Well after months of waiting it’s finally here, Sega Republic is finally here. From the first impressions it’s big, very big pretty much like most things in Dubai being honest. It was still quite odd that it just opened, no fanfair, no major press release, a major entertainment centre just well… opened. The only way that I knew it was open was by the video boards in the mall that had changed and that was it. The new cinema in the Mall has had massive coverages placed here and there promoting it. Anyways click the link for a gallery and my thoughts on the Sega Republic in Dubai Mall.
Entry is not free to start with. Entrance to the park or the republic is by a swipe card that you have to charge up with a minimum of 10DHs. Not bad and will get you 1 or 2 goes on an arcade unit.
Ok to make the point here, its big. very big, in fact it almost suffers from being too big. Wide open spaces, well as much as you can get in an amusement park are prevelant and the layout feels, odd. It’s hard to quantify the meaning of the word odd but it is just that. Perhaps disjoined is a better word. I’ll let some pics do the talking
Initial thoughts are is that like most things in Dubai it is a technical marvel and perhaps opening before Ramadan is almost like a soft launch before it no doubt gets packed after the religious season is over.
A few of the games have already shown signs of being unreliable. Ghost Squad for example has a problem with the guns on the left hand side cabinet. Perhaps due to the flashing flights or something but it does make the game almost unplayable. The sights seem to dart all over the place and as it requires a steady hand at times, it’s infuriating to say the least.
Over at the wall of games where Virtua Tennis 3 and Virtua Figther 5 reside someone really needs to work out if the sound levels really need to be that high. Loud is an understatement and that with the snowboarding machine going flat out and the announcer shouting something incomprehensible. There is another rant ready about sound systems and being completly setup wrong (double decker take note!!.
The range of games is poor, given Sega’s offerings on the arcade scene this is a mystery given floor space available on the top floor. As it’s obviously a Sega tie in, will any of the games get updated with the regularity of the Mall Of The Emirates offerings?
My final gripe is the cost. For the lesser games like Virtua Tennis, 3Dhs is not a bad price but the bigger games are charged at 7Dhs (the shooting ones). That is a lot of money for those games. These aren’t even new titles but have existed for a good while in most other arcades. 100Dhs isn’t going to last that long due to the difficulty settings being turned up slightly, trust me on this I know the settings have been changed, more deaths = more moola after all.
There are some offers on at the moment which if you are going for anything but a casual play or walk around, take advantage!! The offers don’t appear to be as good as the offers in the MOE arcade type from the first glance.
Yes, its big, its grand and as a technical feat, very impressive but for myself its just lacking feeling or excitement to get the senses pumping. All the loud noise and flashing lights don’t fill the place with feeling. After the holidays this may change when there are more people there. Even with the offers going on the stay time in the republic is limited and 100 – 200dhs will only last about an hour which is a lot more time than it will take to go on all the big attractions.
Saying all that, its still worth a visit!