Is Arcade1up Worth The Money

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Arcade1up has been making miniature arcade machines for several years now. The company started with early arcade games, such as Pac-Man, and Galaga. They have now more advanced games, such as OutRun and more recently announced “Fast & Furious.”

My first interaction with Arcade1up hardware was at a local Walmart. My friend and I recorded it for YouTube:

My friend; pseudonym “The Beard,” playing a Arcade1up Galaga machine.

The quality on the early machines was mediocre. They were solid enough for a $200 price tag, but much like the modern price; the quality has greatly increased. The average cost of an Arcade1up machine, is now approximately $650. Fortunately, Konami games are now included in the Arcade1up line. In addition to the increased quality, Internet-based features have been included. While I have not been able to test the Internet functionality myself, I do have experience with the second generation and the more modern, “counter-cade” line.

Another friend purchased the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles arcade cabinet and we filmed the construction.

While the first Ninja Turtles cabinet has four-player co-op play, it is a little on the small side for four adults to play simultaneously. The emulation on the cabinet is solid, and it includes both Ninja Turtles arcade games. Years later, Arcade1up released an updated version of the cabinet that featured online play. They also released a cheaper alternative, called the “counter-cade.” That’s the cabinet that I purchased.

I released several videos featuring this cabinet.

Unboxing & Review
Retro-Bit controller on Arcade1up Counter-Cade

Upon learning that the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Cowabunga Collection was set for release, I did sell the counter-cade. I bought it primarily for my kids to play. They used it a few times and then forgot about it. It sat in the box for some time, before I ultimately sold it. I rarely used the counter-cade, and once I could play the arcade games on a modern console, with the controller of my choice, I opted for that, instead.

The Cowabunga Collection was fairly solid, but the online was unplayable. I offered a few solutions that were ignored.

After spending time with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles across the Arcade1up line and Cowabunga Collection, I opined that Konami has a plan. I contend that Arcade1up is Konami’s test for future collections that could be released on modern consoles.

With all of that being said, is it worth buying an Arcade1up cabinet, or is it better to wait (or hope for the best) for a release on modern platforms? I can honestly say that I have little interest in buying another Arcade1up cabinet. I enjoy playing them, but as far as owning them myself, I have little interest.


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