Keeping an eye on the coin-op gaming scene
There is some consternation in coin-op circles at the resurgence of virtual reality, because of the threat a 3D headset poses to the arcade’s last great competitive advantage: the sense of immersion of playing a game in an enormous cabinet. With its chain of 40 arcades across Japan, Taito has a vested interest in keeping the scene alive, which goes some way to explaining why it’s celebrating the 20th anniversary of traindriving sim Densha De Go! with a frankly ludicrous train-cockpit cabinet. Inside, three widescreen displays mimic a windscreen and side windows, while a touch panel replicates the dials and meters of a real-world subway train. Set to debut in the spring, only Tokyo’s Yamanote line will be included in Densha De Go!! at launch, though Taito intends to expand that slender offering by adding more lines and operating companies through updates. There’ll also be cross-functionality with forthcoming iOS and Android puzzle game Renketsu! Densha De Go!!, though Taito is yet to specify how it will work. Neither seem likely to find their way to western shores, but given the state of the UK railway, that’s probably for the best. You can’t drive a train while sitting on the floor four carriages back from the controls, after all.
Game Densha De Go!! Manufacturer Taito