The days of the arcade are long gone and yet coming back in a new way. Thanks to the company Arcade 1-Up, 3/4th sized replica arcade machines can be purchased for assembly and play in your own home. To this day the company has released a number of games including some original classics like “Pac-Man,” “BurgerTime,” and “Frogger.” They’ve also gone through the decades after them and released “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles,” “Marvel vs. Capcom,” several different “Street Fighter” versions, and so many others. Notably absent from the list were light gun games, but that omission has been rectified thanks to the upcoming release of “Terminator 2: Judgment Day.”
When it was originally released in 1991, the arcade adaptation of the James Cameron blockbuster film was also a huge hit. Featuring two mounted sub-machine light guns, two players (or one ambidextrous player) could shoot their way through seven levels. Between defending vehicles, blasting away other terminators, and destroying everything you can find at Cyberdyne, it’s a very solid action game to compliment the film it’s based off of.
Arcade 1-Up’s version of the cabinet differs in that like the rest of the cabinets, it’s 3/4th the size of a normal arcade machine, and the sub-machine guns on this model are different colors and attached to a cord as opposed to mounted to the machine itself. Maybe some purists will decry this change, but for anyone else it shouldn’t pose a problem. Not to mention, if you need a replacement part, it’s probably a lot easier this way rather than having to remove a mounted gun, hardwired onto the cabinet.
At Nerdbot, we’ve extensively covered some of the Arcade 1-Up releases. Earlier this year we discussed the announcement of the “X-Men” arcade cabinet in addition to the much beloved “The Simpsons.” And in full disclosure, I personally own three of the cabinets, “Marvel Super Heroes,” the original release of “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles,” and the crown jewel of my collection, the “Marvel vs. Capcom” cabinet. Even with my almost complete ineptitude when it comes to physical labor, I was able to assemble the cabinets and their respective risers with relative ease.
While the idea of having an awesome light gun game at home is tempting, the price point and lack of additional features is a bit less appealing. The T2 cabinet comes in at a whopping $699.99. My special edition “Marvel vs. Capcom” set only cost $499.99 and that includes a pretty cool stool for sitting on as well. More importantly, that system comes with five games, the titular “Marvel vs. Capcom,” “Marvel Super Heroes,” “X-Men vs. Street Fighter,” “Marvel Super Heroes vs. Street Fighter” and “Marvel Super Heroes in War of the Gems.” The latter of these was originally a Super Nintendo game that was included here to function with the arcade controls. The “Terminator 2” cabinet has no extra games, just a featurette on the making of the arcade game.
Is $699.00 still a lot less than trying to buy an actual T2 arcade game? Yes, it certainly is, but this feels like a big step back in value compared to the previous releases. Maybe the licensing costs jacked up the price, but it’s still a big ask. Personally, I have no reason to believe that the build quality would be anything less than stellar considering how good the other releases are, but this is still not nearly as much bang for the buck; even if it is a light gun game.
If it sounds up your alley though, head on over to Arcade 1-Up and get your pre-order in for a January 2022 release. It’s certainly a lot better than the SNES and Sega Genesis ports that we got back in the day, so grab a friend and start blasting away. Or don’t and let the terminators win and damn our future to Skynet; see if I care!