Gaming Editor Louis Wright went clothes shopping with his girlfriend and the unthinkable happened: gaming…

Gaming Editor | ( ̶T̶e̶m̶p̶) Lead Developer | MA Film & Television Research & Production | BSc Computer Science | BurnFM Deputy Station Manager | Generally Epic

‘The Husband Chair’ is a well recognised concept. For the uninitiated, the chair is an oasis in the clothes shop for those not interested in fashion, but nevertheless dragged into the depths of one by their partner. 

My girlfriend invited me on a day out to Birmingham city centre

Recently, my girlfriend invited me on a day out to Birmingham city centre to get her ears pierced (the temptation to get a nose piercing was palpable) and do some clothes shopping. Lo and behold, I was in the position described above: not interested in fashion, and yet, trapped within a clothing store. While there was childish fun to be had in picking out completely outlandish clothing items and presenting them to her in full earnest (I am a bit of a trickster), the allure of ‘The Husband Chair’ was ever present. However, the Urban Outfitters that we were within had something better than ‘The Husband Chair’, that being two arcade machines to play on while your partner shops. 

The first, Pac-Man, is an absolute classic, featuring an iconic yellow fellow dashing through mazes, dodging ghosts, and noshing pellets. It is a fantastic time sink, perfect for either short play sessions or extended time periods making the game a brilliant choice for placing within a clothing shop. If one’s partner is there for a long time, picking multiple outfits and trying on many clothes, then the game’s continuous and building nature allows for play to last for the entire time. Likewise if it is a quick visit, where the desired outfit is known, then the game can still be played, with a swift game filling the time to checkout.

The arcade machines in Birmingham city centre’s Urban Outfitters is an awesome alternative

The other machine, Street Fighter II, excels in Pac-Man’s flaws. The fighting game is intense, competitive and diverse with a wide array of characters and tourneys in a single player mode or the thrill of beating your opponent in a 2-player mode. Therefore, if there are others trapped within the clothing shop, waiting for their partners, then it is possible to join together in solace of a shared fate, battling it out in button-mashing fun. Alternatively, if there is not another to play with, the individual character campaigns can take hours to complete.

Nothing can be better for one stuck in the clothing store than a good gaming session. If the phone’s mobile data is working, or the Nintendo DS is left at home, then the arcade machines in Birmingham city centre’s Urban Outfitters is an awesome alternative.

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