We don’t discuss EVO here very often, the reason being that it’s more “arcade adjacent” then “arcade focused.” That’s just the nature of things as fighters have taken the far back seat in interest from the amusement sector while gaining a bit on the home/console side of things.
One company in our industry has been looking to bring the fighter back though – exA-Arcadia. Since hitting the market at the end of 2019, they’ve launched five fighters to their coin-op platform (Samurai Shodown V Perfect, Kung Fu Vs. Karate Champ, Chaos Code EXA, Fight of Gods AE, and the just released Dynamite Bomb!!), with that number soon hitting six with the pending launch of Axel City 2. Four other fighters are listed on their games page, but I know of at least two others in the genre which have yet to be announced. So while the platform is still heavy on the shmup, it’s quickly catching up with the fighter genre.
As a part of boosting that interest, exA-Arcadia announced on Twitter that they will have a booth at the event, showcasing ten titles, five of which are from those aforementioned fighters, two of them being yet-to-be-released ones (Arcana Heart 3 Xtend and Axel City 2).
exA-Arcadia will be at EVO 2023 from August 4-6 at the Arcade in Booth E3 located near the main entrance.
Come experience our new fighters and industry leading sub 1 frame input lag tech!
①Arcana Heart 3 Xtend
②Axel City 2
④The Kung Fu vs Karate… pic.twitter.com/sWcZDcbSlz
— exA-Arcadia 【公式】 (@exaarcadia) August 2, 2023
The event starts tomorrow in Las Vegas and runs through Sunday; As far as I know, no other coin-op arcade game maker will have a presence there. That isn’t too surprising, given that the only other company to make anything else in the genre is Raw Thrills, but Injustice is already six years old and was made for casuals, not hardcore fighting fans.
It’ll be interesting to see how this might result in increased interest, hopefully leading more players to search out locations that have an exA system with games. I suppose one way I’ll know is if anyone asks about something like Dynamite Bomb or not (although while writing this story I did have someone ask about buying the POP standee I have from Samurai Shodown).