With SM Arcade's introduction to Desura, there are bound to be new people discovering the mod for the very first time.
Source Media Arcade is an active project with its 2nd public release currently in development.
Generally, this mod is a fun and interactive way to access the media, games, movies, pictures, programs, and files that are stored on your personal computer. The mod is also a great way to discover new media, games, etc. and even allows you to purchase, download, and install new games through Steam simply by walking up to a virtual arcade cabinet and "using" it.
The version currently available, called BETA 1, is a thoroughly tested relatively bug-free public release. This version is single-player ONLY and has the intended gameplay of being a 3D FPS file explorer where you can browse through your favorite games, movies, and other media all in a virtual world powered by the Source engine.
Generally, the gameplay for BETA 1 works like this:
1. You create some Playlists (usually generated by scanning the contents of a folder)
2. You walk around a map spawning items from your playlists
3. You customize the screenshot and marquee artwork images of the items
4. The arrangements of the spawned items are automatically saved for next time you load the map
1. You load up a map and select an arrangement to use
2. You explore your media, play games, watch videos, and launch programs
That's all there is to it! You can save an unlimited amount of arrangement sets for each map, so you are not limited to having only 1 arcade per-map. And because it is possible to set playlists to "shuffle", you could have an arcade that automatically has different games in it every time it is loaded!
The back-end of the SM Arcade is also very friendly to modification due to its heavy use of script files. Pretty much every aspect imaginable is customizable, if not through the in-game user interface, then through these script files directly. If you have any questions or need any help concerning customization, just post a comment on this profile and I will respond to you ASAP.
In development: Source Media Arcade 2
The next version of Source Media Arcade is a complete re-write of the original mod, this time based directly around multiplayer arcades and internet connectivity. The user interface has been greatly improved and the entire process of placing shortcuts into the world is simplified. However, the focus of version 2 is multiplayer arcades, and for most players only minimal customization will need to take place. One draw back of the original version's design was that the user have to manually customize the screenshot and marquee artwork. With the introduction of multiplayer, clients no longer have to worry about anything but playing games.
Generally, the gameplay for BETA 2 works like this:
1. You find an arcade server to join
2. You start playing/buying/downloading games, movies, pictures, etc.
1. You customize an arcade map, much like you do in BETA 1
2. You supply as much internet-related info about items as possible (such as download/purchase URL, screenshot URL, marquee artwork URL, etc.) This allows clients to connect to your server much quicker than if they had to download these files from your server directly
3. You create a server and invite your friends
The experience of the mod will be unique to each arcade server you join. This is because the server operators have complete control over the media/games/etc that are placed. Every detail is decided upon by the server operator, such as where clients are sent to download or purchase a game and what images are used as the screenshot and marquee artwork.
The next version also performs virtual match-making for programs/games that support it. For these games, playing against your friend is as easy as walking up to the arcade cabinet he's playing on and joining in.
All versions of Source Media Arcade are highly customizable and fully support programs that require command line launch options.
Source Media Arcade BETA1 is AVAILABLE NOW!
Source Media Arcade v2 has a projected release date of October, 2011.
If you have any questions/comments, I will be monitoring this profile. Happy gaming!