Keeping an eye on the coin-op gaming scene
The arcade scene’s bid to stay relevant in the modern era means, in the main, ever-more ludicrous cabinet designs and a renewed focus on large-scale VR. In that context, Magician’s Dead, from Japanese developer Byking, seems rather quaint. For starters, it’s played on a Viewlix cabinet, which was introduced way back in 2007. The cab’s been heavily customised, however: there’s no joystick, and just one button. Your primary input device? A thoroughly new-fangled wired Wii Nunchuk. The analogue stick moves your anime-hero character through a 3D world; one trigger makes them jump, the other locks on to enemies. Mash that single attack button and they’ll perform a simple melee combo. On first inspection, there’s little incentive to part with your ¥100 – until you see the 3D motion sensor that’s embedded in the cabinet, which is pointing upwards and turns hand gestures into magical powers. A downwards wiggle of the thumb fires single rounds; sweeping laser beams are doled out with swipes. Clench a fist and you can pick up scenery before throwing it at a hapless foe. The best of the lot is an airstrike, as you use both hands to line up the target, then clench and shake both fists for the duration n of the ensuing bombardment. It’s pure anime-power-fantasy antasy stuff, and as such ch unlikely to reach h western shores, but Magician’s Dead d at least shows you u don’t need a VR headset to bring innovation on to the arcade in n the year 2016, just a little creativity.
Game Magician’s Dead Manufacturer Byking