So wouldn’t you know it studying arcades meant I had to go back! This time I went alone… well, without my closer circle of friends. I decided I was going to make a serious effort to get to understand why the regulars (people who visit at least once per week) go to the arcade.
Obviously I didn’t want to get stuck on one guy because one data point does not a study make so I moved around and tried to talk to as many people as I could. that way I’d get a variety of answers rather than just, “My friends come here.”
Not really surprising that reason was one of the most popular reasons. Similar to the reasoning in my last post, people go out to be with their friends; nothing new here. What I didn’t expect to be a common answer was that this was their way to escape.
What I mean when I say that is that, unlike me who plays games to escape into new worlds and be the hero and slay the dragon and save the world, there version of escape was really just a change of scenery. They could escape their home life/their apartment/their other social circle. It was more about physically being somewhere different than being the hero.
Don’t get me wrong, people definitely liked being the saviour and blowing up the terrorists but that was definitely unexpected. I’ve never really been concerned with my surroundings unless they’re super bland but I guess I’ve just been used to my room for so long I’ve become immune to it.
It’s just interesting to see that while the games are definitely fun and the core of the experience (I mean, why be at the gaming arcade if not to play games) but the games themselves weren’t at the forefront of the reasoning. I suppose it’s like playing soccer with your friends even if you’d rather play rugby.
I don’t think I could do that but hey, to each their own.