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SyntheticBlinkerFluid
SyntheticBlinkerFluid PowerDork
11/15/14 11:21 a.m.

So last night a friend and I decided to adventure to Galloping Ghost Arcade in Brookfield where we had heard was an amazing time machine of old school Arcade games. I had taken a look at their website and it looked like it was promising. Their list of games was huge. Well I will say that the place is overwhelming. There has to be at least 100+ machines in the three areas of the building.

While I had a most excellent 4 hours there, I have some gripes. So, I'm going to give the pros and cons of my experience.

Pros:

  • Many games to choose from. You will find several games to play. So many I remember from the past and many I've never heard of. Some machines play double duty, and have a toggle switch on the front that could switch between games.

  • One cost to get in, which was $15. No having to use quarters. All machines are rigged with a "coin" button on the front that takes the place of putting coins in the machine. So if you die or run out of time, just hit the button. Some machines are just set to free play like the Pinball machines.

  • It's not crowded. We arrived there at about 8pm. there was not many people there when we got there, but soon after we arrived, it seemed to get busy, BUT, with as many machines as there were, you could find something else to play while you waited for the machine you wanted to play.

  • Barely any kids. One thing I hated from the past was the amount of brats that were running around. However with todays ADD generation, this place is probably boring as hell to them and there's people you may have to interact there with. What kids were there, they were with their parents and from what I could see, were bored as hell.

  • It just had the feeling of a real Arcade.

Cons

  • My biggest gripe, was the amount of non-functional machines on the floor. I understand that many of these are 25+ years old, but there was a large amount of machines just not on, which was disappointing, because most of them were ones I wanted to play. I was even more disappointed that they had 10 pinball machines and only 4 of them were on. There were also a few machines in various states of repair mixed in with the functional machines.

  • It was a bit off-putting when I walked in and there is just arcade machine parts laying EVERYWHERE. This is supposed to be a business and I would hope that the owner would take a little more pride in it and not leave CRT tubes and circuit boards laying everywhere. There were a couple table top games in back and one of them had another CRT tube sitting on top of it.

  • Lighting. This I think can never be helped. Most arcade machines have a screen that's angled up and any light is going to glare off the screen. There were a few games that did this to me, but I just overcame and adapted.

Other than that, I had a good time. Definitely worth the drive. Now for some pictures.

PubBurgers
PubBurgers SuperDork
11/15/14 6:22 p.m.

Nice. I thought arcades ceased to exist years ago. One day I WILL own a Galaga cabinet.

mndsm
mndsm MegaDork
11/15/14 6:36 p.m.

There's a galaga ms pacman reissue that came out not long ago....

mndsm
mndsm MegaDork
11/15/14 6:36 p.m.

Also, tz is my arch nemesis. Only pinball in history.I couldn't tame.

SilverFleet
SilverFleet UltraDork
11/21/14 4:27 p.m.

A couple hours away from me up in Weirs Beach NH is Funspot, which is the largest arcade in the world. It is basically a big 3-floor warehouse full of games of all types. The bottom floor is mostly party games and ticket games/skee ball, the 2nd floor houses some multiplayer games, a bowling alley, and some kid's rides, but the third floor is where it's at. That's where the American Classic Arcade Museum resides. This is classic video game and pinball HEAVEN.

I've been going here since I went there with a friend on summer vacation back when I was 10. It was awesome then, and even better now. They recently began expanding the museum and doubling the space. The cut-off date for stuff up there is around 1987/88. They have stuff going back to an original Computer Space machine from Nutting & Associates from 1971! They also have a museum section with different displays of classic console games, promotional items, etc.

I really need to make another pilgrimage to video game heaven.

PS. I actually have a Galaga cocktail table arcade machine, but it's sadly non-functional. It is actually a modified Galaxian machine, but it hasn't worked in about 12 years.

mndsm
mndsm MegaDork
11/21/14 4:34 p.m.

Y'all are gonna make me broke and divorced. I used to be an arcade tech, I can fix many things, and I lurve this ish. I was the one that turned rob onto this place.

SyntheticBlinkerFluid
SyntheticBlinkerFluid PowerDork
11/21/14 6:06 p.m.

I'm hoping that I can make a trip back soon. It was a lot of fun and hope that they get some of their machines that weren't working back up.

mndsm
mndsm MegaDork
11/21/14 6:43 p.m.

From what I know, they're as much a shop/collection as they are an arcade. They have a full time tech just restoring stuff, and they basically use the door fees to get stuff up and Running.

SyntheticBlinkerFluid
SyntheticBlinkerFluid PowerDork
11/21/14 6:52 p.m.

I know, but it's a bummer to see so many machines down. It kind of reminded me of the time when arcades were on the decline and you'd see so many machines down because nobody cared. I know they care, because there are so many to play. I can always find something to play.

mndsm
mndsm MegaDork
11/21/14 7:03 p.m.

Just think, they're not down because of eol. They're down because of being revived.

SyntheticBlinkerFluid
SyntheticBlinkerFluid PowerDork
11/21/14 7:14 p.m.

I guess that is another way to look at it.

Never found that Marble Madness machine though

mndsm
mndsm MegaDork
11/21/14 7:15 p.m.

That game was effing impossible. So was 720, with that goofy as E36 M3 roundy joy stick. I still want one.

SyntheticBlinkerFluid
SyntheticBlinkerFluid PowerDork
11/21/14 7:23 p.m.

I loved Marble Madness. Actually a love/hate relationship. I suck at that game.

Kenny_McCormic
Kenny_McCormic PowerDork
11/21/14 11:29 p.m.

I've known about this place for a while, will definitely be visiting if the opportunity arises.

mndsm
mndsm MegaDork
11/21/14 11:36 p.m.

Face tube told me about it.I asked the wife if we could move.there. she said it was OK as.long as it was just me and I was living in the corolla.

SilverFleet
SilverFleet UltraDork
11/25/14 1:17 p.m.
SyntheticBlinkerFluid wrote: I loved Marble Madness. Actually a love/hate relationship. I suck at that game.

Pretty sure Funspot has it.

SyntheticBlinkerFluid
SyntheticBlinkerFluid PowerDork
11/25/14 8:45 p.m.

In reply to SilverFleet:

Well I'm not coming to Mass any time soon.

mndsm
mndsm MegaDork
11/25/14 8:56 p.m.

Finally aced twilight zone. Completed lost in the zone, final score 1.285b. My arch nemesis has been bested. Now, Addams. I need to tour the mansion.

Gearheadotaku
Gearheadotaku PowerDork
11/27/14 8:45 p.m.

That place sounds great! I miss 'real' arcades.

RossD
RossD PowerDork
12/1/14 4:07 p.m.

Has anyone here actually built an arcade mame cabinet? I have considered it a couple times but never hit 0the check out button to put my money where my mouth is.

SilverFleet
SilverFleet UltraDork
12/4/14 11:30 a.m.
RossD wrote: Has anyone here actually built an arcade mame cabinet? I have considered it a couple times but never hit 0the check out button to put my money where my mouth is.

I have wanted to do this for years. I have boatloads of MAME roms stashed away for this. I hold myself over by using my Xbox 360 Hori Fight Stick with my laptop.

keethrax
keethrax HalfDork
1/7/15 9:13 p.m.
RossD wrote: Has anyone here actually built an arcade mame cabinet? I have considered it a couple times but never hit 0the check out button to put my money where my mouth is.

The "new guy" (not that new anymore) at the office brought in the table style one he built. We're currently upgrading it.

aircooled
aircooled MegaDork
1/8/15 11:22 a.m.
RossD wrote: Has anyone here actually built an arcade mame cabinet? I have considered it a couple times but never hit the check out button to put my money where my mouth is.

Yes. I built a tabletop style vertical (optimized for the older games of course) cab. Works great. It has the entire MAME catalog on it, but there are probably only 10-20 that are played much (yes, there are some pretty marginal ones out there). It has a 4/8 way stick, 6 buttons, Spinner and a trackball (trackball, with two buttons above it can be used as a mouse when out of the front end).

I upgraded the PC a few years ago to get some of the games to play smoother (added an Ultimarc Arcade VGA card to get all the weird resolutions). It runs a Win98 front end, but I think I really like the DOS based one I was using previously a bit better since it was a bit more seamless (less obvious it was a PC with a front end when you start it)

Ultimarc and the iPac are essential. They have a joystick now (didn't a few years ago) that will easily switch from a 4way to an 8way (which is very nice).

http://www.ultimarc.com/

Something you might want to look into is using a Rasberry Pi to create a VERY small emulator (I am sure you can find an online guide). One interesting issue if you are interesting in a very authentic style cabinet is that finding tube monitors (especially the really big ones you want for a cab), may be getting more difficult. Everyone is just tossing them out, so the nice thing is if you find one it will be cheap (as in free), but most won't even bother trying to sell them.

SilverFleet
SilverFleet UltraDork
1/9/15 11:57 a.m.

In reply to aircooled:

Interesting. I actually have a Galaxian cocktail cabinet in my basement with a Galaga board in it that has not worked in a long time. I've been debating whether to restore it or make it a MAME machine. It's pretty beat up and the marquee surround under the glass is actually (and crappily) painted on. The monitor is a vertical flipping one, but the display has some significant burn-in. Hmm...

singleslammer
singleslammer UltraDork
1/9/15 12:39 p.m.

I built an upright cabinet for my Dad. It runs a 19" CRT TV, a PS2 (hidden in a drawer), and a prebuilt two stick control pad from X-Arcade. Works pretty well and it is a lot of fun.

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