Thinking about the arcade brings back a wave of nostalgia.
Back in my secondary school days, we would change out of our uniforms and convene there after school. For most people, the arcade was the place of many memorable group outings and for some, perhaps even the location of a jittery first date.
It’s been a while since I’ve stepped into an arcade but after seeing the photos of the swanky new Timezone outlet at VivoCity, I was so stoked to visit it and relive those days of glory.
After having a go at most of the games at the new outlet, here are 10 things to do at this Timezone flagship store, currently the hippest arcade in Singapore.
1. Race At Top Speed In The Exhilarating Bumper Cars
The Bumper Car ride was one of the most thrilling games in the new Timezone outlet and a definite must-try (Yes! Bumper cars in an indoor arcade!).
The whole arena is decked out with pulsing neon lights, resembling a futuristic discotheque. You’ll have four minutes per game to zoom around and ram into your opponents at full speed! The impact of collision is rather strong and simply exhilarating.
Unlike normal bumper cars, there are no pedals, so you’ll have to navigate by pulling or pushing on two levers instead.
Unfortunately, there’s sure to be that one friend who just can’t get the hang of the controls. When the game ends, share a good laugh over how that poor soul was whirling around in circles!
Price: S$8 per pax
2. Score A Strike At The Mini Bowling Station
Here’s another novel game that you wouldn’t expect to see in an arcade — Mini Bowling.
This fun-sized version is great for families. Entertain the kids with adorable-themed graphics such as Bubblegum or Birthday. These bowling balls are a lot lighter than your typical ones, making it easier for kids and beginners to score.
For teens and adults, remove the bumpers at the side to properly battle it out.
Confident that scoring a strike with this mini version will be a breeze? Raise the stakes then! How about having the loser top up the credits for the whole group?
Price: S$6 per pax
3. Reminisce With The New & Improved Arcade Classics
Of course, amidst all these funky new games, we can’t forget about the arcade classics — a game of good ol’ racing or a bout of basketball.
Sticking to the neon theme of the flagship outlet, these traditional arcade games have undergone a face lift. The normal “car seats” are decked out with a strip of neon lights and even the ubiquitous basketball station has LED lights framing it.
Price: S$2.50 per pax
4. Wipe Out Your Opponents With Unusual Weapons
We’re all used to unleashing our anger at the shooting games but have you ever shot down the bad guys with a… vacuum cleaner lookalike? Give this unusual weapon of choice a try at Luigi’s Mansion.
For those scoffing at the previous station for being too cutesy, why not show off your marksmanship against a never-ending onslaught of zombies? Ditch that boring gun and try firing with this crossbow at The Walking Dead station.
Price: S$3.50 per pax
5. Work Up A Sweat At Dance Dance Revolution (DDR)
For a workout session in the arcade, I strongly recommend you to try a game of Dance Dance Revolution.
The game looks deceptively simple but it’ll have most people questioning their psychomotor skills. Between all that jumping around and trying to catch the beat, you’re in for a mini workout.
I still remember the good old days of being a teen with limitless energy and stamina — playing three consecutive games was a breeze. Now, two rounds into the first game and my heart was racing and beads of sweat were already forming.
Price: S$2.80 per pax
6. Unleash Your Competitive Spirit With Air Hockey
Another game that’s great for groups that will get your adrenaline pumping is the Air Hockey station.
Don’t be distracted by all the vibrant colours or the flashing lights because the machine will suddenly release an onslaught of discs that will have you fumbling.
From the loud whoops and screams emitting from the players, this is one game that will surely have your competitive spirit all fired up.
Price: S$2.80 per pax
7. Score Some Tickets & Save Up For The Big Prizes
There are two types of visitors when it comes to the arcade: those who are there purely to enjoy the games and those who have their eyes set on the prize (aka, you’re there to score tickets to redeem some merchandise).
As someone who’s part of the former group, I usually don’t bother with winning tickets. After all, most of the time we don’t earn enough to redeem the really good prizes and if we try to save up to redeem bigger prizes, chances are the tickets will just end up lost and forgotten.
But, with Timezone’s new system, you can now convert your paper tickets into e-tickets that will be stored inside your Timezone card. No more lost and wasted tickets!
Here’s a tip if you’re looking for a game where you can win a lot of tickets at one shot!
After a game at the Space Invaders station with my strategy of “shoot everything that’s blinking on the screen”, I found myself the proud winner of 100 tickets (life hack!).
Price: S$2.80 per pax
8. Redeem Adorable Toys & Quirky Board Games At The New Prize Shop
Another exciting feature of the revamped Timezone arcade is its new and improved prize store.
Instead of peering across the counter and pointing at your desired prize (no not that, the one on the left, yes that!), you can now shop for the prize you like, take it off the shelf and pay with your tickets on the way out.
We saw some really interesting board games up for grabs and there were plenty of other merchandise too, ranging from soft toys to glow sticks and even portable power banks.
9. Conduct A Creative Photoshoot With The Neon Lights
If you haven’t heard of Brandon Woelfel, have you even been on Instagram recently?
With the neon lights and playful vibe at the VivoCity Timezone arcade, it’s perfect for a Brandon Woelfel-inspired photoshoot. Position your subject in front of the colourful lights, use a shallow depth of field and have fun clicking away!
Of course, please be considerate and don’t hog the machines.
10. Rent A Party Room For Maximum Fun
The Party Room at the Timezone arcade is great for throwing a memorable party. Not only will you have a fantastic view overlooking the Sentosa Boardwalk, the package also comes with a session of fun and games at the arcade!
With over 80 games that span across 12,000 square feet, the revamped Timezone flagship store is sure to be great fun for both the young and the young at heart! Perhaps now I can convince my friends to drop by the arcade the next time we’re in VivoCity or when we’re heading back from Sentosa.
Prices: From S$2.80 per game