ReplayFX Arcade and Video Game Festival Finishes With a Bang


The world’s largest pinball tournament, the Pinburgh Match-Play Championship, and the accompanying video game festival hosted by ReplayFX Arcade wrapped up this past weekend, and initial reactions show it was yet another successful year. With over 530 pins, 300 arcade games and 225 consoles with thousands of games filling 250,000 square feet of show room floor, the festival was a huge success for those looking to get their fix of gaming on any and every format possible. (FYI: The event is not affiliated with RePlay Magazine.)

“Our attendance this year was phenomenal,” said festival director Mark Steinman. “We eclipsed well over 10,000 people, and when you wrap up all the numbers it was at least a 27 percent increase on last year’s festival.”
Those 10,000 plus attendees were treated to myriad of entertaining, educational and emotional events. Pinburgh, a main driver of the show, hosted 700 different competitors that came from around the world to play pinball, and according to Steinman, 200 more people were stuck on the waiting list hoping to get a chance to prove their mettle. Every spot for the competition sold out less than 90 minutes after tickets went on sale.
Keith Elwin won the tournament, with second place going to Karl DeAngelo, third to Cryss Stephens and fourth to Raymond Davidson.

Players fought for over $100,000 in prize money, so needless to say, the competition was stiff. This was the second year the Replay Foundation has hosted the ReplayFX Arcade and Video Game Festival, and what started six years ago as Pinburgh has only continued to grow. Steinman is already talking with other festival organizers about how to fit 1,000 players into Pinburgh, and more attendees on to the festival floor.

“Last year we moved to the convention center, and figured if we’re going to all that trouble why not just throw this giant party, gaming convention,” Steinman said.

ReplayFX is set to grow into new areas next year, with Steinman assuring that the team is working on new avenues of fun. This year featured an entire portion dedicated to VR gaming, with a cordoned off area for motion-based, immersive fun. For next year, Steinman hopes to bring in a dance competition on Andamiro’s Pump It Up and Konami’s classic Dance Dance Revolution games. There will be prize money for the best competitors, and Steinman believes the sheer fun of watching talented dancers will become a staple of the festival.

“We’re looking at expansion, we want to get this as big as possible as fast as possible,” Steinman said. “And with the quality of the partnerships we’ve been building and the feedback and reviews we’re getting from attendees, we’re set to keep growing. Our main theme is to have the greatest arcade in the universe, and I think we’ve done it this year.”

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