Find the Right Size and Quantity of Arcade Machines for Your Space

Need help making optimal use of your arcade space? Complete our form, and an arcade specialist from M&P Amusement will help fill your arcade with the right size games at the best prices!




Arcades are a nostalgic and exciting addition to any entertainment venue — whether you have a stand-alone arcade, or it’s located within an FEC, a bowling alley, a rental property, or a bar.

However, as a new arcade owner, it's essential to carefully consider the right size and quantity of arcade machines that will generate profit and create an enjoyable experience for your patrons. This guide will help you optimize your arcade floor plan layout and determine the right number of cabinets for your space.

Understanding Arcade Cabinet Dimensions

Arcade machine games come in various sizes, dimensions, and shapes, each with its own unique charm and appeal. The two primary categories are upright cabinets and sit-down cabinets. 

Upright cabinets — the quintessential arcade look — typically stand around 70 to 75 inches tall, 30 inches wide, and 33 inches deep. Meanwhile, sit-down cabinets are designed to accommodate seated players and tend to measure around 30 inches tall, 30 inches wide, and 40 inches deep.

But don't forget that variations exist among different arcade machines. Some might have slightly different dimensions based on the game's design and features. It's important to be aware of these variations to ensure a seamless fit within your arcade space.

When planning your arcade layout, also consider the doorway and aisle clearance to facilitate the smooth transportation and installation of your machines. A little extra room can go a long way in preventing unnecessary damage.

Calculating the Right Quantity of Machines

Before making any decisions, assess your available space with precision. Consider potential pathways, waiting areas, and any other fixtures that could influence your machine layout.

To ensure a pleasant playing environment, allocate a minimum of 3 feet of space between each machine. This prevents overcrowding and encourages a comfortable atmosphere. Make sure to leave enough room for spectators to watch the player.

Offering Game Variety

Diversity is the name of the game. Decide on the mix of games you wish to offer, catering to a wide range of player preferences. Whether it's classic games, fun indoor basketball games, exhilarating racing and motorcycle games, or heart-pounding shooting games — a well-rounded selection will keep patrons engaged and coming back for more.

If you notice that a certain game you purchased is doing better than the other machines, you may opt to get another game or two in the same gaming genre, giving patrons more of what they like.

Optimizing Your Arcade Floor Plan

Crafting an appealing layout is an art that involves strategic planning. Think about the flow of traffic within your arcade. Place popular or larger machines in high-visibility areas to draw attention right from the moment patrons walk in. And there should be a logical, easy-to-follow path for customers to navigate around the arcade.

For a cohesive experience, group similar games together. Establish designated zones for retro games, modern titles, multiplayer attractions, and games for younger kids. This arrangement makes it easy for players to find their preferred games.

Inclusivity is key. Ensure that your arcade is accessible to all. Leave ample space for wheelchairs and select machines that accommodate seated players comfortably.

Need help making optimal use of your arcade space? Complete our form, and an arcade specialist from M&P Amusement will help fill your arcade with the right size games at the best prices!

Arcade Entrance

Planning the layout of your arcade’s entrance is especially important if you’re located in a high-traffic area. 

Remember, the entrance sets the tone for the entire experience. By creating an inviting and visually appealing entrance (that’s properly lit for day and nighttime), you're more likely to attract a steady stream of curious gamers who are eager to explore what your arcade has to offer.

Consider incorporating eye-catching signage as well as thematic decorations that align with the gaming experience you're offering. These could be posters of iconic games, vinyl wall decals, or even life-size cutouts of popular characters.

Design the entrance in a way that provides a glimpse of the exciting arcade interior. Allow passersby to see the rows of colorful machines and hear the sounds of gameplay, enticing them to step inside. You could even install a small interactive display near the entrance, showcasing snippets of various games, giving potential patrons a taste of the fun they can expect.

When you get new machines in, consider placing them near the entrance to keep passersby updated.

Award Redemption Counter

Place the prize redemption counter in a central and easily accessible area of the arcade. This ensures its visibility from different parts of the arcade and draws attention.

If possible, locate the counter near some of the most popular games. This creates a natural flow of players toward the redemption area after they've had a fun gaming experience.

Design the counter to be visually attractive, using bright colors, engaging displays, and vibrant lighting. The counter itself should stand out as a focal point. 

Rotate the available prizes regularly to keep the selection fresh and exciting. This gives visitors a reason to return to see what's new.

 Budget Considerations

Every decision you make should be mindful of your budget. Arcade machines come with varying price tags, so balance your initial investment with potential returns based on the games' popularity.

The cost of a full-size arcade cabinet can vary widely, depending on several factors, including:

  • The game titles included and the demand for them
  • The quality of components
  • The overall design of the cabinet
  • Additional features (like a high-resolution display, online connectivity, lighting, a built-in audio system, etc.)

M&P Amusement offers a variety of new and used arcade games for sale that run anywhere from $2,700 to $17,000.

And remember that the investment doesn't end with the purchase. Maintenance and upkeep are ongoing costs that contribute to the longevity of your arcade. Regular repairs and software updates ensure a seamless gaming experience for your patrons.

Starting Out Small

During your arcade’s initial phase, consider starting with a smaller number of machines. A prudent approach allows you to test the waters and gauge the popularity of different games before expanding further.

While there isn't a fixed average revenue figure for arcade cabinets, a common approach for estimating potential earnings is to consider factors like the number of players, the average time spent playing, and the cost per game or play session. 

Some arcade owners aim to cover the cost of an arcade cabinet within a certain period, and anything beyond that is considered profit.

Selecting the right size and quantity of arcade machines is crucial for creating an inviting and profitable arcade space. Make sure to regularly analyze your layout's performance. Pay attention to customer behavior and feedback as well as sales data to make necessary adjustments.