27 June 2013

A New Strategy for Score Improvement

To keep myself interested and motivated in the 100k Challenge, I’m always coming up with new ways to approach the sometimes daunting task of boosting my scores. My latest idea is to play a single game from my list for an entire week, until I either beat my existing score or the week runs out.

This week’s game was determined by the latest round of the JAMMA+ high score challenge, and the game in question is Mappy. I’ve already played the game more than 20 times and have managed to improve my top score by just over 10k to 82,510 points, taking it from orange to yellow status.

I’ll probably continue to play the game for a little longer since there is the secondary aim of ranking as highly as possible in the JAMMA+ competition, but I’ll be switching to a different game at the end of this week for the purposes of the 100k challenge…

21 June 2013

Funspot Report

I’ve been back from my holiday to the USA for a few weeks now, and it was certainly a memorable trip for a number of reasons! Most relevant to this blog was the 15th Annual Classic Gaming Tournament at the legendary Funspot arcade.

This year’s tournament featured the usual line-up of 15 classic cabs, a mixture of reasonably well known games like Xevious and Moon Patrol, and obscure but interesting titles such as Zero Hour, Head On and Pac & Pal. This year’s manufacturers tournament featured games from Konami, including two that I’ve played regularly as part of the 100k challenge, albeit under their European names of Green Beret and Shaolin’s Road.

A new addition this year was the 30th Anniversary Tournament, which included three games celebrating their 30th birthday – Tapper, Star Wars and Elevator Action. Finally, there were the usual daily game challenges that included the likes of Rally-X, Metal Slug and Video Pinball.

I’ve put together some comprehensive video coverage of the tournament which can be seen below:

This year I finished 28th in the main tournament and 19th in the manufacturers challenge, both significant improvements on my 2010 placings, and I certainly credit my 100k challenge as one of the reasons for my overall improvement on classic arcade games.

Also noteworthy from this visit to Funspot was my fiancĂ©e Anna’s live performance on Bank Panic. Her score of 1,087,100 was a personal best, the greatest score ever recorded on the machine at Funspot, and also the greatest score recorded by a female player worldwide. Nice work!

As well as visiting Funspot, we also managed to check out some other locations around the USA that have classic arcade games, such as Barcade, Game Galaxy and the Pinball Wizard arcade. These are summarised nicely in my United States of Arcadia videos on YouTube.

New games I discovered on this trip that I enjoyed, and have now made it on to my MAME cabs, include Swimmer, Zarzon, Food Fight, Timber and Skydiver. If you’ve never played any of these before then I recommend checking them out!

So now it's back to the challenge with some renewed enthusiasm...