Midway, in their heyday, was a great company, but their last few contributions to the gaming community weren't that good. The last game they released was TNA iMPACT!, a game that was panned by gamers and critics alike. Midway went under, and sold their assets to Warner Bros. Interactive, who now holds all of Midway's properties, including the Mortal Kombat franchise. As a way of keeping the glory days alive, Warner Bros Interactive released Midway Arcade Origins for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.
I admit, I was apprehensive when I picked this game up, given the problems that plagued the compilations of the last generation. Music would cut out, the analog controls had issues, and the GameCube versions had a considerable delay between action and sound. It was as if Midway sent them out the door without making sure they worked. These were the days before patches were made available. It is true that emulators don't translate well to consoles, but some time should have been taken to ensure the game was released unbroken. In this version, these problems were avoided.
Midway Arcade Origins has over 30 games, with Defender, Joust, and Rampage being among them. They look and play great. There is even a screen border that mimics the glass border art for arcade machines. An exellent touch, using the classic artwork. Not only that, but this is the first in the series that has online support with leaderboards and trophies, but no online multiplayer. So much for the "social" experience that some games like The Simpsons and X-men already have.
With all the good comes the bad. Sadly, not every game that was released in the last generation was released on this disc. I am thankful for Total Carnage, Smash TV, APB, and Gauntlet, I am disappointed that we didn't get NARC, Kosmic Krooz'r, Wacko, and RoadBlasters. Also, I loved watching the interviews with the makers of these games in the past games. We don't get that here. We only get a handful of factoids that would scroll across the screen in the pause menu.
With this collection, not to mention the downloadable classics and Pinball Arcade, my PS3 is practically a virtual arcade. Now, I wish Nintendo would give us some arcade love, and not just the watered down NES games.