|Tilt (Town and Country Mall)|
|Years active||1983 - 2000 (?)|
|Number of games||30-35|
|Located||U. S. A.|
Tilt is a chain of arcade centers that can be found in malls across the United States.
The Town and Country Mall in Houston, Texas, at the 800 block of the West Sam Houston Parkway North, was the very first mall in the city that had three levels, built in 1983. Although the mall thrived during its initial opening and had several solid years of sales, due to several circumstances (the mall not being very visible, at times the city’s economy went through slowdowns, and the Beltway 8 toll road built not far from the mall bypassed it entirely), business began dropping, resulting in stores closing or leaving for other locations. The mall was eventually demolished and a new set of businesses opened up in its place years later.
The Tilt arcade (also known as store 132) at this mall was one of the original stores that opened with the mall and had some of its last remaining games left not long before the mall was demolished in 2004 (see Trivia).
Located on the third floor of the mall next to Joske's (Dillard's) and wrapped around Cargo Furniture, the games in this arcade initially ran on slotted tokens, but had reverted to quarters by 1987. The decor at this location as originally built (also used in a few other Tilt locations built in the same period) included orange floor and wall carpet and orange acrylic pieces hanging from the drop ceiling. Between the rows of acrylic were strips of incandescent lights.
As the company transitioned to include more games issuing tickets for prizes, a small prize redemption center was built on the left side of the entrance.
Late in the life of the mall, the arcade was moved several doors to the right to a smaller lease space, still on the third floor. This gray-carpeted location with pink and blue tile and neon also had a redemption center and was used until the mall was closed.
As mall traffic dwindled to nothing, the third floor became almost deserted by patrons; this location ran an unusual promotion with several games playable for only 10 cents to attempt to regain traffic.
Known games, video
- Bionic Commando
- Captain America and the Avengers
- Crime Fighters
- Cyberball 2072
- Die Hard Arcade
- Discs of Tron (environmental)
- Dragon's Lair
- Enduro Racer
- Food Fight
- Gauntlet II
- Hoop Shot
- Jack and the Beanstalk
- Kung-Fu Master
- Magical Drop game of some sort (either II or III)
- Major Havoc
- Mortal Kombat
- Omega Race
- Pit Fighter
- Race Drivin'
- Return of the Jedi
- Space Ace
- Space Harrier
- Star Rider
- Street Fighter II Championship Edition
- Subroc 3D
- Tecmo Bowl
- Yie-Ar Kung Fu
- Side-viewed beat 'em up of some sort involving robots
- Big Choice Crane
- Bull's Eye (Sega pellet gun shooting gallery)
- Kiddierama Cartoon Theater
- Rage in the Cage (basketball)
- Other pinball games
- During the first several years of the arcade’s existence, the games operated on tokens. However, as stores began leaving and the mall emptied out over the years, the game room would also close its doors, but left some of the games operating in a space not far from where the arcade stood, running on quarters. (One of the very last games left out was the Magical Drop game of some sort.) By then the facility was mostly used by a local mall walkers group, as only a few stores and food places were left, along with a community center.
- This was the only arcade to ever operate in the Town and Country Mall.
- At a local Houston gaming expo in 2006, this person here was recognized and acknowledged (although he wished not to be identified for the photo) as to being one of the Tilt employees at this Town and Country Mall location during the 1980s.