When the owner of Arcade UFO decided to sell the business in 2017, three arcade lovers used the opportunity to invest in Austin’s only Japanese and Korean-style arcade. Located at 9029 Research Blvd., Ste. 100, Austin, Arcade UFO is an arcade in North Austin dedicated to providing the local gaming community with access to fighting, racing and rhythm arcade games imported from Japan and Korea.

Original owner Ryan Harvey opened the arcade in 2008 in Central Austin, but the business moved to North Austin in December for more space and a newer building, co-owner Rob Campbell said.

While the arcade offers a variety of games to customers, fighting games such as Tekken and Guilty Gear provide a particular draw for arcade-goers, co-owner James Taylor said.

“The fighting game community is a big part,” Taylor said. “I would say that’s kind of what started this place.”

The arcade offers weekly gatherings for different games. Playing in person creates the most realistic and accurate experience for players by avoiding lag between button presses and movement on screen, which can happen with online play, Campbell said.

In addition to fighting games, the arcade offers rhythm games, which allow players to hit music notes on the screen with a variety of controllers.

“A lot of the rhythm games in particular also have expensive or bulky controllers that people don’t want to buy for themselves, so this is where they can come to play,” co-owner Matt Laux said.

Although much of its activities are centered around competition, the gaming community is what makes this arcade special, Campbell said.

“Competition is at the core of it, but the fact that you can have this very supportive, open and friendly community centered around competition is a really neat thing,” Campbell said.