I've never been a big fan of social media. There's some good content out there, sure; but it's just so time-consuming. And when it comes to my own online content, I'd much rather focus on my blog.
But of course, I do have social media, and when big news pops up in my feed, I try to be aware of it. I received an Instagram notification earlier this morning that a number of accounts I follow—including Raw Thrills—had added to their stories. When I opened Raw Thrills's story, I encountered a delightful surprise.
Their Instagram story opened with a single question: "Can't get enough Raw Thrills?" Simple enough. The next pictures ran through many of Raw Thrills's recent releases, including Cruis'n Blast, Jurassic Park Arcade, MotoGP, World's Largest Pac-Man, and Space Invaders Frenzy. They were well-composed advertisements for their newest games. I certainly couldn't complain.
Then came another prompt: "Now for the new stuff." Next up on Raw Thrills's story were X-Games Snow Boarder and Injustice Arcade. There was also a photo of the new Teenage Mutant Turtles game with simple text: "TMNT/COMING 2018."
This was all great; this was all good. But what really caught my eye—what really got me excited—was this picture right here.
It's a picture just as exciting as it is vague. What could this new game be? Why choose now to tease it in this manner? I may not know a darned thing about the "Mystery Game," but I sure can't wait to see it.
My initial thoughts were, "Hey, maybe this is Nex Machina!" However, based on the very, very little we see of the cabinet, I don't think is the case. (Nex Machina seems to have completely disappeared for a while. Here's a link to an article from Housemarque themselves that might explain its absence. I want to write an article about this so badly, but I haven't gotten around to it yet.)
It's also possible that this mystery game could be Specular Interactive's Splash!, a game we haven't seen in any capacity for a long, long time. (Whatever happened to...Specular Interactive?) This, too, seems like an incorrect assumption, though. The cabinet couldn't be Splash!, right? Besides, I think a game of that nature is destined for a summer release.
My final assumption—perhaps the most accurate one—is that this mystery game is Mario Party Challenge World, which we last saw at IAAPA 2017. For those of you not in the know, Mario Party Challenge World (originally released as Fushigi no Challenge World) is Raw Thrills's first attempt at bringing the concept of Japanese "medal games" to the West. I have no real interest in it; it is, after all, a redemption game. However, it is interesting and maybe even serves as a precursor to Raw Thrills bringing other Japanese arcade games to the U.S.
Since all we can do at this point is speculate, here are some pictures of the Western and Japanese versions of Challenge World that you can compare to the barely-perceptible mystery game. (IAAPA 2017 image courtesy of Arcade Heroes, if you couldn't tell by that watermark.)
Once again, all we can do is speculate. This "mystery game" could very well be a brand-new Raw Thrills game that hasn't even been seen before. If so, 2018 could be the biggest year for Raw Thrills yet. If the Spring 2018 release date is to be believed, there is no doubt in my mind that Raw Thrills will reveal the mystery game soon. In the meantime, I'll keep my eyes sharp for updates. Check back with my blog every now and then to see if any more news has surfaced. (Though in all honesty, Arcade Heroes will probably beat me to the proverbial punch.)
By the way, where's the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles trailer? I'd love it if Raw Thrills uploaded a trailer to their YouTube channel soon. They've gotta hype up the game, after all.
See ya soon, ya sweaty nerds. Remember to maintain a constant state of hype.