Welcome to Newsbytes, a collection of quick news items from around the amusement world. There’s a good chance we’ll have more ‘big’ stories coming up as we get closer to IAAPA, so stay tuned! I know the site has been fairly slow this year, but there are still things going on in the arcade world worth talking about.
VR & Laser Tag Are Coming Together With Limitless VR
Ever since I first tried The Void, it was clear that there were a lot of similarities between location-based VR and laser tag. Creative Works has decided to blend the two together, giving the world what they call Limitless VR. Here’s a trailer:
It is cool that laser tag arenas would be able to change things up with new digital maps, as opposed to having to reconfigure the actual space; It’s probably more cost-effective too, although that depends on this system’s purchase and operating price. Based upon my experience at The Void, however, I’m skeptical about this. I think that laser tag needs to be looking more at MXR (Mixed Reality which could enhance the mazes with projection mapping and digital targets) or Augmented Reality solutions as opposed to jumping on the “hype train” of VR. Perhaps Creative Works has sorted out the various bugs and problems that come with restricting your real-world vision and overlaying it with the VR digital map, but it’s impossible to say without seeing it used extensively in the wild.
To delve into that a little further, the issue that is present in these situations has to do with perception & expectation. Where the physical space of an object like a wall actually exists vs. where your brain expects it to be when you reach out to touch, tends to be off by an inch or two. It doesn’t matter how accurate the digital world map is, this creates a strange, awkward feeling as soon as you realize it, and that removes the immersion, which deludes the experience. I’m speaking from my time using The Void of course – wherein playing a non-physically demanding game of exploring ancient ruins or a slowish paced sci-fi shooter, I still saw many scrapes, dents, and gashes in the maze walls when walking around without the goggles on. Those issues don’t go away just because you’re using more recent headsets, so I can’t imagine how it’ll really work out when you have a game like laser tag in place (and we all know that people run, regardless the rules in place).
Of course, I wouldn’t expect them to launch something like this if it wasn’t tested already, so maybe my skepticism is misplaced, but that’s just my gut reaction when looking at the potential hazard of a situation where you put players together in a confined space, have them play a game that requires a lot of movement, and you then limit their natural peripheral vision with something like an HMD. I guess we’ll find out soon enough!
Surfin Surfari To Launch In November
A videmption game that we’ve seen on test here and there over the past while is finally launching to the market around IAAPA time, Team Play’s Surfin Surfari. It’s listed on Elaut’s website, although if you click on the link to the Benchmark Games site, it’s not there as of this moment. Still, it says mid-November for launch, so expect to see this one at IAAPA. It’s been a while since we’ve had any kind of surfing game on the market – Sega’s Soul Surfer being one of, if not the, most recent. That wasn’t videmption though.
Sega Updates Chunithm & Ongeki Titles
(Thanks to Ted for the tip)
Here’s one that’s just for Japan, as Sega has rolled out a new cabinet design for their rhythm game Chunithm, and has updated the software for Ongeki. These are two that I just don’t see Sega ever giving their official blessing to out West, but that won’t stop the occasional import here and there. Both games were shown during a stream on Twitter (I can’t find one on YouTube); Then there was this new video of Initial D: The Arcade where they’re doing a promotion with an “energy soda” drink called Lifeguard through December.
Andamiro’s Chrono Circle Spotted On Test
I don’t know if Andamiro USA plans on grabbing this…we’ll know for sure at IAAPA. If you want anything like Sega’s MaiMai out West, then this seems like the best chance, although I would not be surprised if they pass on it due to difficulty or perceived difficulty. If you see one out there on test though, let us know
Big Buck World Championships 14 Recap
Did you miss the Big Buck World Championship event, or didn’t want to watch all 9 or 10 hours of it? Then here’s a handy recap:
New Explanation Video For Stern’s Insider Connected
Now that Insider Connected is out there, they can talk about it in more detail. George Gomez explains how it all works:
Speaking of pinball, but going way back, Stargate now has ColorDMD support. It’s too bad there never was a Stargate SG-1 pinball…
Aliens Armageddon – Full Game
I’m starting to run a little low on games that I can capture, although some of it’s because my capture devices don’t like with some of the games that run at 1360×768 resolution, like Jurassic Park Arcade or Maximum Tune 5. This capture is also rather imperfect; The game screen kept going black for a few seconds during play, which I guess you could call ultra challenge mode. 😛 I also just got a drone and have begun to tinker with ideas there, although it’s hard to say how much of that I can really use for the AH side of things. Looks like what I’ll need to do is get better at some of the games on my exA and capture more of those 😉
Not a whole lot this week, but for what there is:
Direct Footage Of The APM3 Arcade Version Of Cotton Rock ‘N Roll – Looks fun…with the exA version around the corner, I’m tempted by this. Speaking of that version, here’s a new character page for the game.
[Non-Arcade] The Nintendo Direct Is Now 10 Years Old
Let’s end with Winning Halloween:
— Mandy Madsen (@abitzegaio) October 23, 2021
That’s all for this weekend, thanks for reading!