One of my earliest kid memories was of having a tabletop hockey game in the house. Classic setup of Toronto versus Montreal. As kids, we literally beat out the entire structure of this one game. It was replaced with another one in the late eighties. It would be demolished in even shorter time.
I was visiting the home of a local musician recently and noticed he owned a tabletop game similar to one I grew up with as a kid. It brought me back one of my favourite gaming memories.
When I began my career as an arcade mall-rat in New Glasgow, Nova Scotia, I looked forward to the coin-operated dome-covered games appearing. Many of them had a button on each side that would activate a booing sound which added some entertainment (or irritation) to the game.
These were a blast to play and for a few quarters you could easily fill an hour or more of game time. These units were heavier to operate so playing for a period of time might result in an inadvertent workout. Watching people get competitive playing the games was equally entertaining. People could draw a crowd.
In my mid-teens I was hanging out at the arcades less even though it remained a safe place for me to go. I was still maintaining my passion for classic arcade games and pinball. It is a passion I still need to renew a few times per year. One of my friends and I occasionally drove up to the mall and play a best of 7 set of games. We would draw a crowd not just because we played for a while, but because we ended up entertaining the crowd. Win or lose, Todd had me nearly dying of laughter while playing the game.
Normally if the plastic puck were to be stuck in the corner, the closest player had a stick long enough to reach it. Even so, there were moments when the puck would be just out of reach. Todd started to get into the habit of practically tilting the game upside down to retrieve the loose puck. If you had hands on the levers, you were going to be flipped over with it. It was one of the funniest things a person could ever witness. A few times when Todd would be faced with a near goal, he would exercise his self-anointed right to flip the table to one side in order to improve his goals against average. As his opponent I could never get mad at him for this. The sight of him doing this was so funny it brought on laughter-induced abdominal pains.