Finding the right balance between price, quality, and performance is hard with basketball arcade games. They are either too expensive without bringing anything new to the table or are far too cheaply made and won’t last you too much. Luckily there are a few products out there that are priced just right and offer a great amount of durability and fun. The Lifetime 90648 Double Shot Basketball Arcade Game is a prime example of that and is, in my opinion, the best value you can get out of your money compared to its competition.
My Verdict: If you are looking for a well-rounded basketball arcade game that has all the bells and whistles you might need, the Lifetime 90648 might just be the thing for you. It is one of the best values you can get out of such a game and is easily durable enough to withstand years of continuous usage.
Now, let’s see what makes this model worthy of being called one of the best basketball arcades today…
Overview & Features
Everything on this model is balanced, as all things should be, but at the same time it is also a premium arcade in every sense of the word. From the frame to the nylon materials, everything feels solid and well-made. Even the side nets are stretch-resistant and super hard to tear apart. The rims, backboard, and return ramp are also of typical Lifetime quality. Let’s take a closer look at all of those features now.
This is one of the best things about this arcade and also one of the worst. The game itself is quite large, typical for a dual-shot model. That is great since it will be good for children and adults of all sizes. Still, having such a large arcade will create some difficulties. For instance, the bigger the game gets, the fewer will be the available spaces in your house in which you will be able to place it. Even when folded, the Lifetime 90648 will take a significant chunk of any room’s space.
It measures 52 inches in width, 90 inches in length and is height adjustable from 84 to 90 inches at the back. The front is also height adjustable. That length of 90 inches is actually class leading but as I pointed out, that might be an issue depending on where you want to put it. The weight of the whole arcade when set up is just under 90 pounds which also makes it hard to move around but adds to its sturdiness once its at place.
Materials and Durability
The materials are probably what sets this arcade from all of its competitors. Lifetime is a brand that has been known for using solid materials for all of their products which ultimately reflects on their price tag but their brand is one that is revolving around well-made products. Here, across the whole arcade game you get powder-coated steel, heavy-duty nylon and medium-density fiberboard for the backboard. The 12 inch rims are made out of metal and the nets are nylon just like the return ramp. Unlike the nets, though, the ramp is reinforced and double-layered so it really is going to stand the test of time well.
The powder coating will prevent the main frame of rusting, cracking, chipping or peeling over time. One disadvantage of the steel mainframe is the added weight which isn’t very little, as I already pointed out.
As an improvement over the older model, the 90648 comes with slightly more accurate infrared scoring sensors on the rims which are also better positioned in order to not miss a shot. They will miss eventually but the worst case scenario is taking a few points out of every hundred you do, so unless you are going to an epic time score, then this wouldn’t bother you. In the heat of the moment you probably won’t even notice that 1% chance of missing a hit.
The score board itself is digital and shows a lot of information, from the game modes to the time and high scores of each one of the shooters. The only issue I have with the display is that for a 90 inch long arcade it is kind of small and it might be hard to see the score in a brightly lit environment. It is a triple digit display, though, which makes up for that and adds another number to your potential high score. Now, you can go up to 999 points when playing by yourself or with friends.
Just as the Pop-A-Shot Dual Shot Basketball Arcade Game, this one comes with 7 basketballs. They are also of similar quality, although I have to admit the basketballs that come with the pop-a-shot arcade are one of the, if not the best I’ve felt for an indoor basketball arcade.
Same as most other arcades, these balls here are 7 inch ones. Going into a 12 inch hoop makes them the ideal size to rim ratio for a better game. If you want to make things a little bit trickier or harder you can always find 8 or 9 inch mini basketballs that will be harder to put in that 12 inch rim. Still, the Lifetime basketballs are very grippy, hold air well over time, and have a good feel to them. On top of the 7 basketballs you also get a hand pump.
Additional features and accessories
Some of the additional features that I wanted to mention here are the games that come pre-installed and the game select controller.
The controller comes as standard on all lifetime arcade models and is located on the front right leg of the game. It does an alright job at choosing any one of the 12 pre-installed game modes and has volume controls for the buzzer and other sound effects. These effects aren’t my favorite but they do make the atmosphere a little more fun and arcade-like.
Design and Practicality
In terms of its design, the 90648 has a rather familiar folding structure similar to most of its competitors. It has nothing flashy as its decoration, with the return ramp being completely black. There are wide nets on both sides to keep the balls going straight to you after a shot.
Once folded it still is quite the large item so practicality isn’t as good as some single shot models, no matter how Lifetime advertises this as a “compact” arcade.
The price is possibly the strongest feature of this arcade. It isn’t too expensive but also isn’t too cheap, or in other words – priced very adequately. Most of its direct competitors are a bit more expensive which makes this model even more desirable. Its sturdiness and all-around quality are practically unmatched for its price.
If you are on a tight budget but want an arcade that has similar functionality to this one, check out my Giantex Foldable Indoor Basketball Arcade Game Review. Now, let’s head over to what I think are the most important pros and cons of this model…
Advantages & Disadvantages
- Great price to value ratio
- Class-leading scoring system
- Comes with 12 different games
- Has a controller
- Can be easily folded and adjusted
- Comes with 7 basketballs (pump included)
- Heavy-duty materials
- Triple digit scoring displays
- Still too large for some rooms even when folded
- The sound effects aren’t that good
- Display can feel a bit small
Basketball shooting requires similar drills whether you do it with a 7 inch ball or a 29.5 inch one. Click here if you want to read my beginner’s guide on basketball shooting fundamentals.
When it comes to decently priced basketball arcade games, there are few that come up in my mind but no one is anywhere near as accurately priced as the Lifetime 90648 Deluxe Indoor Basketball Arcade Game. It does almost everything right and is one of the sturdiest models I’ve reviewed so far. As a whole, it is easily a model that anyone can buy and almost all of these people will be satisfied with what they got. The few tiny issues I have with it are in no shape or form deal-breakers but they can be annoying, especially since there are other brands that get those things right. The main issue (which is also a great advantage for some) is the bulky size. For an indoor arcade this will definitely take a significant chunk of space of any room you put it in. It also isn’t great in terms of its scoring display and sound effects. Other than that, it is a solid all-rounder that will make you feel like you’ve spent your money on the right thing. I gave it a score of four and a half stars out of five mainly due to the little issues I had with it.