Sunday, August 9, 2009
Family Fun Arcade: Nathan and Ted's Excellent Adventure
If you belong at Family Fun Arcade, you probably know it already. Less-than-hardcore gamers might enjoy the air hockey table or Dance Dance Revolution, but you won't find any vintage games here -- no Ms. Pac Man, no Galaga, no DigDug. Family Fun Arcade is all about fighting games -- Street Fighter, 3rd Strike, Marvel vs. Capcom. The family-owned arcade has been in its Granada Hills location for decades, and it's been described as the number one fighting game mecca in Southern California (they even had a Street Fighter IV before it was released in the U.S.). Family Fun also hosts tournaments that draw high-level players to its dark and soda-stained confines, and the convenient proximity to Asahi Sushi, Pizza Cookery, and Golden State Collective can't hurt either.
Nathan, Family Fun employee:
How long have you worked here?
I've worked here for two years.
How did you get the job?
I used to work at the Simi Valley location, which they closed down, so I came over here.
How did you get the job in Simi Valley?
I knew someone who worked there, and I kept bugging him until there was an opening. They have a waiting list of people who want jobs here. I waited until I was at the top of the list. Luckily, I had some money saved up from my old job, so I just waited.
How long did that take?
What do you like about working here? Do you get free games?
I don't get free games, and I'm not allowed to play while I'm working. But I like it because I can relate to the people who come in here.
What do you dislike about the job?
Junior high kids who come in and sit on the games, try to play for free, or try to put tokens in the machines instead of quarters. The machines get jammed, and then they come to me and say, "The machine jammed, I want my quarter back." Well, the machine jammed because you put a token in it.
Ted, Family Fun regular:
How often do you come here?
Pretty much every day, now that it's summer.
Are you in school the rest of the year?
Yeah. I go to Valley.
Do you live in Granada Hills?
No, I live in North Hollywood.
So why don't you go to an arcade in North Hollywood?
North Hollywood has arcades, but they're not like this one. This is the place for more adult gamers.
What's your favorite game?
I like all of the games. I don't really have a favorite.
Which one are you most into playing right now?
I guess Street Fighter IV.