I’ll admit I have been so engrossed in my Switch - and a bit of Star Wars Fallen Order - of late the Capcom Home Arcade has kind of crept up on me.
But I love surprises... and this bad boy did not disappoint.
Everything about the Capcom Home Arcade is big and bold.
The unit itself, the logo, the price and the claim that it offers ‘The greatest Capcom arcade games experienced on the ultimate home arcade’.
There are 16 games pre-loaded on the Capcom Home Arcade including 1944: The Loop Master, Alien vs. Predator, Armored Warriors, Capcom Sports Club, Captain Commando, Cyberbots: Fullmetal Madness, Darkstalkers: The Night Warriors, Eco Fighters, Final Fight, Ghouls ‘n Ghosts, Giga Wing, Mega Man: The Power Battle, Progear, Street Fighter II’ Hyper Fighting, Strider and Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo.
But let’s address the look and size of the CHA first. From what I have read so far the unit itself - both in aesthetic and practical terms - is very Marmite.
Some love it, others hate it.
Certainly the use of the Capcom logo to shape the unit itself is a brave move. But I love it, it is hands down the coolest bit of kit in my living room. Yes it can be a touch impractical when playing alone, but nothing a table or cushion next to you won’t solve.
What must be clear is that this is a premium piece of hardware, not just the latest console gaming gimmick.
The unit boasts two competition class Sanwa JLF-TP-8YT control sticks with 8-way GT-Y directional gates and OBSF buttons which Capcom say - with some justification - provide the finest precision, response times and durability.
It feels top drawer in the hand and if the brilliant selection of games themselves doesn’t tug on your nostalgic heartstrings then the feel of the arcade sticks and buttons certainly will.
This is aimed at hardcore gamers and Capcom fans. The price - it will set you back around £200 in the UK - has raised eyebrows.
If you say £50 of that is the hardware itself, it means each game works out around £9. And many of them, such as Final Fight, Alien vs Predator Street Fighter II Hyper Fighting and Progear, are well worth it and more.
Two-player action is where the CHA comes into its own. Not only in terms of fun but also the unit’s physical stability while playing.
You can upload your top scores via the CHA’s onboard WiFi to a Worldwide High Score Leaderboard and it is hoped - although not confirmed - that new comes could be added via the internet in the future.
The CHA is premium retro gaming, the likes of which we have never seen before in terms of overall package. It’s not perfect but my goodness is this one cool, badass piece of hardware with the games to match. A must for any hardcore gamers of the 1980s and 90s.