Arcade Flyer Archive Revisits the Past

In order to advertise their products, such as a Ms. Pac-man cocktail table for sale, video game developers invested time and money in their graphic design team, responsible for creating posters that would draw in arcade owners, convincing them they were looking at the “next big thing” – the game that was sure to draw a crowd.

Today, a website called the Arcade Flyer Archive has immortalized many classic arcade game posters and inducing nostalgia in many for the old days when the neighborhood arcade was the top local hangout.

Who Were the Posters Designed For?

Nowadays, if you want to buy your own arcade cabinet, that’s a convenient option. You can install a cabinet in your finished basement, your garage, and even your bedroom, if your spouse can stand it. Back in the golden age of arcade games, game manufacturers had one primary group of customers: arcade owners.

Because of this fact, searching through the archive of arcade flyers makes viewers realize how different these posters are than modern day movie flyers or any similar marketing material. The flyers were not intended for the public, but to sell arcade owners on the purchase. Most of the posters, while portraying some incredible artwork, clearly state the dimensions and the weight of each cabinet. This information would have been essential for arcade owners interested in filling an open space on their arcade floor, but who didn’t want to purchase a cabinet unless it fit their layout.

Additionally, many posters described the material the cabinet was made of. For arcade owners, buying a solid upright cabinet was an investment. They didn’t want to waste money on a game that would constantly need repairs, no matter how popular. The poster advertising the game Maneater describes the product as a “creative cabinet of reinforced fiberglass,” made of “solid state digital components,” with a “200 CMF cooling fan” included.

The flyers also always noted the cost to play, helping the owner quickly tally up their potential profits. Arcade owners were attracted to games that would hook people, because then they’d want to come back next week and spend their pocket money again. When applicable, games always advertised multiple levels and addictive game play, catching the interest of arcade owners.

To dig into the collection of arcade flyers and travel back in time with eye-catching graphics and design, visit the Arcade Flyer Archive website today.