While one of the last true German Arcade gaming area has closed in Augsburg, Bavaria some time ago, Bavarian companies are still involved in producing innovative arcade stuff.
Take the rather small company Gerstlauer, ironically located near the city of “Augsburg”, for example. They partnered up with SEGA and produced “Veil of Dark“: An interactive survival arcade shooter, played as an interactive darkride concept within their spinning coaster vehicle.
You board that vehicle as a part of a special force unit. Together with your light guns, you’re supposed to solve the mystery about an abandoned laboratory. Well, the story might seem not much innovative, but the combination of gameplay and “German Engineering” is: Not only does Gerstlauer combine gameplay with roller coaster ride elements (finally, somebody heard my prayers!). No, there is more to it: Like a fast LSM launch(!), a spinning-coaster-heartline-roll (!!) and interactive displays moving together with the vehicles and interact with each light gun(!!!).
Well. German game developers might not play a big part in the international video game industry. But the good old German Engineering probably does. Veil of Dark has been opened in SEGAs own mega indoor arcade “Joypolis” recently. You can see Veil of Dark in this video (turn DOWN the volume) at approx. minute 3:45:
Fans immediately will recognize the coaster being from Gerstlauer from tracks, vehicle or doors. Pity we will probably never see anything arcad-ish like Joypolis with its Veil of Dark outside of Japan, though. Nevertheless, I’m happy that something this innovative has finally left Bavaria and found its gaming place overseers – even if it’s (again) mainly the engineering know-how. Thanks, Gerstlauer!