General Chaos Arcade Party on September 28 lets Chicago gamers party like it's 1989.
Longtime independent game development studio Game Refuge today finalized plans for its General Chaos Arcade Party, to be held at the Galloping Ghost Arcade in Brookfield. It’s a rare opportunity for Chicago-area video-game fans to meet and compete with the creators of classic games like Arch Rivals, Rampage World Tour, Pigskin and many more.
“A lot of people think that video games originate from Silicon Valley or Japan and nowhere else,” says Chris Bieniek, a former video-game magazine editor-in-chief who also serves on the board of directors at the VideogameHistory Museum. “They don’t realize that some of the most popular games of all time were developed right here in Chicagoland. And that some of the people who made them are still in the area, still making great games.”
“Chicago was the epicenter of arcade game development in the golden age of video games,” says Brian Colin, a 31-year industry veteran whose earliest game credits include hits like Discs of Tron, Spy Hunter and Rampage. Recent articles in Chicago Magazine and on the Kotaku website have spotlighted Chicago's thriving indie game development scene, of which Colin has been a cornerstone ever since he left Bally/Midway to form Game Refuge Inc. in 1992. “The formats keep changing, but nothing can compare with the ‘social gaming experience’ of a packed arcade on a Saturday night.”
In addition to celebrating the arcade legacy of Chicago-based game designers, the event will also be a rallying cry for a Kickstarter campaign mounted by Game Refuge to fund the development of General Chaos II: Sons of Chaos. The new game is a modern sequel to the company’s first independently-developed product, a “multiplayer battlegame of paramilitary pandemonium” that became a cult favorite on the Sega Genesis game console.