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classic arcade memories?

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#26 7800Lover OFFLINE  



  • 488 posts
  • Location:Fargo, North Dakota

Posted Fri May 11, 2018 7:37 PM

This was posted elsewhere in this forum section.


Sometime in the early 1990s, we drove over to southern Virginia to a shopping mall there.  The town was either Danville or Martinsville; I can't remember which.  My brother and I were delighted to find an Aladdin's Castle video arcade there.  It was inside that I found a Spy Hunter machine. 


As I played it, I remembered the trick about breaking the accelerator pedal - I had heard from someone that you could dislodge the pedal to make the car go faster.  Glancing around to make sure nobody was looking, I crouched down and dislodged the metal accelerator on the machine.  Indeed, the car went faster but was much harder to control.  During my playing, I got the feeling I was being watched.  I glanced off to the side and saw two people looking at me.  One was a shorter guy in glasses with an Aladdin's Castle t-shirt on; the other was a bigger guy wearing a muscle shirt and with big arms.  Both were pointing at me and talking to each other.  Suddenly, some sort of commotion broke out in another part of the arcade.  The two men went to see what was going on.  (I didn't know what it was myself.)  I put that pedal back the way I found it and then calmly left the arcade.  We never went back again.


That was the only time I ever pulled such a stunt in a video arcade.  I wonder whatever happened to that machine that I broke.   

#27 Keatah ONLINE  


    Missile Commander

  • 20,334 posts

Posted Fri May 11, 2018 8:14 PM

I'm going through my old posts I copy-pasted in a word.doc file to keep for historical sake. I found the one where I went to Galaxy World in carol stream and had my CB antenna stolen. It was a nice magnetic mount one from RadioShack. Damn fuckers. It was about then I realized the amount of riff-raff was increasing at arcades. Though it would take me about 2 more years to finally give up on the scene. General mall arcade closures and increase in fighting games helped me lose interest.


That is correct. Back in the day I got to interview for a technician's job and was appalled and dismayed at what went on in the back room. It was like a torture chamber for electronic games. The things and techniques that were done to force the games to perform was just sickening. The mess, the half-assed soldering. Boards stacked on the floor.


Today it doesn't bother me anymore. And in fact if you come across an arcade cabinet, and want to modify it, I'll encourage any conversion to modern electronics with a proper mame install. That's what mame was made for. To preserve the game and replace older electronics.


I also happily recall going to PinPan Alley in Algonquin, quite a trek to get there, and taking lots and lots of photos. The owner got to talking with me and said I was the only kid he'd ever seen bring in a camera and actually "document" the establishment. I even have the rare ones of Earth Friend Mission they were demoing. But I don't think I can get motivated to post them.

#28 Kosmic Stardust OFFLINE  

Kosmic Stardust

    Princess Rescuer

  • 16,759 posts
  • Location:Milky Way Galaxy

Posted Fri May 11, 2018 10:17 PM

I was a little kid, possibly preschool age or kindergarden at best, and my mom had to take a greyhound bus for a special trip. My dad had to take my mom to the bus terminal and I with them. It was wee hours of the morning, still pitch black outside. A man had just put a quarter in a Donkey Kong Arcade machine when his bus started boarding. He saw me looking up wide eyed at the monitor and suggested I take over for him. My mom agreed it was a nice gesture, so my dad picked me up and held me so I was tall enough to reach the control panel. There was something magical in that Mario moved in the same direction that I tilted the stick. Truth be told, I never cleared that first barrel, but it was still an amazing experience. Sadly my parents were too frugal to allow me to spend money at the arcades or buy me an nes later when it came out, so growing up I stood and stared at the attract mode or watched people play imagining it was me. But I never forgot the unnamed man who gave me that first free credit... :)

#29 jhd OFFLINE  



  • 1,673 posts
  • Location:Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Posted Wed May 16, 2018 12:55 PM

There were just a few small arcades in the city where I grew-up; most were associated with bowling alleys. We did not have Aladdin's Castle or any other recognizable franchises in Canada. 


My family used to regularly visit New England (mostly Portland, Maine and the exurbs of Boston, like Worcester and Auburn) in the mid-1980s. A high point of these trips for me was visiting the truly massive Dream Machine arcade located in the Worcester Galleria; that establishment seemed larger than all of the arcades back home, combined. Some of the other area malls had smaller arcades, too. 


One hotel that we stayed at (in Worcester, I think) had a lonely Tapper arcade game in the lobby; I had never seen one before (or since). 

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