There is an arcade in The Last of Us Part 2 in which Ellie fights bloating. This tense meeting, with a patchwork avenger fighting zombies alone. The in-game ruins that the battle takes place appear to be based on a real-life location in Seattle. Now, GameWorks Seattle’s true arcade game is reportedly closing before the start of the new year.
The closure was first reported GamesRadar together with several Twitter users in the gaming industry who say GameWorks will be shut down is imminent. Although they don’t say when, several tweets from users offer the company will close its Seattle office on December 23rd. The reports also mention liquidation, presumably due to financial disputes and debt payments, although the pandemic probably did not help the case.
The Las Vegas Location Monitor confirmed that Kotaku that the Seattle commercial is closing; and that GameWorks, as a company, is closing, although they cannot say exactly when.
The closure of the company was also confirmed in tweet from Get in the car, loser! composer Christa Lee. GameWorks has a long history of mismanagement as outlined in long report for November 2020 Facets…
In a Twitter post for KotakuLee said she is “helping the Video Game History Foundation preserve what we can of this place.” A manager who spoke to Lee reportedly said the Seattle site “could have been managed by the homeowner if they were interested,” but it is unclear if that will happen. Salting a fresh wound, Lee said the Seattle office staff were “just [given] week’s notice ” The last day of GameWorks…
GameWorks has not yet publicly announced these closings. Kotaku reached out to GameWorks for further comment via email and called several places besides the Las Vegas arcade.
Founded in 1996 as a joint venture between DreamWorks, Sega and Universal Studios, GameWorks has served as a hub for video games and entertainment. It looked like a proto-longboat before the net came along. It has also been the mainstream of esports as one of the few places frequented by the fighting game community. Placing new and old arcade cabinets, GameWorks makeshift formwork is another reason why conservation matters.