You repeatedly press the button showcasing your uppercut. Your opponent ducks as you display one low punch after another. Finally, it’s time to “FINISH HIM!” You deliver one last high kick, and he goes down. The adrenaline runs through your veins and all you want to do is Play It Again.
Play It Again is a new arcade that has recently opened next to the AMC movie theater in Johnson City. All around the arcade are vintage games, including fan-favorites like Mrs. Pac-Man, Frogger and T-Mek. Music from the ’80s that corresponds to the music videos hanging on the walls resonates throughout the establishment.
The experience manager of Play It Again, Elizabeth Epperson, excitedly spoke of how Play it Again came into existence.
“There were old games in storage and games from the arcade in Gatlinburg, so it was decided to use them to bring in new business,” she said.
Local retro gamer John Tolley said the arcade is nostalgic.
“I think it is really cool they are bringing an arcade like that back around here,” he said. “It’s nice to be able to play games that you grew up playing.”
Play it Again not only offers games but has sodas such as Ski and Frostie Blue Cream Soda as an extra blast from the past.
In the future, there are hopes of new additions to expand the offerings and improve the building.
“We are wanting to expand and possibly add laser tag and extra seating in the future,” said Epperson.
The arcade is also in the process of obtaining its beer and liquor license, and management plans to add bar food to the menu eventually.
Instead of quarters, players receive a free-play wrist band for $12. You can also sign up to be an arcade member and receive $2 off. In addition, Play It Again offers the opportunity for birthday parties and private events. If you book a reservation now, you can join in on some friendly competition and play at their four player Pac-Man table.
“We rotate games every so often, so they will change for different game play,” said Epperson.