Tacoma

Old-school gamers enjoy Pinball and Arcade Show in Tacoma

Old-school gamers enjoy Pinball and Arcade Show in Tacoma
TACOMA -- Andy Sampson is a die-hard arcader and at the 5th Annual Northwest Pinball Arcade show he's in good company.

Hundreds of gamers will flock to Tacoma this weekend to slay some dragons and rescue a princess.

It's all part of the Northwest Pinball and Arcade Show - which happens to be the the largest arcade set up in the Northwest.

This is a place that has self proclaimed pinball nerds flipping over those little plastic bats.

A moment to live out their childhoods for a new generation.

"I have a young son on the way so for me this is a chance to be able to enjoy what I had when I was little and be able to show my son in the future some of the fun things I grew up with," Sampson said.

For most people here these 400 pinball and arcade games are a hobby.

Most have collected these since video games sent the arcade industry into a tailspin in the 1990s.

"It's kind of like our Disneyland. we get all the games out the public gets to come out and enjoy them," Halligan of the Northwest Pinball Arcade Show.

In this magical kingdom, the pinball wizard reigns.

"It gets your adrenaline going," said Yvonne Harvey Shea, who will be 75 years old next month.

This is her first time enchanting others with her pinball prowess.

She's only been playing three months.

In that time she's gone from owning one machine to five.

"If I would have started earlier I would probably have 100 like some of our friends have," she said.

A lot of the machines' mechanics are 30 years old.

They require a lot of upkeep.

Whether or not the industry survives, Sampson said his son will play.

"If I have to fly him to Japan I will, I don't care," Sampson said. "I will find a way to have him play these games."

The pinball and arcade show continues thorough Sunday. It costs just $20 for unlimited play.