These days, you can find a decent arcade machine for $200. It will be a simple unit, mass produced and sold through a lot of retailers in store and online. It is an easy buy, with a lot of choices.
But we will be focused on the other part of the scale: the most expensive arcade games you can get today, or at least try to find, and how they got to that price.
5. Atari Major Havoc $4,000
The Atari Major Havoc machine (1983) was a desirable unit, so much so that millions of people tried to play it as soon as possible. There are a lot of fans who play it even today and can’t get enough of it. The machine uses vector-based graphics to show off the action in a variety of smaller games, such as shooting aliens. It’s cabinet has a very unique, clean design. The game design is standard for that era but the main reason for the high price is its rarity.
4. Centuri Aztarac $4,000
This 1983 arcade unit has vector-based graphics and standard joystick controllers. The main characteristic here is the bubble located over the display. It offers a warp of the visuals and makes the gaming stand out from the crowd. It is a one-of-a-kind design that wasn’t really seen ever since. When it comes to the rest of the cabinet, the game is a bit more modern than others on the list and has arguably better graphics.
3. Nutting Associates Computer Space $5,000
The Nutting Associates Computer Space is the first arcade game ever made, releasing in 1971. It will cost you $5,000 today and is extremely difficult to find due to its rarity. The shell is made from fiberglass and the design feels futuristic, even by today’s standards, though the game feels like a precursor to Asteroids. The creators of the game (Nolan Bushnell and Ted Dabney) founded a little company known as Atari after developing Computer Space.
2. Cinematronics Cosmic Chasm $6,500
This arcade game was released in 1983 by Cinematronics, the same company that made Space Ace, Dragon’s Lair and many others, based on a game by developer GCE. However, back in the day when this game was launched the company was bankrupt, leaving only a handful of units on the market. A decent cabinet in mint condition will cost you $6,500 but the price is going up as we speak.
1. Williams Blaster Cockpit $12,000
The Williams Blaster Cockpit is so rare that it is almost impossible to find, as there were only around 5 units ever made (various reports place the total between 3-5). To make things more complicated, there were apparently two main versions. The first was made from wood, while others were made from plastics. One of the cabinets is still on display, while the others have been converted into other games or lost over time, which is why it’s so rare to find and commands a high price.
As a collector, you would likely want to have all of these machines to be able to play some of the forgotten retro games from the last 50 years. That’s going to be difficult, but if you can swing at least one or two of them you would create a stunning collection.
This article was submitted to us by Brianna Venegas. Brianna is a writer for Gamulator.