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The Best Home Arcade Cabinets for 2020



Arcade1Up Mini Pong machine played by two people on a table
Arcade1Up

Who doesn’t like to pass the time in some classic arcade games? From Pac-Man to Marvel Vs. Capcom, these video games have a special place in many people̵

7;s hearts. And while playing them on a console port is fine, playing them on an arcade machine at home is so much better. So if you have some arcade fanatics in your life, here are cupboards you can gift that won’t break the bank or eat up too much space. Plus, they look great anywhere, in a playroom or otherwise.

Pac-Man Fever: Arcade1Up Pac-Man Cabinet

Arcade1Up Pac-Man cabinet
Arcade1Up

Who doesn’t like to chase a new high score Pac-Man? After all, it’s one of the most iconic arcade games of all time, and Arcade1Up’s game cabinet offers the best home version you can own. The case looks and plays true to the original and even contains the less known ‘Pac-Man Plus ”, which makes some minor visual and gameplay changes to the original game.

In front of Mrs. Pac-Man fans we recommend the Mrs. Pac-Man Counter-Cade, which keeps the iconic colors and illustrations of the original cabinets in a smaller and less expensive form.

For Star Wars fans: Arcade1Up Star Wars cabinet

Arcade1Up Star Wars cabinet
Arcade1Up

This beautifully detailed cabinet houses three classics Star Wars games based on the original trilogy. The A new hope and Empire Strikes Back games are very similar as both are line vector based flight simulations where you control X-Wings with the cabinet’s flight stick. The game for Return of the Jedi is instead a pixelated interpretation of the original film, recreating the film’s most iconic action scenes. Seeing the Star Wars universe in a few arcade games is sure to be a treat for fans of the series and the unique control scheme is fun to watch too.

There are two versions of the Star Wars cupboard: one with seat and one without. It’s no surprise that the seated variant is more expensive, but that’s the only difference between the two: the games, controls, and cabinets are identical in both versions.

Shoot Some Hoops: Arcade1Up NBA Jam Cabinet

Arcade1Up NBA Jam Cabinet
Arcade1Up

NBA Jam is a favorite of many from the ’90s for its fun and over the top gameplay that still keeps the core part of basketball intact. The game supported multiplayer for up to four players, something that Arcade1Up certainly upheld. Not only does this cabinet have four separate sets of controls (two for each team), but it is also one of the few Arcade1Up cabinets to support online play. So whether you want to relive the glory days with people across the street or the country, this cabinet makes sure you can play together.

Co-Op Fun: Arcade1Up Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Cabinet

Arcade1Up Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cabinet
Arcade1Up

Speaking of multiplayer, arcades were never short of great beat ’em up titles, and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles game is one of the best, especially for fans of the franchise. This four-player machine features color-coordinated controls for each turtle as they beat up Shredder’s goons. The gameplay is simple but fun, and the second game in the closet, Turtles in time, expands things with updated visuals and more mechanics.

The Ultimate Face-Off: Arcade1Up X-Men Vs. Street Fighter Cabinet

Arcade1Up X-Men Vs.  Street Fighter Cabinet
Arcade1Up

There is no greater feature of arcades than some of the classic fighting games, but why not have a few superheroes now? This cabinet contains X-Men Children of the Atom, X-Men Vs. Street Fighter, X-Men Mutant Apocolypse, and Marvel Vs. Capcom: Clash of Super-Heroes. Of course you might recognize it Marvel Vs. Capcom as a name if you’re familiar with the series’ modern items, but these older titles are definitely worth returning to.

With three fighting games included, you’re sure to spend a lot of time fighting your friends in these chaotic fighters – there’s even online play for all three games. X-Men Mutant Apocolypse is definitely the odd one out, as it’s a side-scrolling adventure game, but that doesn’t mean its inclusion isn’t all appreciated.

If you are a fan of fighters, Arcade1Up’s Mortal Kombat machine is an excellent choice – if you can find it. It seems to be sold out everywhere, including Walmart. But it is still something to watch out for.

Dig it Up: Arcade1Up Dig Dug Counter-Cade

Arcade1Up Dig Dug Counter-Cade
Arcade1Up

Dig Dug is all about, well, digging. You have to traverse the underground and defeat different types of enemies without dying to progress. There’s not much left to it, but it’s such an iconic arcade game that it definitely earned a place on this list. Arcade1Up’s Counter-Cade offers excellent value for money and is compact enough to fit in tight spaces. It also includes Dig Dug 2, which takes place on an island and has some new gameplay mechanics.

Take to the Stars: Arcade1Up Galaga Counter-Cade

Arcade1Up Galaga Counter-Cade
Arcade1Up

We have one more Namco classic to talk about, and it’s endlessly addictive Galaga. This is a thoroughly high-scoring game, with levels that get tougher as you progress. There may not be unique controls, but the core gameplay is so well designed that it is sure to please any arcade fan.

So many SNK Games: SNK MVSX Arcade Machine

SNK MVSX Arcade machine
Single

SNK has a great catalog of games from fighters like the king of fighters series to great sidescrollers such as Metal snail. And this arcade cabinet from Unico contains 50 games from the developer from the past years. It’s a fantastic price, and with two sets of controls built into the closet, you can fully enjoy every game in multiplayer.

The actual arcade machine can be placed on a countertop if desired, but the included stand puts it up to standing height for standalone use.

So many SNK games

Lots of games: AtGames Legends Ultimate

AtGames Legends Ultimate
AtGames

While the cabinets we’ve mentioned so far specialize in specific games or series, the AtGames Legend Ultimate machine takes a much bigger punch. This cabinet contains 300 fully licensed arcade games preloaded on it. While many of these games are not particularly noteworthy, there are some recognizable names here such as Earth Defense Force, Tetris, and even the Super Star Wars trilogy of the SNES. The cabinet is equipped with two sets of controls for multiplayer titles. It’s relatively easy to connect a Raspberry Pi for even more games.

You can also purchase the AtGames Legends Control Deck, which itself has 150 games pre-loaded. The control deck can wirelessly connect to the arcade cabinet as another way to play, or you can connect it to your TV to play games on the big screen directly from the control deck.

TV Compatible: Dragon’s Lair X Replicade

Dragon's Lair X Replicade
New Wave toys

Dragon’s Lair is a kind of interactive cartoon. During the beautifully hand-drawn animations, you must complete certain events by pressing the correct button quickly enough to avoid dying. There’s not much in the way of actual player input here, but the randomization of scenes and challenges helps keep things fresh. With this cabinet from New Wave Toys you can enjoy the game on one sixth of the original arcade format. While this cabinet may be small, it is still fully operational with a complete set of controls.

Moreover, you can connect the cabinet to your TV to enjoy the game on the big screen. In addition to the cabinet itself, you also get some nice little doodads like a mini laser disc player and a replicated user manual.

Desk Sized: Tiny Arcade

Small Arcade Frogger Cabinet
Small Arcade

While the larger cabinets we’ve covered so far are fantastic for keeping the original cabinets faithful, sometimes you just want a cute Pac-Man cabinet on your desk that works. That’s exactly what the Tiny Arcade company offers, although you could probably have guessed that from the name. These micro-cabinets are decorated to match their larger counterparts and include little controls that are … fine for what this is.

While these won’t blow the competition out of the water when it comes to playing the games, they are still fun novelties. There are currently 11 different cabinets available for Dig Dug, Frogger, Galaga, Galaxian, Ms. Pac-Man, Pac-Man, Space Invaders, New Rally X, Pole Position, Q * Bert, and Tetris.

The classic game: Atari Mini PONG Jr.

Arcade1Up Atari Mini PONG Jr.
Arcade1Up

To end our list, let’s go back to the beginning. PONG was one of the first arcade game machines ever released, and this tabletop version stays true to the aesthetics of the original cabinets. You turn the dials to move your paddle, and while it’s extremely easy, the game offers a fun look at the history of arcades. The machine is also portable, so taking it to a friend’s house is no problem (if that becomes an option again).




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