Welcome to another edition of Newsbytes. here, I collect some quick news items from the week to share with you, as a way to pad the weekend with a variety of items.
Today also marks the 11th year that I’ve been in business with my own arcade. I documented my first location back in May of 2008 on the site, and have occasionally kept you up-to-date since then. It’s a great feeling to make it this far, although that is subdued by the pending bowling alley with a larger arcade opening up in the same building in just two months. I did go and look at some potential sites to move to this week, which I’m not super excited about, but one must prepare for various possibilities. We’ll see.
Onto the news:
Taito Announces Tethete X Connect Rhythm Game For Winter 2019
While Taito might not be the first company people think of when it comes to rhythm games, they have done a few in the past, including Groove Coaster and Music Gun Gun. Now they have an interesting new entry for the genre called Tethete X Connect. Using a large vertical touchscreen, the user dances with a virtual character, touching the circles that appear on the screen along with some body/motion sensing to detect certain dance moves that you are supposed to mimic on occasion. The translations mention that you can “hear the other person’s breath,” I’m not sure if this is just talking about the sound or if there’s any kind of wind effect built into the machine. The animations of the character are pretty detailed, and you can upgrade your dance partner with new clothes as you progress. This video from 4Gamer gives you a better idea of how it works in practice; the dancing action starts around 3:20 if you want to skip all of the menu stuff:
They will hold a livestream for it in a little under two weeks, where a public location test will also be taking place. You can see a little more on the official website here.
New footage of Outnumbered by LAI Games
If you’re into shooting gallery games (Point Blank, parts of Frightfearland, Sharpshooter), then Outnumbered should be right up your alley. I’ve discussed this one in the recent past as it launched to Timezone locations across southeast Asia last month, but now we have a new trailer for it to watch. This was posted to the Outnumbered Facebook page, but I added a little more to the video to explain what the game is in case you missed it. Expect to see Outnumbered in the US after IAAPA 2019:
High Scores Arcade Debuts Super Smash Bros. Melee Cabinet
While we had a little bit of fun at the expense of Smash Bros. fans with our most recent April Fools joke, don’t let that trick you about this next item. The High Scores Arcade in Alameda, CA has taken the desires of the Smash fandom to heart and created their own custom Super Smash Bros. Melee arcade cabinet. It follows the same pattern as Nintendo’s early 80’s cabinets, while sporting
a flatscreen proper 27″ CRT inside (thanks to Megan for clearing that up!) and Gamecube controllers for the users to enjoy. This also sits next to two other unique cabinets the location has on hand, a Nintendo cab for The Legend of Zelda (made to work on the Nintendo VS. hardware as I recall) and a cabinet for Oregon Trail. Read more at the press release here (and my apologies to Meg who sent me this earlier this week, but it went to my spam folder)
Footage of some Japanese arcades from 1987
H/T to Kevin Williams of The Stinger Report for this. We’ve been having a bit of a discussion on Twitter this week regarding the polices of taking/not taking photos at a location, as many venues still try and enforce a no photography rule. This is particularly common in Japan, which makes this old find a little more interesting to me as two tourists wander around some arcade places in 1987, lugging around a giant camera and filming people as they played. Finds like this are rare enough, especially for Japan. Check it out:
Along similar lines, here’s a broadcast from 1992 that’s mainly focuses on Sega, where a kid got the chance to visit Sega HQ and play some of the latest games on an arcade machine. That part is around 40 minutes in. H/T to Eon Fafnir & John Andersen.
Checking out Lagoon Amusement Park’s Arcade
It’s been a little while, but yesterday I visited the Lagoon Amusement Park in Farmington, UT. Founded in 1886, the park is well-known among residents of Utah & Idaho, with industry alumni such as Nolan Bushnell having worked there once upon a time. They’ve had an arcade venue near the midway for as long as I can remember, so I always stop in and look around whenever I have the chance. It has changed a little bit since I was there two or three years ago, finally remaking the outside to not look like some run-down warehouse.
Inside the arcade, they’ve often been home to some rarities like F-Zero AX or Primeval Hunt. That has also changed, although I was surprised – a little disappointed – in the direction they’ve taken since I was there last. Gone are both of those aforementioned games; no more pinball machines and there were some other changes with it adding many more older redemption games that I never pay much attention to. For the video titles, they have several games from the late 90’s around, several GlobalVR racers, a pair of H2Overdrives, but the newest video piece is Terminator Salvation & Guitar Hero Arcade. While some of the titles they have are great games, I guess I expected a revamped location to have more new stuff to it. At least everything I came across was working, so that’s a plus.
The Game Machine Magazine Archive
H/T to Oga Shi for this. If you like arcade history and understand Japanese (or you just like to flip through pictures), then this web archive of some very early Japanese amusement trade magazines. It spans 1974-1980, with all of the scans being available in PDF format. Check it out!
Cat of Fortune On Test In Japan
I haven’t really followed all of the “fishing games” that have popped up on the market out there, as they’re mostly rehashes of the same concept. For hardcore gamers, these are utterly forgettable, but redemption gamers seem to like them plenty enough.
Once in a while, a variation comes along that might be interesting and we see it get some official representation through a US manufacturer. I don’t know if Cat of Fortune will be one of those, but it’s certainly possible. It’s currently testing in Japan as a medal game, which is what most/all of these games do before being modified for ticket redemption in the West.
Let’s leave it with something that is bound to make any arcade collector cringe, an Atari Star Wars cockpit converted into an Atari Games Hydra:
— Cursed Arcade Conversions (@CursedCabs) June 8, 2019