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Arcade Castle: A Gaming Podcast

Welcome! You've reached the home of the Arcade Castle Podcast, a podcast that looks a little at video games, a little at board games, and those things that got a little bit of both. While most podcasts tend to look at the latest and greatest, we have opted for a far darker path through the sprawling realms of digital and analog games. For lying between the two genres is a pile of games few dare to play, games that often defy categorization. Bizarre chimeric creations and licensed games abound here. Found in thrift stores and online, studying these games will be a global effort a countries across the planet send these objects to the Arcade Castle for examination. Why do we do this? To determine how well these board games capture the essence of their parent franchise. To see how the strategies, gameplay, game mechanics, player challenges, and player roles are translated from the digital realm of video games to the analog base of the board game. Can we learn anything about design and gameplay by comparing how a single franchise is represented in two different mediums? Can one inform the other? That, and who doesn't love board games and video games?
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Arcade Castle: A Gaming Podcast
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Now displaying: 2018
Oct 31, 2018

In Episode 16, Arcade Castle takes a look at another giant in the Edutainment industry: Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? A facts based learning game at heart, WitWiCS has players tracking V.I.L.E. henchmen across the planet and, later, both time and space, as they attempt to stop these henchmen from stealing iconic cultural icons, items, concepts, buildings, geographic locations, and more by gathering clues, answering questions, and following the trail of the V.I.L.E. henchmen until they are captured and placed behind bars. If you are a good enough A.C.M.E. Detective you may find yourself on the trail of Carmen Sandiego herself and finally answer, once and for all, just Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?, issue a warrant for her arrest, and place her in jail and stop her crime syndicate for good.

 

Additionally, Arcade Castle takes a look at a series of bookends, or sorts, for the Edutaiment franchise, by looking at the earliest and the most recent entries in the Carmen Sandiego board game adaptations library by playing and examining the Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? Board Game from 1992 and the Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? Card Game from 2017. Can 25 years make a difference in game design and how a company adapts a video game icon to the tabletop? 

In Episode 16, Arcade Castle sits down to discuss the Carmen Sandiego franchise, its time and place in Edutainment history, and their ow connections with it as they play these two games to see how you can adapt an Edutainment video game franchise into cardboard and dice and, if after 25 years, whether all our knowledge paid off in the form of a better game in 2017 than in 2018 or if, as they say, history repeats itself...

 

Outline:

00:00 - 35:00 - Arcade Castle talks for length about the Carmen Sandiego franchise; from video games and a game show to the numerous board games and animated series, they discuss Carmen Sandiego's impact not only in the video game industry, but culture at large. Arcade Castle also discusses the fate of Carmen Sandiego since the turn of the new millennium and its status as of 2018.

35:00-50:00 - Arcade Castle sits down and plays the Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego Board Game from 1992 and looks at how University Games interpreted the Edutainment title, how to play it, what strategies you can bring to the table when playing it, and how well it captures the franchise.

50:00-75:00 - After a quick break, Arcade Castle plays the latest entry in the series via the Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? Card Game from 2017 by Pressman Games. By playing it and comparing it to the board game from 1992, it is Arcade Castle's hopes that they will see a difference in not only board game design, but how designers approach a video game franchise in 2017 and whether or not it is different than that of designers in the late 80s and early 90s.

 

If, after listening to the podcast, you desire more, you can find us at: www.arcadecastle.blogspot.com

Additionally, you can find us on Itunes (and a number of podcast services), Twitter, Facebook, BoardGameGeek, and Instagram!

You can contact us at: contactarcadecastle@gmail.com

Also, if you like the new theme song, check out Tony Robot! https://www.facebook.com/louisvilletonyrobot/

 

Sep 1, 2018

In Episode 15 of the podcast, The Arcade Castle finds itself, once again, on a journey through another oregon trail licensed board game by Pressman in the form of The Oregon Trail Board Game: Journey to Willamette Valley. Having played The Oregon Trail Card Game and The Oregon Trail Hunt For Food Card Game in prior years (and on Episode 04 and Episode 08, respectively), The Arcade Castle has mixed expectations when bringing this game to the table.

 

In The Oregon Trail Board Game, players are uncovering the trail from Independence, MO to Willamette Valley, OR. As they traverse the wilderness of 1800s America, players will find hunting grounds, ford rivers, locate forts and towns, and brave the elements as they attempt to successfully reach Oregon. However, the trail is full of hazards and, as supplies dwindle in their covered wagons, will they best the calamities that befall them, or end their trip in a shallow grave on the roadside?

 

As players play the Oregon Trail Game they will place trail tiles onto the board as they attempt to get to Willamette Valley, OR. As they proceed along the trail, they will need to hunt, trade, buy, sell, and more as they attempt to ensure their family has the supplies it needs to make the journey, but also survive the calamities they encounter upon it. 

 

Will this latest entry in the Oregon Trail franchise deliver like a delicious pizza? Or end up being only peperony and chease?

Episode Outline:

00:00-20:00: Arcade Castle talks about the Oregon Trail franchise as developed by Pressman over the years and how that can inform the player on how this latest entry was developed and published. 

20:00-40:00: Arcade Castle talks about the gameplay of the Oregon Trail, and its contents.

40:00-60:00: Arcade Castle takes an in-depth look at the strategies inherent to the Oregon Trail Board Game, what the players can bring to the table to have a better chance at winning the game.

60:00-72:00: Arcade Castle compares this third entry in the franchise to the first two to see how the success, or failure, of them defined how the third game was developed and how the strategies reflect that development.

If, after listening to the podcast, you desire more, you can find us at: www.arcadecastle.blogspot.com

Additionally, you can find us on Itunes (and a number of podcast services), Twitter, Facebook, BoardGameGeek, and you can contact us at: contactarcadecastle@gmail.com

Also, if you like the new theme song, check out Tony Robot! https://www.facebook.com/louisvilletonyrobot/


Apollo Approved!

Jul 24, 2018

As the sun blazes down on Kentucky without mercy, Arcade Castle cools down by blazing down miles of asphalt at 900+ miles an hour as they play the early 1990s board game adaptation of F-Zero! Based off of the seminal Super Nintendo game that boasted Mode 7 graphics & wowed gamers in 1990, the F-Zero Knight League Real Racing Simulation Game does its best to capture the look and feel of F-Zero in a board game!

 

In the F-Zero Knight League Real Racing Simulation Game (hereafter FZKLRRSG), players race one another throughout the five courses of the Knight League, attempting to win as many races as they can to score the most points to win the game! Players have a 'hand' of cards to manage their speed and health as they navigate the hazards of each track in the Knight League. Players can push their luck to try and get in first place, but if they are not careful, they may find themselves a fiery wreck on the racetrack.

 

In Episode 14 of The Arcade Castle Podcast, John and Patrick play the first board game adaptation from the racing genre. Did TOMY successfully craft a game that captures the pace and feel of the iconic 16 bit racer? Or did it end up a twisted heap of metal and ash on the sidelines?

 

Episode Outline:

00:00 - 07:00 - John and Patrick discuss the workability of a listener's suggestion for improving the Megaman Board Game (2015).

07:00 - 20:00 - John and Patrick talk about the racing genre and their top three racing video game titles.

20:00 - 30:00 - Turning their attention to the F-Zero franchise, they discuss the technology behind Mode 7 graphics, the history and cultural reception of the F-Zero games from inception to its current status in the field.

30:00 - 53:00 - Arcade Castle discusses the FZKLRRSG in depth; from looking at the components and rules to examining the strategies gamers can use when playing FZKLRRSM, they try and determine how successful this game is at capturing the essence of the F-Zero franchise in a board game format.

 

If, after listening to the podcast, you desire more, you can find us at: www.arcadecastle.blogspot.com

Additionally, you can find us on Itunes (and a number of podcast services), Twitter, Facebook, BoardGameGeek, and you can contact us at: contactarcadecastle@gmail.com

Also, if you like the new theme song, check out Tony Robot! https://www.facebook.com/louisvilletonyrobot/

Jun 25, 2018

 

Continuing the adventures from Episode 12, Arcade Castle looks at two more Kickstarter games, this time in the form of food-themed card games. The first game Arcade Castle examined was a card game based off the 1982 arcade smash hit Burgertime. Following this, Arcade Castle had dessert in the form of Robots Love Ice Cream, based off a mid 2010s IOS phone game.

 

The Burgertime Card Game attempts to overcome the challenge any developer faces when they try and adapt a typical arcade title into a board game or card game: how does one take the often "easy to learn, lifetime to master" simplistic gameplay of many arcade titles and make it a compelling and strategic game for multiple people to play. Does Burgertime successfully create an enjoyable dish, or bring something to the table that deserves to be tossed into the trash?

 

After Arcade Castle digested Burgertime, they decided to get some dessert in the form of Robots Love Ice Cream. Based off a Space Invaders-esque IOS game, RLIC requires players to militarize their ice cream trucks and use weaponized ice cream to destroy robots across a series of worlds before they are able to steal that world's ice cream. Players work together to fend off the robot menace and save the galaxy's ice cream! Does this game provide a sweet treat, or a goopy mess?

 

Episode Outline:

00:00 - 20:00 - Arcade Castle talks about Talking Mcdonald's Trees, Fast Food Jobs, Cob Slevins, Board Games About Food, Video Games About Food, Fist-Fights At Old Folk Homes, Drive-Thru, and more!

20:00 - 35:00 - Arcade Castle discusses the Burgertime video game series, the Burgertime Card Game, and how the game 'plays'.

35:00 - 45:00 - Arcade Castle looks at Robots Love Ice Cream, how it plays, and whether or not they recommend either game.

45:00 - 62:00 - After playing three Kickstarter games that run the gamut of good to bad, Arcade Castle has a discussion about the pros and cons of the Kickstarter phenomenon.

 

If, after listening to the podcast, you desire more, you can find us at: www.arcadecastle.blogspot.com

Additionally, you can find us on Itunes (and a number of podcast services), Twitter, Facebook, BoardGameGeek, and Instagram!

You can contact us at: contactarcadecastle@gmail.com

Also, if you like the new theme song, check out Tony Robot! https://www.facebook.com/louisvilletonyrobot/

 

Jun 4, 2018

 

Riding the high that was Rollercoaster Tycoon, Arcade Castle gets on board their next ride in the form of the Megaman Board Game by Jasco Games, approved by Capcom, backed by 2,639 backers on Kickstarter to the tune of $415,051, developed for over two years, and released in 2015! (*phew*) But as the ride begins for Arcade Castle, a ride, unbeknownst to them, that last for hours and hours and hours, can Arcade Castle survive until the ride is over?

 

In Episode 12, Arcade Castle tackles the Megaman Board Game, which attempts to capture the essence of the Megaman series through custom dice, challenge decks, and modular board. However, the centerpiece of the game, and the main selling point via this board game's creator--Jasco Games--is the board game's miniatures. But, as Arcade Castle begins hour 3 of the Megaman Board Game, they begin to question if the miniatures even serve a purpose beyond window dressing and discuss the real question: has anyone ever played an eight player game of the monstrosity and, if so, are they still playing?

 

With all new music from Louisville, KY artist Tony Robot, Arcade Castle tries to figure out just where Jasco Games went wrong with the Megaman Board Game, and how to fix it, since Jasco Games has stated they will no longer support this game (well, they may if you give them more money).......

 

If, after listening to the podcast, you desire more, you can find us at: www.arcadecastle.blogspot.com

Additionally, you can find us on Itunes (and a number of podcast services), Twitter, Facebook, BoardGameGeek, and Instagram!

You can contact us at: contactarcadecastle@gmail.com

Also, if you like the new theme song, check out Tony Robot! https://www.facebook.com/louisvilletonyrobot/

 

Episode Outline:

00:00 - 20:00 - Arcade Castle talks about artificial intelligence, 3D printing, video game board games and board game video games, Nintenhard, flooding bowling alleys, Megaman, 20XX: fact or fiction?

 

20:00 - 30:00 - Once Upon a Powerup: How Megaman Almost Was Megamain't.

 

30:00 - 45:00 - Arcade Castle takes an in-depth look at the components and gameplay of the Megaman Board Game from 2015. Arcade Castle examines how Jasco Games' approach to both of these elements directly led to the main issue with this board game: longevity.

 

45:00 - 60:00 - Both members of the Arcade Castle have different approaches on how to fix a fundamentally broken game, yet also find common ground and overlap that lead to an overarching approach that owners of this game can take to try and make this game that is MEGA on style and mega on substance more playable and more enjoyable.

 

Apr 19, 2018

Surviving the Cold War of Episode 10, Arcade Castle takes a break from serious topics and takes a trip to the amusement park thanks to Parker Brothers and their 2002 board game adaptation of the Roller Coaster Tycoon PC video game from 1999!

As Arcade Castle starts acquiring properties through auction, they cast a dubious eye towards the "Parker Brothers" publisher and the similarities to one of their other titular board game titles. However, as the game progresses and patrons ride rides, events occur in the park, and victory points pile up, Arcade Castle starts to see that there is more here than a "opoly" derivative.

However, as the play progresses to the games end, Arcade Castle starts to see the scales tip in favor of luck and random events vs. player strategy. Undeterred, Arcade Castle develops a few key rule modifications and component upgrades that push the excitement factor of the Roller Coaster Tycoon Board Game to the MAX!

In this 2002 adaptation of the 1999 video game, Arcade Castle uncovers a game that, despite the potential it would a bland 'gentle ride', turns out to be an exciting, fun, and memorable ride! Besides, everyone needs more vomit tokens in their board games!!!

Episode Outline:

00:00 - 25:00 - Arcade Castle talks about roller coasters, amusement parks, management simulators, projectile vomiting, carnies, post-apocalyptic wave pools, and Top Gun.

25:00 - 45:00 - Arcade Castle takes an in-depth look at the Roller Coaster Tycoon Board Game, the components, the rules, the gameplay, as well as some of the games shortcomings such as balancing issues, luck vs. strategy, and unstructured game progression.

45:00 - 65:00 - Seeing potential, Arcade Castle takes some time to take some of the problems the board game has and creates some easily implemented rule modifications and minor component additions that add a great deal of gameplay while removing randomness and luck.

 

If, after listening to the podcast, you desire more, you can find us at:

www.arcadecastle.blogspot.com

Additionally, you can find us on Itunes (and a number of podcast services), Twitter, Facebook, BoardGameGeek, and you can contact us at: contactarcadecastle@gmail.com

Mar 26, 2018

Box

Amid rising tensions, Arcade Castle chills with a Cold War Simulator on the Odyssey II from 1981. Utilizing a mathematical formula from the C.I.A. and real world scenarios torn fresh from the headlines (well, fresh in 1981 anyway), Magnavox created Conquest of the World. The third (and final) entry in the Master Strategy Series by Magnavox, Conquest of the World takes advantage of the expanded memory on the video game cartridge to create a 1v1 games that implies additional strategy on the screen and, when coupled with the board game portion of Conquest of the World, provides a in-depth gaming session for players picking up the joystick and board game. Or so Magnavox claims...

 

In this episode of the Arcade Castle Podcast, John and Patrick play another weird blending of video game and board game courteously of Magnavox. Pulled from the annals of time, Arcade Castle finds an interesting time capsule. A video game board game that blends elements of RISK and AXIS & ALLIES yet requires players to engage in battle through the Odyssey II to determine the outcome of global conflicts between nations, all of which is filtered through Cold War tensions. Can this game with overtones from the Cold War prove to be a hot ticket to fun? Or is it consigned to the No-Man's-Land between Board Games and Video Games?

Conquest of the World Gameplay!!!

 

Episode Outline

 

00:00 - 25:00: Arcade Castle discusses an overview of the Master Strategy Series from Magnavox as well as the Conquest of the World. The discussion then turns to the Cold War nature of the Conquest of the World and Arcade Castle discusses their own recollections, memories from that time as well as games they have played that also focus on the Cold War.

 

25:00 - 50:00: Arcade Castle turns their discussion to the specifics of the Conquest of the World, including its contents and how the Conquest of the World is played, both as a board game and as a video game.

 

50:00 - 70:00 - After their examination of the game and how it plays, Arcade Castle turns their attention to some of the issues Conquest of the World has in terms of gameplay and balancing power between players as well as taking the game to task for its claims that it is based on the 'real-world' calculations of power between counties. They offer solutions to these problems.

Manual and Cartridge

Board

Formula for Perceived Power

Artwork

Mar 7, 2018

 

 

In this episode of the Arcade Castle Podcast, we take the first word of our podcast quite literally by playing two arcade themed board games released by Milton Bradley in 1983: Pitfall! and Jungle Hunt. As Arcade Castle plays two jungle themed board games intended for players far younger than they, can they survive the hazards of the trail? Or succumb to the pitfalls and traps?


In Pitfall!, players move forward or backward along the surface, jungle trail, or the underground, cavern trail in their attempts to collect enough treasure to prove themselves as an adventurer brave enough to climb the mountain at the end of the game to collect the diamond. However, as players brave the jungles and caves of Pitfall! they must overcome a variety of hazards that include voracious crocodile, rolling logs, fires, cobras, and the eponymous pitfalls. If players are brave enough to enter the underground caverns, they may find themselves face to face with the vicious scorpion and may find themselves staying in the caves as a permanent resident...

 

In Jungle Hunt, players traverse the wild jungle interior to try and save the jungle girl from a tribe of hungry cannibals. But players need to navigate a forest of vines to swing their way to victory. Clever use of movement points can move one's adventurer closer to the goal, while moving other players further away. Additionally, players must beware the jungle gorilla or find themselves knocked from the vines to the jungle floor and forced to work their way back into the vines and into the game. Can you save the jungle girl? Or find yourself facing an angry gorilla instead?

Episode Outline:

00:00 - 22:00: Arcade Castle discusses at length their memories of hometown arcades, their favorite arcade cabinets, and why birthday cake, exercise, and jungle gyms are a bad combination.

22:00 - 38:00: Arcade Castle turns their attention to the first game they played in their Arcade Double Feature: Pitfall! They discuss their relationship with the game, Saturday morning cartoons, and how a board game can provide strategy and choice while still being aimed at younger children.

38:00 - 54:00: Arcade Castle looks at the second game of their Arcade Double Feature: Jungle Hunt. They discuss how NOT to make a board game for children, adults, or anyone in between. Can an arcade game with little content be successfully crafted into a board game?

**********************************

Additionally, you can find us on Itunes (and a number of podcast services), TwitterFacebookBoardGameGeek, and Instagram!
Check out our videos on Youtube!

You can contact us at: contactarcadecastle@gmail.com
Also, if you like the new theme song, check out Tony Robot at: www.facebook.com/louisvilletonyrobot/

***********************************

 
Jan 27, 2018

Arcade Castle's attempt to sacrifice The Oregon Trail Card Game during the solar eclipse was, in a word, unsuccessful. At the height of the astronomical event, Arcade Castle thrust a dagger into the very heart of the card game and set it aflame in the hopes of removing its presence from this planet and send it into the unfathomable void of space.

 

But Arcade Castle was wrong.

 

As the embers died down and the solar bodies unaligned, something arose from the ashes, the proverbial phoenix: The Oregon Trail: Hunt For Food Card Game. This event left Arcade Castle defeated for some time...until now.

 

In Episode 08, Arcade Castle looks at the pseudo-expansion for the original game that no one asked for and no one expected. Nevertheless, setting themselves to the task, Arcade Castle opened up the Hunt For Food Card Game and played the second game in the series of card game adaptations of the legendary computer game that was released by MECC in the early 1970s.

 

The Hunt For Food Card Game, as the title suggests, is a card game adaptation of the hunting mini-game found in the Oregon Trail Computer Game. As the hunter, players navigate a grid of cards, flipping them over to explore the terrain. As they explore, obstacles, wild game, and hazards present themselves to the players. As a team, players must attempt to overcome these hazards as well as attempt to hunt, kill, and bring 600 pounds of meat back to the wagon to continue on the trail and win the game. But will this card game's aim be true? Or will it prove to far off the mark?

 

Episode Outline

 

00:00 - 07:00: Arcade Castle reintroduces the Oregon Trail card game series published by pressman, as well as recapping their opinions about the base game as discussed in Episode 04 of the podcast.

 

07:00 - 27:00: Arcade Castle explores, in length, The Oregon Trail: Hunt For Food Card Game. They describe the contents of the game, the rules of the game, and examine the strategies present in the game as well as the numerous problems with the game.

 

27:00 - 53:00: After playing the game as a standalone game, Arcade Castle integrates The Hunt For Food Card Game with the original Oregon Trail Card Game to see whether or not this integration helps either game become more playable and determine if it causes more problems then solutions. They then explore how changing some rules and adjusting gameplay may make both games function better. Do they recommend this game? Or recommend sacrificing it to the astral powers that be?

You can find us at www.arcadecastle.blogspot.com! 

Additionally, you can locate us on Facebook, Twitter, and Boardgamegeek! Reach us at contactarcadecastle@gmail.com 

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