City That Drinks
Bar Arcade still has some work to do before it reaches the next level.
Published: May 1, 2013
2324 Boston St., (410) 800-2464
Bar Arcade isn’t a new bar so much as it is a new theme for some of the space inside Horse with No Name (pictured), in Canton. Even so, it’s still the first attempt to bring a full-on video game arcade/bar hybrid—an idea so good, every neighborhood should have one by now—to Baltimore. Johnny Rad’s has Skee-Ball, which is cool, and other places have maybe a game or two, but there’s nothing akin to Penn Social in Washington, D.C. or Barcade in Brooklyn, a place with video game cabinets dating back to the Reagan years.
On its Facebook page, Bar Arcade lists more than 40 titles you can play, but it’s a bit deceiving because the majority of those titles are housed in one cabinet, a Multicade which we were told wasn’t working when we stopped by. All told, there are nine consoles, which, in addition to the Multicade, include bar staples Golden Tee and Big Buck Hunter, the first-person shooter Area 51, Ms. Pac Man, NFL Blitz 2000, Street Fighter III, Skee-Ball, and pop-a-shot basketball. And for those of you who shoot pool, they have two tables.
It’s a decent start. On a Sunday night, we got in a full round of 18 holes in Golden Tee, shot a few games of pool, and pretty much had the games to ourselves—plus, you know, beer, which is great. The offerings are a bit slim, but the bartender told us there are plans to bring in a lot more video game cabinets in the near future. Bar Arcade still has some work to do before it reaches the next level. With any luck, some day soon, we’ll all be playing Donkey Kong while sipping local brews, like God intended.
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