GDC puts up arcade machine in Union

ZACH GREENE ’13 AND LEWIS BEVAN ’14 COMPETE in the fast-paced A Tale of Two Castles on the Game Development Club’s arcade machine during Genericon XXV. Players must destroy the opponent’s castle before their own is vanquished.

An arcade game machine was recently installed in the Union Games Room. The machine features five fun games made by RPI’s own Game Development Club, some of which were seen at last semester’s Game Development Showcase.

The first game, Bullet Hell, is a scrolling shooter game in which you play an angel descending through Hell to fight Satan, only, instead of a traditional left-to-right style, the game goes from top-to-bottom. The farther you go, the faster the game scrolls, and the more enemies are sent at you, including ones holding giant mirrors which reflect your attacks back at you. Luckily, you can pick up powerups which help you deal with the increasing intensity. In my opinion, the game is very well-paced.

Egypt vs. Greece: Battle of the Gods offers both a solo and a co-op mode for when you have a friend with you. Reminiscent of Galaxian and Centipede, it was the most traditional arcade-style game on the machine. You play as Egyptian gods, fighting your way through three levels to defeat Zeus on Mount Olympus, shooting at enemies and dodging their return fire. You can pick up two powerups; one to increase your firepower, and one to charge a gauge at the bottom of the screen. When this gauge fills up, you can turn into an invincible yellow character with two arms that shoot bullets; very useful for boss fights. After defeating Zeus (spoiler warning!), if neither player died at all for the duration of the game, you are transported to a secret level where you must defeat Hades and his underworld minions. After that, the game restarts at the first level with the difficulty slightly increased. This game is also the only one to feature a high score board.

Robot Glacier Fortress is an action/puzzle combo where you play as a narwhal trying to get an ice cream cone. You jump, climb, and grapple your way over obstacles and enemies to retrieve your frozen treat. The game offers an action mode, a puzzle mode, and a combination mode, as well as allowing you to select which level within these modes you want to play.

Seal Tree is by far the simplest game on the machine, but is nonetheless enjoyable. You play a circus clown desperately trying to catch seals falling from the sky. They pile up on top of each other while you slowly sink, and you have to keep extending the pile upwards before you disappear off the bottom of the screen. Meanwhile, the seals are making their seal noises while balloons pop and confetti dances in the background, complete with seizure-iffic flashing colors. Silly and hilarious, this game is guaranteed to put a smile on your face.

Finally, A Tale of Two Castles is a two-player game where each player controls an opposing castle. You hire wizards, trainers, and workers to earn gold and repair your castle, and you can train troops such as archers, knights, and even dragons to attack the other player. The game is very fast-paced, and offers a few different strategies, making for an interesting experience even after playing several times.

The arcade machine can be found against the far left wall of the Games Room, and I definitely recommend checking it out. Give all the different games a try; they’re plenty of fun, especially the two-player ones, and more will be coming soon!