Swingin’ Report Show #90: Game Designer and International Video Game Hall of Fame Inductee Chris Tang

The SEGAbits Swingin’ Report Show is back with returning guest Chris Tang! Chris is a game designer and gaming tournament champion, and was recently inducted into the International Video Game Hall of Fame. SEGA fans know Chris as the winner of SEGA’s Sonic & Knuckles Rock the Rock competition in 1994, and before that Chris was a finalist in 1990’s Nintendo World Championships. Since then, Chris has worked on games at Atari and Capcom, including Gauntlet IV, Primal Rage, Street Fighter III, Rival Schools and Power Stone. Chris is also the yearly announcer for the Tetris World Championships and originator of the BOOM! Tetris for Jeff meme.

Currently, Chris is hard at work on Flight Armor Project: STRIKE HARBINGER (working title – subject to change), a new game inspired by classic SEGA titles like Space Harrier. The game combines the fast paced forward flying gameplay of Space Harrier with the RPG and combat elements of Phantasy Star while utilizing a unique arcade control structure that evokes Virtual On. The game is developed by HitSparks Games, and features the work of senior artist Kiyoshi Okuma, whose past work includes Gauntlet: Legends, World Series Baseball 2K2, The Sims 2 and Darkspore.

I sat down with Chris for an update on the development of Flight Armor Project: STRIKE HARBINGER, including the incredibly fun two player mode, and to discuss more of his past career, his work as an announcer for the Tetris World Championships and his recent induction into the International Video Game Hall of Fame.

Want more information on Flight Armor Project: STRIKE HARBINGER? Visit the official website!

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Galloping Ghost Arcade celebrates 600 games with SEGA’s Star Wars Arcade

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I really lucked out when I ended up buying a house 15 minutes away from the Galloping Ghost Arcade. Opened in 2010 in Brookfield, IL, Galloping Ghost Arcade has fast become the largest arcade in the world with 599 games available to play. Yesterday, that total hit 600 with a Mystery Monday reveal of SEGA AM3 and LucasArts’ Star Wars Arcade. This Model 1 game released in 1993 to Japanese arcades and remained an exclusive. Few machines are known to exist, with only three listed on Aurcade as being publicly playable in the US. The game is best known for its SEGA 32X port, which is a faithful home version of the game. However, having now played both I have to say that the arcade version feels much bigger and livelier, with a higher polygon count, more ships and more hazards. Interestingly, I did not notice the Y-Wing as being playable in the arcade version, with the one and two player co-op modes both piloting the X-Wing fighter.

SEGA News Bits: Strike Harbinger First Impressions and Exclusive Gameplay Footage

Get ready, as our Strike Harbinger coverage continues! In this SEGA News Bits, Barry talks George through what it was like playing an early arcade build of Strike Harbinger during its debut at Galloping Ghost Arcade‘s SEGA Week. Created by the game development and design studio HitSparks Games, which is co-owned by Lead Game Designer Chris Tang and Senior Artist Kiyoshi Okuma, Strike Harbinger takes inspiration from classic SEGA titles including Space Harrier and Phantasy Star. The game is not due out until 2017, but this early first look at the game shows a lot of promise! Featuring unique controls and RPG-style elements, there is a lot more to Strike Harbinger than you’d think. So click play above and hear what Barry thought of the game and see some lovely 1080p 60fps gameplay footage courtesy of the developers.

More SEGA Week coverage is to come, including even more Strike Harbinger details and footage, so stay tuned! If you enjoy the SEGA News Bits video formats make sure to like, share and subscribe to our YouTube for more.

Swingin’ Report Show #86: Strike Harbinger Game Designer and SEGA Tournament Champion Chris Tang

On this episode of the Swingin’ Report Show podcast, Barry sits down with game designer and gaming tournament champion Chris Tang at the Galloping Ghost Arcade’s SEGA Week. SEGA fans may know Chris best as the winner of SEGA’s Sonic & Knuckles Rock the Rock competition in 1994, and before that Chris was a finalist in 1990’s Nintendo World Championships. Since then, Chris has worked on games at Atari and Capcom, including Gauntlet IV, Primal Rage, Street Fighter III, Rival Schools and Power Stone. Now, Chris is hard at work on a new game inspired by classic SEGA titles like Space Harrier and Phantasy Star. The game, titled Strike Harbinger, combines the fast paced forward flying gameplay of Space Harrier with the RPG and combat elements of Phantasy Star while utilizing a unique control structure that evokes Virtual On.

Strike Harbinger – developed by Chris’s company HitSparks Games – was revealed Saturday, April 30th at Galloping Ghost Arcade where I had the pleasure to meet Chris and the game’s Senior Artist Kiyoshi Okuma, whose past work includes Gauntlet: Legends, World Series Baseball 2K2, The Sims 2 and Darkspore. I also had the honor to be the first member of the public to play the game, and following that experience I chatted with Chris about his life as a tournament gamer, his career, and his plans for Strike Harbinger. 

Want more information on Strike Harbinger? Stay tuned for an upcoming SEGA News Bits as well as a SEGA Week writeup!

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Galloping Ghost Arcade’s SEGA Week tournament games revealed

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SEGA Week at Galloping Ghost Arcade in Brookfield, IL (just outside Chicago) kicks off today! While we have a lot of fun stuff planned for this Saturday the 30th, dubbed SEGAbits Saturday (which you can read more about here), all week long you can take part in tournaments for ten SEGA arcade games. Simply show up to the arcade, ask the front desk for more information, and start playing. But what will you be playing? That was a mystery… until today.

While we knew there would be some new games added to the arcade as part of the tournament, the big surprise was that all games in the tournament are new to the arcade! Players will battle for the high scores in: The rare SEGA AM2 action game Arabian Fight, the Tetris-like puzzler Bloxeed, the classic puzzle game ColumnsFantasy Zone starring everyone’s favorite Opa Opa, the 2D fighter Golden Axe the Duel, Zaxxon‘s sequel/revision Super Zaxxon and the Westone developed Wonder Boy, the beat ’em up Fist of the North Star, and biggest of all (literally) the sit down deluxe Galaxy Force II! So come on over to Galloping Ghost Arcade all week long for dozens of classic SEGA arcade games and more.

Note: Astro Blaster has been pulled due to technical issues, but will be replaced with another game soon.

Meet Sonic & Knuckles Rock the Rock champion Chris Tang at Galloping Ghost Arcade’s SEGA Week

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SEGA Week at Galloping Ghost Arcade in Brookfield, IL runs from April 25th to the 30th, and we’re excited to announce a special guest who will be in attendance all week long: Sonic & Knuckles Rock the Rock finalist and champ Chris Tang! Back in 1994, SEGA of America held an insane Sonic & Knuckles event on Alcatraz Island dubbed “Rock the Rock”, featuring TV coverage by MTV and co-hosting duties by Daisy Fuentes. Sounds crazy, right? Well that’s the 90s for you. Chris Tang’s other accomplishments include the 1990 Nintendo World Championships grand finals and in later years becoming a creator in the game industry, contributing to franchises that include Street Fighter, Transformers, Marvel vs. Capcom and Power Stone.

If you live in the area, or have never visited Chicago, head on over to the Galloping Ghost Arcade! On April 30th join us for SEGAbits Saturday, which will highlight the many SEGA games celebrating anniversaries as well as the arcade originals of the SEGA 3D Classics titles – SEGA 3D Classics Collection releases that same week to the Nintendo 3DS. We also plan to feature special tournaments with prizes . There will also be surprise reveals of classic SEGA arcade machines, playable for the first time at the arcade, and Chris Tang will be there.

Join us for SEGA Week at Galloping Ghost Arcade in Brookfield, IL, April 25th to 30th

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SEGAbits is excited and honored to reveal that we’ll be collaborating with Galloping Ghost Arcade, America’s largest arcade, for SEGA Week from Monday, April 25th to Saturday, April 30th at midnight. Galloping Ghost Arcade is located just outside Chicago in Brookfield, IL, and features over 500 classic and modern arcade machines, and several of them are made by SEGA. SEGA Week’s main focus will be tournaments covering 10 SEGA arcade titles, of which will remain a mystery until the day of the tournament. Still, if you want an idea of what to expect, the arcade has SEGA titles which include OutRun, Space Harrier, Thunder Blade, Monkey Ball, Crazy Taxi, Zaxxon, SegaSonic the Hedgehog, Sonic Championship, Michael Jackson’s Moonwalker, Golden Axe, Golden Axe: The Revenge of Death Adder and several more.

On April 30th join us for SEGAbits Saturday, which will highlight the many SEGA games celebrating anniversaries as well as the arcade originals of the SEGA 3D Classics titles – SEGA 3D Classics Collection releases that same week to the Nintendo 3DS. We also plan to feature special tournaments with prizes courtesy of SEGA and Archie Comics. There will also be surprise reveals of classic SEGA arcade machines, playable for the first time at the arcade, and you might even encounter a special guest or two.

More details to be shared as SEGA Week draws near, but make sure to mark both the week and SEGAbits Saturday on your calendar now as it is an event that is not to be missed! For details on the arcade and more, visit the Galloping Ghost website and the SEGA Week event page on Facebook.

After the break, check out some photos of the arcade, just to get a sense of the size and selection of games. It’s huge.