Caine's Arcade – Los Angeles, California - Atlas Obscura
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Los Angeles, California

Caine's Arcade

A 9 year-old boy’s elaborate cardboard arcade in his father’s used auto parts store. 

Sorry, Caine's Arcade is permanently closed.

Caine Monroy is a 9-year old boy who created a cardboard arcade in his father’s East Los Angeles auto body shop during the summer of 2011. The arcade is built almost entirely out of excess cardboard, copious amounts of packing tape and toys from Caine’s personal collection.

In addition to the games, Caine created a security scheme via calculators to ensure that his customers don’t take advantage of the “fun passes”, a bulk coupon book that allows visitors to play more games for cheaper then the normal asking price.

Although Caine takes his business very seriously, the arcade had a rough start, receiving no visitors in its first few months of operation. This was primarily due to the nominal foot traffic surrounding the auto shop, which did most of its business online. However, everything changed when LA filmmaker Nirvan Mullick visited the shop to purchase a car door. He noticed the cardboard arcade and stepped inside to play. As Caine’s first customer, Mullick was amazed by the young man’s spirit and saddened to hear that he was, in fact, Caine’s first and only customer. This motivated him to bring attention to the boy’s endeavor with a short film. The documentary, Caine’s Arcade, was released online on April 9, 2012 and quickly became a viral phenomenon, achieving international media attention.

Today, Caine’s Arcade is more popular than ever, receiving a steady flow of visitors during its very limited weekend hours. But these customers aren’t necessarily interested in the entertainment. Rather, they have come to admire a young boy’s dedication and unique approach to the art of gaming.

Know Before You Go

Located inside Smart Parts Aftermarket