Not many people know it but Chuck E. Cheese and the Atari Corporation were started by the same man - Nolan Bushnell. Yeah, the father of what many consider to be the quintessential video game console gave birth to one of the first arcade theme-restaurants. So it shouldn’t be that much of a surprise that the first video game restaurant targeted at the 20-something crowd also happens to be Bushnell’s brainchild.
The uWink Media Bistro is, at its core, a grown up version of Chuck E. Cheese, which lures customers with terrific food and interactive gaming experiences. The main attractions are the interactive tabletops which allow customers to play games with each other or, if they so wish, hold tournaments with patrons from other uWink restaurants. The interactive tabletops are linked to the uWink server, meaning that their selection of games and entertainment is always updated.
Now you might think that it is easier and cheaper to simply stay home, fire up the internet and order a pizza but… you are 100% correct. Seriously, what was Bushnell thinking?
There are a lot of services targeted specifically at gamers, and music is no exception. There is in reality an entire genre of rock and metal music dedicated to video games. It might simply be incorporating a few classic video game sounds into your music, like the band DragonForce does, or it might be centering all of your lyrics and musical style on video game terminology and history, like “Machinae Supremacy” tends to do.
For the fans of something a little bit softer there are the “Video Games Live” concerts. The VGL experience is the product of video game industry veterans Tommy Tallarico and Jack Wall, who use classical orchestral music and choruses to recreate beloved video game soundtracks for their audiences. The show also features an elaborate display of video footage, smoke and lasers, all perfectly coordinated with the music.
Video Games Live cover songs from such titles as Castlevania, Chrono Trigger, Halo, God of War and even Sonic the Hedgehog. It just goes to show you just how much our culture has changed. People are now willing to pay to listening to video game music covers instead of playing the actual games.
A quick Google Image Search or a trip to deviantART will prove incontrovertibly that some video game fans might have taken their enthusiasm for games a little bit too far, producing entire websites dedicated to nothing more than video game pornography. Literally every character from every game imaginable has been sexualized on the internet, but what’s even stranger is that this phenomenon has already left the virtual world and stepped into the real one.
It has materialized on Earth in the form of the Video Game Girls Burlesque show. In 2009, guests at the Bordello in Los Angeles were treated to a very original experience: the Bordello’s girls dressed as famous video game heroines, slowly taking off their clothes to the beat of classic video game music. Characters in this unique strip show included Princess Peach (Super Mario Brothers), Samus Aran (Metroid), Chun-Li (Street Fighter), Princess Zelda and Link (The Legend of Zelda). For all the people not really familiar with video games… the last character, Link, is a man.
On the plus side, after such a show you will never look at your beloved video game characters the same way. On the down side, after such a show you will never look at your beloved video game characters the same way.
- - Theme Parks: http://www.teendrama.com/dens/journal/2006/pearljam/mario_takes_direction.jpg http://static.howstuffworks.com/gif/nintendo-park-1.jpg
- - Off-Broadway Plays: http://www.blogcdn.com/www.joystiq.com/media/2009/06/adventurequest580.jpg http://www.freewebs.com/dayton24/AdventureQuest-header5.jpg
- - Museums: http://cache.gawker.com/assets/images/kotaku/2009/03/natcenter.jpg http://www.icheg.org/images/videotopia.png http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/a/a6/CustersRevenge.jpg
- - Restaurants: http://farm1.static.flickr.com/120/298919363_6a5c025f86.jpg http://foodbeast.com/content/wp-content/uploads/2008/06/uwink-2.jpg
- - Music: http://cache.kotaku.com/assets/resources/2007/03/vglleadin.gif http://www.platformnation.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/12/videogameslive.jpg http://www.stuffwelike.com/stuffwelike/wp-content/uploads/2008/08/video-games-live-cd-cover.jpg
- - Burlesque Shows: http://vvoice.vo.llnwd.net/e8/video-game-girls-burlesque-bordello.3367894.87.jpg http://vvoice.vo.llnwd.net/e8/video-game-girls-burlesque-bordello.3367903.87.jpg http://vvoice.vo.llnwd.net/e8/video-game-girls-burlesque-bordello.3367910.87.jpg