Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Flynn's Arcade Closing and the Death of the Starcade

I finally made it inside Flynn's Arcade when I was down in Disneyland last month. I'll say that the arcade was just ok. It's a good thing I got in there when I did, because I just got word that Disney is closing Flynn's (and ElecTRONica) down on April 15th. It is being replaced by The Mad T Party, a (Tim Burton) Alice in Wonderland attraction.

Flynn's Arcade had a definite 80's vibe to it, in that a lot of the games would eat tokens, buttons/joysticks  didn't work, etc. The TRON Pinball game was turned off with an out of order sign on it, same with the air hockey table. I actually chuckled when things didn't work well, it was almost too authentic. Overall it wasn't bad though. There was a good amount of classics to choose from.

The arcade was waaaay off in the corner of California Adventure. ElecTRONica was pretty cool and although the arcade closed at 10:00, the cast members working there locked the doors and let everyone stay as long as they wanted after. It was good to hear people exclaiming "Whoah I haven't seen this game in soo long!" "Duuude, check it out!!!" etc. Some couple was playing Gauntlet when I left and they were on level 90 or something, pretty dedicated I'd say.
Here some pics of Flynn's Arcade's final days.

Flynn's Arcade

Good lighting.
Lots of people were playing.

Mr. Do and Donkey Kong Jr.

They had some great neon on the walls!

Space Paranoids is MUCH easier on the computer!

Space Paranoids side art.

Asteroids and Solar Fox.

Home of TRON
Meanwhile, over in Disneyland.....

The Starcade used to be one of the best arcades in California, two stories and in Tomorrowland, it was on a completely different level than Flynn's arcade, you kinda had to be there to understand how awesome it was. It's had a steady decline over the years due to poor management. It was pretty terrible the last time I was there, but it was still at least trying to be an arcade. The writing is on the wall for the Starcade.

If this sign is still there a year from now it will be a miracle.
Inside the Starcade.
That's right.....it's a gift shop now. :'(
They still have a handful of games, pushed way into the back. The Mini Neo-Geo is still there and there was a kid playing Spinmaster as usual, but this arcade is doomed.

What's left of the Starcade.
The Pirates of the Caribbean Pinball game was shoved over into a corner, with tape over the dollar bill acceptor and both coin slots. I removed the tape and the pin worked perfectly. I must say, it's one of the funnest modern pins I've ever played and it was in beautiful condition :)

Pirates of the Caribbean Pinball.
I took some pictures of the Grizzly Game Arcade at the Grand Californian Hotel this time also:

Grizzly Game Arcade

Arcade 102

That was a long post, but it's probably the last time you'll have to hear about arcades in Disneyland on this site. If you go down there, play some games while you still can.

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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Gemini Arcade Palace

The next stop in Las Vegas was the Gemini Arcade Palace!

 The Gemini Arcade Palace is dark, cool, and popping with throbbing beats and flashing lights.
It is a Bemani/rhythm/dance focused arcade. I could tell they care a lot about their arcade, aside from the games, they had all kinds of neat pictures on the walls, lots of nice soaps in the bathroom, and baby powder/paper towels at the machines. They had comfy couches for chilling and some modern console systems to play if you just want to hang out. Gemini has fighting game events on the consoles pretty regularly it seems. It should be obvious, but I'll say that they have a giant selection of rhythm games to play, including some very modern titles.

The manager Juli was super nice and genuinely cares about arcades and the whole scene in general. Overall the arcade had a very nice community feel to it and I would spend a hell of a lot of time there if I had to live in Las Vegas!

Anyways, here's some pictures of the Gemini Arcade Palace!

DjMax Technika 3


Notice the fresh disco ball!

City cabs with some emulation action.

Vending goodness!

They had a big selection of DjMax Platinum Crew cards, I only bought two :)
I love this arcade and (as usual) I wish I could have stayed longer. It's 100% worth checking out if you are in Las Vegas!!!

Long live Gemini! Support your local arcade!

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