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23 December 2003
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Korea Life Blog - At the Arcade (2)

After shopping at E-mart we stopped at the arcade.

Here's another shot of a typical row of miscellaneous fighting and sports games. The last time I posted a shot like this I got a lot of e-mail from people who thanked me for bringing back the memory. Back then the games were 100 won each. Now prices have gone up to around 300 won per credit, depending on the arcade. Whenever I play these it just feels that I'm not even controlling the players, especially baseball and tennis.

Here's an odd game. You use a plastic crab to catch small lolli-pops that aren't worth the hassle or the money to play.

Power up, baby hero! I guess you're a Korean caveman baby and you have to win the race. Nothing special except it's got some pretty good retro boombox type speakers.

Another drum game. I wish I knew how to play this. I saw some kid wailing away ringing up perfects left and right, but I just don't get it. Also, the music is pretty lame...I think it was Westlife. Where's the heavy metal?

At last, I got a shot for you of the popular dancing game. You have to step on the right arrows that pop up on the screen. Watching these girls boggled my mind. The arrows were everywhere moving so quickly yet the girls were practically flawless. My mind and body are just not the coordinated. I thought maybe Koreans just naturally understand these kinds of games. However, Julie was equally as clueless.

I tried to get Julie to sing a song with me, but she refused. I thought I would sing one anyway, but sitting there in the small booth so close to Julie watching me, I chickened out.

I tried to get Julie to take some sticker pictures with me, but again she refused. She's really not much fun at the arcade. Oh well.

When I was younger the arcade was my favorite hangout. Perhaps that's why I always feel an urge to go in them. However, every time I do I end up leaving disappointed. It seems every game falls under the same categories: fighting, shooting, sports, or virtual. The machines have gotten so big there's just not enough room for variety. And what happened to the idea of the arcade being a place for kids without much money. Most games now cost from 50 cents to over a dollar to play. In my opinion arcade games have become too big, too flashy, too complicated. While the graphics and sounds have improved, I feel arcade games and arcades themselves have lost their magic. Console and computer games on the other have taken incredible leaps forward. I'm highly addicted to a game called Dungeon Siege and its expansion pack Legends of Aranna. The game is not available for some reason in Korea, despite the fact it puts the dated Diablo 2 to shame. I downloaded the set off Overnet. Check out these two screen shots:


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