This newsbytes is earlier than normal as I am headed to California for the California Extreme show, unsure of my time and internet access for such things. I will certainly post any big news as I am able to although Twitter will likely be the easiest place for sharing any item of that nature. Let’s start with the small arcade that was setup for the San Diego Comic Con (I recall when this was a Flynn’s themed event several years ago when TRON Legacy was getting teh hype):
— The Hollywood Reporter (@THR) July 21, 2018
New Sponsor: Touch Magix
As you likely noticed already, we have a new sponsor! It is thanks to the support of such sponsors as we have advertising here that helps keep the site going with the various costs involved with such a blog. Touch Magix is based out of India and has been turning some heads with their projection mapping technology. This tech has been integrated into a couple of original videmption games such as Magix Floor and Mannequin Challenge. Welcome!
Big Buck Championships XI Announced
Play Mechanix has announced this year’s venue and details on their next massive championship event. This year the #1 Big Buck Hunter in the world will walk away with $20,000 (as opposed to $15,000 for the #1 of previous years). But don’t worry – if you aren’t the best, they are still giving away big, albeit smaller, cash prizes. Watch for more details including the venue…I won’t spoil it in the text 😛
Halo: Fireteam Raven Reviewed By IGN
Despite the current vibrancy that the arcade market is enjoying, it is still fairly rare for mainstream video game sites to recognize the existence of new games, much less review them. Thus, it is always nice to see when someone does take the time to leave the house and review a game, just like game journalists of old used to do. Granted, when something with a big name is attached to it, chances of it getting such media attention go up, particularly when the game in question has been a major fixture on the console landscape. Check out IGN’s glowing review of Raw Thrills’ Haloe Fireteam Raven here.
Sega Testing Chrono Regalia In Japan
Sega has begun testing out a new RPG strategy-based arcade game in Japan by the name of Chrono Regalia. Using a touchscreen (that by this report is a “completely new touch panel” but I’m not really sure what that means – new touchscreen technology or something else?). From a few translated reports, it sounds easy to learn but is “well-thought out”, providing for some deep and entertaining gameplay as you get into it. It sounds like a strategy card game turned into an arcade, but I have my doubts that it will see any sort of “official” Western release. Check out the game’s website here.
Tipsy Raccoons Adds A New Mini-Game
As shown in this single screenshot. Has anyone out there played this one yet?
Consumer Interest In VR Wanes
Our industry was quick to jump onto the potential that virtual reality technology could bring to amusement, but it has not been an easy road to travel. While I do believe that Amusement VR stands the best chance of the tech finding some level of success (due to it being capable of providing all of the accessories in one package that, to the consumer, is relatively inexpensive compared to the overall cost of the platform), I don’t see signs of it completely replacing standard arcade machines any time soon (granted, I just don’t see that ever happening, not with VR. AR/ MXR & holograms are a different story though; see below the next paragraph). Of course with Mario Kart VR headed West, perhaps that’s the “killer app” everyone has been looking for; Ai Solve has also been showing strong player interest in their We Play VR platform:
This is also an area where consumer interest might have a stronger effect on the tech too. Unfortunately for those developing hardware/software for the consumer side, sales data & trends are not headed in a positive direction for VR. How this will affect amusement VR remains to be seen as we can “buck the trend” in a consumer sense, much of the time. But that data seems to indicate that the “cons” of the tech are outweighing the “pros”, with marketing stumbling in a way that convinced the small number of early adopters to jump on board but not every one else. With numbers like that, a comeback/turn-around isn’t impossible but it is difficult; I think the biggest weakness the tech has is in price. The problem is that when you go cheap with VR, it becomes less immersive, less compelling and not as fun to use. To correct other issues it has (vertigo problems in some, moving from wired to wireless, bundling all accessories needed for immersive experiences with the base hardware, making better content), all of those can only be corrected through higher prices, thus making it difficult to “fix.”
I’d be curious to hear what you think though. I still think more R&D should be going into volumetric displays:
— Voxon Photonics (@voxonphotonics) July 21, 2018
Killer Queen’s Journey To The Nintendo Switch
From arcade phenomenon to the wildly popular Nintendo Switch and PC, Killer Queen has had quite the interesting journey. This video interview by Game Informer covers that in plenty of detail, click to enjoy:
Donkey Kong Arcade Gets More Love From Nintendo
Not that it really needs it, given the fame of the game already. But for those who can never get enough DK, Nintendo’s official channel posted this 11 minute focus on the Nintendo Switch release:
For those interested in more official recognition of arcades on the Switch, Hamster continues their strong support of bringing NEO GEO MVS titles to that platform.
That’s all I managed for now. Onto CAX!