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Categories: Arcade News

New in the Arcade – Spider-Man: The Video Game

spider-man the video gameA powerful ancient artifact, the Sorcerer Stone, has been stolen by the evil Doctor Doom. Join 4 comic book heroes in an action-packed adventure to get the artifact back! Play as Spider-Man, Black Cat, Hawkeye, or Sub-Mariner to defeat foes along the way. These heroes are jumping in the air, crawling on walls and clinging to helicopters while being pitted against extreme supervillains (including a 30 foot tall Venom!).

Spider-Man: The Video Game is the first Spider-man-exclusive arcade game. This beat ’em up comic book brawler combines a mix of side-scrolling and platform gameplay. Playable for up to four people, each of the four characters has their own unique moves. Players control their character using an 8-way joystick, an attack button and a jump button; push the two buttons at the same time to employ the mega-effective Mutant Power (be careful, doing this will drain energy). Players must battle through four acts and ten villains to obtain the artifacts and beat the game!

This game was a smash-hit amongst players and critics upon its release. It was praised for its graphics and use of many characters from the Marvel Universe. Spider-Man: The Video Game is a classic that still holds up decades later.

Did You Know?

  • Spider-Man: The Video Game was never ported to a home system, despite being a wildly successful arcade game. To this day, rumors circulate regarding an in-home version being produced.
  • The soundtrack “borrows” a lot of its tunes from Sega’s 1986 arcade game, Quartet.
Categories: Events

Superhero Night – Win Tickets to Wizard World Comic Con! Thursday 2/16, 5pm

Portland Wizard World 2017

Win tickets to Wizard World Comic Con at our Superhero Night, Thursday 2/16 5pm-close! Show up to Ground Kontrol wearing your best superhero costume and we’ll award a 3-day Wizard World weekend pass to our two favorite costumes! The costume contest will take place at 9pm as our No Pun Intendo – Stand-Up Comedy Showcase begins in the lounge, but there is heroic fun to be had all night with a surprise addition to the arcade, drink specials and more!

Check out this year’s guests, programming and exhibitors at Portland Wizard World Comic Con here: http://wizardworld.com/

Please note: If your costume includes a mask, you must remove it at the door for entry and at the bar for service. Excessive face paint is prohibited – we must be able to recognize you while checking your ID!

Superhero Night · Thursday 2/16 · 5pm-close · FREE from 5-8:30pm, $3 at the door after 8:30pm · 21+

Categories: Arcade News

Superb Owl Sunday: Sports-Free Happy Hour All Night! Sunday 2/5, 5pm

Superb Owl GK 2017Need something to do on Sunday night that doesn’t involve sportsball? Stop by for some classic arcade gaming and extended happy hour in honor of the highly effective bird of prey from the order Strigiformes!

Known for their nocturnal schedule, ability to rotate their heads more than most creatures, and a tendency to swallow their prey whole, owls are sorely underrepresented in classic arcade gaming and are rarely seen in arcades or game rooms. In fact, should you see an owl near any type of arcade game or pinball table, it is advised to call an animal control professional so that the bird can be safely removed and released in the appropriate habitat.

Possessing sacred knowledge regarding candy lollipops, owls gain the ability to speak perfect English while wearing a square academic cap, and have no reported interest in alcoholic beverages. That’s good news for you, because Ground Kontrol will be serving draft beer, draft cider, PBR, Tecate, Coors Light and well cocktails at happy hour prices until midnight! Enjoy a pint without fear of swift and silent retribution from the fearless predator with razor-sharp talons, and play your favorite games from the past four decades with absolutely no broadcast of any sports competition whatsoever!

Over 90 arcade games; beer, wine, cider and well cocktails at discount prices; and freedom from being consumed and turned into a pellet or having to watch hours of sports – it’s Superb Owl Sunday at Ground Kontrol!

Superb Owl Sunday – Extended Sports-Free Happy Hour · Sunday 2/5 · Happy Hour 5pm-Midnight · 21+ · FREE

Raiders of the Lost Arcade: Double Dragon

Double Dragon

This year marks the 30th anniversary of Double Dragon, so we’ve doubled our Double Dragon! The original arcade version of Double Dragon is here as our new Raiders of the Lost Arcade feature! Prefer the vastly different NES version? Don’t worry, it’s fully playable in our PlayChoice-10 cabinet!

In Double Dragon, twin brothers Billy and Jimmy Lee (also known as Hammer and Spike) must venture into the territory of the Black Warriors street gang in order to rescue Billy’s girlfriend, Marian! Trained in the martial arts, the Lee brothers are well equipped for combat with a variety of techniques at their disposal, but tracking down and defeating the gang’s leader, Willy, won’t be an easy task. Braving the mission solo or teamed up with a partner, do you have the strategic button mashing skills necessary to defeat the ruthless Black Warriors gang and save Marian?

Developed by Technōs Japan and published by Taito, Double Dragon is one of the earliest successful beat ‘em up games and is commonly considered to be the granddaddy of the genre. Although it’s technically the spiritual successor to the 1986 beat ‘em up Renegade, it was Double Dragon that defined the two-player co-op mode that became central to the genre and inspired numerous sequels and spin-offs in arcades and on home consoles. One of the most exciting features of the game was the advanced combat system, which was relatively complex at the time of the game’s release. In addition to a variety of moves that can be performed with combinations of the kick, jump, and punch buttons, Double Dragon introduced the ability for the players to arm themselves with weapons dropped by enemies, such as whips, baseball bats, and dynamite. The game’s four stages take the players through city slums, a factory, a forest, and finally the gang’s hideout, with plenty of enemies and bosses to beat up along the way.

Did You Know?

• If two players beat the final boss together, they are then forced to fight each other to determine who will win Marian’s love.

• The popular NES version of Double Dragon (playable in the Playchoice-10 cabinet) features several significant changes from the arcade version and lacks two-player co-op mode. Notable features include a level-up system with unlockable attacks, different level design, an alternative story where Jimmy Lee replaces Willy as the antagonist, and a one-on-one battle mode with two-player support.

• According to one of Double Dragon’s creators, Muneki Ebinuma, many of the game’s features were influenced by Bruce Lee movies.

Categories: Events, No Pun Intendo

No Pun Intendo featuring Curtis Cook – Thursday 2/16, 9pm

No Pun February 2017Stand-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!

Each month, we feature fantastic comics from Portland & beyond. This month’s lineup:

Curtis Cook
Ben Harkins
Robbie Pankow
Crystal Kordowski

Hosted by Earthquake Hurricane’s Anthony Lopez!

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 – Funny Books for Humans – the only all-comedy publisher featuring writers and artists from Adult Swim, The Onion, The Daily Show and Marvel Comics. Pick up their books at your comic book shop of choice, Amazon or direct from http://devastatorpress.com/

Bonus Round All Ages Free Play – Friday 1/13, Noon-4pm

Looking for another opportunity to enjoy free play during our all ages hours? Kick off your Friday afternoon with Bonus Round All Ages Free Play!

From Noon-4pm on Friday January 13, every arcade game and pinball table at Ground Kontrol will be set to free play. Over 90 games spanning decades of arcade history from the vector classic Asteroids to the indie game Killer Queen, all for one low $3 cover!

Feel like you’re not quite good enough at pinball to sacrifice crucial coinage? Can’t crack the high score on Frogger without a practice game or ten? This is the perfect opportunity to play anything and everything – no quarters necessary! As always, we’ve also got snacks and a food menu with plenty of vegan and gluten-free options!

Ground Kontrol will be closing at 4pm to prepare for normal 21+ bar hours, so we recommend showing up to our Bonus Round Free Play party on the early side! We’ll re-open at 5pm for the 21+ crowd with free play turned off until our next free play party on Wednesday, January 25th.

Bonus Round Free Play · Friday 1/13 · Noon-4pm · $3 cover · All ages welcome!

Categories: Events, No Pun Intendo

No Pun Intendo featuring Anthony Lopez – Thursday 1/19, 9pm

No Pun January 2017Stand-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!

Each month, we feature fantastic comics from Portland & beyond. This month’s lineup:

Alex Rios
Jacob Christopher
Whitney Streed
Alex Falcone
Anthony Lopez

Hosted by Earthquake Hurricane’s Anthony Lopez!

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 – Funny Books for Humans – the only all-comedy publisher featuring writers and artists from Adult Swim, The Onion, The Daily Show and Marvel Comics. Pick up their books at your comic book shop of choice, Amazon or direct from http://devastatorpress.com/

Clash of the Classics – Joust VS Double Dribble

CotC - Joust vs DD

We are kicking off 2017 with a competition between two beloved yet very different arcade games from the 80s: Joust and Double Dribble!

One of the most enjoyable two player games from the golden age of arcade games, Williams Electronics’ 1982 classic Joust is also enjoyable as a single player, fantasy-action game. You play a medieval Knight, riding a mighty steed (actually it’s an ostrich, or stork) into battle against other Knights mounted on flying Vultures of Evil. The competition of course is the Joust. Your goal is to slay the opposing knight and then catch him before he turns into an egg and tries to get away. If you fail to catch your enemy in time, the egg he has become will hatch into an even more difficult enemy whom you will have to perform the joust with once more, and so on. The opposing Knights start out as Bounders, then Bounders become Hunters and Hunters become Shadow Lords, and if you are unable to keep them from evolving, they become quite a challenge.

Konami released Double Dribble in arcades in 1986 as a follow-up to their first basketball arcade game, Super Basketball. The game boasts realistic features including five-player teams with specialized characters, official quarters and half-time switch as well as a national anthem ceremony, cheerleaders, mascots and fans. The player can replicate all of the actions of a real basketball player: dribbling, passing, shooting, and even attempting a slam dunk, shown in a slow motion zoom shot. Referees keep an eye on the game, calling fouls and sending players to the free-throw line. The game is timed so that a credit must be added to continue game play after every minute if the computer’s team is winning, so try your best to get an early lead on the scoreboard! At the end of four quarters, the winning team holds a victory celebration.

After its release, Double Dribble quickly gained popularity and was considered the most realistic basketball game at the time due to the innovative cinematic shot and dunk animations and the impressive attention to detail. The game was then ported to the Nintendo Entertainment System in 1987 and then later released in Japan for the Family Computer Disk System under the title Exciting Basketball.

Will Joust sink a lance into its competition or will Double Dribble slam dunk its way to victory? As always, it’s up to you to defend your favorite contender and help us decide which game is more worthy of Ground Kontrol real estate. We’ll monitor each game’s earnings between Thursday 1/5 and Wednesday 1/11 and announce the winner shortly thereafter. Clash of the Classics is on NOW, so grab some quarters, tell some friends and enjoy some classic 80s arcade action!

Categories: Events, Free Play Party

New Year’s Eve Free Play Party – Thursday 12/31, 5pm-close

2016 NYE Free Play PartyWe’re wrapping up another great year at Ground Kontrol the only way we know how: by flipping the “free play” switch on every single game and inviting YOU to party like it’s 1985!

Leave 2016 at the door at our New Year’s Eve Free Play Party with an arcade full of classic games and the best selection of pinball in the Pacific Northwest. Save your quarters for the first laundry day of 2017 because they’re all ready to play, absolutely free! Enjoy 8 taps of craft beer and cider and a full bar and food menu with specials all night long. Take a break for some nachos in our retro-futuristic lounge, or just grab another pint and head for your favorite game – we’ve got drink holders everywhere, so you don’t have to balance a beer while you climb the high score board!

DJs Alan Hart, New Year’s Reiff and Mechlo will keep things kicking with an eclectic soundtrack selected for maximum party potential. As we get close to midnight, you’ll be able to grab a glass of champagne (included in your cover) and toast to 2017 with the traditional countdown and balloon drop!

All of this is just $15 at the door, making it the best NYE deal in town. Doors open at 5pm, and capacity is limited, so get here early! If you’d rather skip the line (and get some nice bonuses while you’re at it), check out our super-limited VIP wristbands: http://groundkontrol.com/2016/12/now-available-new-years-eve-2016-vip-wristbands-while-they-last/

New Year’s Eve Free Play Party · Saturday 12/31 · 5pm-close · $15 · 21+

RSVP on Facebook!


Categories: Events, Free Play Party

All Ages Free Play Party – Saturday 12/31, 11am-4:30pm

NYE 2016 All Ages Free PlayWrap up 2016 with all-day, family-friendly free play at Ground Kontrol! Our All Ages Free Play Party offers you another chance to introduce your young ones to the games you grew up with, in their original condition!

Everything from Donkey Kong to The Simpsons will be available to play with no quarters necessary, for one low $5 cover! Wander through decades of arcade history to find old favorites and new ones, and see if you’ve still got the skills to beat today’s high scores. Don’t forget about pinball – our selection of 26 tables features some of the most popular games ever made, maintained in excellent condition!

To fuel a full day of free play, our kitchen will be open serving tasty snacks and hearty sandwiches. Get a basket of fully-loaded Killer Nachos big enough to share, or go for comfort food classics like a grilled cheese or chili dog. Vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free options are available for nearly every item. Save room for dessert, too: We also have amazing ice cream sundaes and root beer floats!

Entertaining the whole family can get expensive, but All Ages Free Play makes it affordable and easy. Bring everyone down and have a blast without busting your budget! Get here early, though – capacity is limited!

NOTE: This is a separate cover from the evening 21+ NYE Free Play Party. If you are attending both events, you will need to exit Ground Kontrol at 5pm, re-enter and pay the cover for the NYE party!

All Ages Free Play Party · Saturday 12/31 · 11am-4:30pm · $5 · All ages welcome!

RSVP on Facebook!