Best 10 Arcades in Asheville, NC

Asheville, nestled in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains, is renowned for its vibrant arts scene, historic architecture, and a unique blend of traditional and modern. But did you know that this city is also a hidden gem for arcade enthusiasts?

A Glimpse into Asheville’s Gaming Culture

History of Arcade Gaming in Asheville

Arcade gaming in Asheville isn’t just a recent trend. From the 1980s, the city embraced the coin-operated craze that swept the nation. Old-school arcade machines dotted various hotspots in the city, from malls to movie theaters. Over time, these evolved, integrating the latest in gaming technology and innovation.


Why Asheville Arcades Stand Out

One might wonder: among all things, why arcades? The city’s eclectic blend of old and new naturally lends itself to spaces that honor nostalgia while embracing modern fun. Its arcades serve as melting pots where memories are made, stories are shared, and high scores are fiercely contested.


Top 10 Arcades You Must Visit

1. Asheville Retrocade

Step into a time machine. Asheville Retrocade boasts of a vast collection of classic games that will surely take you down memory lane. Remember Pac-Man? Space Invaders? They’ve got it all.


2. Pinball Museum

It’s not just about video games! The Pinball Museum offers an array of pinball machines, from vintage classics to the latest models. It’s flippin’ fun!


3. Arcadia Downtown

Combining a bar with arcade machines, Arcadia Downtown is the perfect spot for adults to chill and play. Talk about hitting two birds with one stone!


4. The Play Zone

Kids and kids-at-heart, rejoice! The Play Zone offers an array of modern video games and carnival-style attractions.


5. Game X Change

Are you a collector or just looking to buy some games? Game X Change not only offers games to play but also a broad selection to purchase.


6. Game Vault

Want a mix of board games and arcade games? Game Vault is your go-to spot. Dive deep into their vast collection and find your new favorite.


7. The Fun Center

From laser tag to VR, The Fun Center is a hub of modern entertainment options.


8. Mountain Play Lounge

A family-friendly spot, Mountain Play Lounge offers a mix of arcade games and play areas for children.


9. Neon Forest

For a neon-soaked night of fun, the Neon Forest offers both arcade games and a unique atmosphere.


10. Game On!

At Game On!, it’s all about competition. Participate in tournaments or just enjoy the vast selection of games they offer.


Tips for an Optimal Arcade Experience

Keep some coins handy! While many arcades have moved to card systems, some still operate on good old-fashioned quarters.
Hydrate and take breaks. Hours can fly by in the world of arcade gaming.
Engage with others. The community is what makes arcade gaming in Asheville special.


Asheville, NC, with its rich gaming culture, offers a blend of nostalgia and modernity in its arcades. Whether you’re a vintage game enthusiast or a modern gamer, there’s something for everyone. Ready to dive into the world of arcade gaming? Game on, Asheville!

Frequently Asked Questions

Are these arcades suitable for children?
Most arcades in Asheville offer family-friendly games. However, some like Arcadia Downtown are more geared towards adults.

How much does it cost to play at these arcades?
While prices vary, expect to spend anywhere from $10-$25 for a few hours of gameplay.

Do these arcades offer food and drinks?
Several arcades, like Arcadia Downtown and Neon Forest, offer a selection of beverages and snacks.

Can I host parties at these arcades?
Yes! Many of these arcades offer party packages. It’s always best to contact them directly for more information.

Are there any annual arcade events or tournaments in Asheville?
Absolutely! Many arcades hold special events, tournaments, and themed nights throughout the year.