Take ONE
Joystick joy
{ Arcade lets you let your inner-child out

By Emily Trigg / contributing writer


ig hair. Spandex and leg warmers. Tight acid wash jeans. Just like VH1, you gotta love the ‘80s.

So for a fun place to take a visit back to the days of Boy George and pre-Esther Madonna is Star Worlds Arcade. Located in on East Lincoln Highway, you can take a quick little trip to the “other” side of town and play some totally retro and totally fun games. All for prices as they were in the 80s. Seriously. Does it get any better than that?

Owner Pat O’Malley started tinkering with video game repair when he was 12 years old. “I’ve been in the business now for more than twenty years,” said O’Malley. “But I never thought I could make a business out of it.”

Well, it’s a good thing he did. O’Malley has 38 games available for play, Lethal Enforcers and the pinball machines being the most popular. But then, there’s the Vintage Vault. The video games that started the arcade craze. Ms. Pac-Man, Galaga and about ten others can be played just as they were 25 years ago. And because he also supplies local businesses with a game here and there, there are always games being rotated, so as to avoid creating monotony.

The décor is true to the mall arcade style, dark enough that the screens light the room and decorated with video game memorabilia like Ms. Pac-Man t-shirts, decals, and posters that O’Malley has been collecting for his entire life.

Despite it’s 80s atmosphere, Star Worlds opened in DeKalb in December of 2004. It started in Geneva in the early 80s, then moved to Maple Park in 1985 when O’Malley bought it. The Maple Park location closed in 1995. When figuring out where to open up again, it wasn’t a tough decision. “DeKalb used to have several arcades, then they had none,” said O’Malley. “So I decided to open it again here.”

And things have gone well. Star Worlds attracts every age group. “Parents bring in their kids to show them the games they played,” said O’Malley. “It’s big with the college students. We do birthday parties here, so there’s a lot of opportunity.”

Aside from the high fun factor that Star Worlds offers, you can also do at an extremely affordable price. One token is a quarter. You can get five for a dollar, and then 30 tokens for five dollars.

More than offering a place to play, Star Worlds also repairs and sells games.

If you’re feeling that a trip back to childhood is necessary, or you want to figure out how the world worked before Xbox 360, stop by Star Worlds at 1234 East Lincoln Hwy. They’re open Tuesday through Thursday, 2:30-10:00, Saturday from 11:00-11:00, and Sunday from 12:00-8:00. But don’t stop on a Monday because you won’t be able to get in.

For a truly unique experience right in DeKalb, Star Worlds has it. But just don’t feel obligated to tease your hair or partake in any other crazy fad. We’ve been tortured by bad 80s fashion enough as it is. But do go hang out at the arcade. And make your parents worry a little bit.


Take ONE

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Joystick joy

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