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Which Arcade1Up arcade machine is best?

Arcade1Up is a company that specializes in remaking classic arcade machines with a modern twist. The original machines that are still around can not only be difficult to find, but they’re often in less-than-stellar shape. Arcade1Up uses new technology to enhance the games by putting them in new machines and adding updated features like Wi-Fi and LCD screens. 

The best Arcade1Up arcade machine is the Marvel Vs. Capcom compilation game. In this gem of an arcade game, you’ll find five games spanning Marvel Comics and Capcom fighting games with Wi-Fi capability and 17-inch full-color display. 

What to know before you buy an Arcade1Up arcade machine


Pac-Man was one of the first arcade machines that became successful in the 1980s. This little yellow maze runner roams around munching on yummy digital dots and chasing down ghosts and cherries. The game was originally released in Japan under the name Puck-Man but was changed to Pac-Man by Midway when it came to North America. The game uses a joystick to control Pac-Man, with the goal being to eat everything in sight and survive as long as you can. 

Space Invaders

While Pac-Man stole the show in the early 1980s, Space Invaders came just before it in 1978. Space Invaders was hugely popular, revitalizing the arcade experience, which had dwindled since its peak in the 1950s. In fact, when Space Invaders came from Japan to America, it generated more revenue in its first year than “Star Wars.” As the first shooting game of its time, Space Invaders challenged gamers to the increasingly difficult task of holding off hordes of alien invaders using a joystick to control the weapon and a button for firing.  


Among Arcade1Up’s additions to the modern arcade system is the counter-cade, which offers the nostalgia of an arcade game to those who lack the space for a full stand-up system. This lightweight game setup just uses the top of a traditional machine so you can set it on your countertop at home. It’s also less expensive than a full 1Up arcade machine. 

What to look for in a quality Arcade1Up arcade machine

Wi-Fi enabled

The makers of Mortal Kombat probably never thought you would one day play the original arcade machine online against any player from around the world. Well, Arcade1Up has changed that with Wi-Fi-enabled games. Simply connect your 1Up arcade machine to your home internet and add your friends. From there, you can hop in a game and compete against friends and family. You can play Captain America and try to take down Chun-Li in an epic online battle to the death. 

Dual controls

Some arcade machines only come with one set of controls. This is enough for one person, especially if your machine has access to Wi-Fi, but your experience can be enhanced with dual controls. After all, this is the way the original architects of arcade machines envisioned it. A dual setup has one set of controls on either side of the platform — so, two joysticks and two sets of action buttons. This will let you play side by side with another person in real-time. 

Arcade1Up stool 

Some high-quality Arcade1Up machines come with a stool. While this might not seem like a huge boost in quality, you’d be surprised how convenient a stool can be. The last thing you want is to spend hundreds of dollars on a Mortal Kombat II arcade machine only to realize how uncomfortable it is to stand for hours while playing. The stools are well-made and will remind you of old-school arcade stools from years past. They are also branded according to the game you purchase. For example, the NBA Jam stool looks like the leather from a basketball and features the NBA Jam logo. 

How much you can expect to spend on an Arcade 1Up arcade machine

Arcade1Up arcade machines cost  $180-$550.

Arcade1Up arcade machines FAQ

Do Arcade1Up arcade machines take quarters?

A. No. That’s one of the biggest perks of the updated machines Arcade1Up offers. None of its machines require quarters to operate. Simply plug in the device and play for hours.

How much do Arcade1Up arcade machines weigh?

A. Most of the stand-up machines weighs around 88-93 pounds, with the heaviest machine reaching 97 pounds. The smaller counter-cade machines weigh far less, coming in at 13-15 pounds. 

What’s the best Arcade1Up arcade machine to buy?

Top Arcade1Up arcade machine

Arcade 1Up Marvel vs. Capcom

Arcade1Up Marvel vs. Capcom

What you need to know: This two-player stand-up arcade machine brings together two iconic video game franchises: Marvel and Capcom. 

What you’ll love: In this game, you can compete as Spider-Man while fighting against Ryu from Street Fighter. There are five games in total, including the famous Marvel Super Heroes Vs. Street Fighter fighting game. It also comes with a 17-inch full-color LCD display.

What you should consider: You can’t control the display power to dim the lighting from the screen. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top Arcade1Up arcade machine for the money

Arcade 1Up NBA Jam Special Edition

Arcade1Up NBA Jam Special Edition

What you need to know: This was Arcade1Up’s first Wi-Fi-enabled machine that lets you play online with your friends. 

What you’ll love: Revisit the classic 1993 Super Nintendo game where you can play as real-life NBA players in a two-versus-two format. Hook the machine up to the internet and play with your friends across the world. It even comes with an officially licensed Arcade 1Up NBA Jam stool. 

What you should consider: This game is not suitable for children under age 14. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Arcade 1Up Pacman and Galaga Counter-Cade

Arcade1Up Pacman and Galaga Counter-Cade

What you need to know: This counter arcade, otherwise known as a counter-cade, requires less space to operate than a traditional stand-up arcade machine.

What you’ll love: Aside from its space-saving benefits, this machine features two of the most iconic arcade games of all time. Pacman and Galaga can be played on a clear 8-inch LCD screen with either one or two players. 

What you should consider: Although this game does allow for two-player gaming, it only has one set of controls. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


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Jordan Beliles writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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