• Open Noon-2:30AM Daily
  • All Ages Admitted Until 5PM
  • 21+ & I.D. Required After 5PM

New Year’s Eve Free Play Party! Wednesday 12/31

NYE Free Play PartyWe’ve made it through another awesome year preserving classic gaming here at Ground Kontrol, and it’s time to party!

Blast to the Future, our New Year’s Eve party upgrades our popular twice-monthly free play parties to give you the best time you can imagine counting down 2014! In addition to free play on over 80 arcade games and pinball tables, we’ll have DJs, fantastic food & drink specials, and a balloon drop & champagne toast at midnight!

It’s just $15 at the door to party all night, but get here early – Ground Kontrol has a limited capacity!

WHAT: Blast to the Future: New Year’s Eve Free Play Party

WHEN: Wednesday, December 31st. Doors at 5pm.

COVER: $15 cash at the door, 21+ only w/ ID. Access depends on capacity – if we’re full, we’ll have to hold a line at the door, so get here early!

Categories: Arcade News, Events

All-Ages Free Play Party – Wednesday 12/31

All-Ages Free Play Party!Get a head start on your New Year’s Eve celebrations by bringing your family to Ground Kontrol for an all-day Free Play Party!

Ground Kontrol’s first-ever Family Free Play offers all ages a chance to experience our entire selection of arcade games and pinball tables for one low price at the door. Whether you’re new to Pac-Man or a pinball pro, you’ll get your money’s worth and discover some new favorite games, too!

We’ll also have our full food menu available for snack breaks between your marathon sessions on The Simpsons arcade game, Spider-Man pinball or over 80 other classic selections from the 70s, 80s, 90s and beyond.

Planning to hit our New Year’s Eve celebration, too? If you’re 21+, just purchase a wristband and you’ll be able to keep the retro revelry going all night long! Starting at 5pm, our full bar opens for our NYE Free Play Party featuring DJs, food and drink specials, and a champagne toast at midnight!

Blast to the future at Ground Kontrol, where we’re going to party like it’s 1979!

WHAT: All-Ages Free Play Party
WHEN: Wednesday, December 31st, 11am-5pm. (NOTE: If you’re 21+, you can purchase a $20 wristband before 5pm for access to both Family Free Play and the evening NYE Party.)
COVER: $5 cash at the door. All ages welcome until 5pm! If you plan to come to the evening NYE Party starting at 5pm, you can either buy a $20 wristband before 5pm or pay $15 at the door starting at 5pm. 21+ only w/ ID after 5pm. Access depends on capacity: If we’re full, we’ll have to hold a line at the door, so arrive early!

Indie Game Night – Wednesday 11/26, 5-8pm

SkyhookThis month, we’re hosting a special edition of Indie Game Night during our Last Wednesday Free Play Party, since we’re closed Thursday 11/27 for Thanksgiving! Come down early, as we’ll be set up at 5pm. It’s happy hour at Ground Kontrol until 7pm, too!

Play some of our favorite featured games, including:

What is Indie Game Night?

We live in a golden age of independent game development and Portland needs a central event to showcase these games! Many games are being made to allow several people in the same room to face each other in a fun, friendly, inviting, and community driven way. Ground Kontrol Classic Arcade and musician/games writer Matt Hunter have taken up the call!

Indie Game Night is a showcase of independently developed multiplayer games for folks to play for FREE with other patrons. Games include 2-4 player death-match, experimental, and high score races from developers from all over the world as well as local developers. We plan on hosting game-themed nights, tournaments, developer spotlights, and much more! A gaming community is far too important to let go stagnant and this is the hub we need to unify everyone who loves games of all kinds.

Above all else, we want a fun experience for those who are familiar with games as well as those who are interested in a welcoming introduction. The games we will be showing will be basic to learn but tough to master. Only the highest quality concepts get featured. We have the tough job of researching the best indie games out there and playing these games for hours to filter out what could work – and what doesn’t!

Come join us! It’s free and a great place to try out some new games while testing your mettle against other players!

Ground Kontrol serves a full bar and food menu nightly, and is 21+ only after 5pm.

WHAT: Indie Game Night
WHEN: Special edition – Wednesday 11/26, 5-8pm. Repeats every Last Thursday at 7pm.
COVER: $5 entry because it’s also Free Play Night! 21+ only.

Raiders of the Lost Arcade: Wizard of Wor

Wizard of WorWizard of Wor is an unforgettable classic from the “golden age” of arcade games. With a unique mix of sci-fi and fantasy themes, the game takes after the popular maze-type games of the era, with some added shooter elements. Two players, who can choose whether or not to cooperate, contend with corridors filled with a variety of monsters. Taking out each class of enemy brings out the “heavyweights,” which are tougher enemies as the game progresses. Proper termination of these foes allows for double score opportunities, and a chance to zap the Wizard of Wor himself. A few of these higher-tier monster types have the ability to turn invisible, and the player must rely on the radar, seen below the maze.

Wizard of Wor was an early game to use speech synthesis, and this feature is used mainly as a way for the Wizard to taunt the player. The list of taunts is impressive for the time, as the Wizard has over sixty remarks in his vocabulary! His tormenting phrases add to a particularly engrossing aural experience, as Wizard of Wor’s music is bold, loud, and evocative. It all adds up to a rich, well-themed experience, and a combat maze game like no other!

CLOSED For Thanksgiving – Thursday 11/27

CLOSED For ThanksgivingGround Kontrol Classic Arcade will be closed for business Thursday 11/27 so our staff can celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday with family and friends – and our games can take a break, too!

We’ll re-open for regular business Friday 11/28 at Noon.

Thank you to all of our excellent customers, fans and friends for another great year at Ground Kontrol. We hope you have a happy Thanksgiving and we’ll see you Friday at Noon!

Categories: Arcade News

New in the Arcade: Point Blank

Point BlankNamco’s 1994 classic Point Blank is a different kind of gun game: It’s silly, colorful, inventive and unique! Instead of a cops-and-robbers or zombies-must-die bloodbath, Point Blank employs a wide variety of mini games that genuinely require some dedicated sharpshooting. The game moves quickly, and one or two players get a lot of different goals, rules and targets to blast in a frenzy of creative action. Game modes include accuracy duels, hair-trigger speed shooting, memory challenges and more. Point Blank thrives on variation, and no two games are exactly alike!

All of this adds up to a shooting experience that is wildly entertaining, rather competitive, and refreshingly simple. Despite its simple appearance, Point Blank is nothing if not challenging, and it takes a while of playing seriously to get good at it. It’s a rewarding challenge, with a carnival of gunplay that’s worth every credit!

We’re proud to add this stylized shooter to our line-up. Stop by and try it today!

Categories: Events, No Pun Intendo

No Pun Intendo – Stand-Up Showcase feat. Alex Falcone – Thursday 11/20

No Pun IntendoStand-Up Comics & Stand-Up Games! Every Third Thursday, No Pun Intendo brings fantastic comedians to our lounge! Plus – video game competitions between teams of audience members with fabulous prizes!

This month, we’re featuring…

Aaron Klopfer
Lucia Fasano
Nick Walker
Derek Sheen
Alex Falcone

Hosted by Portland’s Funniest Person 2014, Steven Wilber!

Just $3 at the door to support local comedy at your favorite arcade-slash-bar! Show starts at 9pm. It’s 21+, so bring your I.D.!

We’d like to thank our sponsor The Devastator – The Comedy Magazine For Humans – featuring writers and artists from Adult Swim, The Onion, The Daily Show and Marvel Comics. You can get an issue at your comic book shop of choice, Amazon or direct from http://devastatorquarterly.com.

Categories: Arcade News

New in the Arcade: Creature From The Black Lagoon Pinball

Creature From The Black LagoonWhile it does stick to its classic monster movie inspiration, Creature from the Black Lagoon pinball is really more of a love letter to the drive-in movie theatre experience of bygone years. The successful player will eventually start the show, and enjoy the Creature in all his spooky, holographic glory, but until then it’s all rockin’ tunes and date-night popcorn. The five officially licensed hit songs from the 50s and 60s serve as effective background melody making this game as musical as it is fun!

From John Trudeau – who worked on Judge Dredd and Bride of Pin*Bot, among others – Creature is a table that deserves its passionate fan base. Most of the scoring targets will escalate with an appropriate animation as the player progresses through them. Among these are teenage Romeo trying to score a kiss, several treats from the concession stand, and the unforgettable “MOVE YOUR CAR” sequence with its explosive conclusion! The DMD truly demands your attention in this visually-driven pinball title.

Completing four of the game’s objectives will light F-I-L-M, then the locks, and finally multiball. It’s in this mode where the lights dim, the movie starts, and the spooky hologram of the titular Creature haunts the playfield. It’s actually not the easiest multiball to achieve, but it’s worth the work to see the game’s dedication to the theme!

Take a trip back to the golden era of drive-ins with Creature From The Black Lagoon pinball, and don’t forget to to hit our snack bar at intermission!

Giga-Fright IV: Halloween Free Play Party – Wednesday 10/29

Just When You Thought It Was Safe to Play Pac-Man…

Ground Kontrol’s Halloween party, Giga Fright, returns for the 4th year in a row!

At 5pm, the doors creak open on the best Halloween party in town: a multi-level arcade filled with over 100 arcade games and pinball tables, all set to free play, with a full bar and food menu to fuel party ghouls all night long.

Diabolically delicious drink specials and alarmingly awesome food specials will be available from the friendly stiffs at our bar. Compete in the super-spooky pinball tournament featuring our special Halloween lineup, spin the Hall-O-Wheel for a special challenge, or win $100 in our awesome costume contest!

Come in costume to save money at the door – it’s just $5 for those truly in the Halloween spirit, and $7 for those in civilian clothes. (And don’t try to pull a fast one by wearing a “This Is My Costume” t-shirt or showing up as “Guy That Has 2 Thumbs and Loves Pinball” – we want to see contest-worthy costumes!)

Be ready to line up for the costume contest judging at 11pm – we’ll make announcements leading up to it, but if you’re not here, you can’t win!

Once again, the doors open at 5pm. It’s 21+ only, so bring valid I.D.!

NOTE: If you’re wearing a mask or painting your face, PLEASE make sure we can still match you to your I.D. That means removing your mask and not painting or applying makeup that will obscure your handsome features. Thanks!

WHAT: Giga-Fright IV: Halloween FREE PLAY Party

WHEN: Wednesday October 29th, 5pm-late. Costume contest judging at 11pm!

COVER: $5 in costume, $7 without. It’s a steal no matter what! 21+ only w/ ID.

NARC busts into the arcade!

NARCNow playing as the newest Raiders of the Lost Arcade title! When NARC first landed in arcades in 1988, it definitely raised a few eyebrows. From Eugene Jarvis, the innovator behind Robotron: 2084 and Defender, NARC was immediately noticed for its high level of violence and controversial subject matter. In this entertaining side scrolling action game, one or two players clean up the mean city streets to take down drug kingpin Mr. Big.

Complete with an imposing black cabinet and blood-spattered marquee, the game went all the way with its gruesome aesthetic in a time when video games were often censored and marketed to kids. Players confiscate contraband and currency in each level that is completed with a character-driven boss battle. All of the criminals and dealers are members of the drug gang K.R.A.K., led by the repulsive Mr. Big.

NARC was also notable for its innovation in graphical style. Sporting a higher resolution than most arcade games, it made use of video and photographed sprites, a presentation that would later be popularized with Mortal Kombat. In addition, the game sports some great audio, with recorded speech and screams.

Grab a friend and blast your way to the headquarters of Mr. Big – and remember, Winners Don’t Use Drugs!