I had to find a paper towel to write my username on for my proof to pass muster. Check the register lmao

7PM PST: Guys I'm at work so my responses might be delayed lmao

8.55 PST: Alright guys it's time to close the arcade, which means I'm going dark. This was fun! Maybe I'll do it again sometime :^)

11.30 PST: Okay now I'm really done, I gotta get some sleep. See ya!

Comments: 562 • Responses: 66  • Date: 

JacobDCRoss493 karma

How do you feel about surviving arcades getting overrun with prize machines instead of video games and pinball?

TMStage572 karma

Kinda sad :( they're very profitable but it's so scummy. We already run a child casino here.

commandrix239 karma

What're your favorite games? And what are some of the "insider secrets" for arcades that nobody would get unless they've worked at one?

TMStage325 karma

I'm an In The Groove guy, but I also like Silent Scope and Time Crisis, plus House of the Dead. Classiques.

SoupForDummies11 karma

Y’all got an ITG there?! My first ever job was an arcade tech and I played so much DDR. Still do but I don’t get paid for it lol

TMStage29 karma

Hell yeah! We have a converted DDR cab that we modded back in like...2007 or so. It has a folder called like "modern hits" and it has shit like Black Eyed Peas

Phazon_miner201 karma

Have you ever had a Dragon's Lair machine in your arcade, and if so, how often did that machine need attention? It was regularly out of order when I was a kid.

TMStage217 karma

Not to my knowledge, though shockingly enough our really old shit (we have original cabs for Asteroids, Donkey Kong, and Ms Pac Man!) Is some of the most reliable in the arcade. I can count the number of coin jams I've had to clear on all of those combined on one hand!

nothumbnails200 karma

on crane games is there anyway to somewhat see the strength the arm is set at or is that decided after money is put in?

TMStage399 karma

Crane games are just universally a complete scam lmao. The strength isn't variable, they're all weak as hell.

boymeetsquirrel114 karma

Hello again lol. Same question about those time crisis 3 screens. What makes them difficult to source?

TMStage112 karma

Just old, kinda expensive, and the general manager isn't giving us the budget lmao

AnotherDrunkCanadian95 karma

Do you guys use any mame (raspberry pi) machines or are they all originals? I own a vr arcade and we have a couple of.mame machines. They do ok, but i mostly just throw on free play while clients wait for their friends to show up or if there's a birthday party

TMStage103 karma

I don't know if they're MAME but we have a couple "Arcade Legends" cabs in our free to play section. We also have a Neo Geo with like a bazillion games in it, so that's something.


What game(s) in your opinion seem to jam up the most… and why?

TMStage139 karma

GOAL LINE RUSH holy shit. I'm constantly out there with a screwdriver clearing that game. It's so ass.

Brickwater42 karma

There's a cool little video arcade/cafe near me that has all these pinball machines. They all look old school but some are from modern movies. From the user side it seems like the old ones and new ones have the same look, flair, designs, etc. Has the technology or design behind them changed much since Kiss was big?

TMStage28 karma

Not really. But you might be shocked to learn that pinball machines use an absurd amount of power. Watch yourself!

LowestKey36 karma

How long have you been in this line of work?

How often do you have to manually repair cabinets? Do you rent the machines and have someone else provide support or buy them outright and have to run your own support?

How’s your soldering game?

TMStage37 karma

About six months lol. It's very entry level. We own our own cabs and have our own tech crew, but we're very lucky to be part of a larger company.

FiddlerOnTheDesk31 karma

What game brings in the most money?

TMStage44 karma

Ticket Ring probably. It's the only one people actually line up to play here.

Das_Gruber27 karma

How profitable is the arcade you're working at?

TMStage43 karma

Not. Lol. But we're part of a larger company so we exist mostly as storage and a tax dump.

klcams14411 karma

What is a "tax dump"?

TMStage45 karma

No clue, that's just what my boss tells me haha

HHS201926 karma

Why all our base are belong to them?

TMStage9 karma

Take off every ZIG!

PatrickRsGhost23 karma

How do you determine the ticket "prices" of the prizes? Has anyone ever won enough tickets to collect the large prizes (worth tens of thousands of tickets)?

TMStage43 karma

We internally decide the value of 1 dollar in tickets, then set the ticket prices based on the cost of the items plus a little bit extra. Ours is 1000 per dollar, so if we have an item that cost us 1 dollar each to buy, then we'd probably price it at like 1250 or something.

And yes! The highest single item I've sold was a Wampa Rug for 47,500 tickets about a month ago.

mechmind23 karma

Are you getting these for stocking stuffer? Replicade makes this Keychain. I really want someone to buy it for you!


TMStage11 karma

Yooooooo that's raaaaad

thndrstrk23 karma

Do people still line up for games like we did years ago?

TMStage23 karma

Nah, with maybe one exception on very busy days.

PlaidSkirtBroccoli17 karma

Ever find any rare coins someone accidentally put in a machine?

TMStage30 karma

Not rare, but we occasionally get Canadian and Mexican coinage. I found a Euro coin once too which was interesting.

TheRebelOfBabylon17 karma

What do you think the future of arcades looks like?

TMStage24 karma

Not great :( we seem to be relegated to side attractions these days.

kiloskree17 karma

what game are you best at? is it Mortal kombat 2? are you the guy who beat me in that tournament this year? who are you!

TMStage21 karma

In The Groove is my best game :^)

__-_____-_-__---_17 karma

Do you have Polybius?

TMStage37 karma

If I had Polybius I'd be in some CIA blacksite and not on Reddit getting paid minimum wage.

EpicPwn_34316 karma

How many times a day do you notice people trying to cheat: tip/hit machines?

TMStage24 karma

Not as often as you'd think really. Parents tend to keep their kids honest. I've confronted a few cheaters, but it's not nearly as rampant as it once was.

ecuabron15 karma

Do you have King of Fighters and why is kof 99 the best is the series?

TMStage23 karma

We do! Our Neo Geo has KoF 94-04, and they're all great :)

sunnie_day14 karma

In your opinion, what are the best and worst prizes your arcade offers?

TMStage42 karma

We have these stretch balls that are just hard plastic inside a rubber ball. They're absolute garbage. But we also sell lava lamps for some pretty reasonable prices!

xlnyc13 karma

Do you ever have your friends come over to play games, like after hours?

TMStage17 karma

Not after hours but our friends generally play for free as long as they don't go ham on the prizes lol

mjpache13 karma

You go to the arcade and win enough tickets to buy any toy on the wall. What are you buying?

TMStage27 karma

We have this sick little remote control tank with a camera on it for 76000 tickets. I want it. Gimme gimme.

Trippingthewire11 karma

One time I had a machine run out of tickets. The guy that came to fill it back up told me if I could guess how many tickets where in the brick he had, then I could have them. I guessed 2,000. He ripped one off and told me sorry 1,999. I was about 10 and murdered him with my eyes as I cashed in for some candy when I should have had enough for something big. So my question is how many souls have you crushed like this?

TMStage16 karma

Oof, that's cruel. Nah I'd never do that. Mostly because in this part of town that'd probably get me shanked.

RugskinProphet9 karma

How have you had to adapt to keep coin operated business above ground? Do you think there could be new life for the business?

TMStage17 karma

Honestly the allure of classic old school arcade experiences is what brings a lot of people through the door. I don't think it's sustainable, but it's something.

aconsul739 karma

Does your arcade have Space Paranoids, Matrix Blaster, Vice Squad, and Light Cycles?

TMStage7 karma

We have Cyber Cycles! But none of those ones :(

HHS20198 karma

If you could create a cheat code for any game what would the game be and what would you have it do?

TMStage17 karma

Endless magazine on House of the Dead.

lifeisgr00d6 karma

I have a friend who used to service arcade and other amusement machines. He told me in secret one day that no amusement vending company (what's the right term?) can make a profit off of them... So many/most make their real money off of illegal machines hidden in various places. What's your experience?

TMStage8 karma

We exist as a tax dump for a larger company so I have no idea lmao. No illegal shadow games here.

KaiserGlauser5 karma

Where can I find a Soul Calibur machine that isn't out of fucking order?

TMStage4 karma

We had one like 10 years ago. Apparently they're too fragile :(

NicklesBe5 karma

Why won't yall just let me buy a stuffed animal from the rigged claw games? Also every arcade should have a custom cabinet with homebrew roms/games that's made to look like Polybius. Take it up a notch by having the game/games change randomly and have all the top scores read like CIA1.

TMStage9 karma

Mostly because we'd be constantly refilling it. Also for certification purposes. You'd be surprised how regulated arcades are. You have to get a certificate and everything.

HHS20194 karma

Billy Mitchell shows up at your lair. Embrace him or exile him?

TMStage13 karma

Billy Mitchell is pre-emptively banned for life from my arcade.

Metalhed694 karma

How pissed do you get when a little kid has like 17 tickets and can’t decide between any of the tiny little prizes and just stands there for like 20 minutes with his parents going “Do you want the spider ring or the bouncy ball?!?!?!”

TMStage4 karma

Well 17 tickets doesn't buy you anything here :^) but yeah, it can get annoying, especially when lines start forming and people need help. Funnily enough, it's the parties with the huge numbers of tickets that are the quickest and easiest, since they usually know exactly what they want and came here specifically to get that thing.

bsage3 karma

What do you think of an arcade running on hourly passes vs credits per play?

TMStage9 karma

It's possible, but not with coin op. You'd never get the wrong people out the door.

Candy_Acid3 karma

I've noticed that the staff at the arcades are often fixing machines. Is there something specific that customers do to the machines that makes them break all the time?

Do you have Area 51?

TMStage9 karma

We used to have Area 51, dunno what happened to it.

99 times out of 100, an attendant is at a machine to clear a coin jam or restock tickets. Kids will often just ram coins into a game and then leave, and this can cause quite a bit of problems over time. I once pulled over 60 tokens out of one once!

718Brooklyn3 karma

Do you ever see people who have a gambling problem struggle to stop playing the casino type games?

TMStage8 karma

Very rarely. I've cut exactly one person off because he was starting to show signs of gambling addiction, and I wanted to head that off before it became a problem, at least for us. Poor guy :(

coldstar3 karma

What's your favorite game that dispenses tickets?

TMStage3 karma

Mmmm, maybe Goin' Rollin'. It's fun to watch the multiplier stack up.

kenji-benji3 karma

What's your Ms Pacman high score?

TMStage12 karma

I haven't set one yet 🤔 maybe later tonight I'll try.

Update: I got 22000 points :3

Thrilling10313 karma

What’s your Ticket per token? Do you have unlimited gaming passes?

How do feel about the token driven gameplay games? The games where the token is used in an skill game to win tickets.

TMStage6 karma

We can't really do unlimited gaming passes because, y'know...coin op. Coin dozers and other such machines are kinda neat, but it still fuels the whole "child casino" thing, which is not great.

pichichi0103 karma

Can you help me dump an u dumped arcade PCB? Western Shooting by Art and Magic.

TMStage3 karma

Way above my pay grade lmao. Ask MVG maybe?

gloebe103 karma

So… any chance you have any old Polybius cabinets sitting in the back?

TMStage8 karma

No comment, Inspector.

SlashStar2 karma

After Crazy Taxi was developed, why did we bother creating new arcade games? Hadn't we already reached the pinnacle of the genre?

TMStage4 karma

sad DDR noises

allthecats2 karma

What are you most curious about right now?

TMStage6 karma

I'm curious if my taco bell will get cold while I answer these lol

chipszed2 karma

why did popsicle sticks stop working for spoofing coins?

TMStage5 karma

The coin has to fall through a little coin mechanism which takes some twists and turns before falling out and tripping a little wire. The popsicle stick won't fit lol.

Onlyhereforthelaughs2 karma

What is your record for most tokens jammed in a machine?

We went to a movie theater arcade and I swear when we finally kicked them all loose it was like 18 tokens. (I was one of those weirdos that would crawl on the sticky carpet with a flashlight to find spare tokens on the ground under the machines. It even became a recurring dream.)

TMStage5 karma

Something like 65 out of Daytona USA. It was absurd. I spent a solid ten minutes down there.

Onlyhereforthelaughs2 karma

Jesus. Just how much room is in that coin track?!

TMStage3 karma

A lot of it was jammed inside the coin mech itself. Someone stuck a huge coin in there and it backed all the way up.

StrangeCaptain1 karma

How tight are your pants right now?

TMStage4 karma

I got some very loose cargo pants for work, so not very :^)

HHS20191 karma

What book, film or other piece of creative content do you feel should be developed as a video game?

TMStage3 karma

I want a Sayonara Wild Hearts arcade game so bad dude.

Tsara12341 karma

I want to buy a pop'n'music machine for my home but don't want to import it from overseas. Do you have some fancy way of ordering these machines without having to pay an arm and a leg?

TMStage2 karma

The arcade business is unfortunately very up front cost heavy. Not really any way around it :(

ronatello0 karma

Not judging.

The mustache and unibrow...what's going on here?

Too good a head of hair to neglect your face bruh.

TMStage7 karma

I have given up on ever finding a mate.