Sunday, January 16, 2011

Arcade Infinity is NOT Closing.....Yet.

While the first post of the new year was depressing and hateful, the second post is the exact opposite!
It seems that Arcade Infinity will stay open for at least a little while longer, thanks to community support!
From the Facebook


AI is being saved by the owners of Diamond Plaza. After seeing all of the public outcry over the closing, and how active this particular event page has been since the announcement, they've worked out a deal with AI to significantly help their operating costs and keep the arcade open for an unspecified period of time. While currently the arrangements that the landlords have made with the city of Rowland Heights AI's business license will only cover them for 6 more months, they're working out arrangements to extend it up to a period of 3 years. We'll know the outcome of this sometime in March when the approval is made or denied.

Either way, thanks to the landlords we get to keep AI for at the very least a few months longer. After speaking with Ken, the first action they're gonna be taking with this turn of events is to put some money into getting 4 Super Street Fighter 4 setups running, beatmania IIDX 18 RESORT ANTHEM (possibly in a new cabinet), DDR X2, pop'n music 18 SENGOKU RETSUDEN, and a few other titles that he's has his eye on for a little while.

Also just to clarify a bit on the closing of the arcade, while a good portion of it had to do with earnings (or lack thereof) the nail in the coffin was actually delivered by the city of Rowland Heights. AI's business license was to expire in December, and the costs that they originally wanted the Tao brothers to pay to keep things open was just completely unreasonable for how much money the arcade was pulling in. The landlords have since worked with the City to make their license renewal a possibility, and have secured them an extension.

With all of this being the case, we still want to encourage everyone to make their way out to the arcade this Saturday. Instead of a last chance to play at one of the best arcades the US has ever seen, let's celebrate their 10 years of continued business and contribution to the arcade industry in North America!

It seems the reason for them closing was, as usual, the greed of someone else. It reminds me of the story last year of Oklahoma raising the price of vending stamps by 300% from $50 per machine to $150 per machine.
The people that are in charge of these tax increases probably figure that owners can just increase prices to compensate, except they don't think about the fact that you can't keep charging more and more for arcade games. They are mostly already more costly than the 25 cents per game that they should be in most cases.

In the case of Arcade Infinity, the city wanted more money from them for their business license and I bet they figured AI would just up their prices and everything would be fine, or they would leave and someone else would move in and pay, not caring if the arcade closed.
Luckily they have a large community of people down there that understand the value of video arcades and are fighting to save theirs.
Front page article in SGV Tribune.

Instead of a somber last day meetup, they had a big party at the arcade and lots of people showed up.
The second part of this story makes me as happy as the first part made me sad :) You guys down there ALMOST lost your arcade, I hope you will all put some extra effort in to going there more often now... for most of us in other parts of the country it's already too late. Long live A.I.!
Discuss this topic on the forums!