Many of the game consoles people grew up with are most likely hidden away, collecting dust in the attic.
That’s why Chris Munasinha, owner of Arcade Vaults, has created a community for creative gamers to enjoy the nostalgia that retro videogames bring. From the original Pac-Man to modern day classics like Fortnite – gamers can play the most iconic games of the past five decades.
Located in the historic High Street Arcade, the gaming shop spans two floors with one for gaming, and another where developers can create their own games.
Chris said: “There’s no other place that I know of, certainly not in Cardiff that has quite a large array of video games going back so far, and then a combined workplace for people to meet and hang out. It’s also the only arcade in an arcade that I know of in the UK.”
“The pandemic has been hard for us as it has been for everyone. Just before everything locked down, we were hitting our stride because we’d only been open just over a year by that point. And it was quite hard for us to lose all that momentum.”
With people being physically apart, Chris decided to adapt the business and provide online streaming services for his regular and loyal customers to virtually come together.
He said: “Our tagline is about the community. We’re a not-for-profit community interest company. Our goal is to always grow the video game community and not just a place to drink and play games, but to meet people.
“The uniqueness of the arcades in Cardiff really appeals to the uniqueness of our community. It works well, it fits our ethos and retro aesthetic.
“The independent, unique businesses that you don’t get on the high street are the key to the arcades. People can just explore these arcades and find something completely different that they wouldn’t find anywhere else.”