beats headphoned area arcades offer video and pinball fun
In an age when you can carry hundreds of video games in your pocket (or wherever you store your smartphone), it no small feat for an old school video game arcade to succeed.
Random video or pinball games can be found in several places, from bars to restaurants to convenience stores. But, if you really want to get your game on, head to one of these locations for hours of arcade fun.
Sometimes, the name says it all. In this case, the “N refers to pool tables, duckpin bowling lanes, Skee Ball, pinball, classic arcade games, Whac a Mole, online desktop gaming stations, and a wall of tiny, goofy prizes where you can redeem your bounty of Skee Ball tickets.
The business has changed a bit over the years, as games tend to come and go. The biggest difference, says Jones, is how hard it is to repair classic games these days.
“The pinball machines are tough,” she says. “To get parts for pinball, my husband kills himself on that. That old baseball (pinball) game . we actually had to go to a machine shop to get parts made for that.”
Currently, they waiting on a piece to get the claw machine working again. There is one advantage to modern technology, though. When the monitor on their classic “Dig Dug” arcade game broke, the new one had some bonus features.
“Instead of just having ‘Dig Dug, it has 40 games on it,” Jones says.
Prices vary, but the usual setup is $10 for unlimited play on Thursdays and $5 to $14 on Fridays and Saturdays, depending on how many hours one stays. Duckpin bowling is an additional $2 per game. If you haven been there in a while, it will be worth making a trip.
Part of the renovation includes combining 15 foot TV screens, a new menu and new games with top to bottom upgrades to make it the ultimate go to game day headquarters. With massive projection screens and 25 huge HD televisions, it has dining, sports viewing and entertainment under one roof.
“Our look is unlike anything you seen before, and with new food and new games no other place has this much fun going on,” says Chris Lama, general manager of the Pittsburgh location. “We so happy about the new sports bar and can wait to share it with fans.”
Signature Dave Buster Million Dollar Midway games include Speed of Light, Quad Air Hockey (you can play with two to four people), Connect 4 (based on the classic board game), Fruit Ninja and newly added Doodle Jump. There plenty of opportunity for a game of pocket billiards. Entertainment choices include state of the art simulators, virtual reality and traditional carnival style amusements and games of skill. The games appeal to almost all ages.
The midway, also known as Dave Arcade, houses about 200 games. There is a combination of cutting edge simulator games (driving, racing, shooting, etc.) and redemption and carnival games that give tickets or actual merchandise.
The Winner Circle has prizes for all ages, including stuffed animals, novelty items for teens and adults, apparel and electronics such as Wii, Playstation and Xbox game consoles, games, iPods and iPads.
The best value is the Power Card. It costs $20, plus a one time activation fee of $2. A $20 purchase gets you 100 chips to play games. Games generally range from three to 10 chips per play. You can add chips to the card for an additional fee each time you visit.
In the restaurant area of the venue, an extensive menu includes poppin potatoes, bistro steak and shrimp, chicken Rockefeller and snow cone cocktails.
Founded in 1982 and headquartered in Dallas, Dave Buster operates 60 large venue, high volume restaurant/entertainment complexes throughout the United States.
Dave Buster is at 180 Waterfront Drive, Homestead.
“Our game room offers the latest in high tech electronic video, redemption games and prizes,” company spokeswoman Georgina Kalaitzis says. “The Monster Drop Extreme and Bass Wheel games are the most popular games to win tickets. But the adults love the Boxer game.”
Instead of tokens, Latitude 40 offers credits on a reloadable game card that guests can use every time they return to the venue. Five dollars buys 25 credits. Most games cost about three to five credits. Some higher redemption games can cost up to 15 credits, but prizes for those games range anywhere from an iPad to a Kindle Fire.
Billed as an “entertainment complex,” Latitude 40 opened in November and has become a popular venue for people seeking all sorts of fun. In addition to the game room, the two story space houses the Axis Bar, with a stage and dance floor, and the 360 Grille, a casual contemporary American restaurant. There are three theaters and 24 bowling lanes.