The ReplayFX Festival is Any Classic Video Game Lover’s Dream Come True
Do you long for the days of destroying aliens, gobbling ghosts and stomping goombas? If there's a video game or pinball machine you haven't played in a while, chances are it was at the ReplayFX Arcade & Video Game Festival this past weekend in Pittsburgh.
Your first thought might be, "Hey! I live in Maine. Why would I want to travel all the way to Pittsburgh for this?" ReplayFX has over 700 retro video and pinball games, over 2000 console games and the chance to show off your skills at them against players from all over the world. It's all under one roof at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in downtown Pittsburgh and is put on by the Replay Foundation and the Professional and Amateur Pinball Association (PAPA) with a lot of blood, sweat and tears...literally.
Walking into the ReplayFX hall, it's hard to believe that all these games are in one place. Every corner you turn you'll see a game you remember from your childhood, one you may not have played in years. This was mine...
Mr. and Mrs. Pac-Man pinball. As a kid, this gobbled up tons of quarters from me while waiting for my pizza at The Handy Store in South Paris.
I took some video just as the doors opened to the festival on Thursday. How many games can you spot that you remember?
You really don't get a feel for the size of this show until you see it from above. This video was taken from a catwalk that crosses over the center of the room.
The side with the lights out is where the majority of the arcade is with video games, pinball and console games all set to free play. No quarters needed. The other side with the lights on is the Pinburgh competition area. A match-play pinball tournament with 800 players competing simultaneously. It's not in the Guinness Book of World Records, but it should be!
I competed in my fifth Pinburgh tournament and after a day of not-so-great play, I managed to make the finals of C division on day two, but got eliminated in the first round. My best finish was fourth in C division in 2013, so next year I'm hoping to make it one division higher and compete in B.
If you love retro video games and pinball, this show is a must! It's totally worth the trip out to Pittsburgh. Ready to go back to the arcade? ReplayFX 2018 is July 26-29.