Welcome to Newsbytes, a post that curates quick news from around the world of arcades, pinball and other location-based entertainment. We haven’t done one of these for a while as it’s been a busy time, but with Amusement Expo well and truly over now, we’ll start seeing things return to “normal.” This time, we have news out of numerous companies from the East (Sega) to the West (Raw Thrills), and some unusual things too. Let’s dive into those stories:

New Trailers (Raw Thrills, LAI, Sega Amusements)

Following on from that last big Raw Thrills update post (which was almost a Newsbytes unto itself for them), we have some more new arcade game trailers to cover here. One of these is again for a Raw Thrills game, but this time for a specific aspect of an update, and has only been posted by Betson on their own YouTube channel so far – a look at the new Series 3 cards of Minecraft Dungeons Arcade. Here’s our recent post on that too if you missed it.

As detailed in that previous post, Raw Thrills had some trial and error in putting up the Godzilla trailer. This hasn’t been exclusive to them, as LAI Games also recently removed their Smash DX promo, swiftly uploading it again soon after. Not sure where the difference lies, but here it is:

Back to the wholly new trailers, and Sega Amusements have recently uploaded this one for Hyper Cross. This one shipped nearly six months ago now, however more promotion can’t hurt. Though there must be some out there already, we haven’t seen any out on location just yet:

SAI didn’t post these themselves, but there are also a couple more trailers out there for Apex Rebels now; one from Middle East distributor ASI demonstrating it at DEAL, and another from Alan Ng, who from the looks of his previous uploads composed the music for several SAI promos. His is essentially the teaser we first saw last November, but in Chinese, and with a couple new glimpses of Motorland Sakura.

Speaking of Apex, a big special post dedicated to it should be going up on the blog soon. Stay tuned to find out what that may be 🙂

Japan Arcade Updates (Sega, Taito, Bandai Namco)

Perhaps due to it being a new fiscal year there, we have several updates out of Japan to talk of. Let’s reel them all off here; some are directly game related, others not.

First for the latter, Sega’s merger of their Toys subsidiary and Japanese arcade division into ‘Sega Fave’ is now complete. The initial announcement and implications were previously reported in a Newsbytes back during January, and you can find its new website design here. One can probably expect collaborations, but from the looks of it they are treating the toys and amusement sides as separate sub-divisions still.

So although the move does seem to be more to promote synergy (or whatever) between these businesses, a big new ‘Season 4’ version for Initial D The Arcade also released a few days after the merger happened. Fans of those Sega blue skies should take note of one of the new courses featured in this, as it has those in abundance. Not that we’ll ever get to see this over here via Sega Amusements, of course, but still…

Taito meanwhile are pressing on as usual with their few arcade activities, despite inhouse development being more minimal these days with long-running titles like Groove Coaster now no longer online. We’ve already reported on Space Invaders Gigamax, and they have just pushed a fresh update to Street Fighter 6 Type Arcade in conjunction with Capcom. This adds new character Ed, a new stage, and some different customization options. Unlike other games mentioned here it should also be available outside of Japan via Round1US locations already.

As for Bandai Namco, we have another update on one of their upcoming new titles. Unlike the more experience-led Goldstorm Pirates and Bike Dash Delivery, this particular rhythm game example isn’t likely West-bound – but does involve a very big domestic IP for them. The Idolm@ster Tours was first announced in a surprise reveal over a year ago at JAEPO 2023, and is still currently in development. Further location tests were announced for it just recently, alongside a revised control panel from early appearances, making ‘Beatmania’ comparisons slightly less fair:

Elsewhere at BNA, their big expensive Gundam Pods sequel has finally been taken offline after flopping hard. On the brighter side, Wangan Midnight Maximum Tune continues as 6RR+ is released to Japan. With 7 seemingly delayed, one wonders if they have learnt a lesson or two from Gundam in revamps. Also, their Techinca arm for overseas games (Raw Thrills etc) is testing yet another Top Gun/Quick Shot/Skill Shooter rebadge. It seems exactly the same as those, but with a new name: “Top Shooting”. The famous Spiderman pointing frame comes to mind here…

And one more thing: Marvelous have just revealed a new edition of their Pokemon kids card game. We heard of secret trials for it in Japan on the grapevine, and this marks its public debut; a July release window is quoted. With competition in that genre heating up overseas (BNA releasing Animal Kaiser Plus, and Marvelous themselves testing Naruto Arcade Battle), perhaps it’s worth pondering if this one will come over too?

Finishing Up Amusement Expo

Here are a few further videos from AEI’24 that did not feature in any of our blog posts. The show was a month ago now and the AH channels are doing okay, but not all of our readers regularly watch. This is of course fine – not everyone has time to avidly watch video content. So to that end, we have several more detailed looks at products featured there. First off, Stern’s JAWS pinball:

Continuing the looks at new pinballs, here’s Barry O’s Barbecue Challenge by American Pinball:

And Amusement Source International did not only show off Thunder Attack – they also demonstrated Super Shooting, another new target shooter out of China in the Bullseye Crack Shot mould. Not certain when this one will be shipping right now, but the framerate could do with a little more work in the meantime.

Last but not least – sort of – is Playbox Carnival by PLAYMIND. This is essentially a smaller, more affordable version of the larger PLAYBOX concept. Not sure yet on when this one will be ready to ship either, as each unit requires changes to the games to work in the required vertical screen format.

Though this wraps the AEI’24 videos up for now, next week is EVO Japan 2024, when I will be sharing some more from exA-Arcadia. I had the chance to play several games that were on embargo there, some of which new fighters. exA plan on announcing a few new games at the event, plus something else that should be of interest to many in the arcade community. Again, stay tuned…

May Amusement Shows

Though Stateside expos are finished for now, amusement shows are still taking place overseas. Two in particular that will be happening next month are the Saudi Entertainment & Amusement (SEA) Expo, and the Asia Attractions & Amusement (AAA) Expo. SEA is taking place May 7th-9th at the Riyadh Front Exhibition & Conference Center, while AAA is being held from 10th-12th at the China Import & Export Fair Complex in Guangzhou.

Not much has came out of either in terms of previews so far, but Yuto Games have promoted their stand at SEA and Bravo Amusement have posted about theirs at AAA. It is also looking likely that Wahlap will be debuting a brand new environmental shooting game said to be “unlike any other” at the latter – a recent InterGame interview did not mention this in specific connection to AAA, but did say they plan to reveal it sometime in May…

Arcade Game Shows

Now a topic that doesn’t often come up in the news: arcade game shows. Yes, I mean those not of the industry event kind. First of all, more on a certain story you may recall us running on the site and YouTube channel. Back in June, Arcade Animals were planning a return to the days of Starcade – an arcade game show in the literal, competitive sense. Since then they have got it properly up and running, with six episodes now available to watch on the platform. Another three are also in the pipeline – you can help fund those and more at their Kickstarter campaign page.

Numerous game shows have used video games as a central theme in recent years, but none have been exactly arcade-focused like this one. Do go show them some support if you’ve enjoyed what you’ve seen here! The series is made independently and only released online, so there are naturally none of your television industry production standards. You can definitely say that does add a certain charm to it though.

For a slightly more big-budget and traditional television affair, however, Comedy Central are basing a new animated sitcom on – of all things – Sega’s Golden Axe. Names attached to the series include producers and writers previously involved with the likes of American Dad, Rick & Morty, and Star Trek: Lower Decks (which is ending in favor of this). Though a surprising choice, this presumably stems from the big drive to utilize old IPs at Sega, which Golden Axe is indeed part of. Time will only tell on if this is any good though, or if it will materialize in the end…

Headlines

Arcade Destroyed In A Fire May Soon Rise From The Ashes

Pac-Man’s Pixel Bash For Charity Now Available / Same Thing With Namco’s New Coin Pusher, Tower Island

Alan-1 Is Making A New Comic Book For The Asteroids Recharged Arcade Release

Brief Trailer For QBIX’s Chef Express

DSM Arcade’s Perfect Pour Prototype At MGC’24

Arcade Belgium At D-CON Geek 2024

Big Names Leave Bandai Namco

Wilcox Arcade Is Back In Action

Meow Wolf Announce Layoffs

Rebuilding A Baby Pac-Man Machine

A Final Fight Comic Book Is Coming

The Murky History Of A Rescued UK Puck Man Board

Mikado Announce A Price Increase, But Customers Don’t Mind

This Birdly VR Knock-Off Is A Little Weird (And Uses Star Wars)

Namco’s Numan Athletics Up Next For Arcade Archives

Was This The Ultimate Video Game Actor Of The ’90s?

After 48 Years, The Zilog Z80 Processor’s Support Is Being Discontinued (used in some arcade games BITD)

[Console] Nintendo’s Game Boy Turns 35 / 19 Arcade Ports To The Game Boy / Yes, There Are New Game Boy Homebrew Games

[Console] New Version Of A Sega Saturn X-Men Recreation

[Console] Take-Two Reverses Course On Layoffs

[Console] Fallout 4 #1 In Europe Thanks To Amazon TV Show

[Console] Atari And WayForward Making A Yars Revenge ‘Metroidvania’ For Switch – I had a similar idea bouncing around in my head for a while that I have been putting onto paper, something that is a little more lore accurate… dunno if its worth finishing up to pitch or not

That wraps up this Newsbytes. Did any of the above news (e.g. the Raw Thrills and Sega Amusements trailers) interest you?





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