Watch Arcade Culture!

November 17th 2012, 10:13 PM MST - Arcade Culture, which will recap the first day's action, is airing NOW.

I will be working on updates here, meanwhile, go check it out.

[Stream ended at 11:30]

Well the first hour was good!

But the rest...

Those of us on the stream just heard some very interesting things about Twin Galaxies, its new management, their plans for the organization, their policies for the future, and what their priorities are.

Things that might be, shall we say, decisive with regard to the future of this blog. Things that I wish I hadn't heard until after the Kong Off.

Listen for yourself and decide what you think. (The discussion begins at 32:15. If nothing else, skip to 42:30. It's a doozy!)

I sure hope that all of you who, like myself, went out and bought a Donkey Kong machine in order to live out a silly, modest little dream of seeing your name in the official Twin Galaxies Top 20 are good enough to beat Hank's world record, or the perhaps two to three submissions that will succeed it before the game is maxed out and the leaderboard goes inert. It appears that $1 is all that matters now.

(Oops! I mean #1, not $1. Sorry, typo. Those keys are so close!)

And I hope you won't miss the Twin Galaxies forums, or the years of strategy, theory, history, and friendship that they contain, because it's all gone now. It's not important.

After all, "a forum and people's opinions doesn't do anything to help us build the brand." (47:30)

It has been a long day, and sometimes we say things we don't mean, but I wonder if an apology will be forthcoming to the two people who were viciously and baselessly accused of conspiring to "steal Twin Galaxies" to start their own scoring system? (37:50)

One of those people was in the chat at the time, and went to Facebook in total shock to defend himself to those watching the stream, pasting the very e-mail cited in the show. Unless he did a quick editing job, or it was written in a secret code, this was not an overture to join forces to "attempt to steal" the database.

From the way the new Twin Galaxies is sounding though, we soon might be wishing that somebody had.

Problems notwithstanding, I miss the "piece of shit" you purchased already.

You have some damage control to do and some plans to rethink, and you'd better get started real quick. Your community (or are we customers now?) is not going to be happy about any of this.

For now, I will move forward with my coverage, albeit far less enthusiastically than I was a few naive hours ago.

Or maybe I'll just post updated standings a few more times and be done with it, knowing now a little more about the people behind this event. I was having fun, but I suddenly feel ill.


Anonymous said...

Saying your giving back to the gaming community in one sentence but then saying that is only true if you get the best score otherwise don't waste our time?!?! TGI was a "piece of shit"?!?! Really?

This is NOT going to be good classic gaming community. Them saying it takes to much effort to verify a 5th place score seems unlikely to me when the old TGI managed to do that just fine. . A cutoff should be set to say ONLY top 10 scores are allowed to be submitted but this "only the best screw the rest" mentality is really disheartening.

How did TGI manage to get ALL scores online before? I doubt they had huge fields of people doing it like he claims it would take. Think about this for a second. Based on the logic he uses NO ONE WOULD HAVE ANY IDEA WHO VINCENT LEMAY WAS. He gets people to play games and want to be a part of this community but since you don't want to waste your time no one has a clue now who he is. This feels like a boot on the neck of the classic gamers.

Its great to know that now a 1.15 million donkey kong score gets you some kudos from the people in the community and from TGI you get zip.... Really just seems wrong... Period.

Anonymous said...

I hate to say it but I agree with your sentiments. You bought a DK machine and had a DREAM of just getting to see your name in the Top 20 list and showing it off to your friends. Forget all that. IF your not first you might as well be last.

"After all, "a forum and people's opinions doesn't help us to do anything to build the brand."" Wow so wait the people you are TRYING TO SELL THIS TO can't help you build this brand? Oh really so market research and product testing and all that crazy crap does NOTHING to build a brand? Wow sorry this guy reallly seems to be a jerk so I can see why him and richie get along so well. Guess I just don't care anymore either. Knowing I can't get any sense of accomplishment unless its first place only. Yeah thanks alot.. What next gonna shoot a kitten?

Anonymous said...

Not to mention he just opened himself up for a huge slander lawsuit with those statements in my opinion. Apology now means nothing. He will apologize with his checkbook at this point. I heard this Phil guy they were talking about was on the stream and said everything he said was a lie. Bad protocol to air that in an online stream. Shows what kind of character (or lack thereof) you have as a person in my humble opinion. Nice to know they just bought a name and they could give a shit about what everyone else cares about. Sadly I hope they crash and burn so as a phoenix it can rise from the ashes from someone who gives a crap about the gaming community and not just to make a $$$ (again just my humble opinion).

Chrispy said...

To think that, just a few short weeks ago, people were complaining about the Donkey Kong recording rules!

Thanks for your opinions, guys. Even though they're no help to my BRAND, I'll allow them.

Anybody want to send me their Donkey Kong tapes? I'll watch them for free.

Andy said...

Hi there-I'll have to give it a listen.
Don't sound too good though... :(

Dennis said...

I love playing arcade games! But like a lot of people living in Europe (Netherlands) I am not able to play on arcade cabinets.
And - like many - having not enough money to buy a genuine cabinet I play classic games using Mame.

In the interview they mention to no longer support uploading scores to Twin Galaxies. That's the end of Twin Galaxies supporting Mame in my opinion. Or do you have to burn the recording file on a dics and mail that to Twin Galaxies in America? And they only publish this record when it is a World record? :(

Again, people who don't have access to play on arcade cabinets (or lack the money to buy a cabinet) and therefore playing classic games using Mame are totaly ignored!

I guess that a lot of people who are playing arcade games using Mame will look for alternatives: maybe Marp...?

What are your thoughts on the whole Mame-issue?

Anonymous said...

The future appears bleak.

1) "Twin Galaxies will no longer accept submissions that are not world records."

2) "One thing that is being eliminated from Twin Galaxies is the forum. There will be no forum on Twin Galaxies."

3) "Submissions are no longer going to be taken online. You will not be able to upload something."

At this point, I can summarize my thoughts on the "new" Twin Galaxies in 3 words:

Dismal failure imminent.

Anonymous said...

Dennis someone should have asked that of them because I get that feeling as well. M.A.M.E is probably done. The want to go with This Arcade and Consoles only it appears. Even if they allow M.A.M.E someone who worked his butt off and got 2nd place is now in the "too bad" category is pretty harsh. Aren't these guys gamers too and realize how much blood/sweat and tears goes into trying to get a score in the top 10 now a days? Especially a title that has been around 20+ years? SMH....

Anonymous said...

We've had enough of the slander, name-calling and throwing people under the bus. No matter what people do/have done, true or false, you should be championing the positives that will make this hobby even more alluring.

Instead, you've fallen back to the same old dramatic accusations and other tactics. This alienates the great players and the great people of this community. It makes them feel like they could be thrown under the bus at any moment for no substantiated reason whatsoever.

Anonymous said...

Were they drunk? After all 1up is a bar?

Anonymous said...

Dunno he was drinking in the stream but was he drunk? Doesn't matter if he was drunk that just means he said what he was really thinking. TG is dead all just get used to it. Go to some other forum/blog/record setting site if you want any input or recognition for your achievements it seems. To me is just sounds like they're too busy putting something together that requires the least amount of work/money/time on their end so they can we make $$$ on your end with the "BRAND"!

Sorry Billy but how many people can AFFORD to pay about $2000 now to "Go somewhere" and set a record. Face it Arcade Games are almost dead and driving or flying someplace to ATTEMPT to set a record is great for the marketing but then to say if you come up 10 points shy too fking bad. Really? This is a just horrible posture for the new administration to take. Plus Funspot doesn't matter anymore?!?! Sorry when your the biggest arcade on the planet to essentially just give them the finger is a joke and comes across to everyone that your just 2 spoiled children who has the "It's my ball so I get to be quarterback or im gonna take it and go home" attitude. For some reason I truly hope this fails and I don't know why and that is a HORRIBLE opinion to have so do you really this makes people want to embrace your "Brand". OH yeah that's right you could care less what I think right but sorry I'm no where near alone on this...

Anonymous said...

Excellent recap of what was said and I am disappointed to say that I agree. I can understand the business side of things - making money and all - but doing it in this way is not going to work at least with the arcade community at large. I can look past the fees to submit scores I suppose...but.

-Holding a key brand to video game history and acting like complete slandering fools? Where is your professionalism? How on earth can people take you seriously now? First impressions are hard to break DUDEs.

-Taking world records only and acting like those below world record holders don't matter? Your going to wipe historical scores off the map? Where is the preservation of history? BTW I love how you disrespected Ben Gold as he is handing over critical pieces of video game history...Sorry Ben, you should have handed that stuff over to ACAM at FUNSPOT where history is really preserved.

-Acting like Funspot is a joke and not working with them to be a verification site despite your 'bad' blood. Could it be its because your slandering fools and they don't want to be associated with people like you? Funspot is THE place to go if your into classic gaming - if you think otherwise because your the god of arcades now - think again.

-Taking down the forums where the arcade community comes together online? However - Its ok to take peoples money just not listen to what they have to say. That online forum was essential to the community - pulling it down is a slap in every contributors face.

The biggest disappointment is that Walter Day and various other iconic people in the arcade community are backing these guys. I think its time to move on from riding the coat tails of KofK people. I hope a group of smarter individuals can design a better scoreboard and engaged the arcade community is a way that is trustworthy with focus on the community, the people, and NOT money money money money. The big names should be able to see that and hopefully take part is bigger and better events. Live streams that don't include drunk idiots stuck in a corner making people like Joel West sit on a floor in front of a donkey kong barrel. That guy almost died playing Berserk for many hours and you have him sit on a floor to interview him? Disrespectful indeed -get a seat for the man next time instead of ensuring your marketing for your upcoming documentary is seen.

Someone out there must start something new, exciting, and respectful to the community.
If that happens - I'll be with them - even if it means writing off the TG name.. RIP TG!

Anonymous said...

Hi Chrispy. I know how you feel i have also put together a dk cab in the modest hope of getting a 1m score on the DK leaderboard.

It is obvious how much passion and effort you have put into this blog so i see how much of a sickener it would be to hear this stuff halfway through the event. Crass end to a good day...

Great work here anyway dude...

Anonymous said...

I feel bad for all the international players. You've got to fly to the states to an approved arcade, pay the ref and hope to God you get the world record otherwise it's null and void. Why not do top five or top ten scores instead of just doing the number one scores? As the first guy stated if they ran like this nobody would know who Vince was.

Twin Galaxies always felt like a leach to me. Since they don't have their own arcade they just suck up to who's ever got one. Gary got sick of it at FunSpot and so did Pat over at Star Worlds. Everything they do is for their own benefit and this new direction is only proving that.

I attended the first Kong Off and like everybody else I was pissed off at the idiot "Morning Zoo" DJ's they had come in. All they did was belittle the players and make a bunch of lewd comments. I remember Richie being pissed off and saying he wished he didn't invite them. So I though his little webshow would be good. But he just does the same thing the DJ's were doing! It's an hour of him making fun of people to their faces and now this guy runs Twin Galaxies now?

He talks about spreading the "Arcade Culture" and helping the "Arcade Community" but what their really talking about is how they pad their wallets and make themselves look good. It's about the brand and making money. If you ever try to make a comment that's in anyway negative towards them they try to silence you. That's why the boards are gone. Even in the chat room tonight people had valid points and Richie was just hurling insults at then and then they'd be removed from the chat.

I really wonder how long this whole thing will go on till it blows up in their faces. I was done with Twin Galaxies before, this further cemented it.

Chrispy said...

Keep the comments flowing, everybody.

I myself am already starting to calm down a little about this, having bumped into Richie in the chat after the awards. He knows that there are issues to work out.

I, like many others, am just upset to see that, at this moment, all of the gamers seem to be losing a bunch of things, without getting anything in return.

The bottom line is, Twin Galaxies as we knew it, "piece of shit" or not, is gone. And it's being replaced by something that doesn't sound like it has anything in it for me, or many other players. I *AM* an "in my tightie whities" kind of guy, and the new TG doesn't sound like it has a place for me, whereas the old one did.

I'll move on with my life and it's not a big deal in the scheme of things, but at this moment I'm looking at the "Donkey Kong Recording Rules" sitting on top of my machine and I feel sad.

Cynicaster said...

First of all, cool blog man, and great job with the coverage.

As for the changing of the guard at TG and what it means for the future, being exclusively a MAME player myself (and thereby being inherently relegated to second-class citizen status anyway), I guess I can understand some of the points on both sides. The long time denizens of the TG community/forums seem to be taking a bit of a “things were working just fine before” stance. On the other hand, although I’ve never tried to submit a score myself, I do feel like I’ve heard nothing but complaints over the last few years regarding the consistency with which TG has been verifying submitted scores. So maybe some things *are*broken and need to be fixed. On that front, I can totally understand the move to raise the bar on submissions, for no other reason than to keep the influx of submissions manageable and the timing of verification consistent.

The “WR only” policy is a bit hard-line though, and it seems to me it will only serve to turn the “community” into even more of an elitist clique than it already is, thereby scaring off future players who have yet to discover (or rediscover) a love for arcade gaming. That’s a bad thing, obviously. Maybe a top 3 or top 5 would be a good compromise?

I didn’t realize there was “drama” between certain people and Funspot, but the latter being snubbed as a verified venue for arcade scores is a bit like saying a homerun hit at Yankee stadium doesn’t count. I mean, it’s probably the most famous arcade there is—mostly due to a certain film, true—but the bottom line is that it does not behoove such a small, niche community to summarily reject an establishment with that kind of name recognition, especially for what I can only assume is just another petty, ego-driven squabble among those that fancy themselves to be the steering luminaries of the scene at large. Speaking as somebody who just loves the games, it’s baffling to me: why willingly fragment a hobby and culture that is already so thin and sparse as it is? If everybody truly wants to keep the arcade culture alive and healthy for years to come, they should be banding together in every way possible.

Richie and his partner seem to believe the borders of their own backyards correspond to the edge of the arcade world; they’re so snugly immersed in their little cliques that they have no real feel for how enthusiasts think and operate elsewhere. I’ll reserve judgment for the time being on their stated plans for TG, but my initial gut feeling is that they’re in for a rude awakening, unless they overhaul the image of their “brand” and find ways to make the so-called “community” more inviting to gamers outside the inner circle.

Paul Denning said...

I watched the video. I didn't hear anything that made it sound like Mame scores dead. The only thing people have picked up on is that there's no online subs but that's true for all systems.
They must know that access to arcades and classic games in general is falling all the time. For this reason alone I'd hope they'd continue to support Mame.
I guess it'll be a case of wait and see?

I'm torn about the WR only policy though. I can see their point. When you think about how many games they track across quite a number of systems the potential to be swamped with submissions is rather large. If they want to make this more legit I can't blame them for covering themselves. The scores will still be listed so new players can see how they're progressing?
Personally I got into this when I thought I could capture a WR (albeit in Mame) and so didn't submit until I obtained that but I have a friend who was working hard to get into the top 10 for Kungfu (arcade) and now probably wont bother. Previous posters have highlighted other players better known because of this ability.

Anonymous said...

I've heard that MAME is gone now period. I'm not necessarily against that decision but I just don't get all the stances they are taking. I don't understand the WR only position. I don't like how they bashed everyone in that stream the way the did. Extremely unprofessional and disrespectful. If this is how they are they can keep TG and stuff it. That Rudy Ferriti or whatever guy comes across like a complete jerkoff to me so I can see how he fits in with the new owners. Face it all something we cherished got bought by a group of elitist who think because they have arcade machines the rest of the world should too and if you don't you suck.

Anonymous said...

Did anyone else notice the streaming and scores where being handled by Aurcade and not TG? Is Aurcade the new place for scores now?

I'm confused... If TG is still a scoreboard, why were they using *another* scoreboard for their own event?

Anonymous said...

Nice blog. I'd like to turn around the question and ask: what would YOU have done? Old TG was a pos/pile of rubble/joke and not viable anyways. Here's my take one it:
* Pay for verification
Probably not much choice since you need verifiers and it's not a non-profit organization. But why not reduce the fee to 10$ and make certificates optional? (5 of 15$ were for certificates according to the video)
* Only #1 scores
Makes absolutely no sense. If the players are paying for having scores verified, the huge influx of shitty scores (= the majority of tg scores) would diminish very rapidly by itself. It's just stupid to rule out 1.1M scores for DK etc.
* A billion different tracks
- Stop tracking all mini-games and crap
- Stop tracking all games, where there is a huge online leaderboard (lots of modern games). The best people are never gonna submit to tg anyways, so just accept that.
- Stop tracking fastest completion. TG is a joke in this category. That community was possibly at tg at some point, but is long, long gone.
- Stop tracking games that can be maxed-out. Lots of console games are in this category and most of them are too easy to max out (few exceptions exist).
- Make a huge clean-up among the console tracks. Many games track scores, but are simply not as thought through as many arcade games are in terms of leeching. Many have respawning enemies, no time limit etc.
- Lump together all tracks that are more or less identical (xbox + ps2 etc etc). Feel free to point out next to each score on which console it was made, but track them together. If someone thinks a platform has a huge advantage, just use that one then...

Anonymous said...

Because Richie can't come up with an original idea to save his life. Why would they come up with a live score keeping system when they can use one that already works, Why come up with a new concept when we can take the "Frog-off" and change the name to "Kong-off" and call it his own. The thought that Richie is the public face of this organization is sickening.

NintendoLegend said...

As a passionate retro gamer who would love to see the community grow, I am disappointed in exclusionist policies like only allowing #1 submissions. As a marketing professional, I can understand the decision to eliminate the forums, but saying that "a forum and people's opinions doesn't do anything to help us build the brand" is patently irrational.

Marketing tip: Any promotional tool is only as good as the mission and vision behind it. Even no-brainer, less interactive means of promotion (advertising!) can be done wrongly. It sounds like the people now in charge just are not intelligent enough to understand how a discussion forum can be a positive thing.

Anonymous said...

Because as we all know, integrity and Rudy go hand in hand.

Wasn't Rudy the guy who threatened a gamer allegedly (which got him kicked out)? And isn't he the same guy who cries on youtube when one of his scores gets beaten?

dwayne said...

I have not been following most of this stuff till I saw tim's post on facebook but one thing i can say is these guys have no credibility. They can careless about the games or the players or helping others in a so called community they are all too narcissistic to recognize the value of someone else besides their own shadow or face in the mirror. We can't want to be playing donkey kong all the time. 1000's of games are made and 1000's are actually way more fun and 100's are more difficult to play. Record keeping goes hand and hand with truth but most don't take history seriously or the truth seriously so we end of with this self-promotion tool. Power and money and politics always end up together and there is always someone on top and others who get shit on. i originally talked to the guys at the 1up before richie and they wouldn't give them the time of day, meaning tgi and richie until i went there and started to talk about organizing a contest with jourdan but with in a week i got a call back and jourdan told me him and richie are in bed together. i think they are whores not anyone i would choose to have as a friend and i will leave it at that!

Paul denning said...

New post on FB. Sounds like they're listening to feedback. Mame still supported. Discount being considered for people who don't want certificates. Top 10 scores for arcade games. Submissions to be accepted again from Dec 3rd.
Doesn't sound so bad now right?

Dennis said...

Paul, that seems good news :)

Will there be scoreboard of top 10 scores for Arcade (cabinet) games exclusively? Or will this be a general rule for consoles and MAME?

I'd really like to know if they plan to have a scoreboard of top 10-scores for MAME-games: would really make my day!

Hope to hear from the community...! :)

Paul Denning said...

So far they've only mentioned Arcade(cabinet). People have asked about Mame specifically but they've not answered yet.
They have also said they'll be trying to honor all Certificate purchases that are outstanding which is good news for me as I'm still awaiting my 1943 (mame) one!

Dennis said...

If anyone has some news on TG's plans of supporting MAME and accepting top 10 scores of MAME-games (besides top 10 scores for arcade games) I'd really like to know :)

Thank you in advance...!

Anonymous said...

The funny thing about Rudy is no one's let him on the gag. He actually thinks his records are worth something.

Anonymous said...

Wow so talking to Richie and the others actually got through?!?! Miracle. Top 10 is better than nothing but still think Top 25 is what it should be. The act of paying to submit will cause people to not both most times anyway and will rule out a lot of BS posts. I want to wait to see how it all pans out. That's good news if its true.

Anonymous said...

"Top 10 is better than nothing ...."

They changed that to anyplace.

Anonymous said...

This means they really have no clue as to what they are doing. They can 'claim' to be listening, but it just means they have no real vision, or no resolve. Either way, doesn't bode well.

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