Does anyone remember the movie "The Lost Boys?". It was one of those iconic movies of the 80's and I remember seeing the Frog brothers meeting at the local video arcade. When I was a child, video arcades were everywhere. You couldn't go into a mall or a restaurant without hitting a big group of arcade machines.
These places were more than just an area to play video games, they were the social hangouts for many teens. You'd go with a pocketful of quarters and spend the next three hours blasting space ships, eating dots and jumping over barrels. The games evolved and soon had amazing graphics and sound. They got bigger and allowed for multiple players and were a major part of the 80's and early 90's.
When console games began to allow people to play similar or the exact games for free at home, the arcades changed. The one players arcade games disappeared and soon were replaced with grandiose machines that had guns or realistic space ship controls. They had to compete with the big guys like Playstation and Nintendo.
As the consoles evolved as well, arcades began to disappear. People could play co-op and multiplayer online and they didn't need to go to the local arcade to meet. People in other states or even other countries could play on the same game. How could arcades compete with that?
They didn't. You'll still find a few arcades here and there, but they are like drive-ins. Relics of an age gone by that are mostly kept around for nostalgia.