Eugene Jarvis Named NY-AMOA “Man of the Year”
At the beginning of each year, the NY-AMOA honors a selected industry professional who continually contributes and positively impacts the coin-op industry. This year the NY-AMOA will bestow the honor of “Man of the Year” on Eugene Jarvis of Raw Thrills at the annual dinner held at Riccardo’s by the Bridge in Astoria Queens, New York.
In 1977, Eugene graduated from the University of California (Berkeley) with a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, and started his career in the game industry with Atari as a game designer working under the design legend Nolan Bushnell. Like many teenagers in the 70’s Jarvis spent way too much time in game rooms playing pinball, and those new fangled TV games like PONG, Tank, and Breakout. Working at Atari was a dream come true.
In 1979, Eugene headed to Chicago to program pinball games for Williams Electronics with the “King of Pinball,” Steve Ritchie. During his time with Williams/Bally/Midway, Eugene was responsible for the creation and development of a number of chart topping and industry changing games including Firepower, Defender, Robotron, NARC, Smash TV, and the record breaking Cruis’n driving game Series: Cruis’n USA, Cruis’n World, and Cruis’n Exotica.
After Midway left the arcade game business in 2001, Eugene co-founded Raw Thrills Inc. with Midway alumni Andrew Eloff and Deepak Deo., Raw Thrills has enjoyed the continued success as a game design and development firm. Their hit games such as Target: Terror, The Fast and The Furious, Drift and SuperBikes all reached #1 in industry revenues charts. In 2007, Raw Thrills merged with Play Mechanix, the creators of Big Buck Hunter and Deal or No Deal. This combination of talents developed such arcade hits as Big Buck Hunter Pro, Big Buck Safari, Big Buck Open Season, and the recently previewed Terminator Salvation. Meanwhile, the Raw Thrills studio has continued to innovate with the introduction of the hits Guitar Hero Arcade and H2Overdrive in 2009.
Raw Thrills and Play Mechanix have received many industry accolades including “Manufacturer of the Year” award for 2007 and 2008 from the American Amusement Machine Association, as well as numerous AMOA, IAPPA, and AAMA awards for their best selling games.
Jarvis states, “Being honored by the NY-AMOA as Man of the Year is especially meaningful to me. Although my games and companies have received numerous awards over the years, this is the first time I have been personally recognized by the arcade game industry. There is no better judge of value in our industry then the game operators. Hopefully no one will ask me for a refund! It is a great honor and after 33 years in the business, I am ready to party!”
“Through his designs and leadership, Eugene Jarvis has helped the coin-op industry grow and reach new levels of success. We owe a lot of gratitude to him and his achievements. His games have allowed the operating community to flourish,” stated NY-AMOA President Ken Goldberg.
With respect to future game innovation, Jarvis forecasts the development of new user interface and display technologies to create compelling new arcade entertainment experiences. “This is not pie in the sky; you will see some crazy new stuff from us as soon as next year! I really enjoy pioneering new game technology and mentoring a new generation of game designers for the arcade industry. We need to develop the next generation of talent that will lead this industry into the future. But as much as things change, the goal always remains the same. Create the best entertainment you can for the player, and you create new profit opportunities for the game operator. Thanks again for this honor.”