Hey everyone! It seems that I'm getting out a bit more often as of late, and what better way to spend time out than playing video games! It just so happens that this past Saturday, Yestercades of Red Bank, NJ was there to feed that craving with a delicious smattering of all things retro to right now.
Yestercades is a pay by the hour/day style arcade featuring a large array of classic arcade cabinets, a decent chunk of modern pinball machines, and a set of gaming stations for console gaming. As of the time of this writing, $25 nets you a full day pass, which allows for full play on any of the aforementioned machines, as well as come-as-you-please access to the arcade (which is super useful to go snag pizza from the amazing place across the street).
The selection of arcade games is quite impressive. All of the standard fare: Donkey Kong
, and Asteroids
are all there from the classic era. Joining them are some more interesting cabinets, like Tron
. The newer machines range from a plethora of fighting games (MK3
, Killer Instinct
), a Neo Geo MVS, and of course, a Golden Tee
cabinet. There is a wide variety of almost everything imaginable, with almost every cabinet working just as good as it did the day it rolled off the line.
The pinball machine selection is much more sparse, with the machines taking up a cramped section at a back wall of the arcade. Fan favorites, Twilight Zone
and Addams Family
, are flanked by some newer pins. Game of Thrones
, Ghost Busters
, and Star Wars
were among the highlights of the remaining cabinets. Almost all of the pinball machines are of the newer variety, which is a bummer for someone like me who really likes EM machines.
The console areas are split into a few separate seating areas. Nearest the front of the building are three big screen televisions, with all the latest gaming consoles hooked up to them. next to that is an old console TV with some Atari 2600 and Colecovision stuff attached. On the opposite side of the room, another big screen TV houses some older, retro titles, next to an old projection TV which is typically housing some N64 gaming (or at least every time I've seen it on, it has been either Mario Kart 64 or Smash Bros).
With so much content, it leaves very little elbow room. The building is typically packed tight, and the aisles are not nearly wide enough to navigate while people are playing, even for a tiny guy like myself. The density of machines also makes the place quite loud...even louder than a typical arcade. The reverberations off the ceiling really give some powerful headaches.
Speaking of the ceiling, the lighting is WAY too dark. It was so dark, that none of my pictures actually came out OK enough to post! (most the pics in this article are from their website, http://www.yestercades.com/
) I know an arcade is supposed to be dark, but it is typically supplemented with some sort of bright neon...really anything to make it less like a cave.
All in all, I really enjoy Yestercades, despite some minor complaints. Their staff is friendly, their equipment is well kept, and they have some of my favorite games in cabinet form, which will keep me coming back for a long time...also, did I mention the pizza place across the street?! That place is amazing, but this hardly seems like the right place to rant about it. I should also mention that Yestercades has a 2nd location in Somerville, NJ. If you are ever in the area, check out either one of these locations!
Until next time