Welcome to Newsbytes, a weekend/bi-weekend curation of news items from around the arcade world. I tried to find something from pinball too, but it seems fairly quiet there right now. I finally had the chance to sit down and interview Eugene Jarvis about the Cruis’n series this week; I’m just hoping to get some items from the development process that I can integrate into the video and perhaps a blog post to fill it all out. As soon as I have that, it’ll be posted.
Until then, let’s talk some news:
Mr. Do! Returning To Arcades Soon?
H/T to Jdevy on this. If you subscribe to the trade magazine Intergame, then you probably read the feature article that highlights redemption and its role in arcades. For those of you who are players/gamers, particularly of the hardcore variety, you probably wouldn’t enjoy it too much, particularly the parts about how in many venues the redemption content makes up a good 60% or more of their earnings. This is why venues tend to focus on redemption instead of video – if gamers really went out and played the video games like they used to, then it would be different; This is also why I don’t cover redemption all that much – it doesn’t need the help like video does.
Tucked away in the article is an interesting piece of information on an upcoming revival of a classic arcade game series, Universal’s Mr. Do!. While discussing the subject with Electrocoin‘s John Stergides, he talks about how redemption is different in the UK, and at the end of his comments he mentions the following:
We are marketing and developing a few games in the pipeline, with them all aimed at family entertainment. These include a basketball-type game, a shooting game and a new series of Mr Do titled games.
While brief, this is a surprising revelation. While Mr. Do enjoyed enough popularity back-in-the-day to get some console ports of his original digging game, along with some wildly different sequels, the IP has been dormant since Neo Mr. Do! landed on the Neo Geo MVS back in 1996 (well, excepting a pachislot machine back in 2013). He’s also not a character that seems to pop up very often when people wax nostalgic about the 80s.
Since the UK really isn’t all that into ticket redemption, there’s a chance that this could be something more of a proper video game, but we’ll have to wait and see. John also said “series,” so that sounds like it will entail several products.
What do you hope to see from Electrocoin in this regard?
Oh, and speaking of arcade remakes, Atari announced this week that they are rebooting their obscurish 1984 release Food Fight next year. I’ve played the game on an original cab where it’s fun, but I really wasn’t expecting this one. That said, they’ve rebooted/remade (or attempted to) just about all of their major IPs in recent years, so I guess it’s time to dig down. This will be coming to all consoles out there including their new VCS, but why they don’t bring something exclusive to that particular console when it needs a reason to exist beyond an Atari logo, I dunno.
Remember Our 2019 April Fools Joke? It’s Sorta Real
If you recall our April Fools joke from 2019, it caused a little bit of a hubbub at the time – it even had some operators calling up distributors ready to cancel other game orders because they forgot what day it was.
Well, now one exists somewhere on the planet, although I’m not exactly sure where. It appears that this is found somewhere in Venezuela; It’s no surprise that you’d find this sort of thing there, or around other parts of South America (where such unauthorized creations are pretty common to stumble across).
Un arcade (no oficial) de Smash Bros Brawl pic.twitter.com/G5C9W9yHxg
— Rotom Gameboy Advance (@RotomAdvanceDX) July 22, 2021
Sega & LAI Games Are Hiring
If you are looking for a job in the arcade industry, then both Sega and LAI Games are hiring at the moment.
More Direct Captures From Real Arcade Games
I wanted to take this chance to thank everyone who has followed the Arcade Heroes YouTube channel lately. I’ve never seen it grow like this, which seems to be due to the direct capture I recently did of Minecraft Dungeons Arcade. I’ve done some other direct captures that haven’t received nearly as much love though, so let’s highlight those here. On the Lightning Knights, I sold that to Castlecade in Madison, WI, so I won’t be able to capture more from that, but I do have two full plays of it on the channel. I’ll have to do something special for when the AH YouTube channel hits 10k subscribers, but haven’t figured it out yet – maybe a direct capture of The Act, if I can get it to work in that regard.
Japanese Arcade History Videos
The first video is from 1979 Japan, the next, 1991. The first one hits at how there were places packed with Space Invaders machines at the time, although that lack of variety wasn’t able to last for very long. On the second one, the Russian host takes a look around a Japanese arcade, showing it off to viewers at home who likely hadn’t seen anything like it pre-Soviet collapse. This was given an additional boost by the presence of an operating Sega R360 right at the beginning of the video. Arcade Press has more background info on that video;H/T To Arcade Belgium for the first vid.
Will Japanese Arcades Survive The Pandemic?
H/T MrJBRPG for this one. This article over at Wired doesn’t paint a rosy picture of the difficulties that small Japanese arcades face, but as it mentions near the end that some places like Mikado Arcade find a way, I think that some will. While manufacturers have scaled back on releases, we had the announcement of Akai Katana EXA the other day(a game that will appeal to smaller locations that have a strong shmup player base) and Bandai Namco just released their Gundam Pod sequel game this week.
Here’s hoping that more survive this crisis than less. Of course, it isn’t just the pandemic that’s a pressure – the article does miss on two other key factors that have been a hurdle there – a national sales tax that was passed in 2020 that hit arcades and the whole revenue share model that eats into smaller center profits (granted, many of the smaller ones will avoid that stuff and just focus on older games where no rev share is required). What do you think, will they make it?
A Hobby Lobby Somewhere Has Arcade Merchandise On The Shelves – Every time I check the one in the same mall as my 1st arcade, they don’t have anything like this.
[Non-Arcade] The PS5 Has Now Outsold The Sega Dreamcast
[Non-Arcade] Pac-Man 99 Getting More DLC
That’s all I could find for the past couple of weeks – take care out there!
The post Newsbytes: Mr Do! Returning To Arcades; Smash Bros Arcade; Arcade History & More appeared first on Arcade Heroes.