Features

The 50 Greatest Arcade Cabinets In Video Game History!
by: -RoG- and Dr. Boogie

Seeing classic arcade game machines lined up next to each other is an easy way to have a wave of nostalgia smack you in the face harder than a hurled barrel compliments of Donkey Kong himself. It brings you back to a time when games were simple, fun, and fairly cheap to play for the most part. Whether it was laughing at how all the enemies bullets traveled 75% slower than your own or enjoying the cheesy digitized voices, there's no denying the classic games had something special.

But there is something about arcade games that we don't think gets enough credit. While everybody has their picks for the best games, most people don't give too much thought about the artistry that was put into the cabinets which held these games. It is with that in mind that I-Mockery is paying tribute to what we consider to be the The 50 Greatest Arcade Cabinets In Video Game History! Keep in mind, this list isn't ranking the games themselves, but the unique designs for the cabinets and cockpits which encased them. Chances are, you'll see some games on here that you've never even heard of, and that's likely because some of them sucked more than E.T. on the Atari 2600. But hey, at least their outer shell designs were damned nice to look at! Furthermore, if there are some games you feel should be on the list, let us know and we might eventually add them!

#50: Space Invaders

Space Invaders

Nobody can deny the desire to pop a quarter into this ol' machine should they be lucky enough to spot it. The inviting drawings on this cabinet helped catch people's attention and made Space Invaders hugely successful. What's nice is how some of the artwork on the faceplate actually bleeds into the screen area. At first glance you might think that it would be distracting but it's not. It just helps draw you into the game that much more. And let's be honest, it's a very simple game and it's not like the artwork would be covering up some vital detail anyway. Another noteworthy thing is that there is no joystick on this cabinet, the left & right movement controls are all buttons, just like the fire button.

#49: Crystal Castles

Crystal Castles

Crystal Castles tried a couple different things with this colorfully decorated cabinet. Most arcade games used joysticks for moving the player around, especially when movement is limited to the four cardinal directions, along with their four half-and-half cousins. Not Crystal Castles, though; the designers decided that the player should have to use a trackball to navigate the grid-like mazes in the game. It's an ingenious way to make your game seem unique, while simultaneously drawing extra cash out of the customer by causing a lot of cheap game overs. The game also came in a cocktail-style cabinet, in case you could convince someone else to join you in getting screwed out of your quarters. Hey, at least the trackball was backlit. That's cool, right?

#48: Crossbow

CrossbowCrossbow control panel

They used to have this game at an old roller rink in town. The premise for the game is that you have to protect your friends from harm by picking off bad guys and flying debris with your trusty crossbow. To fully immerse you in the game, you had to actually use a small mockup of a crossbow. In a way, it was sort of like a primitive version of Silent Scope, except that there was no scope, just a couple notches in the thing that you lined up. The point is, the game allowed children to finally experience the elegant killing power of a crossbow (the H-bomb of the Middle Ages). Incidentally, there was a sharp increase in the number of crossbow-related injuries around the time this game came out, and the politicians of the day sought to pin the blame on video games. Frankly, I don't see the connection.

#47: A.P.B.

A.P.B.

Being a cop requires certain specialized equipment. To that end, the designers of A.P.B. created a machine with a few special features to more accurately simulate the hectic life of a police officer. The game is almost all driving, so it's only natural that there be pedals and a steering wheel on the cabinet. However, the game also included one of the most memorable features of a cop car: the lights. Whenever you hit the "siren" button in the game, a set of red and blue lights at the top of the cabinet would begin flashing, giving you the chance to annoy and distract people from all the way on the other side of the arcade. Thankfully, though, the actual siren itself was in-game only. Also worth noting is that a platform seat could be attached to the cabinet, in case you felt your customers might not want to stand on one foot, with the other on the gas and/or brake, for an extended period of time

#46: Tapper

Tapper

When making a simulator-type game, it is important that you nail down as many details of the experience as possible to completely immerse the player. One of the most basic steps you can take is to include a controller that looks and feels just like the real thing. That said, it's just common sense that Tapper, a bartender simulator, would have an actual pour spout to let you get the full feel of life as a bartender. Of course, you're not much of a bartender, as you only serve beer at your bar, and you only serve one kind of beer: Budweiser. Still, you got to experience bartender-dom in all of its glory. The cabinet even came with drink holders and a brass railing so that you could play as a bartender while still enjoying the amenities afforded to those on the opposite side of the bar.

The bad news: no tips.

It should also be noted that there actually was an alternate version of this game created for more family-oriented places (ie: Chuck-E-Cheese) and was renamed "Root Beer Tapper". Unfortunately the nice add-ons such as the brass railing and drink holders were not included with this version of the game.

#45: Fonz

Fonz

There are many motorcycle racing arcade games out there, but none of them were based on the most memorable character from "Happy Days", Fonz! In addition to having handlebar controls that functioned exactly like a real motorcycle, you had the Fonz giving you a big thumbs up on the side of the machine. His visage alone makes this 1976 Sega classic worthy of our list. Eeeeyyyyy!

#44: Two Tigers

Two TigersTwo Tigers control panel

Here's another fun one from days past. The idea was that you'd sink your opponent's battleship not by randomly guessing a letter and a number, but by blasting through it with bombs and flaming plane wreckage. It even had steering controls just like an old-fashioned fighter plane, or so I assume. Of course, it was a little hard to control the plane with these controls since the action took place from a side view, and not a cockpit view like you'd expect from games with controls like this, but still, it added a certain degree of realism to the experience. Not quite enough realism to offset the fact that you had an unlimited number of planes and that each one only flew about 10 miles an hour, but it was still fun.

#43: Bazooka

Bazooka

The game name? Bazooka. Your controller? A bazooka. Need I say more?

#42: Super Off-Road

Super Off-Road

I've said it before on this list, and I'm bound to say it again: I generally don't care for racing games. The sitting down is nice, but rarely do arcade racing games come with comfy chairs. Ivan "Ironman" Stewart saw this, and decided to save a little money on his racing game by simply doing away with uncomfortable plastic chairs and creating an entirely upright racing game. To some, this must seem like a bad move. Quite the contrary: indeed you are bound to get tired after standing for a while with one foot on the ground and the other tapping a squeaky metal pedal. That's where the "Ironman" part of the game comes into play. It was a race within the game, and a test of endurance without. One player toughs it out while his buddies crack from the strain and start mashing their "nitro" buttons, which merely leads to them slamming into the wall and griping about off-roading being a redneck sport. No no, thank you, Mr. Stewart.

#41: Battlezone

Battlezone

Here's an old school classic for you. The wire frame tanks were cool, as were the nifty stickers for fake buttons carefully placed next to the real buttons that controlled your own tank (which was actually designed in 128-bit color with amazing texture detail and bump mapping, all of which went to waste when it was revealed that the game was entirely in the first person perspective). However, some of the cabinets were designed to further sell the whole "tank of the future" motif. Instead of having an ordinary, blasé screen, they had a sort of periscope view. Normally, completely shutting out all outside light and subjecting your eyes to nothing but bright wire frames for long periods of time could be detrimental to your eyesight, but thankfully, the developers had the foresight to include open areas to the sides of the scope frame to let in some sunlight, and to let a few people look in on you to see if you were doing well or sucking out loud. If Nintendo had remembered this little feature when they were designing their damned Virtual Boy, I might still be able to see the color red.

#40: Exterminator

Exterminator

Having a game where you use a digitized hand to smash digitized bugs in a digitized house wasn't good enough for the designers of Exterminator. They wanted the entire cabinet to be shaped like one of the houses in the game, right down to the roof and chimney. It gave the game a very unique feeling, which was good because the cabinet couldn't be made to play any other games besides Exterminator (something that's commonly done in arcades). It was a very bold move. It wasn't a very popular move, especially since the cabinets themselves were pretty unreliable, but it was a bold move nonetheless.

#39: Title Fight

Title Fight

You kids today. In my day, we didn't have a "Nintendo Wii" with motion-sensitive control sticks for our boxing games. Oh no, we had our own kind of control "sticks" for our boxing games. Take Title Fight, for example. You had two joysticks, and each one was like a set of plastic brass knuckles that you would slam forward and backward in order to lay your opponent out on the canvas. There probably were sound effects in this game, but I could never make them out over the loud banging of the joysticks as I mimicked the motions (and enthusiasm) of real professional boxers. In a totally unrelated note, the local arcade was always sending their Title Fight machine away for repairs because somehow, the joysticks kept getting broken. Probably some punk kids spilling their sodas all over the damn console. I hate kids.

#38: Smash TV

Smash T.V.Smash T.V.control panel

Who doesn't remember Smash TV? Altered Beast had "Wise fwom your gwabe", and Smash TV had "Big money, big prizes, I love it!" Ok, I'll admit it doesn't have quite the same punch, but it was fitting, considering how many toasters and VCRs you could walk away with. The thing that really took me by surprise back when I first saw this thing was that instead of having a joystick and a couple buttons for shooting, it had an unbelievable two joysticks: one for moving, and one for shooting in one of eight directions. It was positively revolutionary. So much so that I didn't even mind the fact that I was getting totally reamed in that game, and shelling out more than my fair share of quarters trying to find the "Pleasure Domes", if you know what I mean.

#37: Laser Ghost

Laser Ghost

Lasers and ghosts were at long last brought together in this late 80's shooter. The cabinet featured plastic guns affixed to the console just like all the other shooters from that era. However, whereas other shooters could only fit two guns for two players onto the machine, Laser Ghost managed to squeeze a third gun in between the other two. This meant your other friend didn't have to wait for either you or your friend to die before jumping in. Unfortunately, the middle gun was much higher than the other two. Some versions of the cabinet included seats for players 1 and 3, and others included a seat for just player 2, but either way, someone was going to be left standing when you played the game. It was just a matter of figuring out which friend you liked least.

#36: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (TMNT)

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (TMNT)

If you were at an arcade with both this game and The Simpsons, you had a tough choice ahead of you, but either way you were in for a lot of fun. Now, the obvious thing to do would be to go with the TMNT game that four people could play, but they still made a number of cabinets designed for only two players. That's how you knew if you were in a cheap-ass arcade or not. Anyway, the cabinet itself was decked out with images of the turtles, along with a couple actors portraying April and Shredder. Were the artists unable to draw convincing human characters or did they think these photo actors would make the appearance of the game all the more impressive? Perhaps it was simply too hard to find the real ninja turtles for a photo shoot? Only Master Splinter knows such ancient secrets. I'm sure that this machine was the start of a highly lucrative modeling career for the girl who posed as April too. Either way, it was a big, bright arcade machine that drew in gamers like pizza draws in turtles. Ninja turtles.

Click here to continue onward to
more arcade cabinets from our list!

Reader Comments

Flash Game Programmer
Jan 10th, 2008, 03:52 AM
Incredible article...

Cruisin' the World though is one of my most memorable arcade games.
Pickleman's Uncle
Jan 10th, 2008, 04:06 AM
"Computer space" ? That thing is crazy, it belongs in a museum :O
It looks like Gumby fucked a tv.

In 1971??? Crazy old.
I know there this game made in the 50s though: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s2E9iSQfGdg

Crazy!
Fanboy
Jan 10th, 2008, 05:53 AM
Wow - I had forgotten about some of these beauties..."Two Tigers" ruled my life once...

A few humble inclusions? "Gauntlet" was always a fave, because it was the first co-op game I really got into. And I always went for "The Simpsons" over TMNT every time. "Operation Wolf" and its sequel "Operation Thunderbolt" were doozies too - the first time I ever saw a gun on a cabinet.

A fantastic trip down memory lane; thanks heaps guys. Damn, where can I get these things?
MLE MLE is offline
CHIEF OF POLICE
Jan 10th, 2008, 06:03 AM
I totally remember Gauntlet ;o I was always the Valkrye.
Forum Virgin
Jan 10th, 2008, 08:00 AM
Beootifool game of football (or soccer as you say) where you rolled a sphere instead of moving joystick to play. Veeery beootifool but don't think was in usa so forget about me...
Forum Virgin
Jan 10th, 2008, 08:02 AM
Oh yeah, operation wooolf! Mr Killgrave very right! And strip poker!
plastic bag
Jan 10th, 2008, 10:14 AM
i was hoping to see Lucky & Wild there, totally one of my favorite arcade games
Clap if you love Dynamo
Jan 10th, 2008, 10:30 AM
I have a few additions I would also like to suggest.

One thing I did not see that was a fun memory for me was a style of arcade unit, the tabletop arcade game. Games like Pac Man, Moon Patrol, Galaga, Wizard of Wor, and Crazy Climber were sometimes put into tables that you could also have your drink and pizza on.

A nice looking multiplayer arcade unit would be a game called Crime Fighters, It didn't just look cool on the cabinet either, it was huge fun because you could kick your enemies while they were down and even better, at the end of every stage, you usually fought a boss that was from a mainstream horror movie. Freddy Kruger, Jason, and Leatherface all made cameos.

Smash TV was another one that I will always remember, it had such a comical look to it and was such a campy theme game wise.
Can't even THINK straight
Jan 10th, 2008, 12:04 PM
I came...
Waiting for the worms.
Jan 10th, 2008, 02:41 PM
Alright, a comment on each page: In this page, I choose TMNT to win checkmate in 11 moves.
Waiting for the worms.
Jan 10th, 2008, 02:53 PM
Didn't realize the comments moved to all pages of the article neato. But T-Mek gets KO in round 3, and Sinistar wins the kewpie doll. Oh, yes.
I hate this hacker crap!
Jan 10th, 2008, 03:49 PM
I never got to experience most of these... I had no idea Computer Space even existed.
Retardedly Handsome
Jan 10th, 2008, 04:20 PM
Ahhh, what a refreshing trip down memory lane. It gave me something to think about while I was avoiding work. I wonder if arcades would just end up throwing out the grips from paperboy for health concerns. Not that arcades were usually a shining example of cleanliness. The combination of prepubescent hand sweat and pizza grease collecting in the grooves over the years.

I know I spent enough that would equal roughly half of my college tuition on the X-men game. Jump-Fierce Attack-Jump-Fierce Attack. Also one that I never got the hang of which I'm surpised wasn't included is Dragons Lair, especially for as cutting edge as it was when it came out (I think it cost $1.00 to play, which would be like $43 dollars today).

In New York City a few months ago and there is a Bar called Barcade that has about 30 different classic arcade games and they keep track of high scores on a chalk board. Its exciting. Played Tapper for about 2 hours.
Shrub Scientist
Jan 10th, 2008, 04:44 PM
Well done - what a splendid article written by two nice young men.

I distinctly remember the Time Traveler "hologram" game. This was the ultimate excitement for me as a 13-year old boy, even if they weren't real holograms. I also had weird demonic action figure toys that had removable souls with holographic images. The packaging warned not to immerse the toys in water, which of course I did, in the bathtub, to see if the demonic spirit would be released from his plastic prison. Does anybody else remember these toys? I've forgotten what they were called.
Forum Virgin
Jan 10th, 2008, 05:28 PM
this is one LOOOOOOOOOOOOONG article!
Forum Virgin
Jan 10th, 2008, 05:55 PM
didn't Arm Kings break a few arms? Now that's an arcade game!
Forum Virgin
Jan 10th, 2008, 06:13 PM
I remember the X-Men one, it was...


Awesome
No Says the Man in Moskow
Jan 10th, 2008, 07:19 PM
that was great! it really took me back to my childhood, going to blackpool with my bro and spending a stupid amount of 20p coins XD

actaually, its just reminded me to set up my home arcade machine! im not sure what to stick in it tho:
cap'n american and the avengers, cap'n commando, avp, simpsons, xmen, aliens, or the punisher... the choices are endless!
Fake Shemp
Jan 10th, 2008, 07:45 PM
I miss arcades Used to be a staple of every mall. Now I don't know of any in my area (East Coast) that are like the ones I grew up with - dank, loud, buzzing, dangerous. All that's left now are arcades bosting a few older cabinet games and a bunch of Dance Dance Revolution set ups. Only one I actually still know of is up in the middle of the white mountains of NH, attached to a 2 lane bowling ally, mini golf, run down extravaganza called " UN T WN", which I'm assuming is missing its F an O, or is something really dirty. Seasonal place only open in the summer. Last and only time I was there the old geezer that ran the place shuffled out to greet us. "Heh, you guys wanna play the games do ya?" he snickered as he limped out back to start up the generator that powered the room. Granted, having Pac and Mrs Pac, and Moon Patrol and a working BattleZone and Tron Deadly Disks along side Galaga, Galaxian and a few others was a nice boost of nostalgia, but raccoons had nested in some of the cabinets and each screen needed to be wiped down from the decade of dust accumulated. I think the newest game there was The Simpsons.
Place has closed down, to be turned into whatever it is they turn things into up in the forest primeval up there, and I'm kicking myself for not being around when the old guy had a big sale and got rid of all his cabinets. I'm assuming they were going for dirt cheap.
Freelance Product Tester
Jan 10th, 2008, 08:35 PM
I would've liked to see a Triforce cabinet in the list. Nintendo, Namco, and Sega worked together to make it. It even let's you insert a Gamecube memory card for the F-Zero game they made for it. It tilts left and right (As long as you buckle up, of course!) as well. One helluva ride. Here's a look at both versions(I played on the original cabinet): http://www.klov.com/game_detail.php?game_id=10971
Ninja in training
Jan 10th, 2008, 08:44 PM
Nice article...Ive seen black painted versions of diretruck at a hotel...and i agree for the most part with your listings
The Magnificent Bastard
Jan 10th, 2008, 09:14 PM
I strongly suggest Virtua-On, Virtua Fighter 2, and The Lost World!

Virtua-On's cabinet was similar to T-Mek.

Virtua Fighter 2's cabinet was just plain pretty, a nice paint job.

And, The Lost World had you sit in miniature car with a big monitor as the windshield!
Bloodbender
Jan 10th, 2008, 09:59 PM
Wow, Panic Park was weird. The arm wrestling game was okay, but it was too easy too cheat by using two hands. X-Men was awesome too. It is a shame that this article didn't include one of the Sega games with the HUGE machineguns. Prop Cycle is missed too.
pickled
Jan 10th, 2008, 10:31 PM
Midway just loves to crush dreams. C
Member
Jan 10th, 2008, 10:57 PM
The Aliens: Extermination arcade cabinet has pulse rifle replica lightguns that look and feel pretty damn sweet.
Forum Virgin
Jan 11th, 2008, 12:14 AM
You forgot SEGA's 360, that was the ultimate arcade machine.
Space Cowboy
Jan 11th, 2008, 12:46 AM
I once saw a Fist of the North Star arcade game where you actually had to punch parts of the screen that would pop out at you to damage your opponent.

First fighting game to ever cause me to actually break a sweat.
From the Home of MST3K
Jan 11th, 2008, 01:05 AM
God DAMN do I miss having a decent arcade. My 360 just isn't the same...

The Franklin once had a traveling exhibit of the greatest Arcade games in history...Much of what was in there was also on this list. Go yell at them and demand they bring it back and make it permanent!
http://www2.fi.edu/
What Video Games?
Jan 11th, 2008, 01:34 AM
Incredible article. I also miss arcades. The only places I know for sure that still has them are a flea market (flesh-eating bacteria included!) and the bus station (Sadly, flesh-eating bacteria sold seperatly.). Oh, and the miniature golf courses.

But still, RiverFair in Indiana had hundreds of them (Including Beasturrizer, which was Bloody Roar with a really gay name.) and this one that closed down years ago in small area near my house also rocked the boat.
Forum Virgin
Jan 11th, 2008, 04:02 AM

Best part of APB was..

After you captured each criminal you had to beat a confession out of them by wacking buttons and moving the joystick before the sarge came downstairs.

I remember clearly the 'Hum dee dum humm de dum" of the sarge walking downstairs (you saw his shadow in the glass window) while the suspect cried out as you beat them.

Anyhow, they don't make um like that anymore I guess.
Forum Virgin
Jan 11th, 2008, 05:13 AM
Excellent article. I actually had the pleasure of experiencing a fully intact "Discs of Tron". I remember being filled with awe at the sheer beauty of that bad-boy. I also used to run around the house with a frisbee taped to my back which I would yank off and through at shit. One time I whacked my dog upside the ass with it. Needless to say,ol' bear was none to pleased.
Forum Virgin
Jan 11th, 2008, 08:10 AM
I consider this list null and void with the omission of the R-360 version of "G-Loc" that was essentially a giant pod that you had to strap into. It was able to rotate a full 360 degrees on the horizontal and vertical axis and even had a built in "barf button" to quit the game if you started to get sick from spinning.
Forum Virgin
Jan 11th, 2008, 11:36 AM
Pity the Midway Space Invaders cab was chosen, when the original TAITO Space Invaders cabinet blows it away in so many respects. It has superior artwork in it's cabinet, backgrounds, and control panel. It also has 2-way Joystick control (not button control).. the way it's meant to be played by it's makers. It's by far the superior cabinet.

Also it's worth mentioning the ghostly holographic effect both the cabinets have for their display which uses mirrors to achieve it's effect. You don't see much of those anymore
Forum Virgin
Jan 11th, 2008, 04:11 PM

Nice article

It certainly brought back some fond memories, and made me mourn the loss of many, many quarters.

I'd like to point out that Robotron 2084 had the dual joystick move/shoot setup a few years before Smash TV.

I'd also like to nominate the original Street Fighter cabinet, which used pressure-sensitive rubber pods instead of buttons. To deliver a punch or a kick, you punched the pod - the harder the you hit the pod, the harder your character punched.

It was kinda neat because nobody could dominate the game for hours, like they would with some of the other arcade fighting games. After a few matches in a row, your arms would get so tired you couldn't deliver a hard punch any more, and any newb with fresh arms could beat you.
lurking on the walls
Jan 11th, 2008, 11:06 PM
i remember the "race Drivin " game you sit in a car molding and try to avoid the block shaped things and run out of time, it was funny but kind of good at the time
Is a thin donkey
Jan 12th, 2008, 12:08 AM
Man, I remember playing TMNT back at my old arcade...never got past the first level, but enjoyed it nevertheless.
Tropical Viking
Jan 12th, 2008, 12:21 AM
I wasn't around to see those vintage cabinets, but as a kid, I truly adimired that of Mortal Kombat 2. The huge screen and the imponent Raiden figure on it's side marveled me for quite a couple years. But I was a shitty player and barely could reach for the joystick, so I never really played it... but let's face it, I was chicken-shitting a little. A lame performance on that arcade would be like standing naked in front of your classroom. That's how I felt like.
Member
Jan 12th, 2008, 03:54 AM
I was hoping that Time Traveler would make the list! I can't think of how many quarters I wasted on that one *laughs* I actually lucked out and found a used copy of the game disc at EB (complete with 3D glasses no less!) that plays on a PS2...

...

...

Still can't beat the thing...
Letch
Jan 12th, 2008, 10:09 AM
I know its not really one of the greatest but i always like the mortal kombat 4 cabinet. They had pictures of the real actors that playd the characters in the game and quan chi's big ass white head loomin at you as soon as you walk in the arcade is always a good motivation to burn off some quarters. Before they recently closed the arcade at our mall they had one but the game inside was like, dragonball z or somethin like that. But back when new 3d mk was all the rage, i think i stood there lookin at the thing while waitin my turn long enough to fully be engrossed by the droning stare of quan chi. now i have a fear of bald men, albino people and cakey black makeup. *shudder*
ids ids is offline
Forum Virgin
Jan 12th, 2008, 10:16 PM
I can't believe you guys missed Wacko - should be in the top-10!
Mongoloid
Jan 12th, 2008, 11:33 PM
i remember playing guitar freaks it was really fun. i never liked DDR, i prefer Pump it Pump
By Hawkings Chair!
Jan 13th, 2008, 05:25 AM
I'm surprised Mad Dog McCree isn't on the list.
I remember when this came out it cost 50p a go! At a time when arcade games cost either 10 or 20p.
Damn worth it though. It was almost worth getting killed just to see the creepy undertaker dude standing over your casket talking to you.

Another great game, which I can't quite remember the name of right now, had a puchbag on it and a camera so that before the game started you could have your own mug superimposed over the game character. I'm sure some psychologists made a good living off of kids who had an uncontrolable urge the punch the crap out of themselves.

Mad Dog McCree cabinet here:
http://www.klov.com/images/11/11812421365.jpg
Built in the 80s
Jan 13th, 2008, 05:27 PM
Awesome article!
Spiral Out
Jan 13th, 2008, 10:07 PM
I would give my left nut and half of my right for a STUN Runner machine.
Forum Virgin
Jan 13th, 2008, 10:39 PM
Aaah, the French.
Forum Virgin
Jan 14th, 2008, 10:16 AM
Kid N is right. The Taito space invaders cabinet is a thing of beauty! Surely would have notched it up the list a few.

Fantastic and well researched article. and thank you for these fine urban champion icons!
Pickled Patriarch
Jan 14th, 2008, 02:05 PM
Good call on the Space Invaders, but if and when we turn this into a "top 100" list, I think the Space Invaders cocktail style table will make it onto the list as it's one of the earlier ones and definitely one of the cooler looking ones.

It's crazy, even with all the research and work that was put into this thing, there are still loads of games I've never even seen. We've received soooo many great suggestions for the list that I'm sure we'll eventually update it to make it a top 100 instead of a top 50.

Thanks again for all the compliments everyone and keep those arcade cabinet suggestions a' coming!
Forum Virgin
Jan 15th, 2008, 09:48 AM
oh all i can rember palying is gauntlet being the Dwarf though never the ranger or what he was as seemed to be a bit rubbish
Forum Virgin
Jan 15th, 2008, 10:46 AM
Time Crisis probably ate more of my quarters than any other machine.
Member
Jan 15th, 2008, 11:08 AM
I thought the 'Addams Family Generator' Looked pretty nifty in the arcade. It was the first thing I was drawn to when I saw it there anyway. I gotta say the vibration didn't feel like shit though. It was pretty fun to piss about with though.
Forum Virgin
Jan 15th, 2008, 01:20 PM
Great article, I thought I knew them all but I was wrong! Here are my comments:

1. Fire Truck - Thank you for including that. That was a very unique game.
2. Smash TV - More 'evolutionary' than revolutionary. As mentioned before, Robotron was the first to employ 2 joysticks for movement and firing. Smash TV just added a second player.
3. I agree with an earlier comment: Wacko should be considered for the next list.
4. Tempest had a very unique cabinet. Great artwork, rotary control. Always drew me in.
5. Galaxy Force (1988) was quite impressive
6. Joust cocktail version. One of the few cocktails you can sit side by side. Good game too!
7. Sprint 1 was one of the first stand-up driving games, but Sprint 8 was the first 8 player stand up driving game. The cabinet is quite a spectacle to see. Take that Ivan Stewart!
Member
Jan 15th, 2008, 05:47 PM
I loved this article simply for the nostalgia of the arcade. A damn dirty shame that they're becoming more and more extinct these days. All well. On a different note, I'd love for somebody to get a snapshot of the original Splatterhouse arcade cabinet and post it, simply to see what the game that continually kicks my ass looked like in arcades.
Forum Virgin
Jan 15th, 2008, 09:16 PM
Police 911...i played it for the first time a few days ago. normal shooter with a gun but it detects your bodily movements to hide behind obstacles and what not so you don't get hit by mobster fire...time crisis be damned!
Pickled Patriarch
Jan 16th, 2008, 05:36 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Styled Executioner View Post
I thought the 'Addams Family Generator' Looked pretty nifty in the arcade. It was the first thing I was drawn to when I saw it there anyway. I gotta say the vibration didn't feel like shit though. It was pretty fun to piss about with though.
Hehe yeah I loved that one too, but that wasn't really a video arcade game. It was more of a novelty attraction that people would tease their friends about. Still amazes me when I see a grown adult who can't last through that entire thing. It's not like it's real electricity... it's just vibrations as you said.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jonny#5 View Post
I loved this article simply for the nostalgia of the arcade. A damn dirty shame that they're becoming more and more extinct these days. All well. On a different note, I'd love for somebody to get a snapshot of the original Splatterhouse arcade cabinet and post it, simply to see what the game that continually kicks my ass looked like in arcades.
Thanks man, glad it brought back some memories. I miss arcades too, but there are more classic arcades popping up around the country. Search around and maybe you can find one close to you. We've also got some killer Japanese arcades around here, complete with Typing Of The Dead (highly recommended).

As for Splatterhouse, the only place online that has a photo of it is klov and sadly, it doesn't look all too impressive, even though the game was awesome. I dig the cheesy marquee though.
frappez le cochon rouge
Jan 16th, 2008, 10:41 PM
Even Destructoid loves it!

http://www.destructoid.com/i-mockery...me-64717.phtml

I agree with most of 'em.
Pickled Patriarch
Jan 18th, 2008, 09:10 PM
Yeppers, Destructoid has always been really cool about featuring whatever our latest gaming stuff is. Real nice group o' people writing for 'em too.
Member
Jan 21st, 2008, 12:07 AM
although i like most of the cabinets in this one, i'm disappointed that they left out the original Darius which was notorious for being the first shmup that spanned 3 screens wide (which was quite innovative for its time).
Exploding In...3...2...1
Jan 28th, 2008, 09:50 PM
Ah, Smash TV, a game i first played on a "Atari History" disk, and i only thing i can say is that its a bitch to play Smash TV on a Ps2 controller.
Our Last Hope
Feb 4th, 2008, 06:06 PM
Amazing article. I hope that cabinets and arcades come back into style.
You'll thank me later...
Feb 14th, 2008, 11:42 AM
Discs Of Tron!

My mother's first husband's best friend owned an arcade that, well I used to go to all the time when I was a kid. The had the full version and I remember playing that bad boy religiously. I was barely tall enough to actually PLAY but my god was that an amazing game.

It's the loss of games like that, that make me furious to see the loss of the arcade.
Forum Virgin
Mar 13th, 2008, 06:23 PM
Amazing article. The only time I did a lot of jumping up and down and screaming to a video game was when my foot accidentally hit the Power button just as I finally got to the Great Palace in Zelda II and I realized I hadn't saved the game at all!!(Yes, I know. Stupid of me). Lots of memories here. I'll never forget standing on tiptoe at the age of five to play Ms.Pac Man. Keep up the good work, guys. I can't wait for the next 50 greatest Arcade Cabinets.
Big Red Cat
Mar 17th, 2008, 05:11 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by MilesMayhem View Post
i was hoping to see Lucky & Wild there, totally one of my favorite arcade games
I'll echo that. Of course, Lucky & Wild was about the only thing to do in the town I lived in.
Space Case
Mar 20th, 2008, 03:41 AM
We have been robbed of our arcades...Now they only languish in disrepair at bus stations and movie theaters...

Nice article.
A little slice of wisdom
Sep 28th, 2008, 07:01 PM
Funny thing about T-Mek, it was the grand pappy to the Mech Warrior Franchise & later Mech Assult
The #1 My Little Pony
Aug 10th, 2009, 01:44 AM
I loved the X-Man game so much when I was little, I bought my very own a few years ago. I love it. It wouldn't even fit through the house entrance until the front door was taken off! Whale of a game, but fun as hell!
Forum Virgin
Sep 4th, 2009, 05:43 PM
discs of tron in the arcade in the contemporary hotel at disney world. i can still hear the loud bangs as the discs bounced of the walls during the battle
Forum Virgin
Sep 4th, 2009, 06:41 PM
I never knew that they had already created guitar hero based arcade cabinets. Before reading this, I never knew they existed. o_O
Forum Virgin
Sep 4th, 2009, 06:53 PM
You know what you forgot "or I may have just not seen"

Carn-evil. I may buy the cabinet refurbished for 1400$
Forum Virgin
Oct 11th, 2009, 03:18 PM
BOOO I was hoping to see Galaxy Force II on this list. But instead After burner II took it's spot. Ok yeah after Burner was more popular. But Galaxy force II had superior game play and graphics. As for cabinet design innovation. It had a really cool sit in cockpit, that had a purple flying saucer design. Also it was the first cabinet that not only tilted up and down like after burner but also spined in a full 360 degrees.
Forum Virgin
Dec 6th, 2009, 12:26 AM
Hi I have a game that you all have overlooked as one of the best/coolest games ever. It is a game by Global VR call "Vortek V3" the cabinet is absolutely awesome looks like a bee landed on the top of the cabinet and got stuck and it is a great game. When I got it the counterbalance was not right so the person I bought it from said it was too hard to play for extended periods of time and after 10 mins of tinkering it is now weightless effort to play for hours at end. The one I own has 5 different games on it and it is always good for a night with my friends. It is the first full sized arcade I have bought. This game should definately be remembered if the list goes to 100
Don't Care
May 17th, 2010, 04:44 AM
Quote:
Well done - what a splendid article written by two nice young men.I distinctly remember the Time Traveler "hologram" game. This was the ultimate excitement for me as a 13-year old boy, even if they weren't real holograms. I also had weird demonic action figure toys that had removable souls with holographic images. The packaging warned not to immerse the toys in water, which of course I did, in the bathtub, to see if the demonic spirit would be released from his plastic prison. Does anybody else remember these toys? I've forgotten what they were called.
I know this answer comes about two years late, but I believe the action figures you are referring to were called "Visionaries". I personally never owned one, but I remember seeing them back in the day.

Excellent article, by the way, and also brings back some fond memories for me as well. And 8-track? Let me tell you, son, back in the day, 8-track was the shit. Hell, I can even remember N.W.A.'s 'Straight Outta Compton' being on 8-track.
Don't Care
May 17th, 2010, 05:06 AM
You know, after posting that, I suddenly feel very old. Not to mention remembering playing Pac-Man, Galaxian, Moon Patrol, and Space Invaders as a young'un, maybe 6 or 7. We didn't go to an arcade, oh no. My dad took my mom and me to a truck stop. Now, this place wasn't what one would normally picture a truck stop to be. It was actually a nice clean place to grab a good burger and spend the evening playing the arcade games. We all loved it. Ah, what memories. Good times, good times.
4 Eyes, No Brain.
Dec 8th, 2010, 05:31 PM
One of the greatest gaming experiences in my life was playing the 4 player version of The Simpsons with the cabinet that had 4 seats and the monitor was in the shape of the Simpsons tv set. We played it from start to finish, I wasn't even bothered that I had to play as Marge.
Im one good looking Troll
Dec 11th, 2010, 05:33 PM
Daytona USA they have up to eight players.
Deadly Towers Survivor
Mar 11th, 2011, 04:11 PM
This article brought me to tears. So much nostalgia...I miss arcades...and I mean real arcades, not the pathetic excuses of ones you see nowadays. I mean ones from the good old days. Ones that were busting at the seams with awesome retro video games like TMNT, Simpsons, Space Invaders, Street Fighter, Final Fight, etc.

Too bad most of these games can mostly only be played via emulation nowadays...
Forum Virgin
Mar 23rd, 2011, 04:11 AM
Awesome list, but there were two cabinets that I was hoping would have made the list:

1. "Beast Busters" - the first zombie FPS that I can remember. What was rad about it was that the controller was an uzi a la "Operation Wolf" - except this baddie had three of them! Plus some really cool zombie apocalypse artwork on the sides.

2. "Lucky and Wild" - a driving/shooting game clearly inspired by the "Lethal Weapon" movies. The controls for player 1 (Lucky) were a steering wheel, gas and brake pedals, and a mounted hand gun so you could drive and shoot(!) while player 2 (Wild) just had a gun. If you wanted though, player 1 could focus on the driving while player 2 could wield both guns John Woo style. Man, I wish I could find these games...
Forum Virgin
Mar 30th, 2011, 09:29 PM
This article brought me to tears. So much nostalgia
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