated for a March/April 2017 release so the next time we’ll see a more complete software package is at the AMOA/AAMA Amusement Expo in March…maybe at the January UK arcade expo that happens.


I have not played the original Daytona USA in a very long time so it’s hard to remember the handling it felt very solid. There is still damage that happens to the cars and you can slide off the track if you aren’t careful. It has pitstops too, although I only watched someone else try that.

The current build has an “Up/Down” shifter but still maps to four gears. This may change for the production build.

The first, beginner track isn’t the most exciting, I prefer the other two tracks I played – either way this is a far superior game to NASCAR from a few years ago. There are a few “artistic liberties” taken with a couple of track aesthetics – mainly the removal of the slot machine stuff due to the locations this game may go to. I also saw the operator mode which is jam packed with options for the operator to enjoy. In particular if the game ends up at a Chuck E Cheeses, they have a preset “Kid mode” that it can be set to to make it easier for the little ones to enjoy.

Sega is developing several features for making tournaments easier to run for operators. Many ops did run big tournaments with the game so that is welcome. In particular, it can run brackets and announce which player is next on the LCD marquee screen. Otherwise this marquee will show the live camera feeds. This party mode is not active yet so that’s all we have for it for now but for ops looking for that, it’s worth noting.


As mentioned, the game has a live camera – meaning that it is constantly recording and pumping that feed into the game depending on what is needed. This is mainly for multiplayer though – that way you can see the live reaction from your opponents as you play and there is an occasional billboard that shows your own feed on there.

Graphically, this game looks very sharp. It runs on PC hardware (not the Sega Nu or Ringedge…maybe we could call it the Europa 2) and the color palette seems to be slightly over-saturated to provide that Bright Blue Skies look that the original game was known for. The cars are streamlined instead of having the chunky polys and the lighting is great, especially on the 3rd track where it takes place in the evening so you get some good shadow effects going on. You can also see reflections on your hood when in the first person hood mode. They also seem to be using anti-aliasing as I did not notice any jagged edges and the textures look great. It slightly reminds me of the KO Drive (a never released Sega race) look but further improved.

From what I can recall of the original, this “feels” like Daytona USA but it has new paint and features that to me make it appealing to the current arcade market. I look forward to spending more time on it but also seeing the completed software.

That’s it for the moment – stay tuned to the site and our Twitter feed for more!



  1. RJAY63 November 14, 2016 at 1:16 pm - Reply

    Did Daytona USA 3 have a “4 gear” or was it an “up-down” model?

    • RJAY63 November 14, 2016 at 1:17 pm - Reply

      Sorry I meant Did Daytona USA 3 have a “4 gear” shifter or was it an “up-down” model?

      • arcades4ever November 14, 2016 at 3:24 pm - Reply

        It used 4 gears.

  2. Sponge November 14, 2016 at 2:07 pm - Reply

    Cruis’n…what have they done to you.

    The menu looks horrifyingly generic, they even ripped the UI font from the first FnF title.

    Any mention of rankings in either Blast or Daytona? I see the QR system which often lives alongside local times.

    • polster November 14, 2016 at 4:51 pm - Reply

      What the hell you talking about? this game looks promising! Plus the game hasn’t been released, quit whining and don’t knock it until you try it! Also, the UI has nothing to do with the first F&F game.

      • Sponge November 14, 2016 at 6:06 pm - Reply

        I said nothing about the game itself. And yes actually, the font used throughout the UI is the exact one used in the original FnF.

        • polster November 15, 2016 at 8:33 am -

          I could barely see the similarities because its been forever since I played the first FNF, but I get it now. however I barely pay attention to those aesthetics, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!

          but when you say “Cruis’n…what have they done to you.”, that actually meant you thought the game was gonna suck, right?

    • arcadehero November 15, 2016 at 10:32 pm - Reply

      Yes rankings are in both games. I managed to get #1 in drift and air time on one set of Cruis’ns at the show but it was deleted to make way for a software update.

      Avatars are also shown on the rankings now to incentivize that aspect of the game.

      Dayonta 3 also has rankings for each course, offering 3 letter spaces for initials. The camera will take your picture after the game to show your face and overall ranking although I think it only does that if you’re in a top spot.

    • RobbAce96 November 18, 2016 at 5:30 pm - Reply

      I agree. The menu screen doesn’t fit the Cruis’n style that was established from Cruis’n USA, World, and Exotica. Now that I look at the font, you’re right. It looks like the same font that was used in all the Fast & Furious games. The graphic guys at Raw Thrills are getting lazy and recycling old art from their other games. Lame!

  3. arcades4ever November 14, 2016 at 3:44 pm - Reply

    Wow, sega Datong 3 and namco WMMT 5 very interesting but as for crusin I unfortunatly have no interest but will give it ago if I come across it regardless. I see namco have opted to using the banapassport which I thought wouldn’t make it to the west. I can’t wait to play it and try out the banapassport as that game helped me with my driving lessons from using the gears lol. What tracks were available to play arcadehero, was it the original remake or the brand new Daytona tracks?
    Can’t wait to see the rest of the games, especially the mystery game from namco.

  4. Mazinger November 14, 2016 at 6:37 pm - Reply

    Were you able to tell if Daytona 3 is developed by AM2 like the first two were?

    • arcadehero November 14, 2016 at 8:41 pm - Reply

      It is not, the main dev hub is the UK (known as SRS, some of the same people that worked on Sega Rally 3, Grid and Showdown).

      That said, there is involvement from Sega Japan and Sega China.

      • VirtuaIceMan November 15, 2016 at 3:50 am - Reply

        Sega Racing Studios (SRS) was closed down after Sega Rally (Revo) and absorbed by Codemasters (who made Grid and Showdown). I think Daytona 3 Championship USA has original Japanese team members working on it, from what I’ve read.

        • arcadehero November 15, 2016 at 10:22 pm -

          To stand corrected, you are right about SRS but some of the people working on this also did work on those games but I am not sure of exact credits.

          Either way, it is not an AM2-only project with input coming in from various divisions within the Amusement realm of the company.

  5. uk arcades November 15, 2016 at 3:09 am - Reply

    wowie those racers are looking great !
    crusin – a updated faf !
    daytona 3 – looks the best! hope to see it everywhere too!
    wangan 5 – well ill never be able to see that one would be a miracle if it is in uk!
    walking dead will either replace Jurassic park or have arcades combine the two together now 🙂
    cant wait to see the rest!.

  6. asdf November 15, 2016 at 7:23 am - Reply

    Thanks for the daytona photos. Does anyone know the correct hw specs? thx

    • arcadehero November 15, 2016 at 10:29 pm - Reply

      I was only told that it is more powerful than the Sega Nu or Ringedge 2 and I saw that it is running some version of Windows but not sure which (probably Win7 Embedded if I were to guess).

  7. Alfred November 15, 2016 at 5:21 pm - Reply

    I have non arcade fan friends who are asking me about these games. I think the show has amazed everyone.

  8. Jdevy November 15, 2016 at 11:57 pm - Reply

    Space Invaders looks interesting, seems like Galaga Assault + World’s Largest Pacman.

    Cruis’n looks good, I am bugged by the lack of tracks but that will change in the future.

    Daytona 3 looks great. The graphics are good for arcades (even though they aren’t really important), and the gameplay sounds promising. I haven’t played Daytona in a long time, too (mainly due to arcades trashing it in my area).

    Walking Dead looks nice, but will be hard like other Play Mechanix games.

    Maxi Tune 5 is promising (especially with how I enjoyed Initial D 4 at one of the arcades I frequent), I remember how broken the 3rd game was broken at a lot of locations, though.

  9. arcades4ever November 17, 2016 at 5:28 am - Reply

    When do we get to see the rest of the games arcadehero? I can’t wait no more.

  10. Aaron November 17, 2016 at 12:45 pm - Reply

    Maybe arcadehero got sidetracked. @Arcadehero I hope you are OK and that nothing bad has happened, I love this website. Honestly, when it comes to these posts, take your time especially if life ends up getting in the way, as so often happens. We just need to be patient and not panic… yet.

    • arcadehero November 19, 2016 at 12:16 pm - Reply

      Thanks for the concern, it is appreciated! It was a matter of time, internet connection, video editing, etc. I still missed a few things – I meant to film VRCade and Holocube but ran out of time.

      A new post is going up today!

  11. Jitterdoomer November 18, 2016 at 2:21 pm - Reply

    For this localization of Maximum Tune 5, where is the Wangan Midnight license that can be seen across Asian countries and Japan?

    • arcadehero November 19, 2016 at 12:10 pm - Reply

      The license isn’t present for that – I wasn’t provided the full details other than it is one reason this release has taken so long to happen. But the official title here is just Maximum Tune 5.

      • Jitterdoomer November 20, 2016 at 11:23 pm - Reply

        Ahh this makes a lot more sense that the Wangan Midnight license lasts two years before it expires and it’s only limited to Asian countries only this is because of the fact that Wangan Midnight manga series isn’t popular in the West.

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