Arcade Heaven
The Best Arcade in the World

On the Santa Monica Pier there is an arcade that is all at once nostalgic and cutting edge.  It features arcade cabinets that have ages of Ecto Cooler spilled on them and skee ball lanes that are worn to the wood.  But in contrast to that, it has arcade games made in this decade, a rare thing to see ever since the arcade heyday went busto.  Once you walk into this arcade, you will feel that warm fuzzy feeling you remember from the 80s when these meccas of entertainment were on every street corner.

 

At the entrance stands Zoltar who was made famous by turning a child into a Bosom Buddy costar in MegaHit "Big".  You can even buy your own Zoltar for $8,995.95 plus tax and watch those Oscars roll in(http://www.gearlive.com/news/article/zoltar-tells-future-10301218/).

 

There are a ton of arcade cabinets here.  At night this arcade is swarmed by patrons.  Its good to see people supporting the local electronic arts.

 

In the corner of the arcade are tucked away three Pacman machines.  Its rare to see an orignal Pacman machine (on the left) but even more rare to see a modded Ms. Pac-man (on the right).  I have never seen a machine like this before and it contained 8 very "interesting" variations of the Pacman formula. 

 

 

The words "new" and "arcade game" are not normally associated with each other nowadays.  The only large arcades in the country are Dave and Busters and their newest games are from the early 2000s (but I did see a House of Dead 4 at one of them once).  So to my surprise, a Sega title by the name of Let's Go Jungle was there.  It looks to have been released last year and I had never heard of it before. 

The game is in another great light gun shooter from Sega released in 2006 and appears to have originated in Europe.  For more info check out http://www.sega-amusements.co.uk/03/flash/LGJ.html

Now I just need to find stateside locations for a Dinosaur King (http://www.sau.sega.com/dinosaurking/) and Love and Berry Cabinets (http://www.loveandberry.com/).

 

What a fantastic arcade on Santa Monica way.