Arcades on Fire
Flash back to the eighties. Vibrant and flamboyant clothing. Long, flowing mullets. Cheesy techno music.
This is what usually comes to mind when thinking back on these strange years but many people forgot what the eighties also nurtured: Video game arcades.
Pac-Man. Space Invaders. Centipede. These are the true nostalgic gems of the eighties and they should be remembered well. They were exciting times for the industry. Video games were finally getting a legitimate foothold on the entertainment market. Young kids from all over the U.S. flocked to these arcades to sacrifice a few quarters for a few hours of fun with their buddies. Video game addiction finally reared its ugly head as competitors gave their all, spending countless hours beating each others’ top scores all in the name of pride and self-gratification.
Fast forward a decade. Arcade games are still running strong but competition with household consoles are putting a major dent in this area of the video game business. However, unforgettable and timeless titles are still birthed in this decade. Mortal Kombat. Blitz. Area 51. Time Crisis. These games hold a very special place in my heart.
Fly to the end of 2011. A look at the times of arcades can accurately be summed up by one visit through the local mall. They are the new technological ghost towns. No gullible soul will throw their precious, petty coins into these overpriced machines anymore. There is too much offered at home with the newest gaming consoles proudly flaunting their own impressive array of games that perpetually advance toward human perfection. I can still remember the times of skee ball and air hockey. I can still remember spending hours collecting hundreds of tickets to trade for over-priced miscellaneous toys and games that never held my attention longer than a few days. I can still remember stuffing my pockets with quarters and hearing myself jingle as I walked throughout the arcade. I can still remember the good ol days…