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Arcadeopoly: The Card Game

February 20th, 2016 Leave a comment Go to comments

It’s very unfortunate that arcades are becoming less and less of a thing as I get older.  Sure, you can go to Dave and Busters, Chuck E Cheese, or a Replay FX event, but there used to be way more options when I was growing up.  “Arcadeopoly: The Card Game” themes itself around those arcade machines we used to know and love.  Here, you’ll be trying to earn quarters by owning and operating your own arcade cabinets.  Of course, your opponents are out to do the same thing.  Before we press player one to start, I’d like to thank Eric Park from Park Productions for providing me with a press copy for review purposes.


Arcadeopoly: The Card Game - 2-4 Players, Ages 12+, Average Play Time = 30 Minutes

Arcadeopoly: The Card Game – 2-4 Players, Ages 12+, Average Play Time = 30 Minutes



The game includes 54 cards and 4 counters.

Setup & Gameplay

Firstly, players will place the sixteen owners manuals cards and the three rule cards face-up, off to one side.  The three money track cards are laid out, with each player’s counter starting on the thirty quarters space.  The thirty-two card game deck is shuffled and each player gets one face-up.  The player with the highest quarters value on their card goes first.  These cards are shuffled back into the deck, then each player is dealt four face-down cards to form their starting hand.

During a player’s turn, they’ll choose one card from their hand to place into the discard pile with play continuing clockwise.  Once a player’s last card has been played, they may repair one of their games if needed and then draw four cards from the draw pile to refresh their hand.  They can also repair by playing that game’s play card and paying one quarter (by moving their token backward along the track.  Should the draw pile ever become empty, the discard pile is shuffled (along with the top games pile) to form a new draw pile.

Throughout the game, players will be collecting owners manual cards (which are visible to all player).  These represent the games in their arcade.  Should a game go out of order, it is flipped to the other side.  The draw pile (game deck) consists of a few different card types: Play, Free Cabinet, Game Crash, Top Games, and various cards that either earn you or make you lose quarters.

Play cards are the primary way of gaining cabinets (owners manual cards) and earning money, though you can lose money if you play a play card of a cabinet that belongs to your opponent.  When a play card is played and someone else owns the listed game, they’ll pay the owner the cost shown.  If the owner owns both games of that color or it is a top game, then the cost is doubled.  If the play card lists a game that you own or if its out of order, then you’ll simply play another card.  If no one owns the game listed on the play card, the player buys the game (putting the owners manual card in front of them) and pays the cost.

The free cabinet card allows the player to take one unowned owners manual shown on the card.  If both are owned, then they’ll take one from the owner (unless they are grouped cabinets).  In the case of grouped cabinets or if the player already owns both, then they play another card.  Game crash cards allow a player to flip an opponent’s owners manual card over so that it is out of order, though they must crash their own if no one else has any to flip.  If the card is played and no one can flip anything, then the player plays another card.  The top games card, when played, goes on top of the top games pile (it’s a separate pile) and any games shown on the card earns double.  The grouped cabinets and top games bonuses do not stack.  When one game in a grouped cabinet needs repaired, they revert to single cabinets and thus can change owners and be top games.

Players continue until one player reaches the green dot on the score track, or when someone falls off the track by losing all their money.  The player with the most money at that point, wins the game!

Editor’s Note: The above doesn’t cover all of the rules found in the manual, but should give you an idea as to how the game is played.

The Review

I’d like to start by getting my gripes out of the way.  The manual is a bit confusing and I had to read it several times in order to understand how some of the concepts came together.  In addition, I don’t understand why the arcade cabinets are referred to as “owners manuals cards”.  If they represent the games in your arcade, then why not call them “arcade cabinet cards”?  One of the cards, “Level 1”, forces you to go back to level 1 (has no effect on the game) and makes you lose three quarters.  I’m not sure how being forced to go back to level one would make a video gamer in real life be forced to pay money…unless it meant that the player died in-game and pumped in more quarters to continue playing.  I just felt the labeling of this card to be a bit off.

On a positive note, I absolutely love the theme.  I mean, who wouldn’t want to own their own arcade?  I like how you can group like-cabinets together, safeguarding them somewhat from other players and doubling their cost when played.  It reminds me a bit of “Monopoly” that way, though it is possible to lose one or both cabinets if one breaks and the game changes hands before repairs can be made.  It’s also a bit like “Monopoly” in the sense that you’re trying to acquire as many property cards as possible…well, in this case, “owners manual cards”…in order to increase the odds of someone playing your cabinets and paying you money.  The top games mechanic is a nice touch and I like that the games in question can rotate, depending on what card is on top of the deck at the present time.

“Arcadeopoly: The Card Game” is exactly what the name implies…”Monopoly” turned into a card game but with an arcade theme.  While it has flaws, the overall idea is sound and the play time is pretty short to boot.  You can find it on The Game Crafter for about $15, making it a fairly good value for what you’re getting here.

Final Verdict: 7/10

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