It’s an obvious truth that there are many millions of players out there who are hooked on the old-style gaming. They either get their fix playing on the original consoles rescued from the cellar, cleaned up and made ready for action or by using more modern tech to play. But the question that’s come up more and more recently is whether the time might be right for a renaissance for the cathedrals of the original wave of games, the amusement arcade.
Rewind 40 years or so and you’d find that pretty much every town had at least one of these gamers’ havens and they were positively rife in the cities. So much so that the unmistakeable sounds of games like Galaxian, Missile Command and Asteroids would be a commonplace soundtrack to urban life being blasted out onto the streets.
The death knell for these pleasure palaces was sounded with the increasing sophistication and affordability of the games console and the games you could play on them. But now the time could be right for their return.
In fact, it’s so right it’s happening. Everywhere from New York to Tokyo, arcades are starting to spring up with Barcade being one of the biggest names to date. The clientele that these places are aiming for are mainly drawn from the generation who remember the original arcades and who and may want a chance to enjoy a little nostalgia. And, where the original arcades focused 100% on the games, the new generation of them are first and foremost bars where people can meet up, socialize and enjoy a game or two as part of the evening’s entertainment.
Of course, for those wanting to indulge in their love of old-style arcade games, there are many other outlets too. For example, many slots games in online casinos are themed around the games with popular examples being Tetris and Frogger. For anyone wanting to check out some of the arcade slots for themselves some casinos have a section specially dedicated to them. If this sounds interesting, then this could be the one for you. With a selection to choose from and a welcome bonus for new players, it’s a good introduction to the genre.
It’s also been suggested that e-sports may have a role in the reintroduction not so much of the traditional games arcade but in the mass game tournaments that used to take place before the action moved online. For games history buffs, the very first of these, the “intergalactic Spacewar Olympics” took place in October 1972. Participants competed against each other at Stanford University and winning would get them a Rolling Stone magazine subscription.
The issue with this might be the same one that the new generation of arcades are finding themselves – the worldwide shortage of machines that are still in good working order. But where there’s a will, there’s a way. So we can be reasonably confident that, if the demand is there, plenty of entrepreneurs out there will be ready to exploit it. And, when this happens, it’s certainly going to be “game on!”