The Simpsons arcade game, produced by Konami in 1991 during the family’s initial rise to fame, is a beloved classic….and for some reason it’s very hard to play legally. Your only two options are to (1) find a decaying original machine or (2) get your hands on a Playstation 3 that has an emulated port of The Simpsons Arcade installed on it. The game was offered on the PS3’s digital marketplace in 2012…and was soon pulled off. (Even if you bought the game when it was available, you are not allowed to download it again. I’ve tried.)
A third option will soon enter the picture, though it’s no less expensive than the others. Arcade1Up is a company that produces recreations of classic arcade games for home use. The machines are always 3/4 the vertical height of the originals, but can be boosted to full size with a “riser” sold separately. This summer, they’ll be opening preorders for a Simpsons Arcade recreation.
From the photos, the Arcade1Up edition looks to be a pretty spot-on clone of the original, albeit with a mysterious trackball in the middle that no one seems to know the purpose of. The prevailing theory is that Simpsons Bowling is being included as a second game — the only other time the characters were arcade stars.
As for the price of this thing…we’re getting conflicting reports. Some sources are saying $499, some are saying $399. The highest figure we’ve seen is $599 US Dollars which would make it one of the most expensive Arcade1Ups in existence — we hope Wario64 got it wrong. We do, however, expect this to be on the high end of the price spectrum due to the cost of the license and its four-player controls. All of Arcade1Up’s four-player cabinets tend to cost at least a hundred more than their two-player machines. But a Simpsons Arcade for just two players wouldn’t feel right.
Preorders will open for the Arcade1Up Simpsons Arcade on July 15.