OPINION: Is the Megacade a Pirate’s Haven, Retrogaming Mecca or …?

For a couple years now, my son has been talking about buying a Megacade from Extreme Home Arcades: https://extremehomearcades.com/

You might have seen these arcade cabinet gaming beasts. These machines are mammoth in both stature/size and the tens of thousands of included games it allows gamers to play in their homes.

Before getting to the machine, it’s important we cover some disclaimers:

  1. I’m not an attorney, this is not legal advice in any way, nor should any of this piece be considered legal advice. Consult somebody that is licensed and can provide that professional service, you won’t be getting any of that herein
  2. I believe in respecting copyright — to a point

My son isn’t interested in the Megacade for the new stuff, he buys all that new, so the companies are getting that new $$$, he’s interested in games he played as a kid. Could he build his own emulation machine for less? Yes. Some people just don’t want the headache/hassle of doing that. Remember PGM Member Kevgret saying he wanted a pre-built virtual pinball awhile back. I think folks like this are more common and the reason these machines are built and sold and it’s not necessarily to infringe current viable game libraries. Yes, some of the people purchasing that do see this as a goal, but I’d argue it’s a much smaller % than the game companies will tell you. We just don’t know.

A game that is “free” like Rocket League isn’t about buying the game anyway, it’s about the social experience, the online, the skins, the micropayments … Megacade does not do anything for this type of game.

Is he interested in reading every issue of Nintendo Power on the Megacade? I doubt it, but it’s a cool gaming reference for the older games. Nintendo should be selling licenses to their entire Nintendo Power library so people can legally buy and own these great magazines. Sure, there is the ebay route, and then one could buy every physical issue, scan them him/herself, but there’s no arguing the convenience of a digital reference.

That’s their problem, they feel like the magazines, the physical ones, are the only ones they want people to have … and physical stuff fades, wears out, ends … and the creativity is lost without the digital version and/or some archival backup. This is just one of many ways Nintendo loses when they could win in most people’s eyes. People aren’t stealing from them when they hoard their property like it can make them rich forever. It can ‘t — and won’t.

Sooner or later somebody with a war chest greater than Nintendo will fight them in court and this will all be decided for future generations. I think the courts will ultimately weigh that historical archival is more important than establishing some sort of forever copyright system. This means that gaming companies will have X/XX years of commercial viability and then after abandoning or not renewing it becomes part of the public domain. And renewals should not be endlessly generational. Donkey Kong, Mario, these should become part of public domain at some point in time. No longer something Nintendo can solely profit from.

The characters, yes, as long as they are creating new works with them, but not every single game they have created with those characters. Just like MIckey Mouse and Disney. Sooner or later the characters will also become public domain. It should be this way with every single creative work on the planet, regardless who creates and controls it. And for how long.

But let’s get back to the Megacade. Is this simply, realistically a pirate’s haven? Or is it a convenient way to experience virtually every retrogame and arcade game made (that will run on the current hardware)? One could build their own system from the heart of a higher end gaming PC. In fact, you don’t even need a higher spec PC to emulate many of the older systems.

This is more of a moral/ethical question than valid one: of course it’s a pirate’s haven! Nobody on earth has bought and owns all 50,000+ of the games advertised. If someone does, they’ve got one huge home and storage facility.

On a past Twitch stream, I mentioned wishing they sold this with only a small few games configured with the arcade controls and then let the customer customize what games s/he/they want to add to it. One of their customers, a PGM member, was in chat and told me they would work to customize the setup, so this would be one way to own a more legit, if you will, Megacade. This, of course, assumes the owner loads only games s/he/they own.

Of course none of this addresses the non-gaming content that’s packed into the Megacade like full movies. Yes, this thing actually plays DVDs, Blu-Rays and the like as well. Pretty much anything you can play on your computer ripped from the movie files — legally, of course 😉

I also remarked not wanting to watch movies on an arcade cabinet, as the screen is angled wrong for watching movies, but was corrected by the Megacade owner that said the experience was actually pretty good. After all, Megacades come with a high screen. Personally, I’d rather watch movies on a 4K TV mounted in/away from games, but suppose this would be convenient.

We queued up JAWS from our Vudu/Fandango account — legally purchased — at our HUO (Home Use Only) Stern Pinball Jaws Launch Part over Easter 2024 and it played in the background on the 4K TV. I do see the interest in having movies on there.

But that goes back to the “movies you own” vs. not own, again making Megacades that by default have this content on their machine the equivalent of having those illegal cable boxes that could bypass and get all the movie channels for free.

What are your thoughts on the Megacade? Too pricey? Great deal? No interest? Some interest?

Spread the love

Related Post

3 thoughts on “OPINION: Is the Megacade a Pirate’s Haven, Retrogaming Mecca or …?”
  1. Too pricy. I’ve heard good and bad about their customer service. With the number of games on it, I doubt they have configured the controls AND sensitivity settings for every game. The spinner setting on Tempest, may not be the same as arkanoid. How are you playing Ikari Warriors or BattleZone? That is what people want from a pre built, turn it on and play, no fiddling with control settings. Then, you get into the modern games. Everyone has their line in the sand on emulation/piracy. Adding current Steam/Epic games, let alone the Nintendo stuff, I have no idea how these companies get away with it. I feel they are overpriced for what they are. Filled with too many games you will never play or probably even look at.

    1. The larger number of games “50,000!!!!! games” is what are selling these because gamers think: wow, I’ll never have to buy another game system. Bought a Pandora in 2023 and it was one of my least favorite game purchases ever because of all the same games with different title names and the horrible UI that made it cumbersome to favorite the games you like. Am sure there are better Pandora Boxes, but that’s $200 vs. $10,000+ here.

  2. HI Todd!

    I think the Megacade is way overpriced and like ED said, there’s no way they have all 5000+ games configured correctly. If you want a great 2 player arcade cabinet just get a OG Irrcade if you can find and put all the games you want on it with the Team Encoder HDMI kit. Just join the Packs R US Discord and you get for yourself 90% of all the arcade games out there pre-configured and just push the ones you REALLY want to your machine. I’ve got a Ultimate arcade cabinet for $250 with great screen, controls and frequent game updates.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *