For our first look at the latest locations to open their doors around the world for this month of March, we have quite a few places to talk about. The explosion in FEC’s continues apace, especially in my neighborhood. It’s getting to the point where it has me a little concerned for how us small fries will fare against so many behemoths. But with so much to talk about, let’s get to it.
Lucky Strike Social (Chicago @ Wrigleyville, IL)
Since this location has been mentioned a few times on the site in conjunction with the launch of the new Daytona Championship USA Super Deluxe. Lucky Strike Social is a rapidly growing FEC that has a strong focus on eating, bowling and arcades. You can guess by the addition of the Super Deluxe that these venues have a cutting edge line-up of games. For the Wrigleyville location, it has an arcade featuring about 100 games, in addition to that Daytona they also have: Aerosmith pinball; Deadpool pinball; Guardians of the Galaxy pinball; Halo: Fireteam Raven (SDLX); Iron Maiden pinball; 4x Moto GP; Pac-Man’s Pixel Bash; Space Invaders Frenzy; Star Trek pinball (Vault Pro); Star Wars pinball (Pro); 4x Storm Racer G; The Munsters pinball; World’s Largest Pac-Man and more.
Galloping Ghost Pinball (Brookfield, IL)
Pinball is as Chicago as pizza pies and Chicago Dogs, but even though it’s not too difficult to come across such games in the area, there is always room for more. The Galloping Ghost Arcade has made a name for themselves in being the world’s largest video arcade; now they are making a move into pinball with the opening of GGP. This is located in a separate building from the video arcade, so keep that in mind if you’re just looking for pins. While the pinball selection is not quite as massive as their video game side (yet), it still boasts many popular titles and plenty of rarities. Those include: Alien, Baby Pac-Man, Bride of Pin-Bot, Defender, Freddy A Nightmare on Elm Street, Haunted House, Monster Bash Remake, Pin-Bot, Predator, Tales from the Crypt, The Addams Family, The X Files, Twilight Zone, Varkon, and more. You can find some good video of the location, along with quick interviews, at WGNTV.com.
HUB Stadium Adds An Arcade (Detroit, MI)
While this location has been open and offering other entertainments such as axe throwing and a bowling variation called “Bombowling,” they recently added some modern arcade games to the mix to entertain waiting patrons. Some of those games include Aliens Armageddon, Deadpool pinball, Connect 4 Hoops, Space Invaders Frenzy, The Beatles pinball, The World’s Largest Pac-Man and more. Replay ran a piece about the arcade addition; their official website is here.
G4CE (Clearfield, UT)
I was recently alerted to this one, which comes from a new chain of FEC’s that are taking a somewhat unusual approach to opening up. Most tend to focus on a single state then expand from there into nearby regions, but according to their locations page, they are starting in Utah and will soon expand into Michigan, Indiana, then a second in Utah (West Jordan). Utah must be prime ground since that is where the first location has opened, I’m just not sure why they are opening way out East for the next locations.
Anyways, for the opened Clearfield location, I talked with a local operator friend who went there already, and he mentioned an impressive setup of entertainment – 10 bowling lanes, several multiplayer LBE VR stations, laser tag, go karts, mini-golf, escape rooms and a big “100+ games” arcade center. I can’t find a games list for the location, but from looking on social media, see Halo: Fireteam Raven SDLX, Jurassic Park Arcade, MotoGP, Rabbids Hollywood 65″, Space Invaders Frenzy, Tomb Raider 65″, Virtual Rabbids: The Big Ride, and many more. You can visit their main website here.
Launch Trampoline Park (Delran, NJ)
Trampoline parks have been another subsection of the FEC market that has been growing in recent years, and they were in the news here in Utah recently as the state cracks down on some injury problems in requiring special licensing to open such a park. For a new venue that opened up in Delran, NJ, they’ve added a state-of-the-art arcade, with plenty of video and redemption titles to please clients for when they are jumping around. I’ve not been able to find a games list or many photos of the game area, although I know they have a Halo: Fireteam Raven 2-player, a Jurassic Park and what looks like a Tomb Raider 65″ (hard to tell from the pic, look on the right and the gun the kid is holding looks like TR’s). You can find them on Facebook here.
Flipout Trampoline Park (Aintree, Liverpool, UK)
Since we’re on the subject of such parks, let’s also highlight a location that has opened up on the other side of the pond in Liverpool. InterGame has a brief article about them, however there is no mention of an arcade. Maybe they’ll add some later on.
The Summit Thornton (Denver, CO)
Jumping back to the states, if you’ve been looking for FEC action in the Denver area, then The Summit Thornton will fit the bill. The parent company already has two locations in Colorado, making this the 3rd. As you can expect with an FEC, they have a mixture of video and redemption titles, landing around 70 games. Some of those titles include: Cruis’n Blast, Jurassic Park Arcade, Mario Kart GPDX, Space Invaders Frenzy, Super Bikes 2, Virtual Rabbids: The Big Ride and more. Read more about them at The Vending Times or find them on Facebook.
Player One Arcade Pub (Doraville, GA)
If you’re in the greater Atlanta area, and have been wanting some retro arcade/pub fun, then the Player One Arcade Pub is soon going to open their doors. Due to a problem with a contractor, they were delayed from their initial hope of opening Feb/March, so April is the time they’re looking at now. I did some looking for a games list and didn’t see anything definitive; some of the games on their Facebook page were for sale so they could fund the build out or buy different titles. Either way, looks like an 80’s/90’s retro mix; you can stay up to date with them on Facebook or Instagram.
Round 1 USA Opens In Salinas, CA
Per this tweet, California has another Round 1 to call home. Although by the end of this year, it’s looking like the Californian landscape will be dotted with R1USA’s, as the company seems to have kicked their expansion efforts into overdrive. While not listed on their locations page yet, I hear they are also going to expand in Utah with a location at a mall in Orem; I’m sure they have plenty of plans for additional locations.
That’s all I managed for now; if you find yourself near any of these locations then be sure to go and check them out. But don’t forget existing locations in your area either 😉