Below are a few examples of what some people have been saying about the "dying" Arcade scene. . . . .

I have been in the business part time for about 15 years. Video games are just about a thing of the past. For me pinball still does good because it cant be copied on playstation. There is only one place you can go for that experiece and that is the arcade. Same thing for the delux sitdown games. The stand alone arcade is on its way out. There will always be a few games at the moveis ect. but even those places are getting though. How many quaters do you need to get to pay for a delux game after the split. It takes to long just to make your money back never mind making a profit. As for the old games for collecting. There will alway be some people looking for games for there home, but as time goes on the kids now will not have any great times at arcades or at the local pizza place to remember when they grow up so there will be no one to buy games for there homes in the future that is trying to remember the good old days. All they will know is playstation. There is also a limited amount of classics that are still hidden in old warehouses somewhere so that will be the end of finding these great deals and reselling for a big profit, and with production of new games very limited there wont be any big surplus of games to resell in the future. Yes I think there will always be a way to make money in this business but you are going to have to work hard for it. The days of anyone being able to buy a game and pay it off in a month are long gone.

You're totaly right that emulation will kill (and is killing) retro game collecting. Even myself, when I first collected 10 years ago, I would take whatever classics I can get (within my budget~1980 to 1988 range). Now, I'm much more choosy. I'll take a real bargain if it comes my way, but I'm way more picky because in reality, I can just play them all on a MAME machine (which I'm building right now). Some how the desire to own certain games is just lessened by the fact that I can play them and get my fill. This is especially true of most games that were available as conversion kits. If I'm going to use up valuable space in my home with uprights, I might as well stick to collecting nice dedicated units that have full artwork on the cabs.

I don't think emulation will do much to kill retro gaming, MAME has been around since before I started collecting, and if anything it further sparked my interest and got me hooked on a number of games I hadn't even heard of at the time. A game just isn't the same on MAME, some play ok, but you still don't get the unique controls, the cabinet artwork, and the general feel of the game.

I think the generation that was growing up when the first real Video games came out.Especially Pacman.Are getting much older now.Im 50 years old. I remember when they brought the first Pacmans into Nathans Gameroom.It was such a hit.They had to bring 8 more.And you still had to wait a good half hour to get to play.I started in the game business over 16 years ago after seeing people throwing their money at those machines until they were full everyday.I remember those days when the actually had a full coin box by the end of each day.That is no joke.They made thousands of dollars each week on each Pacman.I used to love to refurbish games and resell them.And i would love to play them too.But now that im getting older.I no longer get that tingle when i see a mint Robotron or Ms Pacman.Well i do in a way.Only because i can make a huge profit on the classics.There are still people from my generation who are into collecting them.But as i get older.My love for the classics is fading(Sigh(,).I used to see a bunch of really mint classics.And i would feel like i just saw a piece of heaven.I still like to mess with games a little.But now my interests are in the future of my life.Don't get me wrong.Im not that old.But believe me.There will come a time when you will put other things ahead of video games.I never thought
that would happen to me thinking back 10 years.But now i worry about things like retirement.Sad.I never thought i would be one of the older folks(,I don't see the newer games becoming classic collectables.At least not many of them.I guess things like Starwars and stuff like that.Will always have a following.And Ms Pacman and a few others will never die.Im glad i was part of the generation that will always be an important part of history.