Sunday, 13 August 2017

A part of arcade history. My holiday hunt for Amusments new and old.

I was on holiday recently in the UK and it was at a Haven at the seaside now it might not have been where I went on holiday as a child but there were a lot of similarities there were caravans and chip shops and ice cream parlours but most importantly at least for this blog post there were arcades.

Now back when I was young in the 80's the whole arcade scene was absolutely booming, there was of course giant video game arcades at the coast but you also got machines in pubs, pizza parlours, chip shops, cafes heck there was even one in one of my local hairdressers. I could go into what killed arcades but I think that's something that has been done to death.

During my Holiday I went in as many arcades as I could and looked at various machines both games and amusements and I took a lot of pictures and I basically want to share some of these with everyone and in some cases talk about them a little as well.

OK so lets start with the stuff I actually found in Haven itself.

There was this Jurassic Park arcade machine which as well as being quiet a big impressive beast of a machine was actually quiet fun as well. Its a clearly quiet recent machine which see's you shooting tranquiliser guns at various dinosaurs, if you see it I would recomend giving it a blast its pretty good.

There was a card based combat game called Animal Kaiser by Namco, every time you play you get a collectible card which you can use again in the future it wasn't my sort of thing but it was interesting, if you check my Instergram Kerr9000_blog there are more pictures related to this including one of the cabinet and one of the cards themselves.

The last machine was this lovely modern Space Invaders machine which I really enjoyed playing on, sure I would much prefer to see an old fashioned original machine but  I appreciate the game living on in this way with a modern machine even though I think its more likely to be old farts like me playing it as apposed to it gaining a new audience.

Haven was also filled with lots of the 2p machines the waterfall type where you put 2p's in to try and push prizes out as well as having those claw machines with stuffed animals in and lots of typical adult gamblers.

The story when I got out and in to various other Amusement arcades wasn't much different, you didn't see any old 80's machines anywhere, you saw the odd modern machine but mostly they were buried by gambling machines and claw machines. I would loved to have found an old machine a Final Fight or a PacMan or something but I guess you just don't really see those things anymore.

I did see a few modern arcade games

Yet the really cool thing I saw was some nice old amusement pieces which I would like to share here. Video Games were not the only things which made amusements when I was growing up.

Here is a dancing clown, you used to see a lot of machines like this when I was younger the basic idea is you pay a small amount and you get a show, in this case Peppy the clown dances for you. I remember when I was young I used to enjoy a machine where Sooty would play the drums for you if you paid 20pence. We actually saw one of these Sooty machines as well but my girlfriend took the pictures of this for me and I haven't gotten them yet.


There was also this great Four-Square machine and the Scientific Automatic Palmistry machine. I found it really interesting to be able to try this stuff and to be able to photograph it basically because I am mostly a fan of preservation its why I am a video game collector but I also think things like this need to be photographed kept and remembered as they were just as much a part of arcade history and therefore video game history as everything else.

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