Ah the Arcade. My parents use to take me to one in Bayville where I would stand on my feet for hours and play with complete strangers (who said video games aren't social?)
I would only leave the machine to frantically run back to my parents for more quarters as the GAME OVER counter wound down. Arcades have seemed to fade more and more as they lack relevance due to the advent of home-based consumerism and that pesky Internet.
Besides Dave and Busters, of course.
But that's like the BestBuy of button mashing and trigger clicking entertainment- too all encompassing, and far too corporate.... but I do love that fucking mocap Boxing game...exhausting.
The Arcade thrived among other dinosaurs of retail such as the CD Store (no one called it a "record store"- that was our parents), the Video Store, and the Shoemaker. I never got the shoemaker...he doesn't make shoes...he doesn't make anything...and why does it always smell so fucking weird in there? Whatever...
5. STAR WARS TRILOGY
Every camp overnight, teen tour,- THIS BITCH WAS MINE, you sat in a big X-Wing cockpit armed only with a joystick. The game translated great scenes from THE ONLY THREE STAR WARS MOVIES THAT MATTERED into sick dogfights, lightsaber duels, and the occasional Ewok sex. Lush graphics, true-to-Lucas sound, and that R2-D2 scream when you got a game over still haunts me at night.
4. Revolution X
A great shooter featuring the sights and sounds of Aerosmith, plus the sprites of animated strippers- major 6 year old bonedogs.
We all know Mortal Kombat and Street Fighter are far superior and let's face it; more popular games, but when I was coming up, TEKKEN was king. you know why? BECAUSE YOU CAN FIGHT AS A PANDAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!! EEEEE!!! HE'S SHO CUTE! but deadleeeeeee
2. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Arcade Game
This one may ruffle some feathers, or shred some shells. The follow up, TMNT IV: TURTLES IN TIME, is the best side scrolling beat em up of all time. Hands down. But that game was equally good, if not better, on SNES. I think it might even deserve it's own blog post one day. OOOOOO. However, this game was the genesis. Except it wasn't by Sega (heh). It was made by Konami, who ruled the 90s gaming world simply because they made the best product. For me, TV show games defined the Arcade, which leads us to number one:
1. THE SIMPSONS ARCADE GAME
The quintessential childhood cartoon, the quintessential game. With four players, this gem OWNED any birthday party. PEOPLE GOT BIT AND SCRATCHED TO BE MARGE. She was a beast with that vacuum. Again, Konami. Never made it to a home console though, and I for one, still burn.
I know I am forgetting tons, but don't fret, more will come back to me as the effects of antibiotics and zoloft wear off...