Book Review: Sega Arcade: Pop-Up History – A Gloriously Decadent Tribute To A Golden Age | Nintendo Life

Taiken your breath away.

To anyone who didn’t experience them firsthand, it’s hard to accurately convey the mesmerising power of amusement arcades in the ’80s and ’90s. A furious storm of light, sound and smell (the latter not always pleasant, we should add), your typical arcade was dominated by flashing screens and packed, jostling bodies. This was raw ‘social’ gaming before online play came long and connected the entire globe; your mettle was tested against friends and complete strangers, with victory and defeat playing out in a very public arena.

However, for a certain period of arcade gaming’s ‘golden years’, the biggest attraction was not the spectacle of beating all comers at your favourite one-on-one fighter, but stepping into one of Sega’s many ‘Taiken’ arcade machines. Taiken stands for ‘body sensation’ and was Sega’s answer to restoring some excitement in the otherwise uniform world of arcade cabinets.

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