Sunday, February 23, 2014

Pinball Pete's

I came of age in the 1980's.  As a product of white suburban America at the time, it means that I spent quite a bit of time in the video arcade.  Every mall in America had an arcade.  In some towns, there were even purpose built arcades.  As home computers and consoles got better, the arcade became a dying breed.  By the mid 90's, the arcade had all but disappeared.
 I am not sure when Pinball Pete's started but I know its existence predates my time in the Ann Arbor area.  My first roommate in college was from Ann Arbor, so one night he took me to the Pinball Pete's that used to be on South William Street.  The one in this picture used to be across the street but that location burnt down.
 It has been a while since I've visited here but I decided to feature it in today's post.  So in I ventured.
 I do like the neon lights though.
 It is almost like stepping inside of a time capsule.  If you didn't pay attention to the names on the pinball machines you would think you were back in the 80's.
 A row of video machines that wouldn't look too much out of place in the 80's.  What is really amazing is how this is a representation of how technology has changed.  If you wanted to play good games, you to go to an arcade.  The console games of that era weren't that great.  But as home computers and consoles improved, this quickly changed.
 The Star Wars trilogy game there is one of my favorite games that came out of the mid-90's.  It was an improvement on another Star Wars game from the mid-80's.  Sadly, they don't have that game anymore.   This game is pretty fun though, you get to go through different scenes from the Star Wars trilogy.
 This is probably an example of one of the earlier first person shooters.  You were representing some sort of Green Beret going through a non-descript third world country.  It was kind of fun in the day but it doesn't compare to Call of Duty though.
 Another bank of video games that wouldn't look out of place in the 80's.
 I decided to play Miss Pac Man.  It was fun.  I used to know the pattern on Pac Man where I could get to about the 20th level or so.  That was one aspect of the old games, if you could figure out the pattern, you could play forever.
I remember as a kid, it was a big thing to get the high score.  It's not quite as impressive these days as there aren't quite as many people that play games like this.  If you ever needed a reason for a screen saver, this is it.  You can see the maze burned into the screen.

So there is a little bit of reminiscing.


Unknown said...

Are they reopened after the water damage earlier this month?

Mikoyan said...

I was there Sunday, so I would say they were open.