Having just visited a local arcade, I can tell you how different an experience it is to the upscale franchises. Before I moved, the closest thing I had to an arcade was a distant Dave and Busters. All of the independent gaming places had been closed for years.
When I entered the premises of this arcade, I noticed how calm it was. Sure, there were quite a few other groups, including a birthday party, but somehow, the atmosphere was nowhere near overwhelming. The service very reasonable compared to the corporate workers who work at certain other gaming establishments. In fact, “reasonable” is the best word to describe this type of place.
There was a fair amount of arcade games to choose from. The fact that a few were out of order or had minor technical problems just added to the charm of the place. Let’s face it. Dave and Busters is too clean. Sometimes you need to play a game of Tekken on a monitor turned purple, or the Simpsons Game without the ability to move Bart up to realize that in the end, it’s all about having fun.
The fact that arcade franchises try to be perfect is a tad off-putting. I always feel like they are trying too hard. The end result is sensory overload. An authentic arcade does not need to be big or bold. In fact, less is more. The less flashy the arcade, the more you feel right at home. It’s these types of personal experiences that are dying by the dozen. If you still have one, please support your local arcade. Big companies like Dave and Busters may have a good selection, but they don’t have heart.