Welcome to yet another weekend and with it another round of Newsbytes, a collection of items from around the arcade world that don’t necessarily need a full-blown post to talk about. While the month has been slowish for big news, this week accumulated a lot of small stories, so let’s jump in:
Sega & Namco Collaborate On InitialD x Wangan
Challenging times make for strange bedfellows, although Sega & Namco have worked together on arcades in the past. Still, this announcement of the two star arcade racers for each company coming together is a little bit of a surprise. InitialD: The Arcade launches this next week to Japanese arcades and it will allow players to race as popular cars from Wangan Midnight Maximum Tune (such as the Devil Z). It sure would be cool if Bandai Namco could do the reverse here on MT5 and proffer an update that allows us to play with certain ID cars on MaxiTune 5…
JAEPO Was This Week…
…but due to Covid, it was hastily set-up at the last minute as an online-only event. Also because the pandemic continues to wreak havoc in Japan, there wasn’t much announced, leaving us with a Newsbytes blurb instead of a full-blown post or two like we’ve done in the past.
That said, an anonymous tipster did send me an unlisted video by Bandai Namco Amusements that was created for BNA’s “International Customers.” Now before anyone gets excited and starts blasting this all over the place, you need to note what this means – it does NOT mean North America. This is talking about non-Japan parts of Asia, such as Malaysia, Singapore, Hong Kong, and sometimes Australia. I did confirm with BNA America that none of what is mentioned below is intended for the States, New Taiko No Tatsujin in particular thanks to a certain Kompany who likes to still patent troll over a game franchise they released way back in 1998. So thank them for why we don’t have games like Taiko getting official support in the US (well, to be fair, licensing also plays a role, but BNAA specifically mentioned certain rhythm game patents and lawyers).
We do have readers in SE Asia though, so if you operate games there and look for BNA’s releases for your territory, then this will be of interest to you:
New Trailer For Upcoming Mortal Kombat Movie
Yeah, MK hasn’t been seen in arcades since 1997, but it was still in the arcade that the now console-only franchise got started. I can remember the hype of the first film quite a bit, replete with the insanely catchy theme song. Don’t worry though, I’m not going to demand that characters from Street Fighter show up here 😛
ICE Reveals Super Chexx Tahoe Edition
As a part of their Home Arcade division, ICE has announced their “most unique Super Chexx game yet!” They have introduced “distortion printing,” to the game, which has graphics of Tahoe mountains printed on the dome itself. It’s a really sharp-looking piece, but unfortunately will only be available for residential/non-commercial customers. These limited edition units go for $4275 and will begin shipping on April 1st. Click here to find out more.
Another Sega R30 discovered
I thought that occasional site writer SaraAB87 was going to post something about this on the blog, but since she didn’t, let’s go to Forbes, which has a far wider reach than we do for these sorts of things. Suffice it to say, this story of an abandoned R360 found in a field in the UK has some similarities to the infamous Sundance story of 11 years past. I truly do not envy whoever takes on the task of attempting to restore this to like-new working condition…
Rampage World Tour Gets A New Marquee & Topper
Thanks once again to Szabo’s Arcades & Game Refuge, this follows up on the Rampage marquee+topper released a while back. As an official work of the original Rampage & RWT game designer Biran Colin, this replaces existing RWT marquees, giving the cabinet a much nicer and modernized look. I was quite happy with my Rampage topper – I’d jump on this if I had a RWT. Interested? Order here.
Atari’s Breakout Re-Imagined For The Amico
I’ve been very critical of the new Atari VCS game console, in part because it’s another half-witted cash-in on what used to be an iconic name. A big part of that has been demonstrated by Atari’s entire lack of interest in procuring any kind of exclusive content for the system – they don’t even have their own Atari titles available for the system as exclusives. Without said titles that you can’t find anywhere else, I find it very hard to spend my money on something like a game console. The odd and ironic thing is their competitor of both the past and the present -Intellivision – will have various exclusives on their upcoming Amico system and some of those are Atari games.
One of those is Atari’s 3rd big hit from the early days – Breakout. While Atari did release Breakout for the iPad back in the early 10s, it didn’t do a whole lot to reinvigorate the concept, something that others like Taito have done a great job at doing over the years. Now with this Amico remake, Choice Provisions (Bit.Trip.Runner), this is looking like it will end up being one of the best refreshes of the idea in a while. Granted this is early footage so a lot can change, but if it only gets better, here’s hoping that this version finds its way to arcades (where it can be put onto a proper vertical screen):
About The Capcom Arcade Stadium…
Stay away…at least until/if Capcom decides to fix it. I had more than one friend contact me about it the day it was released this week, where they were disappointed and shocked to find out just how terrible the games are, with various lag problems and dropped frames. From the sounds of it, it was just a quick ‘n dirty cash-in, but very poorly done.
Oh, and speaking of cash-ins, I guess someone at Blizzard corporate realized that “arcade” is a cool buzzword again, so they decided to throw together a small collection of their old 2D games and slap the word “arcade” onto the release to hopefully milk some interest out of there.
H/T to Kevin Williams for some of these
Let’s end with this something fun, given that much of the US was dumped on with snow this week. I should’ve thought of doing this…it just needs a Snow Bros. marquee to be complete [Source, Facebook]: