Midwest Gaming Classic: A Video Game Paradise

Midwest Gaming Classic Logo

The Midwest Gaming Classic happened this last weekend in Milwaukee and man, it was a blast. Despite having lived in Milwaukee for 6 years, only last year did I learn of it’s existence and it was only after I missed it. This year I was determined to go. I’m not much of a “gamer” any more, but I do love me some vintage arcade action and The Midwest Gaming Classic promised a lot of it.

I managed to meet up with Zac Shipley (@zacshipley) and we checked out all the greatness they had to offer. Let’s get to it!

The Nintento Playstation

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Yep, that’s right. This is the legendary console that Nintendo was working on with Sony before they axed it and Sony became a dominant player in the wold of video game consoles. This is the only known version of the console to exist. And I saw it with my eye balls!

The Creator of Rampage and Xenophobe Brian Colin

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In the corner of one of the downstairs rooms was an unexpected surprise, designer Brian Colin. I didn’t know that he was the man behind the artwork for several classic arcade games including Rampage and a personal favorite, Xenophobe. Man, I had a weird relationship with Xenophobe when I was a kid. It freaked me out. I can thank Brian for that, because not only did he do the artwork, but he also designed it. I purchased a poster from him that you can see above. You can check out his game studio, Game Refuge, on Facebook.

Beavis and Butthead Arcade Game

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If this Beavis and Butthead arcade game doesn’t look familar to you, don’t worry. It’s a prototype and one of the only ones known to still exist. It was really cool to see in person. One thing that I find interesting is that it’s running on 3DO architecture, if you remember those. I loved mine. Sadly, by the time I went back to play it, it was already bugging out.

Judge Dredd Arcade Game

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Judge Dredd is another rare prototype arcade game to make an appearance at the con. This one is readily available as a MAME Rom, but it was still cool to see in person. Again, by the time I got to play it, it was getting really buggy. Also, it’s a three player game, but people kept crowding out the middle player section. Come on dicks, let everyone get a chance.

Ghostbusters Pinball

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I was super excited to play the new Ghostbusters 30th Anniversary pinball game by Stern. It was there and there was always a little line to get to play it, which warms my heart. The game itself was fun, but I only got one play out of the deal. I’d need a lot more time with it. Still, from the one game I played I enjoyed myself as much as I normally enjoy a pinball game.

This Robot Toy

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I’ve never seen this particular robot toy before. It sure does look like Vincent from The Black Hole.

Fake Pinball Machines

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A company by the name of VP cabs was offering video pinball machines (not my pic btw). Basically, it had they have the shape and controls of a pinball machine, except it has two monitors and a computer running Pinball FX 2 (and maybe PinMAME?). They cost several grand, less than a new pinball machine but more than a used one. They do offer the advantage of holding many pinball games as opposed to only one, but it is a little weird looking down at a 2D surface. What would really make these a must buy would be 3D.

The Brown Box

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This was pretty cool, it’s a Brown Box, one of the earliest prototypes for a video game console made in 1967.

Pingame Journal

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As I was heading out I found the booth for Pingame Journal, which is a magazine dedicated to pinball games. It’s interesting how there are still niche printed magazines out there. It’s a pretty cool magazine. You can check out their website here.

Bartop Arcade Cabinets

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A company by the name of “Game Guys” was selling these cool mini arcade units. They’re pretty pricey, but the cost covers the construction, the controllers, computer running the games, and the monitor inside. They appear not to have a website or social media presence. Shesh.

Steel Battalion in Action

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This was a great sight to see. A bunch of Steel Battalion games in action. Super cool and unique game. I still have mine in a box somewhere.

The Dealer Tent

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There were lots of dealers with lots of cool and hard to get game stuff. The most frustating thing for me is that any SNES game I want is expensive now as hell now. No wonder people turn to ROMs.