This past weekend, Funspot arcade in Laconia, New Hampshire, played host to the International Classic Video Game Tournament. Gamers from all over the world have been traveling to Funspot for the past 15 years to compete against each other, sometimes on video games that were born long before they were. For many, it's a chance to play rare games that they've only heard about. For others it's a great chance to connect with like-minded friends over a friendly, albeit competitive, game of Tapper.
The competition runs for four days as participants try to post the high score on each of the tournament games. Outside the cordoned-off area reserved for the tournament, the rest of Funspot's American Classic Arcade Museum is open to the public. Mixed in amongst the novice players, you're likely to see world record holders trying to beat their high scores in between their tournament play. I spoke to three gamers who have made the nostalgic trip to Funspot repeatedly, enticed by the pristine machines and the sense of camaraderie among the players.
Special thanks to Derek Janiak for his help wrangling the elusive video gamers in their natural habitat.
Nick Lombardo's Website: arcade-hunters.com
Robbie Lakeman's World Record Space Zap game. I watched Robbie play Space Zap at Funspot; it's a mesmerizing experience. Robbie holds a number of world records on a variety of games.
Rob Ross's World Record Super Sprint game. Rob attempted to break his own record while I watched, and even explained some of his tips and techniques, but sadly wasn't able to post a new high score.