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mcmonkey
rank 44
Posted:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 4:37 pm
quote : #1
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Posts: 1314
Type: PAL
I've been meaning to share this for a few weeks, but I've only really just calmed down from the whole experience.

So a long long time ago, or as some may say - a few weeks ago - I went to a place that is something of a rarity in the north of England. A place which I only really thought existed in Japan, cheesy American movies, and in my imagination. A place called... an "Arcade".

I had been to a few in my youth while on holiday at various seaside towns in the northern Wales. These were usually depressing places with sticky floors and a whiff of stale cigarette smoke. They had claw grabbing games, fruit machines, air hockey tables, but few actual arcade machines. The games that they did have were over played and in a terrible state from years of kids seemingly trying to destroy them.

So on one cold Sunday morning, a friend and I arranged to go to a good arcade. An arcade that I hadn't realised was so close by (about 30 minutes by car), and one that apparently was full of classic arcade cabinets that had been lovingly restored by bearded techno-wizards (I assume). I was a bit apprehensive due to my prior experiences, but I was assured that this one would be different.

We arrived in Bury, a former mill town, at about midday. We had something to eat, and then took a walk across town to a place that can only be described as a very close approximation of heaven. As you can see from the URL - there were two floors packed with fantastic games from the early 80s right until the present day. We had a great time playing Crazy Taxi, Monkey Ball, a couple of shmups which I'd never played in a fully working state in an arcade before, and various others. While wandering about looking for other machines to play - I stumbled upon...

Ikaruga...

Bloody Ikaruga!!!

Now - I have always wanted to play this game in an arcade. I never thought I would be able to play it without paying a ridiculous sum of money to fly to Japan. Even then - I thought the chances of finding somewhere that still had the 17 year old game up and running would be slim. There it was though. There in its Naomi cabinet, looking like it had in all those pictures I had seen of it online over the years. It was amazing. It played a bit differently to how i am used to playing it on the Dreamcast though. For instance: to release stored up energy, you had to stop firing, rather than press a different button. It took some getting used to!

So I hope you enjoyed my long winded story!

Has anyone else come across the Naomi version of a Dreamcast game in the wild? Was it everything you hoped it would be? Are arcades better in your part of the world than they are over here?

Discuss!
  _________________
Pretty music wot i has made:
http://grandcanonicalensemble.bandcamp.com/
lordnikon
rank 86
Posted:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 10:15 pm
quote : #2
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Posts: 5889
Type: NTSC-U/C
That is incredible. I would love to visit that arcade. From the pics, it looks like it has quite a few sit down candy cabs.

What type of cab was Ikaruga in? Was it a vertical tall NAOMI cab? with the NAOMI letters down the side?

Like this one?

https://segaretro.org/NAOMI_Universal_Cabinet

This is the arcade I go to in Chicago:

http://www.gallopingghostarcade.com/

They also have Ikaruga, but... its in a woody cab with a vertical LCD, so a bit less authentic. It is running on a NAOMI though. Also, a light shines on the cab and has always plagued it. Everytime I am there, it has the same problem. Laughing They move the cab around but always a light is blasting on the cab.

They have Tech Romancer there as well:

http://www.gallopingghostarcade.com/qr/techromancer/
  _________________
I'm already numero uno on Dark Helmet's hit list...
mcmonkey
rank 44
Posted:
Wed Mar 14, 2018 7:10 am
quote : #3
profile : pm
Posts: 1314
Type: PAL
It was a vertical tall NAOMI cab. I thought I took some pictures of it, but my phone didn't save them. They did have a few sit down Naomi cabinets that looked to have been re-purposed for other games (there was a Dodonpachi sequel in one not too far from Ikaruga). I did have a wee look-see for where one would slot in a VMU, but I couldn't find one on any of the Naomi games.

I did have a blast with Monkey Ball! The banana stick was way more fun to use than it had any right to be.

That arcade you go to looks like pretty fantastic. Are those sort of places more common over there?
  _________________
Pretty music wot i has made:
http://grandcanonicalensemble.bandcamp.com/
lordnikon
rank 86
Posted:
Wed Mar 14, 2018 10:50 am
quote : #4
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Posts: 5889
Type: NTSC-U/C
Next time I am back at Galloping Ghost I should do an audit and review of all the NAOMI games in the space. It would be a fun excuse to head back out.

I think GGA is now one of the largest if not the largest arcade in the US. There are smaller arcades here or there, like Nickle City, but many are dying. Some bars have sprung up including a few retro cabs. Game Works which Sega owns is still a good place to experience some stuff like a sit down Outrun 2 experience with the hydrolics and everything (its awesome!). However for a proper oldschool arcade experience Galloping Ghost is it. People fly in from Hawaii to go there, so its been sort of a big deal ever since it opened.

I own most of the games in the arcade at home in the form of console ports. However, I still go to the arcade because its nice to get out and just hang out. I enjoy the atmosphere.

They have a room all devoted to shmups even.

Lately, when I go, I end up settling in on some Shinobi or Flicky. I try to spend serious time on certain games rather than running around ROM style just playing for a minute or two.
  _________________
I'm already numero uno on Dark Helmet's hit list...
mcmonkey
rank 44
Posted:
Wed Mar 14, 2018 4:40 pm
quote : #5
profile : pm
Posts: 1314
Type: PAL
I pretty much spent the entire time hopping from cabinet to cabinet. I was a bit too excited not to!
  _________________
Pretty music wot i has made:
http://grandcanonicalensemble.bandcamp.com/
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