Despite the bowling pin outside the main entrance, there’s a lot more to do at Round One in Great Lakes Crossing than bowling.
The amusement center has a bowling alley, bar and arcade. Though this is the first and only location in Michigan, 18 of the 120 locations worldwide are in the United States. The company is based in Japan and Christ Nowak, one of two amusement managers at Round One in Auburn Hills, said that because of this, they have arcade machines no other arcade in the state has.
“Half of the games are Japanese,” he said. “If people understand the games, they come back again to play some more.”
Some examples of these games include Project Diva, a rhythm game based around the popular virtual diva Hatsune Miku and fighting games such as Tekken.
Round One provides translations near the games for American players to figure out how to navigate a game entirely in Japanese, so the games are still very playable for people who don’t speak the language.
Katie Hokanson and Tom Beaver, two Auburn Hills residents, were first time visitors to the arcade.
“There’s so many options,” Hokanson said. “It’s not very expensive either. I heard about the arcade from a friend of mine, and I’m impressed.”
Beaver, upon his visit, said the two of them planned to come back again.
“It’s a great way to spend a little bit of time,” he said. “We are waiting for our movie here, and figured this could be a fun way to spend a few minutes.”
Both of them said their favorite game in the arcade was the “table flip” game where players have to bang their fists on a plastic table and flip it hard to make things fly across a virtual stadium.
Round One is the home of the only “Dance Dance Revolution A” machine in the state. Nowak said countless players come to the arcade and stay for hours just to play this game over and over again.
The arcade also offers unlimited play cards for some of the games where visitors can pay $10 to play certain games as much as they want for an hour. In addition, Round 1 offers different packages for “swipes”, their game-tokens housed on a plastic card.
Some games offer players tickets, which are also stored on this card. The more players come to Round One, they earn not only more tickets, but opportunities to increase their membership status and get more discounts and rewards.
The bar at Round One has tap beer and bottled beer, as well as a menu of different food and snack options. As if this wasn’t enough, there are also ping-pong tables, darts, billiard tables and private karaoke rooms that groups of people can rent by the hour.
Round One is open from 10:00 a.m. until 2:00 a.m. every day, including most major holidays. It’s located near the Bath and Body Works inside of Great Lakes Crossing Outlets.