This failure was a long time coming.
We hadn't been in there in about a year, but the last 3-4 times we visited, more than half of the games we attempted to play were broken or malfunctioning in one way or another. In many cases, this wasn't apparent until you had already scanned your card and been charged for the play. Staff was extremely sparse, so stopping someone every time this happened would be tedious. Many games had physically broken controllers and no sign that they were attempting to fix them. They were just up and running as if nothing was wrong, despite being unplayable.
I agree that this place became WAY too kid-oriented. It's ironic because early on, they closed the entire bottom floor, which had been specifically dedicated to the 3-8 year old set. You would have thought they'd have figured out that given the overall nature of downtown entertainment, they were likely to do much better focusing on adults.
Dave and Buster's succeeds because they have figured that out. The places are clean, the games all work (or have signs indicating they broke yesterday and parts are on order), and MANY of the games are entertaining for adults and children alike. There are even games that really only entertain adults, which All Play had virtually none of. At one time, it appeared that the most popular attraction in the place was the mini bowling downstairs. They eliminated that after the first year or so, and the upstairs mini bowling seemed to be restricted to use for private parties only. The one time we walked into that room, we were immediately accosted by an employee who demanded to know what we were doing.
On another note, the climbing wall was closed the majority of the time. This was the only attraction that would primarily attract adults.
All Play was another great idea for downtown Des Moines, and another very poorly executed idea. There have been so many of these in recent years. When are people going to start listening to their customers and potential customers?