Collectors Corner

Posted on May 22nd 2016 at 08:00:00 AM by (Addicted)
Posted under Barcade, Pinball

This series will focus on visits to barcades, game stores, conventions, etc. and our first stop is Tokens & Tankards. Nestled within downtown Mount Prospect, Illinois (18 W. Busse Ave) in what used to be an old pizza parlor, Tokens & Tankards provides a spin on the classic barcade as they offer up classic British and Belgian pub plates paired with local craft beers.

The barcade or gastrocade, as they like to call it is divided in to two halves. The front half is set up for communal play where one is invited to grab a board game off the shelf, grab a chair, order some food, and play. The back half contains several pinball and arcade machines as well as the bar, and it is here that I spent most of my time. This area contains a good variety of early eighties to late nineties titles with most games costing a token to play. For every $20 spent on food or drink you earn four tokens, and provides extra incentive to keep playing and drinking.

Shots of the Arcade/Back Half:

Back left: (Millipede, Space Invaders DX, Bagman, Spider-Man, TMNT)
Of course our group had to stop and play some TMNT. It's one of those games that every time I see it I will drop in at least a quarter/token.

Middle right: ( Galaga, Smash TV, Bump & Jump)
Galaga is a timeless classic and Smash TV is always great with a friend.

Middle left: (Tapper, Joust, Double Dragon, Arch Rivals, Pigskin 621 AD)
Ready Player One? Lots of great games here.

Front Left: (Rampage, Rampage World Tour, Rolling Thunder)
Rampage! (Please let the movie not suck as bad as Batman v Superman). It was nice to see  Rolling Thunder as I feel it is an underrated game.

Front: (The Simpsons, Star Trek Voyager)
We had to play The Simpsons to completion. You have to love late 80s and early 90s Konami arcade games.

Middle right: (Gorf, Sinistar)
I hunger!

Pinball Games:

I don't have much experience with the first three games here. I hope to change that next time I stop by.

I love the Addams Family pinball. I think I spent half of my tokens here!

The group I went with quickly latched on to the newest edition to the wall of pinball machines The Hobbit. Following the evolutionary path established by Williams with Pinball 2000 (Revenge from Mars, Star Wars Ep1), The Hobbit has a full led backglass with all sorts of moving toys. There is so much going on in fact that it is easy to become distracted when one is playing resulting in quicker games than usual. Regardless of how quick the games ended it was still fun to play and one of the games I see myself coming back to.

Xbox Live & PSN have nothing on local communal play and there's nothing like an arcade or board game to bring people together. The sites and sounds of the arcade married with good food and good friends provides a one of a kind atmosphere. I loved spending time here and hope to be back soon.

More information can be found at:

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Wow! That is a fantastic selection of games!  Some great classic cabs there. Love the Joust, Double Dragon, Rolling Thunder, Sinistar, and Tapper especially. Some of those are fairly rare. Also a great lineup of pins. I have a Sorcerer and it is one of my favorite games.  Paragon is a great early 80s Bally and Gorgar is a fun machine and the first to actually have speech. Two other pins that I see pieces of in some of your pictures include: Swords of Fury and High Speed. Both of those are great pins as well!  My buddy has a SoF that I have dibs on when he is tired of it. Wink  The owners of that place really know their games.
The Addams Family Pinball game is one of my favorites as well. The barcade down the road where I live has it and I play it everytime I am there.
@nanners: I'll definitely give Sorcerer a try next time I stop in. You are correct there is Swords of fury and High Speed there. Swords of Fury is my second favorite pin, and the first pin I ever owned. It was unfortunate that it was broken at the time of my visit. I had a chance to speak to the owner and he was very knowledgeable, and sees this as a realization of a life long dream.

@Fokakis79: It's an excellent game! What games/pins are in the barcade near you?
I'd love to get a Gorgar pin one day. Super cool machine
I didn't realize The Hobbit was released yet. Even their website still says things like "Pre-order" and "features subject to change" so that is awesome you got to see one. Last week we went to the closest barcade to us, I talked to a guy there while he unjammed some coins, they once had a Wizard of Oz (same manufacturer) and I wondered what happened to that. He said "they couldn't wait to get rid of it" haha. Apparently they had tons of problems with it, repairs and such, hopefully The Hobbit is better, I want one just because of the ip and it's looks.

It's probably a good thing the closest barcade to us is 30 minutes away, if it was closer, I think we would be there all the time  Tongue
This place looks awesome! It has a few key machines that my local arcade bar is missing. Although this place looks bigger than the one by me. Rolling Thunder was always one of my favorites growing up, even though I sucked at it as a kid haha. The Addams Family pinball is fantastic, but Gorgar was my favorite as a kid. My uncle had one in his bar so every time we would go visit him I would play it constantly. The British pub plates sound intriguing too. I've been trying to plan a trip to Chicago with a couple friends for a while now. I'll have to see if this place is in the area and maybe plan a detour Smiley
I have been to Tokens & Tankards as it is not too far from where I live, and I can say that while the place does feature a nice selection of game cabinets and pinball machines in the arcade, the restaurant side of the business ruins the entire experience. I was served raw chicken, and when I asked the server to take it back she refused stating that "That's how it looks when you cook it on the bone". I'm not talking a little pink inside, I'm talking full on wet red raw. It could have made me sick if I hadn't refused to eat it. And I'm not the only one to complain about this as many others I know have experience the same under cooked food issue and the unwillingness of the staff to own up to the face that they don't know how to properly cook their food. I refuse to give them any more of my money or time.

You want to go to a good barcade in Chicago with staff that actually wants your business, are nice as can possibly be and features an enormous amount of arcade cabinets and pinball machines that are well taken care of? Go to Logan Arcade on the corner of Western and Fullerton. The owner James Zespy is one of the nicest and down to Earth people I've ever met and he loves to talk about each of the games he's collected and is proud to show off on the floor. He even has a Killer Queen cabinet!
@TheOldAssRetroGamer: Sorry to hear that you had a bad experience with the food. If I was served raw food I know I wouldn't go back. Thanks for the suggestion Logan Arcade and Killer Queen is on my to play list since I heard Duke talk about it.

@zophar53: No matter where you end up it's always good to pop in some quarters with a couple of friends and play a game.

@nupoile: It was fun to play but I can see it become a pain to maintain with so much technology. If a pinball machine has more buttons than my console controller I'm out.
Awesome article!  I wish this place was near where I live, and is now motivating me to check out some places I have heard of that are hopefully similar.  Good reads!
Nice article!  I would love to find and play a Hobbit pinball machine, that looks awesome!  Some definite classics in the arcade as well.

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