Another week, another look back at the IAAPA 2018 trade show that took place in Orlando back in November. It was such a massive show that it can’t be contained in a single post…or even two. In fact, if you were to walk every part of the floor, you would have covered 10 miles! That’s a lot of amusement product. In case you missed the first post, you can see what games we covered in part I by clicking here.
We covered seven different games last time, so we’ll do the same for this round. Links are included to be able to see more about each product beyond the video, as we have the most comprehensive and detailed descriptions of these products that you’ll find on the web (even more detailed than what manufacturers post to their websites!). If you haven’t already, be sure to subscribe to us on YouTube, so that you don’t miss more awesome video updates!
Fantasy Soccer Brings World Sport Back To Arcades
Soccer is a sport enjoyed by people all over the world, so it has been sorely missed within the arcade business. Thanks to UNIS, it is finally back and in a form that most players can enjoy. Find out more about this new game here!
Namco recently surprised us with the news that not only is the entertainment giant looking to expand its operations within the country, but they are also doing it with a new name. The video game, game center, and theme park focused company released a statement at this year’s IAAPA expo under the new name Pac-Man Entertainment, a reference to the company’s popular title and long-time mascot.
Throughout their long and prestigious history, Namco has divided its operations into several major departments, all of which operate under similar names. For example, Bandai Namco focuses on home console video games; Bandai Namco Amusements handles the research and development of arcade & VR games games; Bandai Namco Technica handles technical support of their content; Namco Cybertainment operates their family center consulting and arcade business locations; and so on. The names have changed several times, which does make for some of the confusion out there, on top of all of the divisions. Either way, this is one company that has it all figured out when it comes to arcade game operations, which is why it can do so with success across the entire globe.
Did you know that a new Predator movie just came out? Nowadays, franchises that we think are already laid to rest tend to resurface with a sequel, spinoff or, in most cases, a reboot. This particular movie is one of the latter, as it aims to pay homage to the original Predator. In that movie, world-class action star Arnold Schwarzenegger played the role of Dutch, a member of an elite squad of soldiers sent to a jungle in Central America to combat an unknown threat. According to the synopsis of the most recent film, the newest reboot of the series revolves around the following events:
“When a young boy accidentally triggers the universe’s most lethal hunters’ return to Earth, only a ragtag crew of ex-soldiers and a disgruntled scientist can prevent the end of the human race.”
So, in many aspects, this one is close to the original. Furthermore, now that we have a new Predator movie, what better time to take a look at one of the series’ arcade games?
In the world of gaming, there is a constant influx of new game titles, developed by both “AAA” and independent studios alike. In this sense, it is expected that not every game will have the same standards of quality, nor the same reception regardless of the said quality. Some games are outstanding, but fail to garner public attention, and fade into the “cult classic” category. Meanwhile, other mediocre games ride on the fame of their franchise to piggyback themselves into the public view. However, every once in a while, the top evil scientists brew up some of their worst concoctions in their labs and release it in game form, to the dismay of all the gamers around the world. Sometimes, Fallout 76 happens.
Speaking of “AAA” studios Bethesda has made quite a name for themselves over the years, with titles in The Elder Scrolls and Fallout series among others. There was plenty of hype to accompany the release of Fallout 76, but instead it is creating its own negative “fallout” in the video game industry after launching as a buggy, unfinished, and unoptimized mess. This goes well beyond what they have normally done – Bethesda has become infamous for releasing games in this state, then sitting on the sidelines waiting for the community to fix them. This is, in great part, because their games are highly-moddable, to the point where you can change virtually anything after the developers release the modding tools to the community. In other words, if the engine can render it, then it can be added into the game.
We’ve talked about Adrenaline Amusement’s Tomb Raider arcade game on several occasions this year. The cabinet, which was released at the beginning of 2018, received a massive launch; and by massive, we’re not talking only about the reception. The cabinet itself is enormous—about 120” across. While this game is ideal for Family Entertainment Centers who have enough real estate (and money) to accommodate this beast of a cabinet, this is not the case for collectors who also happen to be die-hard fans of the game series.
However, for those who tried out the game at your local FEC, and felt that they needed to get their hands on their very own Tomb Raider cabinet, today might be your lucky day.
Adrenaline Amusements announced that the company would be producing smaller cabinets for those with a smaller budget and tighter space requirements. This means both smaller operators and potential collectors. The new cabinet preserves all the functions of the original, including 4-player co-op mode, as well as guns with motion sensors and force-feedback capabilities, and will only measure 65”. This means that, while players might need to squeeze a bit when playing the 4-player mode, the cabinet itself will be a much better fit in those tight spaces.
As gaming’s staunch historians might know, the industry was developed by men, for men; and by men, we mean adults. The target audience of the video game systems in the early 70’s were mainly adult users who would get hooked easily on any activities, and that wouldn’t mind sinking a few quarters for a few rounds on Pong. Heck, some of these games even debuted as machines in bars and taverns, which made their player base consist of somewhat-inebriated adults who were spending their hard-earned cash on some unwinding.
The ensuing popularity garnered by the games was the driving factor behind the proliferation of an industry which, to this day, has become even more prominent than TV. And this is all because some merry tavern-goers popped some machines so full of quarters, that they would stop working. Furthermore, considering that the average Midway coin box can fill up to $1,500 in quarters, there was plenty of motivation for developers to keep working on games.
Fast-forward to today: video games are everywhere, consoles and PC have dominated the market for the past couple of decades, and fans are constantly abuzz talking about new or upcoming games. Even our phones have evolved to accommodate video games, as mobile games are just as prevalent as their home-console counterparts. As gamers ourselves, it’s a bit worrying when we think about the current state of gaming, how business models interfere with their purity and with the enjoyment that the user can derive from a session.
What would you say is the most critical part of a fighting game? The mix-ups and crossups? The block strings? Maybe even the normals? Now, consider, for a second, that you’ve never played a fighting game; quite a difficult experience, right? Those terms might all make sense for those of you who are seasoned veterans of fighting games, but they can seem quite confusing for players who are just getting into the genre.
So to help out those “greenies” who might be wanting to get into the exciting world of arcade fighters, we’ve put together this short guide on the basic fighting game terminology. We hope that this will be useful for beginners, who can learn them and hop into the fray with at least a theoretical knowledge on why they are losing (trust us, you’ll lose a lot at the beginning). And who knows, if you’re a veteran, you might even learn the name of “that thing” that you do that helps you win matches, but that you’ve never actually known what it’s called.