Miniature video game cabinets scratch a nostalgic itch for ‘80s kids who miss their favourite childhood arcades, but their compact size often means they’re single-player only. My Arcade’s new Street Fighter II: Champion Edition Micro Player solves that with the option of linking a pair of tiny arcades using a cable so that side-by-side fights — and the requisite trash-talking — are still possible.
You can, of course, get classic Street Fighter games for almost any modern console and simply plop down on the couch next to a friend with controllers in hand for a shared screen throw-down, but the Micro Player slathers on the nostalgia with a 1/10th-scale cabinet featuring the same graphics as the full-size 1992 original as well as six arcade-style buttons, and a joystick with mechanical switches that probably feels great — even if it’s also scaled down.
The Micro Player is designed to match the arcade experience of playing Street Fighter II as closely as possible, but at just 7.25-inches tall with a 3.5-inch screen, and a backlit marquee, you can keep this on your desk, kitchen counter, workbench, or anywhere you think some simulated hand-t0-hand combat would be a welcome way to blow off steam. You could even drag it into the bathroom because the tiny cabinet can be powered using a microUSB cable connected to a power adaptor, or a set of four AA batteries.
Playing against a computer opponent can quickly lose its novelty — whether you’ve advanced past the computer’s skill level or are tired of getting beaten on the easiest setting — so every Street Fighter II: Champion Edition Micro Player includes a data cable allowing two of them to be physically connected for multiplayer fights. The only catch? These things are $US50 ($65) each, and for $US100 ($129) you can instead get your hands on a throwback console that lets two people play Street Fighter (like the SNES Classic Edition) plus a long list of other multiplayer games.