A term in reference to arcade games. It refers to games that are installed in the type of cabinet that has the screen placed face-up at about knee-height, and the controls for the two players mounted on opposite sides of the screen. These cabinets are known as "cocktail cabinets" for their resemblance to the type of glass-topped tables often found in cocktail lounges.

The idea with cocktail cabinets is that it allows two players to sit down and easily play a game that supports two players, but only one playing at a time. "Cocktail mode" itself refers to the game flipping its display upside-down when the active player switches, so that whomever is actually playing sees the display oriented towards them.