Everyone deserves a holiday. Thankfully, many UK charities are dedicated to making this happen. Today,…
If you’re a fan of retro gaming, and you’re heading to London anytime soon, we’ve got some good news: there’s an abundance of arcades in London. These make a great option for a day, or evening out, and it’s something that you can involve the whole family in. The kids may be a little surprised by some of the games of old, but you can be sure that they’ll love them (don’t worry if retro’s not your thing – there are VR and new games too!)
The whole retro vibe has been growing of late, and that means that there has been a boom in London arcades. There are arcades in central London, as well as on the outskirts, and they feature great games such as Pac-Man, Pinball and Mario Kart. The number of arcade games in London goes way beyond these, but they give you a flavour of what to expect.
If you’re looking for an arcade in London, then we’re here to help. We’re going to take a look at the best ones around so that you can plan an amazing trip out.
Arcades in London:
- Four Quarters
- Pizza Pilgrims
- Four Thieves
- Novelty Automation
- DNA VR
- Otherworld VR
- Hyper reality
- Las Vegas Arcade Soho
- Vega London
- Loading Bar
- Funland Arcade
- Queens London
- Chief Coffee
- BrewDog Shephard’s Bush
- The Fighting Cocks
- NQ64 Soho
- London Games Room
Address: 20 Ash Avenue, Elephant Park, SE17 1GQ
Nearest tube: Elephant and Castle
Perhaps the best way of describing Four Quarters is as a no-frills bar with some great arcade games. As London arcades go, this one has a real down-to-earth feel about it. The lighting is dim and that means that the action from the games stands out even more. You can expect bright retro bar stools that go well with the election of games.
When it comes to arcade games in London, here you’ll find titles such as Street Fighter II and Ninja Turtles. This gaming experience is one that’s great value for money too. With just £1, you get 4 quarters to spend on games of your choice. A fiver in your pocket could see you enjoying arcade games for hours.
- Want to stay in the heart of London? The Best Cheap Hotels Near Covent Garden.
Address: 266 Seven Sisters Road, Finsbury Park London, N4 2HY
Nearest tube: Finsbury Park
With arcades in London, you’ll find that many of these are nestled alongside other businesses. This is the case with Pizza Pilgrims, a top pizzeria. As well as great food, this business also offers lessons to kids so that they can learn to make their own pizza.
By including arcade games in the pizzeria, Pizza Pilgrims has managed to create a real 90s vibe. This is one where you can snack on pizza, wash it down with slushies and play retro games to your heart’s content. With titles such as Pac-Man and Street Fighter, Slice has the classics covered. The game selection isn’t the biggest here, but the vibe makes up for it and is the main reason to go.
Address: 10 Stroud Green, Finsbury Park, London, 4 2DF
Nearest tube: Finsbury Park
On your hunt for arcade games in London, Rowans is a must-visit location. While there are some great arcade games to choose from, the main draw here is the karaoke and ten-pin bowling. Even if this is what you first visit for, you can’t help but be pulled over to the selection of arcades. There are some great retro titles and you can be sure that you won’t be leaving at the time that you’d planned to.
The good news is there’s no rush to leave: Rowans has a late licence so the adults can enjoy a drink or two as the evening goes on. Something else that’s really great here is that you’re allowed to order your Dominoes and bring them in. Pizza, drinks and arcade games make for the perfect evening out.
- Want to visit a famous landmark? 10 Churches in London which are worth a visit.
Address: 51 Lavender Gardens, London, SW11 1DJ
Nearest tube: Clapham South Station
This has to be one of the top arcades in London and there’s plenty of space allocated to some truly amazing games. At the Four Thieves, you’ll find a pub downstairs. Upstairs sits an old Victorian dancefloor which has now been converted into a great gaming centre. While you’ll find a selection of retro games here, this arcade in London has a different focus.
You’ll find that a great deal of space is used for VR. The idea is to create a group-playing experience rather than people playing solo. There’s also the smallest crazy golf course that you’re ever likely to see along with a racing track for remote control cars.
Address: 1A Princeton Street, London, WC1R 4AY
Nearest tube: Holborn
This arcade is unlike any other arcade in London. What you’re not going to find here are the classic titles that you’ll find at other arcades in London. That’s because Novelty Automation is a highly specialist arcade. It’s the pet project of Tim Hunkin who is a writer, inventor, engineer and cartoonist. The majority of the arcade games here are of his design and making.
This is a great evening out if you’re looking for something different. You’ll find games that you simply can’t find anywhere else and that means that it offers a truly unique experience.
Address: Unit 1&2 York House, 400-404 York Way, London, N7 9LR
Nearest tube: Hammersmith
This arcade in London is another that provides a great experience and offers a great evening out. This is another where the focus is on the VR gaming experience, rather than that of retro games. If VR is your thing, then it has to be said that DNAVR is a must.
Here, there are games that are suitable for single players but there are also plenty of multiplayer ones so that you can get friends and family involved in the fun. There are options such as fighting off zombies as well as heading to try your skill and luck trying to leave an escape room.
Address: 336 Acton Mews, London, E8 4EA
Nearest station: Haggerston overground
It seems that London arcades have a love of offering all things VR. As the name suggests, Otherworld VR is another of these. That’s not to say that there are too many of these around. The truth is that they all offer different experiences. Whereas DNAVR is all about fighting for your life, Otherworld VR balances this with things slightly more serene.
One of the most relaxing options has to be the island experience. Here, you and friends can kick back and even find yourself earning free drinks for the time you spend there. That being said, there are plenty of other VR experiences for those who are seeking something a bit more adventurous.
- Looking for a Premier inn in London? The Best Family Friendly Premier Inns in London.
Address: 67 Mile End Road, Bethnal Green, London, E1 4TT
Nearest tube: Bethnal Green
One of the top arcades in London, Hyperreality offers a truly outstanding experience. There’s the Cyberpunk bar and the obligatory karaoke to try out, and then there’s the stunning collection of VR experiences. The range of games on offer here means that there is something for everyone.
There are VR games that can see you fighting, exploring or relaxing. There are options to play alone or as part of a group. Aside from these types of games, what we really like about this place is the VR rollercoaster experience and the VR go-karts. The latter of these is simply amazing. If you’ve never tried virtual reality then we would recommend heading to Hyperreality and giving it a go.
Las Vegas Arcade Soho
Address: Basement 89, 91 Wardour Street, London, W1F 0UB
Nearest tube: Oxford Circus
This arcade in London offers a great experience and it’s one that the whole family can be involved with. That’s because downstairs is all about great gaming, while upstairs allows those who like the casino-themed experience to have some fun. The upstairs is restricted to those aged 18 and over, while downstairs is open to all.
No matter what your taste in arcade games, you can be sure that Las Vegas Arcade Soho has you covered. There’s a great selection that covers, fighting, racing and dancing, and everything else that you can think of. Being just around the corner from Chinatown, this arcade in London provides the perfect excuse to get out of shopping!
- Want to Stay at a Holiday Park? Check out The Best Holiday Parks Near London.
Address: 9 Islington High Street, London, N1 9LQ
Nearest tube: Holloway Road
Arcade games in London are nothing short of spectacular, and what Vega London has to offer is up there with the best. This is a location that’s back to basics meaning that it’s the games that are the main focus. While you may find the odd unique title, you’ll also find plenty that’s comfortingly familiar.
The number of games available is impressive with Japanese classics and a whole host of retro titles. The Vega London experience is truly a social one. As well as the arcade games, there are great spaces where people can just get together, as well as a pool table where you can challenge your friends.
Address: 129 Stoke Newington High Street, London, N16 0PH
Nearest tube: Mile End
Loading Bar is another one of the best arcades in London. The thing here is that there is so much more going on than just the arcade games. While there’s a great mix of old and new titles, you’ll also find that this location has a regular DJ who adds a whole new dimension to your gaming experience.
While you’re enjoying all that the arcade games have to offer, you also have the chance to sample a great selection of drinks from the bar. If you’re looking for something else when you’ve had your fill of video games (if that’s even possible), there’s even a selection of board games for you to try out.
- Looking for a Luxury Stay? London Hotels Which have Stunning Rooftop Pools.
Address: 318 Oxford Street, London, W1C 1HF
Nearest tube: Oxford Circus
This arcade in London is a great place to visit if you want to get together with like-minded gaming fans. As the name suggests, this arcade is all about making you feel like you belong. That means that it doesn’t matter if you’re an avid gamer or if you’re an arcade newbie, there’s something for everyone and there’s an overwhelming feeling of community.
This London arcade isn’t about games of old. Here, you get to enjoy the latest console games on the likes of PlayStations and Xboxes. If you want to give something else a try then there are VR booths to explore. This allows you to have a completely different gaming experience, and there are some great tournaments to get involved with.
Address: Unit 25/27 The Brunswick Centre Bernard Street, London, WC1N 1BS
Nearest tube: Holborn
As far as London arcades are concerned, this is perhaps one of the most family-friendly that we’ve come across. It has over 35 games to choose from, and these suit people of all ages. If you’re a fan of pinball then you’re sure to love it here as there are plenty of pinball tables to try.
Don’t worry, it’s not all about pinball machines though. There’s also a great selection of games that focus on dance, music and sport, so no matter what you’re into, there’ll be something to keep you entertained. Yes, there are other arcades in London that are suitable for kids, but this one seems to lean heavily this way and has games that will keep them entertained for hours.
Address: Box Park, Olympic Way, Wembley Park, Wembley, HA9 OJT
Nearest tube: Wembley Park
We’ve already seen arcade games in London that focus on the virtual reality experience, and MeetspaceVR is another one of these. The best way of describing this location is as a VR theme park. With a huge 200-meter square arena, there’s plenty of room to move around as you seek survival during the zombie apocalypse.
The reality aspect of this game means that it’s definitely not suitable for younger children out there. Well, not unless you’re prepared for a whole load of sleepless nights. One watch-out here is that there’s no fixed entry price. The price you pay will depend on the gaming experience you’re after, so be sure to check this out before you turn up.
Address: 17 Queensway, London, W2 4QP
Nearest tube: Queensway
Another arcade in London that makes the grade as a great family day out. Yes, there are plenty of arcade games to get stuck in with, but you’ll also find ten-pin bowling and ice skating among the attractions. The arcade games themselves are well chosen to ensure that they cater for young and old meaning that you can have peace of mind when the little ones are desperate to get involved.
The other plus point here is the food and drink. There’s plenty of variety so you can be sure that you can feed the family with minimal disruption to their gameplay. For the adults, there are some pretty awesome cocktails to enjoy too.
Address: Turnham Green, Terrace Mews, Chiswick, London, W4 1QU
Nearest tube: Turnham Green
If you’re looking for London arcades that come with an 80s vibe then you’re going to be a huge fan of all that Chief Coffee has to offer. The main focus here, in terms of games, is pinball and the classic Japanese titles that we all know and love. There’s also some top food on offer and, whenever you visit, trying one of the signature coffees is a must.
While there is very much an 80s feel to the place, it’s also very laid back and relaxed. This provides the perfect atmosphere for people to tune out and lose themselves in the games. That being said, there are plenty of opportunities to get social too.
BrewDog Shephard’s Bush
Address: 15-19 Goldhawk Road, London, W12 8QQ
Nearest tube: Goldhawk Road
This arcade in London is just as well-known for its food and drink offerings. This is a bar that has Scottish-brewed beer as a speciality, and people are happy to travel here just to try this. Beyond the great beer, there are also tempting burgers and wings to sample. There’s no way you can leave without giving at least one thing a go.
When it comes to the games, the selection is pretty impressive. You’ll find that pinball features quite heavily, but there’s also a great selection of other vintage games such as the legendary Space Invaders. The feel of the place all adds to the experience, and it’s one of the arcades in London that you should really visit.
The Fighting Cocks
Address: 56 Old London Road, Kingston Upon Thames, KT2 6QA
Nearest station: Kingston train station (overground)
This arcade in London is famous for its music scene. If rock music and live bands are your thing, then you should get yourself to The Fighting Cocks and see just what there is on offer. While the music may steal the show, there’s also great food and drinks alongside an impressive display of games.
While arcade games are popular here, you’ll find that most people like to turn their hand to a game of pool. This provides the perfect environment and atmosphere for this. Even if pool isn’t your usual game of choice, you’ll still enjoy the experience here.
Address: 53 Berwick Street, London, W1F 8SP
Nearest tube: Tottenham Court Road
This arcade in London is strictly for those ages 18 and over. That’s because it’s also a cocktail bar and nightclub. The arcade experience here is exceptional, with a range of vintage games sitting along slightly more modern gaming consoles. You’ll see the NQ64 in neon lights, as well as a splattering of graffiti on the walls. It’s all part of the feel and the atmosphere of this arcade.
There are plenty of first-person shooter games from the 90s, and you can even become a rock god by having a go at Guitar Hero. When you’re ready for a drink, you’ll find game-themed cocktails all served under the sounds of the regular DJ.
London Games Room
Address: 77 Hoxton Street, London, N1 6PJ
Nearest tube: Hoxton
When looking for arcades in London, it’s worth noting that London Games Room is in a variety of locations around the capital. However, it’s this one on Hoxton Street that has the real focus on arcade gaming, and that’s why it’s made our list.
There are plenty of arcade games to choose from, and you’ll also find a Fireball football table. Another draw here is the fact that there are some great craft beers to try, as well as some delicious-tasting food. The theme here is centred on a tropical oasis, and this makes it very different to some of the other locations where this operator is featured.
Address: 2b Worship Street, London, EC2A 2AH
Nearest tube: Moorgate
This is the last of the London arcades that we’re going to look at. This one offers an experience that’s a little more private when compared to the other London arcades that we’ve looked at. That’s because Platform offers a number of booths that are semi-private, where you can fully immerse yourself in the gameplay.
The gaming booths can be hired for 90 minutes at a time. Of course, while you’re lost in a game, there’s no time to go looking for food and drink. For that reason, Platform has a great app that lets you order from your booth and have everything brought over to you.
As you can see, when it comes to London arcades, there are plenty of options to choose from. Whether you’re looking for a family day out, or an evening for adults along with a few drinks, everyone is catered for. It’s great to see that arcades in London have so many family-friendly options.
What we also like about London arcades is that there is a perfect balance between old and new. There’s plenty of opportunity to enjoy all of the retro classics, but equally, you can lose yourself in a great VR experience too. No matter what your game of choice, you’re bound to find something that you enjoy.