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Pixe Sukola
01-14-2019 at 07:32 PM
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Incentivising Arcade owners

Hello, I have been playing a lot of Snow Bros lately and recently I got enough points to beat the current score in the Arcade platform. In my city there are very few arcade places left and 90% of all the machines there, are just emulators in arcade cabinets, the few original ones I could find are Tekken 5, Samurai Shodown 3 and Snow Bros.

All three are in the same Arcade place, the biggest and oldest in my city, the problem is that the owner is never around, only counter employees and they can't be opening machines for customers to film the boards, etc.

I left a note and my phone number with one of the employes and she said she will give it to the owner and explain what I need and maybe he will call me back, but she and I agreed that it was too much to ask and not worth the guy's time, given that I can get the score with less than 5 pesos (50 us cent). So I offered to pay 100 pesos (10 dollars) for a 3 hour session, plus the coins I use to beat the game if they can open the machine and set the dip switches correctly. She said she'll pass the message and it would be up to the owner.

So I thought that maybe if the certifcates for the Arcade platform would include the name of the arcade place where the gamer got the WR, if/when the gamer orders one, she/he could give a copy to the arcade place to hang in the place, etc, and that would make it easier for us gamers to gain access to all the details we need to film without so much reluctancy.

That's it, have a great year!

  1. bensweeneyonbass's Avatar

    Firstly it’s NOT too much to ask to open the machines so settings can be confirmed visually. Don’t let any business jerk tell you that. It’s a simple matter of accommodating a loyal customer. If they can’t do anything to help you then they don’t deserve you.

    I like the idea of putting location on the arcade scores if it was done someplace on location in the wild.

    But regarding certificates... I don’t think those will ever really come back.

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  2. Blackflag82's Avatar

    Quote Originally Posted by bensweeneyonbass

    Firstly it’s NOT too much to ask to open the machines so settings can be confirmed visually. Don’t let any business jerk tell you that. It’s a simple matter of accommodating a loyal customer. If they can’t do anything to help you then they don’t deserve you.

    I disagree. While I don't think it's too much to ask to open up the back of the machine, I think it goes beyond "some business" jerk. When I go to my usual arcade, the owners are there working 50% of the time. They're happy to accommodate things like this, and a few years back when I made a run at the Excite Bike WR, they pulled the machine out and set it up in a separate room for me. At the same time, the folks who work there and are paid hourly, don't have the expertise to deal with the machines, and they don't want them pulling them out and opening them up.

    I've been to another arcade where I've asked about this and they are not able to pull them out. The situation is that the owner operated the business as a turn-key, and outsourced work on the machines, So the hourly paid folks kept the place running and clean and such, but any work on any of the machines was done by an arcade repair service that came in once a week to take care of stuff. The owner didn't really care about the arcade as much more than a business investment, and the employees could have lost their job to accommodate that request. Now while that might not be the ideal, and we'd all love for the owners of arcades to be arcade enthusiasts themselves, at the end of the day, I'd rather there be a turn-key arcade open where I can't access the back of a cabinet, than no arcade. And that was in a spot where that was the only place to play within about 3 hours, so "don't give them your business" would simply mean, you don't get to play at an arcade.

    As for the original post - I think any way to get arcades on board is a good one. I like the idea of adding the arcade to the certificate. That said, I doubt TG is going to be a reliable source of certificates for record breaking at arcades given the questionable delivery time frame on individual certs. :/

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  3. bensweeneyonbass's Avatar

    If you do what Daniel is trying to do - plan ahead of time and setup a session - I believe that the only people who wouldn't be willing to accommodate the request are "business jerks" and I stand by that. I understand just showing up and saying "show me the board" is not a fair judgment of who's a jerk and who's not. At that point you're kind of the jerk to expect immediate on-the-spot accommodation.

    If you're respectful to the arcade and give them a chance to make it happen on their own terms, and they still don't, that's a jerk move. However they want to justify it is their call, but ultimately if they deny the request for business reasons they're a "business jerk." If they're in the arcade business because they love it or at least think it's a worthwhile thing to preserve, the chances of them working with you on something like this are high.

    This is my own opinion based on my own experience working with arcades.

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  4. Blackflag82's Avatar

    idk. I know the folks who run Funspot and none of them are jerks business-wise or otherwise imo...

  5. Conjured Entertainment's Avatar

    Most businessmen are in business for one thing, to make money.

    The only way to convince them to go out of their way, or make more work for them, is to ensure that it will do one of two things, or both, which is to increase their revenue and/or decrease their loss of revenue.

    The idea of setting up a separate area for the world record runs could be viable, but could prove tricky to be successful.

    Your idea of paying them a few dollars for the hourly time probably won't cut it because it is a one time thing that does not amount to much, unlike a one time change that could provide a continual revenue stream.

    I like the idea of the certificates, and even if Twin Galaxies does not accommodate putting the arcade name/location on the certificate, there still may be a way to achieve the same goal.

    You could simply autograph a copy for them to frame and hang up on the wall, maybe even in that areas designated for world record attempts.

    Here is what I have in mind combining the ideas put forth here, but it would be done in steps.

    1) Offer the $10 for the 3 hours for a record attempt, with the understanding that if successful in setting a world record that you will help promote their business as follows... (this way they make a little money even if you fail)

    2) If a record is set, then they not only get the autographed certificate of the accomplishment to promote more awareness of the arcade, but future attempts could be made as a public event to draw a crowd.

    3) If successful in drawing a crowd for the second attempt, then that area could be rented/used by anyone for world record attempts that could bring in the crowds again, and again, and again.

    Now he has a no lose situation... he makes a little money on the failed attempts, free advertising for the business for a record being set, and a continual revenue stream of increased customer base for future record setting attempts. Also, his machine may be worth more to collectors once he has video evidence of the World Record for that title being set on that machine!

    Just a thought off the cuff based on what has already been said.

    Good Luck!!!

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    Updated 01-15-2019 at 06:25 AM by Conjured Entertainment
  6. bensweeneyonbass's Avatar

    Ah yes, Funspot. The place that never allows you to show the boards.

    Oh wait...

    Graham got video of the board on PP, which is not just any old arcade machine, but one that is notoriously difficult to maintain. And this was at Funspot. Could it be that the perpetration of "Funspot doesn't show boards" is based on a prior situation that people simply don't bother messing with anymore? I know @redelf has submitted from Funspot before. Perhaps he can remind us last time he asked to get board footage.

  7. Blackflag82's Avatar

    Yes, it is possible to get boards shown at Funspot, I'm wasn't saying it's not possible. However, it is not always possible even under the circumstances you previously mentioned of giving ample notice and allowing the arcade to dictate said terms. for example - https://www.twingalaxies.com/showthread.php/164395-Arcade-Pole-Position-Fuji-Speedway-Points-66-060-Graham-Ogilvie

    I've managed to get boards on some trips and have been unable to on others. In my experience, it's less about making arrangements beforehand, and more about who happens to be there, how busy they are, and which machine it is. Turns out, opening up Pole Position at Funspot is an easier task than pulling any of the Nintendo cabs out of the line, potentially unplugging some of the others in the process, and opening the back. ie. Rampage at the end of the row was an easy one to get the insides for, but I've still never been able to get Vs. Dr. Mario, and both of those were requested on the same day, with the same people present, and the same basic level of activity.

    You're entitled to your opinion of "business jerks". My opinion is that people can make decisions that make sense for their business (consistent or not) without customers fulling understanding and not be jerks. And in fact the "I've explained my intentions and reasoning and you don't agree/won't do what I've asked so you must be a jerk" actually makes one a gamer jerk imo.

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  8. Conjured Entertainment's Avatar

    Unfortunate that I missed Graham's second submission, especially after having to vote NO on the first one that he canceled. I'm glad to see that he made a come back with a higher score than the first one. He is a stand up guy who follows the rules, and has the skills to rebound from a submission mistake. Belated congratulations to Graham on a very nice score, and acknowledgement of his excellent sportsmanship.

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  9. bensweeneyonbass's Avatar

    Fine. Apparently the word jerk is serious. I work in a sector that is 100% geared to accommodating the needs of our patrons, and it is contrary to business logic to deny someone a request that you're able to perform.

    If someone is unable to perform a request, that does not make them a jerk by default. If they tell you they're "unable" meaning they're not willing, for any of a number of reasons, I think they're making a mistake. I characterize that mistake as "being a jerk" for what that's worth.

    If an arcade owner told me "Listen I just can't right now I got a birthday party coming in at noon and both whack-a-moles are down" or something like that, fine. No biggie. He/she isn't a jerk they just can't handle it right now. But you'll know if someone is feeding you a line or if they sympathize and can't help. This is where the scheduling beforehand works. You'll know where someone stands when you try to schedule something in advance. At a certain point if they're just unwilling they'll have to just tell you that. At that point I reserve the right to judge their behavior as a projection of their business model, and if I think they're being a jerk, they're a "business jerk." Plus I hope you can see into why I just don't say Jerk. Business Jerk is a caricature of someone who cares only about the dollars and doesn't want to put out any additional effort beyond their operational baseline. Anyway...

    I mention Funspot because you mentioned Funspot for some reason and made a remark that they weren't jerks. That's why I'm even going on about this. I didn't call Funspot owners/workers jerks. I said if an arcade won't accommodate they're jerks. Won't versus can't versus usually does but can't right now and on and on. If you can but won't you must have a reason, but if you don't have a reason you're probably just a jerk. Funspot is a massive operation. They'd have a number of reasons not to show boards at any given moment, but if you plan ahead the chances of them being able to help are so very much higher.

    I'm gonna walk away now. Didn't mean to offend you or your arcade owner friends. But if Billy wants to come in a month from now and get a look inside a machine, but you won't even consider helping Billy because you don't care about being promoted on TG, then you may or not be seen as a jerk.

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  10. bensweeneyonbass's Avatar

    *not THAT Billy...

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  11. Snowflake's Avatar

    as interesting as the moral debate is, daneil seems results oriented, and good are bad, the goal here is to work with the reality and make things better

    I think alot of people in business get into business with something they enjoy. so certainly a small arcade or even a large one owned by a single person is likely someone who has some love of it, and can work with you if you plan things properly

    a large profit oriented business like dave and busters, the manager might not care at all about games, just money. even still, that can be used. i liked daniels idea of offering money for the service. also, every business has slow days. maybe you'll have to actually use up a vacation day from work and go on a day they're slow. Its not just about them accomadting you, its about you accomadating them. and yes, try to take the angle people care about records and thats its something the arcade can advertise.

    side note: billy mitchel isnt madonna. can we stop just referencing him by his first name alone like he's the only Bill on earth to touch games. What about "mame boy".

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  12. bensweeneyonbass's Avatar

    No offense meant - when I grab a random young man's name out of the air, it's Billy. I just as easily could have said Jimmy or Joe Blow or Bazooka Butthead. I most certainly have no desire to elevate that belligerent cheater any further.

  13. EVN's Avatar

    I don't know where you live but here in Australia, nothing says "please open the cabinet and let me film inside" better than a case of beer.

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  14. Pixe Sukola's Avatar

    Quote Originally Posted by EVN

    I don't know where you live but here in Australia, nothing says "please open the cabinet and let me film inside" better than a case of beer.

    I live in Mexico, and people drink a lot too, the problem is that this business is not family owned or managed by a group of guys passionate about videogames, it is strictly business and I don't blame them, they are located right in the middle of the city, and the rent must be very expensive, they have about 30 arcades and they have been opened for about 20 years and during this time the number of customers has only declined.

    If the machine were in a small family owned Arcade place, Im sure it wouldn't be that hard to convince them, but unfortunately all the small places have only multigame emulators in arcade cabinets, not a single original one.

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    Updated 01-19-2019 at 12:43 AM by Pixe Sukola
  15. Conjured Entertainment's Avatar

    If the machine were in a small family owned Arcade place, Im sure it wouldn't be that hard to convince them, but unfortunately all the small places have only multigame emulators in arcade cabinets, not a single original one.

    That is the same problem I run into when I finally find a place that has a few arcade machines in the corner.

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