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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)

I could give a fuck about loldongs,and you Reality started an argument with your bogus ass previous comments.I have no problem putting you in your place. That's an easy task to conquer. You my friend dont want it.You go ahead and wait for TTT2 to drop on console.I'll be at the Arcade where real players play. Oh and by the way check out the newest entry in Bogus Journeys......If your old enough crack open abeer and chill out.

Thursday, October 6, 2011 at 1:15 PM | Unregistered CommenterIMFAMOUSMINDED

Subt-L; don't be bashing #nigerianprinces - I met my future wife there. We haven't met yet IRL but i've seen her pictures and she's like model-hot. The bananahat needs to go though.

No but srsly; if you were to find players these days you would probably be better of looking on TZ, local gamingforums and whatnot to see if there are any local scenes near your place. Going to an arcade in hope of finding one would seem a bit daft. If anything, when you go to that arcade you already have a good clue of that there is an active scene in the first place through checking it out online right?

Thursday, October 6, 2011 at 1:27 PM | Unregistered CommenterReality

Wrong.....for someone like you who says "you would have a better chance going on TZ matchfinder to seek out other players" Yes this is true but your contradicting yourself, you Reality condone staying at home in front of your TV playing online to achieve success in Tekken. That's where you are dead wrong. When you go to the Arcade your seeking ways to better yourself as a player. Your also seeking the full competetive experience that comes with it. Now....with my permission,you may have a beer.

Thursday, October 6, 2011 at 1:44 PM | Unregistered CommenterIMFAMOUSMINDED

I'm trying very hard to resist calling you an internet tough guy. Please stop posting. Please.

Thursday, October 6, 2011 at 1:59 PM | Unregistered Commenterloldongs

i cant believe people are still arguing about this, its like kids who see some other kids playing with a toy they dont have and theyr like "that toy is no fun to play with anyway." Attacking each other is just lame.

if you dont have an arcade scene, tough luck, go build a scene with console or something, give arcade and fighting game companies a reason to invest in your area, or continue to cry. but dont ever go around saying that an imperfect console port of an arcade fighting game is better than the arcade experience, thats just massive bullshit.

Thursday, October 6, 2011 at 2:27 PM | Unregistered CommenterWing

@wing: Which not a single person here has done or said. You and some others just claim thats the case.
So far what Ive seen posted is people saying that they a) enjoy online and dont have arcades around and people that b) take offend in a).
I read massive bias in pretty much every post here.
How about this: I enjoy both online and offline tekken. There is no arcade in my country but I play with lot of friends offline regularly at my place. We have a few beer and just enjoy the game.
What if my friends arent around? I log on to PSN, grab me a few beer and play online which is how I then enjoy tekken with many totally different people and playstyles. A thing I cant do offline. Ive meet people from all over the world that way and actually voicechatted with japanese players while having good matches with them.

You guys really should stop thinking that because its what you do/play its the "correct" way of doing it. Its not. Its a matter of opinion so stop claiming that your way is the right way.

Thursday, October 6, 2011 at 3:27 PM | Unregistered CommenterCentaur

i like to sit around my house and relax in my spare time. But i know i should be working on my portfolio, getting ahead in school, and handling things in life that i normally don't have time to do instead of being lethargic and unproductive.

i wouldn't tell anyone that they should be lethargic and unproductive because that's what i enjoy doing with my spare time, and i definitely wouldn't tell other people that its better for me because i like it.

you play online because its how you get by. but its also a passive approach to building a community. yeah, if someone else would step up and make an arcade for you and got other people interested, THEN you would support them. if someone else generated a scene for you and gave you places to play, THEN you'd be all about it.

you probably have 4 or 5 people in your area that are exactly the same way. i wonder what would happen if you got together with them and started an actual scene.

if you just want to play with your friends, then thats one thing. you aren't being involved with the fighting game community and no one really cares about that. if you are arguing that a serious community for tekken can exist online, then you're wrong. you're scope is either too small or its lethargic. and either one of those stances aren't a good position to have an opinion to tell other people who are active in their community how that community should work.

Thursday, October 6, 2011 at 4:24 PM | Unregistered Commentersubt-L

-We shouldn't let pandas die. But breeding them as a food source isn't exactly economical.

-Makes sense that a person who works at a panda reserve would see alot of pandas. It's true, panda reserves work. But not everywhere.

Tournaments are improving, irrespective of the arcade. Internet involvement is growing, irrespective of the arcade. There are plenty of good players that have not trained within an arcade in a long time. Granted, the arcade is a unique experience, and should be preserved. Like carousels, or (better yet), wooden roller coasters.

I won't harp the point anymore (broken record), but I just don't like to spend my time in an arcade anymore. That doesn't mean I don't like being competitive in fighting games. More people in late 20-30-somethings would have an easier time coming back into the scene if the scene is somewhere besides an arcade. Preferably with burgers, wine, and good company.

Thursday, October 6, 2011 at 6:13 PM | Unregistered Commenterlingmassacre

I love this thread and everything reality has said so far Has been my same outlook on this topic as well

Thursday, October 6, 2011 at 6:32 PM | Unregistered CommenterLinux_thefallen

Centaur, you make some good points, but I have a real problem when you say that the mass dictates what is the "real"/"correct" way to play the game. If this were true, and online was the "real" / "correct" way to play the game, then Namco would just implement lag into the offline mode and we'd all have the same Tekken. Its NOT the same, because it was MEANT to be one way. Makes sense that the place it came out FIRST is how it was intended to be played ie. the "real" / "correct" way ie arcades/offline without lag from the internet.

Thursday, October 6, 2011 at 7:27 PM | Unregistered CommenterRip

If Arcades die, Tekken dies. I hope this does not happen.

Thursday, October 6, 2011 at 9:27 PM | Unregistered CommenterImfamousminded

Aris did you really say you would stop playing Tekken if it wasn't on arcade? The guy that pimps Evo, the console only tourney, fight sticks, for console, Mortal Kombat, console only, the Soul Calibur 2 World champ on console, whole SC2 scene existence because of console? Double standard much?

Thursday, October 6, 2011 at 10:31 PM | Unregistered Commentercc2

I've been intrigued with this thread for a couple of days now and I feel like I have a unique perspective on it because of my experiences. I've been playing competitively since Tekken 3. I'm originally from Kansas so that scene was never very large but we had arcades and I practically lived there. One thing that nobody has seemed to acknowledge so far is that although Tekken "came from the arcade" it got a MAJOR boost when it finally came out on console. Masses of new players began to come out of the woodwork to play Tekken because now they could play the game on which they had practiced and honed their skills at home. How many times have you been kicked out of the arcade at closing time only to gather the competition you met there and head for your console at home? So far the argument has been framed that Tekken only survived on console because it was successful at the arcade. I tend to think the other way around. I think Tekken was only so successful at the arcade because it was on CONSOLE. As someone stated before, Tekken is a hard game to master and MOST of the difficult juggles, advanced movement, etc. that my friends and I learned was on the console not at the arcade.

My work has taken me overseas and I have lived in the Czech Republic for the last 5 and a half years. And believe the the posters that tell you that arcades are non-existent here. Fact is there never really was an arcade scene in Europe (except maybe a few places in Great Britain) so why are there any good players (IE Ryan Hart, Killerdoll, Frizen, Nevan) coming from Europe? Because of their local communities and ON-LINE play (probably not on-line in the case of Hart). But making communities is much harder here too because in many places there just simply aren't any players. Believe me I've tried multiple times to start a community but it just doesn't stick. So if I want to play against a person, I contact some players in central Europe and drive 3 to 5 hours (one way) or play someone on-line. And by the way I haven't caught Bogus Journeys yet, but if you were really playing with 2 or 3 bars then you were WANTING to have excessive lag. No one plays with less than 3 bars. Yes on-line Tekken is STILL Tekken and we know there are problems with it, but by attacking on-line players you are essentially alienating a hugh swath of Tekken players and the Tekken community is already small as it is. All that said, I love arcades and would support any arcade that I live in the vicinity of.

Friday, October 7, 2011 at 1:33 AM | Unregistered CommenterGodinaPocket

GodinaPocket pretty much sums up the situation for a lot of European countries. Some of you act lke you can just go outside and easily find 5 decent Tekken players willing to learn how to play it "correctly" within an hour's drive.

Friday, October 7, 2011 at 1:54 AM | Unregistered CommenterQuadrupledragon

just because something changes from the way that it was originally intended to be experienced doesn't have to be a bad thing eg. pizza was originally mean to be eaten in a fancy italian restaurant with a knife and fork, and now 95% of it is eaten via home delivery. no one gets all pissy and moans that pizza should only be eaten in the restaurant, right?

Friday, October 7, 2011 at 2:09 AM | Unregistered CommenterDavid

Godina is imo right when he says it's really wrong to say that Tekken would die without arcades. That claim really has no firm grounds. If you're looking purely at what's popular in the west and trying to find correlations towards arcadecharts in the east you'll find huge discrepancies. Where are all the western VF players? Why did SF super not get an arcaderelease in the east? Why is marvel the most popular game on streams after SF? They've always been two separate markets and eastern arcades have this highly praised, phoney, "truth" status that it doesn't deserve. I've adressed this before; this mentality simply has to go. Stop sucking eastern dick and go your own way.

People laugh at MK like it's soooo western that this game succeeds here while in the holy lands (east) it wouldn't cause they know what the good shit is. Meanwhile, a dragon ball game is doing better in the arcades (dbz denkai) together with AQUA-fucking-PAZZA. As soon as a Mechagame is released everyone gets their panties in a mess - the new gundam versus game is the number 1 game. Meltyblood games have always done well. Random horceracinggames can come and steal the entire market and at the end of the day Pachinko machines (!) are what really gives arcades the most money.

So no; eastern and western arcades don't mean shit when it comes to a games survival. Wake up and smell the coffee - console IS what saved fightinggames in the west. I would like to add that a lot of current trends that people don't like (catchup code like ultras and rage, dumbing down games) are there as a -direct result- of it being an arcadegame first (minimizing the gap between a good player and a mediocre so people can make comebacks and keep playing) so it's not this grand garden of flowers that some of you make it out to be. And speaking of getting good; where's your record function you want so much on the arcademachines Aris? j/k

Friday, October 7, 2011 at 5:22 AM | Unregistered CommenterReality

If we use your logic, then Tekken is utterly impossible to play the "correct" way. It can only be an imaginary situation, because no matter what you play it on there will be some lag however minute it may be. there is lag in input from your brain to your fingers;your fingers to your controller; your controller to the system running the game; from the system to the monitor; and from the monitors back to your brain. Yeah, I'm being kind of a dick with my reasoning but you get my point. i think what you are trying to go for is the perception of lag. And if that's it, it still doesn't hold much water. I can play online and it could seem as if Im playing offline. i don't think you can generalize just because there are also laggy matches out there.
but having said all of that, i do think that Tekken in the arcade is the definitive way to play it. not because of lag or any shit like that. Its because of consistency. its more consistant because there are less variables to worry about, such as online connection, or different types of monitor with the lag they bring with them. the setup will be the same (or atleast should be), and so will the location. when you eliminate all the variables, all you have to worry about is the game.

Friday, October 7, 2011 at 6:39 AM | Unregistered Commenterjackoffbot

i think tekken would die if it wasn't in arcades simply because it being a balanced, competitive game is the direct result of the game being in arcades.

look at sc. since the move to console, they haven't given a fuck about balance or testing or anything. Its a one time hit, if it sucks, too bad they got your money. adding patches and balancing shit would just be a waste of money considering that rebalance patches cannot be linked to any additional sales.

the ONLY reason why tekken get balanced and is competitive minded is simply BECAUSE its in arcades. if you want people to keep coming back for more money, if you want them to invest monthly in, if you want owners to keep ordering machines and giving namco money, they need the game to be fun and competitive.

if it was just on console, they just gotta worry about sell through. see: SC3, SC4, and most likely SC5.

tekken is harada's baby, but if he's only going to get $30-40 from each person one time, then it won't make much business sense it invest as much money into its development. TTT2 development has been going on twice as long as sc5, and guess which one is hitting consoles first and is console exclusive. sf4 is optimized for outdated technology on console and arcade, and can turn a profit by cutting corners and charging people for updates ever 6-8 months....

maybe that will give some perspective as to why arcade versions are important. namco is a company and its goal is to get money. console players benefit from arcade players even in arcades waning days....

Friday, October 7, 2011 at 10:10 AM | Unregistered Commentersubt-L

Uh, lots of arcade titles have been updated with the release of a console version, like Hokuto no Ken, the latest KoF's, Street Fighter 4, BlazBlue, etc. Just because Namco's policy is different from the other devs doesn't mean that it's some kind of general thing. Most of the updated versions never gets released back into the arcades, although that trend has been on the rise with at least BB and SF4. So Tekken being competetive or balanced doesn't really have anything to do with the arcades in general, Namco could port the system and keep balancing the game via patches on consoles just as easy as in the arcades. But instead they decide to witheld the latest arcade version for years and then release it on consoles without never updating it. Pretty much a big fuck you to all folks that doesn't have access to arcades. Oh well, at Namco isn't as retarded as Sega, though.

Friday, October 7, 2011 at 11:55 AM | Unregistered Commenterloldongs

loldongs: perhaps you missed the third paragraph about patches.

updating for consoles from arcades isn't what i'm talking about.

blazblue is just following their arcade business model. from what i hear, its not working/making $$$ on console. snkplaymore couldn't even support their own console release. hokuto no ken was only played because it was hokuto no ken, and was broken from the gate because people were gonna play it regardless. Sf4 is the only one that has found success, and that's thanks to fanboys, not really the quality of their releases.

why would you balance a game once its outside of it project cycle? you aren't charting its sales after 1-3 months usually, first week sales is THE key number you want regardless of extended sales. a company will not justify spending money on a product they aren't even endorsing anymore unless they are getting paid from it.

they could have you pay for so you could play online, is that what you're thinking? or keep your stats? i'm sure that will go over well.... they could continue patching a game over a games time and lose money. i'm sure that makes alot of sense. even for arcades, namco has not repeated patched a game without creating a new revision of it (hence, buying a new kit, making $$$$$)

the only reason why you would update a game is because you are selling something new. in fact, not really known to normal people, as per sony's contract with 3rd parties, a game can only be patched 3 times without having additional paid dlc added to the title. So you get 3 chances to get it right, then you need to offer paid DLC (such as what mk does) in order to reset that 3 patch rule. namco technically ran out of their patches for t6, and DLC probably was too expensive for what they felt was going to be a small return on content... henceforth why you saw nothing from t6 after launch.

so they should give you at home to.... what? track your progress online? i'm sure that's what the game does already. customize your character? i'm sure that's what the home version does already. the only thing you could do is setup teams, and that isn't enough to justify a $3-5 amount charge for the service. you know... like arcade players do that justify namco putting out a quality product

you say its a "fuck you" but its not their fault they exist to make money and console markets mean you gotta either DLC the shit out of people (welcome paid customizations in your near future) in order to support your title. you would be very surprised how much it costs a developer to even submit a patch to ms/sony... it isn't cheap. but its good to see people are still self absorbed. namco still has employees and still has a bottom line, and tekken is the title that is carrying that company right now.

and just so you know, i've heard from a birdy at a rival company that namco lost a ton of money with tekken 6 console release. i don't think i should give the reasons, but its safe to say that tekken console wasn't the cash cow people think that it is.

Friday, October 7, 2011 at 1:09 PM | Unregistered Commentersubt-L

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