A good arcade (especially in KY) is hard to come by nowadays, so when I was invited down to check out Zanzabar I was excited to see what would be offered up for ‘show and play’.  I originally visited the restaurant/bar/arcade mid-summer 2010 (for the CoinOpSpace.com Louisville KY meetup) and owner Antz rolled out the red for all of us forum members to meet and greet and play some classics.  His selection at the time was good (around 10 games) with plans for continued acquisition and expansion.

I had the opportunity to revisit Zanzabar right before Christmas 2010 and was very happy to see that the game selection has come along quite nicely.  All of the games are in great working condition (with at least one hand-restored by the owner) and there is a really nice selection at this point with several rare games in the mix as well.  What’s especially neat about Antz’s collection is that he has chosen to include several cabaret and cocktail cabinets in the collection along with the usual uprights.

I’ve definitely enjoyed playing on the cabarets (I don’t have any at this time) as they have a very distinct feel to them that is different – but still as gratifying – as the uprights.  I also like the cocktail configuration games, but I just don’t have the floorspace at home for them so I’ve never played much on them as a result.

Here’s what I saw at Zanzabar’s as of my last visit:

  • Uprights
    • Pole Position I/II (sit-down)
    • Space Invaders (with multi-kit)
    • Donkey Kong – check this one out as its the real deal – this is one of the original red ‘Radarscope’ conversions.  It has the 5-bar speaker grille and the one-mech coin door.  It looks awesome.  I LOVE DK in red.
    • Donkey Kong Jr.
    • Eagle
    • Phoenix
    • Tron – ’nuff said
    • Joust
    • Joust 2
    • Asteroids Deluxe – I love this game…
  • Cabaret
    • Tempest
    • Robotron – this one is well worth the entire trip.  This was a NIB (new in box) purchase by Antz.  Almost 30 years in a crate and then at Zanzabar.  Pretty neat.
    • Asteroids
    • Centipede
  • Cocktail
    • Defender
    • Popeye
    • Joust
    • Pac-Man.  This is a recent addition and takes the place of a very rare Tempest cocktail.  Antz and a friend of mine worked out a trade and the Tempest is now performing HUO duty.

As you can see, the list (and the games) is really impressive, in good playable condition and with Zanzabar continuing to roll some variety into the lineup, it’s a great place to go game, eat, enjoy some live trivia (on Sundays) and enjoy some live music as well.

I highly encourage the locals (and anyone who might be in town) to drop by and support the Louisville local arcade scene.  Zanzabar is doing it up right!