I really do enjoy your modern-arcade-insider posts, please do keep'em up
Could you explain what is this video-redemption trend I see mentioned, and what all the different modes are (ticketless etc)? It's all greek to me since I don't think I have ever been in a modern arcade (I don't mean barcade).
Sorry about the delay...hadn't caught it (guess I should subscribe to the post )
Video redemption (or videmption as I like to call it) was made to offer ticket redemption through video games. Because redemption games tend to be the shallowest gaming experience you can find (one example are "quick coin" games, where you drop a coin in the slot, the coin then does something like go down a ramp to hit targets or maybe onto a Plinko-style playfield then drops onto the moving bed of other coins, aka coin pushers. These games last a few seconds at best), when a videmption game comes around, they are also pretty shallow, but can last a little bit longer than the example of quick coin games mentioned.
Your standard videmption game will offer a brief video game experience that you play and try to win as many tickets as you can before the time is up. They usually have a bonus round or condition that must be met to win the "ticket bonus" or jackpot as it's sometimes called. In the case of many Raw Thrills classic remakes, you play a single wave of the game, then once that is complete, you take on the challenge of the bonus (which is usually difficult or based on a percentage chance).
Many videmption games have an amusement mode, which has sometimes been called Ticketless mode like in Space Invaders Frenzy above. When activated, the game is much different, and plays like a classic title in a good sense. In Galaga Assault (which I have at my arcade on Amusement Mode), you play 70 waves of Galaga, with a boss showing up every five levels. There are a few other subtle changes to the play, but overall it's Galaga in HD. In Space Invaders Frenzy, you also have many levels (50, I think) that you play through, just for the high score.
There are also some video games that have a ticket payout feature tacked on as a kind of afterthought, just converting your score into tickets using a weird system, but otherwise plays the same as a video game. Some instances of this that I can think of are Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2018), Neon FM, ReRave Plus.
Whether or not a game is in one of these modes depends entirely on the arcade operator; in some cases, we've found that games earn better when in amusement mode, but for most locations, they will have it setup as a redemption game. One surprising instance of this was Ghostbusters at Dave & Busters. This was made just as a videmption game, but it wasn't doing too well; they tested out a ticketless version and it did better. That is unusual to see though.
For redemption games that solely use a video screen as a scoreboard, I don't count those as videmption, as there is no video "game" that is being played in that instance. This is becoming more common as a way to make redemption games look more modern.
Hope that helps!