Features to consider when choosing a tabletop arcade machine
Finding the right tabletop arcade can be a bit challenging. There are a lot of factors involved beyond just reconnecting with your favorite childhood game. Below are the most important factors to think about.
Small tabletop cabinet or a cocktail arcade machine?
Within the world of tabletop arcade are different types. A tabletop cabinet, as the name implies, is small enough to be placed on a table or desk. You can then either stand or sit in front of it.
A cocktail arcade machine gets its name from the fact you could technically sit and sip a cocktail while playing. Cocktail arcade machines will have stools included in the purchase to create a more social experience.
How many games are there inside
The amount of tabletop arcade games in one machine will vary greatly. For example, the Arcade1Up Pacman Countercade only has two games while the Doc and Pies Retro Arcade Machine has 60.
Cocktail arcades machines, at which you can sit at, can offer even more game options. Indeed, these often reach into the hundred or even thousands, although you will pay a premium for such a large amount of content.
The screen size will vary greatly on tabletop arcades. However, the screen size is usually in proportion to the overall size of the entire arcade. Therefore, if you purchase a larger arcade, the screen will be larger as well.
The smallest screen size on our list of items is for the My Arcade Mini Player which has is only 4.25 inches in size. As the name suggests, this is a mini version. Its small size makes it perfect for kids who want to keep a game in their room.
At the larger end of the spectrum is the ABVIDEO INC. Cocktail Arcade Machine which has a screen size of 22 inches. Again, the design is much different with this machine as the screen is actually on a table and there are chairs surrounding it.
There are many different designs for tabletop arcades. Some, like the My Arcade Mini Player, are small and perfect for a kid’s desk. Others, like the ABVIDEO INC. Cocktail Arcade Machine and the Prime Arcades 412 Game Cocktail Arcade Machine are meant to mimic a table where you sit on stools around it and look down onto the screen.
If you want a more classic machine that mimics arcade games of the past, check out the Doc and Pies Retro Arcade Machine and the Arcade1Up Pacman Countercade.
If there’s an option of a coin-operated play
When you wanted to head to the arcade as a kid, part of the ritual was scrounging up enough quarters to last you your play time. Purchasing your own tabletop arcade means not having to actually pay per game, but there’s still a nostalgia factor about it. This is why some machines have the option of being coin-operated. The good news is that you will have the key to retrieve your coins when you choose to. As well, there is usually an option to switch to a free play mode instead.
On our list, the ABVIDEO INC. Cocktail Arcade Machine and the Prime Arcades 412 Game Cocktail Arcade Machine, and the Prime Arcades 1162 Game Cocktail Arcade Machine all have a coin-operated option.
The size of a tabletop arcade will vary greatly. At the small end, the My Arcade Mini Player measures just 5.5 x 6.2 x 2.2 inches and can fit on any table or desk. At the large end, the Prime Arcades 1162 Game Cocktail Arcade Machine measures a massive 30 x 44 x 29 inches.
Before you purchase your next tabletop arcade, think about where you will want to place it. Measure both the physical space it will take up and the space you will need to play it. Remember that you will probably have an audience at some point, so leave room around your new game so everyone can see as you defend your high score.
Tabletop arcades are complex machinery. From graphics cards to construction, a lot goes into these devices to make them work. Find a product with a solid warranty so you can quickly get back into gaming if any issues arise. On our list, the product with the best warranty is the Prime Arcades 412 Game Cocktail Arcade Machine. It has a five-year warranty along with lifetime tech support.