Hey there fellow kids, and welcome to another exciting edition of NEWSBYTES. Let’s get to the quick news
Willy Wonka Collector’s Edition Unveiled
For any collector who was holding out for the ultimate version of Jersey Jack Pinball’s Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory, the wait is over as they have unveiled the Collector’s Edition version for sale. This trailer sums it up – the game will play the same, but comes with new, high-quality artwork and some other top-of-the-line features:
Pac-Man Panic Comes To China
It’s been quite a while since we heard anything about Pac-Man Panic, Bandai Namco’s latest Pac-Man themed game that is a head-to-head pinball machine. An update finally came this week thanks to this video posted to Wahlap’s YouTube channel. Most of it features people talking, but you can see some new games in the background, including Pac-Man Panic and Mario & Sonic at the 2020 Olympics Arcade. Flyer for Pac-Man Panic is embedded after the video; we’ll see if BN brings it to IAAPA 2019, which I think is 99% certain (between them showing it in China and also testing it in the USA). H/T to Jdevy for pointing out that Round1USA lists PMP as a Round1 Exclusive. Not sure if that means timed or not.
Project L – A League OF Legends Fighter Coming To Arcades?
If you jump to 33:37 of this video (I tried to embed with the time code, but it seems that WordPress ignores that and makes you watch from the beginning), there is something very interesting that pops up in this 10-year anniversary celebration discussion of the PC game League of Legends (often called LoL). They unveiled that they are working on a 1v1 fighting game that is currently called Project L. In this video, at the 34:00 mark, it shows a row of Vewlix arcade cabinet clones as the gentleman discusses Project L. There is no explicit statement that Project L is headed to arcades, we only have that visual and you can see some arcade fighting sticks on their desks. He states at the end that “we’re going to go dark for a while, so don’t expect anything after this,” so we’ll have to wait and see. But, if it’s finished by the time Exa is well-established, perhaps that would provide the perfect platform for a non-arcade-centric company like Riot Games to get their title out there as more than just a prop (I’m referring to Capcom and how they’ve treated Street Fighter in recent memory)
Axe Throwing Lands In Japan
It took a while for the Escape Room trend to make it’s way from Japan to the USA, and now we get to see another amusement fad take the reverse course – axe throwing. You may have seen such a sharp attraction at a modern FEC if you are in the US, but now it might take Japan by storm, per Nikkan-Spa.
Having A Laugh With Typing of the Dead
Yes, this counts since there was an arcade release of TotD. H/T to Website of the Dead for this one. Crude humor warning:
Sega’s New(er) Driving Simulator In Japan – SLDS-3G
While arcades have often blurred the line between being “just” an arcade game and a simulator, companies have created full-blown simulators before, with the aim to educate and train a person involved in a special job or function. Atari did so as early as in turning BattleZone into the Bradley Trainer to teach servicemen how to operate a tank cannon; they also would make the AMOS to train police officers in operating their vehicles. Back in 2002, Sega released their own educational driving sim called the Sega Driving Simulator. Designed for Japanese driving schools, I’m not sure how common it is to find, but I wouldn’t be surprised if a few such schools have been keeping them in operation for the past 17 years. Now, Sega is making an update to that, called the Sega Logistics Service Driving Simulator, or the SLDS-3G (shouldn’t it be the SLSDS in that case?)
It looks like the same concept, but now with LCDs instead of bulky CRTs and sharper graphics. That said, I am a little confused – this tweet by Sega makes it sound like it’s new or under development, but then there is a YouTube channel with videos from a few years ago showing the same system. Perhaps it’s been in development since that time and is about to launch, or they are making a new model. You can check out the official website here.
Pinball Expo 2019
The annual Pinball Expo is underway and while I haven’t heard of any news yet (new game announcements), I haven’t been able to watch or comb through everything yet. Pinball News has some of the seminars, including this from Pat Lawlor and Steve Ritchie. Enjoy:
Let’s end on an image that I had a few people sent me this week…something that shows that arcades span all religions and cultural boundaries (although the lady here looks thoroughly displeased) 😀 Have a great weekend!
Pac-Man Panic is supposed to be a Round1 exclusive according to their site. I do wonder what the test revenues were for this. Hopefully it wasn’t disappointing to the point where Bandai Namco USA didn’t want to handle it and Round1 had to import them. Namco needs more new content than just relying on Andamiro ticket games and arena VR that isn’t as commonplace as Hologate or Rabbids VR.