The Way We Played

Someone always jumps at the opening second and is usually followed by a sweeping kick, easily blocked and countered with a Dragon Punch. This is where we belong; this is how we play. As the movement flows across the screen, people are walking past and commenting. Some stop to watch. Someone reaches in and places a pound coin next to a stick, his way of saying that “he’s got next.”

As the match comes to an end, the smiles are back and someone else steps up to put their money where their mouth is. We stay there for hours, watching, or moving from machine to machine. When we’ve lost the taste to fight, we duck behind crates while we reload, or we climb into the seat of a Hornet and drive for as long as it takes.

Daniel Lipscombe writes about seaside arcades for Resolution. It’s a lovely, NGJ-esque piece that evokes the wonder of arcade gaming before they were rendered obsolete by the growing power of home consoles. I must admit that I’m a little jealous of Daniel, because arcades were a rare treat for me, the highlight of a seaside holiday or day trip. Jealousy coupled with melancholy because, as much as I take comfort in knowing that the latest, greatest games will always be available to me at home, I still believe that we’ve lost a little part of gaming culture.

~ by bigjonno on March 24, 2010.

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