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ATP Podcast Episode 24: Arcades Are Not Dead

It's been a while but we're back with another podcast. This time around, MYK and I have Rip on the show to discuss the current and future status of arcades in America, as well as some thoughts on TTT2. I'm pretty sure this is the most worked up I've ever gotten on a podcast since this topic is very important to me. Anyway, hope you guys enjoy it. 

As always, If you have any questions or suggestions, don't hesitate to leave comments or contact us at






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Avoiding the Puddle Episode #24 Arcades Are Not Dead

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Reader Comments (139)

It is tragic..This Episode was definitely one of the hardest to hear through..I am a TekkenPlayer who once used to be part of a very vibrant offline community,...Used to spend three full days a week there...You forge strong bonds when you play REAL matches with REAL people that care about the game...Emotionally , its refreshing and i used to feel like i was at home...You form friends as well as strong rivalries..Its magical, its probably the best thing i ever got to experience...After being deprived of it , I am telling you guys my life changed and for the worse..It is like you just lost something huge..its like the death of parents...Its absolutely terrible..In two months ill be back and ill get a chance to charge up my life gauge again...and HELL YEAH FUCK ONLINE...not just because it isnt fair , because its lifeless and boring compared to offline..Even at its best..Offline communties are nourishment for the soul..Aris , RiP and MYK you guys scared me to death by bringing up this topic...All I can say is goodluck and I hope you guys continue to make tekken thrive..You guys are true lovers...Tekken is a life that needs to be lived with other people..

Tuesday, October 4, 2011 at 10:11 PM | Unregistered CommenterAly

great podcast aris as always

Tuesday, October 4, 2011 at 10:34 PM | Unregistered CommenterTEKKENLOVER

not sure if it was talked about, but the argument for the future of tekken online isnt all on the netcode from namco. actually im pretty sure the netcode is really good. its just the infrastructure of our internet in this country that sucks so bad. im sure if you asked someone in japan/korea about tekken online they will prolly say its like a slightly laggy tv. and its also not comparable with sf games online because they do dial combos where tekken needs visual confirmation for all combos to work, thats why lag is such an issue.

just my thoughts.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011 at 11:50 PM | Unregistered Commenterphunnykidd

Multiplayer is like the most important Apsect in nearly EVERY game. Doesn't matter if you play strategy games like Starcraft, Shooters like Call of Duty, Fighting Games like Tekken. It is always more Fun playing with other people. You can do that online. BUT what is more fun, is to play with other people who are sitting just next to you. Gathering people together , playing with your friends while talking shit to each other. You can do that without Arcades.
But would't it be much more fun if you would play in Arcades , where you actually could meet new people? Arcades are like a gathering place for those who shares the same love as you. And that's what it should be.
Imagin you would have an Arcade where your living, and there are many people who are playing Tekken. Then, there's a major Tekken Tournament in your city. What do you think, all the top players would go in the free time? To your place? I guess not. To the next Arcade? Yeah, sounds more likely doesn't it?

Letting Arcades die is like letting the whole community die. Who cares shit about who ranked top online. No one. Who cares who won the last major Tournament like Evo? Or Tekken Crash in Korea?

Wednesday, October 5, 2011 at 1:42 AM | Unregistered CommenterYozakuraKuchiki


I used to think about playing online the same way you described. Blaming the insfrastructure not the netcode. The problem with this is that the majority of the world (where Namco wants to sell console versions) is going to have these same issues. So its up to the netcode to solve these problems. Thats the job of the netcode.

Imagine a 2D game with GGPO then take GGPO away and just rely on the infrastructure. Sound like a good idea? Maybe the places with good infrastructure will still be like 'meh, just like a laggy TV' while the rest of the world will be like WTF.

This difference is where technologies LIKE - GGPO come into play. GGPO wasn't created because "hey, infrastructure is great in a few countries". The tech was created because infrastructure is NOT great in MOST countries but we still want a great playing experience. I'm not saying Tekken needs GGPO specifically. I'm saying Tekken DEFINITELY needs SOMEthing LIKE GGPO because AS IS, its NOT good.

Long story short, it requires an outside the box approach. Its not easy, but it needs to be done and tested - NOT tested within a building with lag simulations etc, but in real world testing.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011 at 2:43 AM | Unregistered CommenterRip

I think everyone, and I mean everyone, is missing the point. I too am passionate and have an opinion on this.

You are looking at your scenes and thats nice and all. but what you should be looking at is the PRODUCT.

Tekken 6 is not an easy to pick up and play. The western audiences are turned off by this. I have have seen this first hand. So, why should a scene, arcade or other wise, care about a product they cant get into?

At the end of the the definition of an arcade game is something you stick a token in and get enjoyment for a short amount of time. Fact. Tekken is so hard to get good at now why should anyone spend all their money in learning a game where the rewards are hard to come by and understand.

Tekken is very niche. We all know this...

I dont even care if I get flamed on this its a point of view, and an aspect missed off this podcast.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011 at 3:13 AM | Unregistered CommenterPuNkMAFIA

You gotta explain to me how playing offline at someones house on console is different from playing on the arcade aside from having the option to chose between pad and stick?
How is offline console not the real thing? even Evo is played on console.
I agree that online is just bullshit, but why are u so looking down on offline console?

Wednesday, October 5, 2011 at 3:17 AM | Unregistered CommenterDamajer

As a person who came from the online I really do feel like the arcade is the way to go. Ever since the day I went to Round 1 to play T6 for the first time(got to play Ken I who plays devil jin and got my ass kick since online tactics does not work at arcades nor to these guys) in stick it was a different feeling to me as if like I could do more than the online feeling like breaking grabs with no lag was a bit easy to do just takes a bit of practice(since its impossible online) and I dont have to deal to those people who RAGEQUITS all the time who can't take their loss like a man. And I do admit that I have a really bad internet connection.. ask galo lol.. so yea I am thinking about once I get my car or get a ride with someone then Ima kick it with sonken and his partner jfj at sonkens place or galo's place and play tekken 6 at its best with friends.

So bottom line here is.. Online is ok(to me since I came there) for those people who prefers it and have no way of access at arcades and I am actually lucky to have Round 1 and Super like 30-40mins away from where I live but just have lack of transportation. And then theres the arcade which you can play at the arcade places if you have access to it if not then.... online is for you.. like me.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011 at 3:19 AM | Unregistered CommenterVince Lionheart

"You gotta explain to me how playing offline at someones house on console is different from playing on the arcade aside from having the option to chose between pad and stick?" at someone's house you are playing "someone"... friend, family, acquaintance.

playing in an arcade, you could be playing anyone. scrub, average, or top level. you could be playing someone you like, never met, or someone you completely hate. you are playing on even ground with anyone and everyone, no worries about monitor lag, sticks... you can play against multiple characters, multiple playstyles, learn new shit from a random persons perspective... you don't have to questions anyone's heart at an arcade; you can assume they are doing anything they can to beat you. you have a neutral ground that you have open to anyone to play at, even if you despite that other person more than life itself.

you might think you are playing the same game, but your experience greatly differs. at home you're just playing "someone". online you're just playing "someone". in an arcade, you're taking on all comers.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011 at 3:32 AM | Unregistered Commentersubt-L

i will never get Bogus Journeys blaming online so hard while playing in 1-2 bar games.

its like joining a shooter game with a ping 300+ and complaining about the lags
its so ridiculous
(you have a position in the community its not good to send out so much hate about onlineplayers)

i try to find local players but its hard and almost impossible
i love tekken so hard so i need to play online
lucky here are the most games 4-5bars and when i can punish -10 then its ok for me

Wednesday, October 5, 2011 at 4:53 AM | Unregistered CommenterAshesfall

Man wow...I didnt realize so many people were still stuck in the 90s like that on some nostalgia high...Its not even about whether or not arcades WILL die, they already have died YEARS ago..but most of you seem to be in denial about they wont all eventually die completely off in the near future..THIS WILL HAPPEN ACCEPT IT. and not because we or I want it or dont want it to happen..its just the reality of todays state of gaming..

Now instead of bitching about it... we should figure out how to adapt to these changes that will take place...All i'm saying is that with the knowledge we have that arcades(the way we know them as) will indeed completely die off soon...We should be talking about how to keep a scene going after the arcade dies and how to effectively revive certain scenes years removed from the arcades...

Its 2011 its time to evolve whether you want to or not

Wednesday, October 5, 2011 at 5:09 AM | Unregistered Commenterdefx

How is hosting a gathering at your house, posting about it on a internet bbs saying "come over to my house to play, everybody is welcome" different from playing at an arcade? At least where I'm from we get lots of random new faces in our gatherings and tournaments, + of course the regulars and good players. I myself started really playing Tekken like this, don't recall ever being in an arcade and don't really care. Old man syndrome and nostalgia goggles aside, I don't think arcades are important or an neccessity, consoles are the norm now and does the jobs arcade do just fine. I can still, and do, respect arcades for laying the foundation and keeping the scene going for that number of years, but nothing is forever, trends change and people just need to move on.

Also, the people saying that they don't want folks coming because they have bad blood with, or people like "now you're at an age where conflict isn't necessary, but this young pussy ass generation of new kids are going up soft as fuck, and have the steadfast resolution of a paper bag in the wind. everything is butterflies and rainbows, everyone just wants to do good and shake hands and GG each other." need to grow the fuck up. Seriously.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011 at 5:48 AM | Unregistered Commenterloldongs

Aris I agree with you to a certain degree, I hope though that whenever they do decide to release the console version of Tag2 that they make it great like how they did the older versions of Tekken 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 on console. I am currently in Romania and I must admit that there is no arcade scene here, but there are offline players who love Tekken even though the last Tekken 6 console was a very bad port. I just want a great port where if we want to have our characters customized and hold our own local console tournaments with a competitive spirit we have a version that at least has all of the working gameplay components of the original arcade release, costumes etc.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011 at 6:49 AM | Unregistered Commenterrasdiggle

The majority of Tekken players worldwide play in arcade, but the majority of English-speaking players play on console, I think thats where all this misconception of arcades come from....

Props to anyone who supports Tag2 in the US.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011 at 7:19 AM | Unregistered CommenterCarmen

I was in disbelief at how surprised Aris was at the lack of arcades. Seriously dude it's only major cities now. In the entire country of Canada T6 is in Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver. That's it as far as I know. I'd agree that the arcade atmosphere is superior but what are you going to do when the last arcade is gone?

Pushing for arcades to leave faster makes no sense but bashing the non-arcade culture is even worse because it's going to be all we have in the future most likely. Instead of avoiding online I try to find good players and convince them to find local people and have games with them. Kids these days DO NOT respond to an old man telling them not to do things thier way so you're shooting yourself & the community in the foot with the anti-online stance IMO. I actually run the offline scene in my area and I use online play as a tool for finding & tutoring players that can't make it out to every gathering. I feel like that's the best way I can use online for the good of the community, not avoid it.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011 at 7:54 AM | Unregistered CommenterThreeli

Sounds like California players finally did not get what they want and they are throwing quite a temper tantrum. No, I do not want to support your cause just to get TTT2 in specific arcades in the USA and watch you play. I have my own arcade to support, even though I know no new arcade fighting games will be allowed there ever again since T5DR (it's a Namco Time-Out Arcade).

Misery loves company, so just sit back and wait for console like the rest of us. When the Tekken Tag Tournament 2 console version comes out, talk to Namco about giving you a license to start a console based arcade cabinet in your arcade and support that way. Which you could do it without a license, but such is illegal and what my arcade told me when I tried to get console Tekken 6 going there to support.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011 at 9:14 AM | Unregistered Commenter9thpixel

Aris you complain about people telling you to give up on arcades, then what do you do? Turn around and tell 90% of people that support this game to give the fuck up and stop playing because we aren't in the right place and aren't playing "real" Tekken anyways? Wow... I would kill to support an arcade scene if there was one within 4 hrs driving for me.. I play how I play, you play how you play.. Stop bitching about people telling you what to do if you're not hurting anyone, when that's the foundation and center piece of your very own argument. I play online and off on console and I'm not hurting anyone either.. I grew up in an arcade, I know what I'm missing..

Wednesday, October 5, 2011 at 9:55 AM | Unregistered CommenterYoshimattsu

But quit because YOU don't think I'm playing Tekken right? Ha! Not today sir. You and your friends are doing great things for this community but lets not alienate anyone based on narrow mindedness, from either side.. I love your site and your show, I love watching bogus journeys and LUYG.. Lets remember we all want what's best for the future of this game.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011 at 10:04 AM | Unregistered CommenterYoshimattsu

If arcades didn't smell like butt sweat and weren't filled with degenerates and <12 year olds, I wouldn't mind spending more time in them.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011 at 10:16 AM | Unregistered CommenterDon Frye

I can def agree with that.

I guess I look at it like HD tv's. Worldwide they can't really support hd fighting games like Tekken because of the lag issue. Over all the technology just isn't there yet but it's becoming more available. I think anyone expecting a good online Tekken should know it's 5+ years off. The infrastructure is essential and I don't think netcode will help up visually confirm a launcher and proceed with combo or see a punishable move to react to. So that's all.

Also I forgot to say that the side of mr.Iowa might have been a little off. Where that may be overall scrub mentality approach, speeding things along for most ppl doesn't mean the death of arcades and rise of laggy online Tekken. I think many are wanting the 'next' version of the arcade. We have a console generation, it's likely when arcades close there will be more console cafes. And I think that's why ppl want it to hurry up so they can get back in the arcade like group setting. But I could be wrong.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011 at 10:20 AM | Unregistered Commenterphunnykidd

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