When packing for your semester abroad, you might not have thought to include your video game console. Video games not only serve as a great way to blow off steam, but also create an alley to relive childhood nostalgia. If leaving your games at home created a void you’re yearning to fill, take a trip to Prague’s gaming museum, Cibien’s Corner.
Cibien’s Corner has two floors with more than 100 gaming devices that you can play to your heart’s content. The bottom floor houses dozens of retro arcade and computer games where you could play the original Pac-Man game and Sonic the Hedgehog, as well as newer Nintendo consoles that could be used to play newer Mario games. The second level has walls lined with a variety of Playstation and Xbox games, including a Kinect; from Fifa to GTA, there are plenty of solo and multiplayer games to explore. You can hop behind the wheel and challenge your friends to a racing game, or use the Wii U consoles to destroy them in Super Smash Bros.
Professor Tereza Krobová teaches Video Games: Culture and Industry here at NYU Prague, a class that explores the development of video games and their role as both an industry and a part of our daily lives. Through exploring its history during class, I’ve come to understand that video games are an important part of pop culture. In the ‘70’s and ‘80’s, American arcades were public spaces where kids and adults alike could escape their responsibilities and focus on having fun. Despite the transition of gaming from public arcades to consoles in the private home, places like Cibien’s Corner are there to remind us how gaming remains a cultural phenomenon, allowing us to step away from the real world and indulge in the fantasy that games can create.
As someone who only plays Mario Kart, getting the chance to visit Cibien’s Corner with my class gave me the opportunity to try a multitude of games, including Dariusburst. The surround sound speakers and vibrations of this game make you feel as if you’re inside the spaceship you’re controlling on the screen. It’s satisfying using a machine dedicated to one game; it allows you to use your own space to fully immerse yourself into what you’re playing. Even if you’ve never touched a video game in your life, you’ll have an amazing time trying all the different machines and getting the classic arcade experience.
Admission to Cibien’s Corner is 290 CZK (less than $13) and is open 1PM - 7PM on weekdays and 10AM-7PM on weekends. Next time you’re in the mood for some competition or need to de-stress, make sure to pay a visit!