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No more convenience store arcade machines

“Where’d you learn to shoot like that…?”

“7-11.”

It recently occurred to me how the above joke would make little-to-no-sense to the vast majority of today’s younger gamers. Sure, it’s halfway explained to the viewer in the previous movie, but even still… I guess they could process the statement as meaning that there are lots of robberies at 7-11 and one would obviously need a good handle on their handgun to get out of said sticky situation(s).

When I was a kid, I could remember heading down to the local convenience store and be guaranteed that at least some variation on Street Fighter II was there. This was in addition to playing Fatal Fury Special at Ames, and World Heroes 2 Jet (and later Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3) at Wal-Mart. It was just an expected thing… arcade machines were everywhere. It was a carry-over from the Pac-Man days, when every store had some arcade machine to keep you around spending those quarters. Convenience stores, laundromats, grocery stores… all of them. These days, I pretty much only see the standard Cruisin’ U.S.A. at rest stops along the New Jersey Turnpike, or the broken-ass light gun game at the pizzeria up on Staten Island that the woman’s family has made a beloved destination.

Why is this? Aren’t classic arcade games cheap enough to grab one or two and throw them in somewhere for some guaranteed quarters? Obviously the newer machines are far too expensive, but there’s no excuse that I shouldn’t be able to play some Komani brawler from the early 90’s no matter which establishment I set foot into.

Besides, let’s not further date the Back to the Future movies. They’re too awesome to deserve that.

2 Comments

  1. I agree. More places should have classic arcade games from the 90s(eg. SF II, X-Men Arcade, TMNT Arcade, Simpsons Arcade). Nowadays, you can pretty much find yourself playing arcade games only at local movie theatres. Some of the new theatres still get the latest arcade games, but damnit, when am I going to find a place that has SF IV?

    Sidebar: I’m a big fan of the Back to the Future films myself. Heck, I’m even getting a replica of the Flux Capacitor next month.

  2. The only arcade around me anymore is a little crappy one located inside my Super K-Mart. It actually used to have some good games, DDR… well, one good game. My friend and I spent a whole summer playing it there late at night (the store is 24 hours, 24 hour arcade DDR just minutes away, it was awesome!) but then randomly it was replaced with some generic hunting shooter or pinball machine. It sucks now. I guess the store hated money or something because we spent retarded amounts of it there.

    Our mall’s awesome Tilt was replaced with a god-awful Chuck E. Cheese. There were several dance machines and 2-D fighters and side-scrolling beat-em-ups there, not to mention sweet physical games like Ski-Ball, etc. Well, those are probably still in the Chuck E. Cheese, however, I’m 24 and don’t have any little cousins or anything.

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