How to Create the Perfect Retro Games Room

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In the face of today’s high-tech games and fast-paced technology, retro gaming is making a major comeback. The BBC reports that more people are collecting and playing with games on systems that dominated the early days of home gaming. These include the Atari 7800s, Nintendo Entertainment System, Sega Master System, and Sony PlayStations of the 80s and 90s, and the classic titles everyone played with as children.

Retro Arcade Cabinet

If you’re one for nostalgia and the old school magic of these games, one way to embrace this resurgence is to build a special place for these retro treasures in your own home. Here’s how to create an awesome retro games room.

Deciding On a Location

Collection of Pinball Games

First and foremost, you must decide on where to place your games room. You can opt to convert a loft or basement, which entails reworking existing space to create the perfect area for retro gaming. More dedicated gamers and advanced DIYers can build the room by extending their homes. This allows you to more accurately customise the space for your retro gaming needs.

Whichever option you choose, make sure to ensure the structural integrity of the room and install all the necessary basics (power outlets, lighting, etc.) to make the area truly livable. Install your insulation, heating and cooling systems to make sure the room is always comfortable, and don’t forget to add soundproofing to keep the gaming noise in.

Getting Games

This part is the essence of your room project. The two most important things to consider here are what kind of games you’d like and how much space you have to work with.

Popular retro games you can still play today include Super Mario, Sonic the Hedgehog, and Doom. Gamers can even go farther back before the rise of home consoles and to the well-loved and bulky arcade cabinets of the 70s and 80s, which featured games such as Donkey Kong, Pac-Man, and Space Invaders. Other non-console games include Street Fighter tables and pinball machines.

These games have seen a recent spike in popularity, and companies and developers alike are beginning to take notice. While retro gaming bars and restaurants are opening their doors all over the country, gaming companies are carving out a market for retro gamers as well. To understand this further, consider Slingo the platform that features exciting and nostalgic titles such as The Fruit Factory, Rainbow Riches, and Star Trek: Red Alert, which are all reminiscent of old-school graphics and sounds. This is a noticeable trend today, especially on the mobile games market, which currently has the highest percentage of gaming engagement. Mobile engagement is actually one of the catalysts that triggered the demand for retro games once again. Although, the nostalgia factor is at its highest when you’re playing with the original consoles and arcades in your dedicated game room.

All the classic titles above and countless others like them can definitely create a wonderful retro games room, but the other important factor you need to consider is space. The Family Handyman cautions that before you break out your credit card, you must survey the size of your room and figure out the best way to fit in the games you want to have. If you have a space large enough to accommodate arcade game cabinets as well as consoles to hook up to your TV, then go right ahead!

Organization Is Key

Since you’re planning a room full of machines, an important consideration you have to plan around is the wiring. Cable organization, especially if you’re dealing with different consoles and machines, needs to be planned well. Gamer Alex Kidman recommends investing in good furniture that allows you to organize connecting cables, as well as good storage for your controllers. As for the cables for your television itself, check out our guide to hiding your TV wires in 30 minutes here on LRN2DIY.

Creature Comforts

The last step to creating your perfect retro games room is to consider comfort and décor. You’ll be spending a lot of time in your new games room, so ensuring the perfect lighting, seating, and refreshments should be a priority.

Paste Magazine recommends emulating the arcades of our youth by installing dim lighting and neon signs for the perfect ambience. Consider rigging up color-changing LED lights behind your games or installing black lights reminiscent of Tron. Don’t forget to invest in a good couch for the optimum gaming experience and, if you have space, set up a minibar and fridge to stock food and drinks. For music, consider getting a jukebox to play up the retro feel in your room. And for the finishing touch, use retro décor!

Do you have a retro gaming room or are you thinking about adding one? Tell us about it in the comments!

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