AR­CADE WATCH

EDGE - - KNOWLEDGE TALK/ARCADE -

Keep­ing an eye on the coin-op gam­ing scene

Wait­ing for the con­sole port of a cher­ished ar­cade game used to be a big deal. Nowa­days, though, the games you play at home are more likely to find their way to ar­cades in­stead – Flappy Bird in­cluded. So Bandai Namco is at­tempt­ing to reignite the ex­cite­ment with a more full-on ap­proach. Star Wars: Bat­tle Pod would feel flat with­out its air jets, wrap­around screen and cradling cock­pit, so the com­pany is skip­ping a con­sole it­er­a­tion and of­fer­ing home ver­sions of the ac­tual cab­i­net.

You’ll have to drop a whole lot more than the £45 the Saturn ver­sion of Sega Rally set you back, how­ever: the stan­dard ver­sion of Bat­tle Pod clocks in at $35,000 (or £24,000 in the UK) – and that’s be­fore de­liv­ery costs. If you re­ally want to splash out, there’s also a built-to-or­der Pre­mium Edi­tion, which comes in ei­ther a Rebel Al­liance or Darth Vader de­sign, sports an en­graved plate fea­tur­ing your name next to the ma­chine’s se­rial num­ber, and of­fers – yes! – “ex­clu­sive car­pet­ing”. In ad­di­tion, you’ll re­ceive a spe­cially bound owner’s man­ual and even have your name in­cluded in the game’s cred­its. How much for all this? A Kanye West-friendly $100,000.

If these prices are out of reach, Bandai Namco has re­sponded to the cab­i­net’s pop­u­lar­ity with a lo­ca­tor tool on its of­fi­cial web­site (www.star­wars­bat­tle­pod.com), giv­ing you the op­por­tu­nity to track down a lo­cal one and play it un­til your pock­ets run dry.

Game StarWars:Bat­tle­Pod Man­u­fac­turer Bandai Namco

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