Monday, December 30, 2013

Retro Gaming New Years Resolutions

Your going to find out pretty soon that I may be a bit behind on a few things. But all I can say is thank God retro gaming is about the past and I have time to catch up, and even learn about the bad stuff without experiencing more of it. Of course keep in mind this all refers to retro gaming.

So here we are two days until the start of the new year. And of course at this time of year everybody thinks about their New Year's resolutions. Sure I could talk about the whole losing weight losing a bad habit gaining this losing that gaining this losing that thing that everybody usually does when to come's New Year's resolutions. But I decided that I would much rather make my New Year's resolutions based upon retro gaming.

Usually one folks make New Year's resolutions it's all about leaving comfort zones. Then again it's not always about leaving comfort sounds sometimes about just completing a list of things that you really want to complete. For instance I know this friend who makes a list of books that he wants to read throughout the year come every New Year's Eve, and he tries to get all the way through that list if you can before the close of the following year. But I really don't know that you're craving is so totally different that maybe the standard rules of New Year's resolutions one exactly apply to that but I'm going to give it my best shot and I'd like to encourage you to make some retro gaming New Year's resolutions of your home and of course yours welcome to follow along with mine.

#1 Play a Final Fantasy game, not necessarily to the finish but just to try to play and get to know it since I've never played one before and I've never had interest to. Everybody rants and raves about the series so I got to give it a try guess.

#2 Finally finish super Mario Brothers 3. I more or less had the game since it was new and all these years later I have yet to finish it. 

#3 Not retro mind you but play and finish Halo ODST

#4 Get an Atari 5200 and 7800.

#5 Play Starfox all the way through

#6 Leave my comfort zone and learn how to play both Mortal Kombat and Street Fighter 2. 

#7 Find my PS1 and games, if I can't get a new one. 

#8 Attend a retro video game convention

#9 Make my wife come to learn and enjoy retro gaming with me

#10 Keep writing this blog

Okay you have to admit it's nothing totally crazy but I am leaving my comfort zone here and there and I have set some goals for myself. Not only that I made it an even 10 items to do. 

With that being said dear reader do you have any retro gaming resolutions for 2014? If so be sure to share because I think we all like to hear what kind of ideas you have for the type of retro gaming you would like to do next year.

Thanks again for reading and Happy New Year!

Friday, December 27, 2013

The Podcast of Retro Gaming: Legacy Music Hour

I hope you're enjoying this series and I also hope that you're beginning to listen to some of the podcast that I have suggested to you.

For this particular installment I decided to go with a slightly different type of podcast. It still deals with retro gaming but it's a bit different than the previous two that I have bought to you. Both the Atari 2600 Game by Game podcast,  and The Retro League, are really great when it comes to learning about old-school games and even how to retro game in our modern era.


With this particular podcast you will still learn a bit about retro gaming but not quite in the same sense that you will from the other two podcast. I started listening to Legacy Music Hour, thanks to a suggestion by The Retro League, who often bought up the podcast. At first I never bothered to really look for it until about a week ago when I came across the podcasts while looking for some additional ones to listen to you. I didn't know what I would hear so I decided to give it a try and listen the first episode I didn't think I'd get much further than that. But after the first episode I was hooked and I immediately downloaded three more. Over the course of last week I must've listened to seven episodes. Keep in mind each one of these episodes is at least an hour long.

The show is hosted by Brent Weinbach, and Rob F. both of whom are comedians and musicians out of Los Angeles. The two of them are both funny and engaging, and also incredibly knowledgeable about music, and composition. Combined with their love for video game music of the 8-bit and 16-bit eras, they present a podcast that is both fun and enlightening.

Until you listen to this show you never really get a chance to realize the effort, and artistry that goes into video game music. The hosts through their own knowledge and research, combined with special interviews from time to time are able to show us how video game music and writers are able to incorporate different styles of music into early digital formats, and then use that music to set the stage for different scenes and atmospheres within games. On top of that you get a great understanding as to how different sounds are made that closely emulate real musical instruments. The podcast is great for helping someone into retro-gaming learn about how games come together, and the importance of music within them. 

I do need to mention that this podcasts last episode was made on November 15, 2013 so they just stopped producing shows last month. But having been doing this podcast since 2010 Brent and Rob have put together 157 episodes. At an average of and hour each that's a lot of listening till you get to the end. And hey maybe if I get enough of you to listen in and write in maybe they will do more shows.

You can check out there blog at, and down load episodes there. You can also find the show on iTunes as The Legacy Music Hour.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas!!!

Merry Christmas!!!!

No post today. Enjoy time with you families and play some games you got for Christmas as a kid, with you own kids. 

Monday, December 23, 2013

Retro Gaming Christmas Memories

Ok, we talked about anticipating what may be under the tree, now let's talk about those Christmas Day memories. I know we're a two days away yet, but I don't want to post an article on Christmas and I'm afraid after none of us will be in the Christmas mood anymore.

Christmas 1989
For me there was the Christmas of 1989 when I got an Atari 7800, and a bunch of games (Atari 2600 luckily). It was a total surprise to get the 7800, sadly it didn't work and I bought it back to Toys R Us to get an Atari 2600 Jr instead. This same Christmas my Mom and Sister kept asking me what games I would like for Christmas. I gave them a list and told them "Whatever you do don't buy ET for me it's suppose to be an awful game". So on Christmas Day I got some 2600 games, I can't remember which ones but I can tell you for certain ET was one of them. I don't know if they had already bought it when they asked me or they just wanted to play a little joke one but I believe it is the latter.  

Christmas 1990

One year later also totally by surprise my parents bought me an NES, with Power Pad. Ok, so it was 1990 and I came into the era really late, but for whatever reason we where never over the top video game crazy at my school so it was alright. I remember that Christmas well, and very fondly since it was also the first one my brother-in-law was a big part of.

Christmas 1993
This would be the Christmas I got my PC I talked about it in my last my last post. To say this least it's a pretty good memory.

Christmas 2004
I wanted Star Wars: Battlefront for a long time on the PS2. This year my wife surprised me with it.

Christmas 2010
My wife surprises me with the Constellation add on for Microsoft Flight Sim X, and CH rudder pedals. Not retro or even traditional gaming but a good gaming memory.

So with this basic recap of my past Christmases what are some of your favorite Christmas day memories? Was their a console that you opened that you didn't expect to get? How about a game? What Christmas Day video gaming gifts are burned into your memory? Let's hear about your Christmases. 


Friday, December 20, 2013

Anticipation for What's Under the Tree

Well, another 5 days and its Christmas. Do you remember what is was like to be a kid, how the entire month of December seemed like one big exciting buildup to what would be waiting for you under the tree?

Of course lets also get down to it and say that Christmas has always been a great time for video games. Christmas is that key holiday when a lot of kids got there consoles. I got an Atari 7800 (that ended up not working) and my NES both on Christmas. Not to mention my first real PC, and a gaggle of Atari 2600, NES, Commodore 64, and PC games over the years.

Now my 7800, and NES where both complete surprises to me so I never anticipated them under the tree. The PC on the other hand, hell yeah! No I know a lot of you are saying "a computer, that ain't retro gaming!". Well to me it is since PC gaming back then was so different and so where the games, and how they where presented. 

To me the PC meant access to the internet, and of course flight sims. As you may no from previous posts a lot of my gaming both on Atari 2600 and NES was and attempt to get a flying experience, bit I think we all know Top Gun, and Afterburner aren't exactly flight sims in the truest sense. 

Besides my PC (which was just a picture of it in a small box that day) there where also some great flight Sims under the tree too. F-117 Nighthawk by Microprose, and Strike Commander by Origin-Electronic Arts. In retrospect they where still more video game then flight sim, but the combination of a multi-function joystick, mouse, and keyboard to control the aircraft certainly make it feel more realistic. 

But, this article is about the anticipation right? Even though I was a teenager there was still that optimism and hope for what Christmas would yield that year. "Are they getting me a computer? Is it in the house? Did they get me games? Will I be playing it Christmas evening?", these where all questions in my excited head. Just that pit in your stomach excitement you get as a kid, you know that same feeling that you get as a young man when it comes to asking a girl out? 

This Christmas anticipation is a huge part of our collective retro-gaming experience. We all had it happen at one time or another. 

So what about you? Was there a video game, or console that you anticipated under the tree? Did you get it? If so what was it?

Anyway readers Merry Christmas! I will see you again after the holiday. 

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Returning to N64

About a month ago I wrote an article about how I was majorly pissed after two transactions on eBay; one for an SNES, and one for a N64 went bad.

I am happy to report that I got my money back on both with very little fight and full cooperation from Paypal. But the better news is that through some odd circumstances a co-worker gave me an N64 that was taking up space in his house, with Ocarina of Time. 

I bought the system home the day before Thanksgiving which helped to make the weekend a bit more joyful. On Black Friday we got Super Mario 64 for it as well, and I also picked up Starfox 64 on eBay that week too. 

To say the least my oldest son is really excited to have the system. I am too since as you well know from previous posts I have been trying to build a cool retro gaming collection. With the N64 in place I now have at least one system representing generations 2 through 7 available to me. Of course if I was able to find my PS1 I would have two for Gen 5, but hopefully I'll find it somewhere in my house. 

I have to say I am impressed with the N64, I like the 3D graphics. At the same time though it is a bit disorienting, and on my tiny gaming TV I get a headache after about a half hour of play. So I guess I have to work on getting a bigger TV. 

I'm still looking for a Super Nintendo though. Especially since I have four games sitting on my game shelf I bought after I thought I was getting an operational SNES. In the meantime though Starfox 64, Pilotwings 64 (both of which I just bought) and maybe F-Zero 64 (have to get) will give me the gaming experience I was looking to get with the SNES. 

To see the least I will turn now to you as my readers for some help on what games to get next. Keep in mind that I have the three Star Wars titles, Shadows of the Empire, Rogue Squadron, and Star Wars Racers in the bag already. So what are your suggestions? What games do you think I should get to build my collection further?
Better yet what a game that you love that isn't exactly a regular name in N64 games? 

Monday, December 16, 2013

I Emulate You Man, I Really Do: Out of Left Field

Gaming has taken an unusual and unforeseen turn over the last five years. Although consoles are still strong, no one really could have guessed how cell phones and tablets could change gaming five years ago. Don't worry PS, XBox, WiiU, and there portable counterparts, aren't about to be overtaken by cell phones and tablets any time soon.

What's truly amazing is since the rise of the iPhones and Androids, how powerful these devices have become. It's hard to imagine that a phone and music player is a more powerful gaming platform then our 90's video game consoles, and any computer we owned up until about the year 2005. 

The biggest thing about cell phones and tablets is that they are the realm of the casual gamer. The whole Candy Crush and Bejeweled crowd. But you can read about my rant on that a different time. Even though casual gamers seem to dominate the "mobile" realm, it hasn't prevented video game developers from going after the mid and hard core gamers carrying super-smart phone and tablets with them everyday. This even means that retro gaming emulators have been put out there for our delight. 

The Activision Anthology is by far one of my favorite emulators, anywhere. For $6.99 this emulator app will get you a collection of 45 Activision and Imagic games. Although most of them are tough to play on a iPhone the app is awesome on my iPad. My favorite games in this emulator are Laserblast, and Stampede but there are a lot of great games on this emulator. 

Another great one is the Atari Greatest Hits app. For $9.99 you get 99 games, it's a little pricey for me, but I played it on a friends iPad and its phenomenal. The only issue is that I an more of a Activision fan which is why I went that way first. 

There are also emulators for other systems as well. For instance the there are Sega offerings for Sonic 1-4, Shining Force, Streets of Rage, Jet Set Radio, and more.

For Nintendo you can find Duck Hunt, Mega Man II. For NeoGeo there are offerings from the Metal Slug series. 

Besides emulating the classics there are new retro games being offered all the time. The big talk in the iOS/retro gaming world right now are all the versions of Final Fantasy you can now download and play on you iPhone or iPad. 

So if you want to try emulation and your on the go be sure to take a look in iTunes, or your Google Play store to see what's out there becuase there is a lot of great emulators in the mobile market. 

Friday, December 13, 2013

A Retro Look at Mobile Gaming

I recently wrote a post about mobile gaming changing the way we game. After giving it a lot of thought I decided I would like to take a look into why mobile gaming is so big and where it came from. 

You see portable gaming has been around for a while with good examples dating back to the early 1980's. But it was about 1990 when consumers began to take it seriously after the Gameboy. Since then we have seen numerous serious contenders fight it out in this market right up to today with the 3DS, and PS Vita on the market.

At the same time though portable gaming really saw contention come out of left field over the past decade. At the time of Nintendo's original Gameboy cell phones where the size of bricks and weighed nearly as much, and only functioned as phones. By the early 2000's the world would change. By the time of the Gameboy Advanced, cell phones and PDA's (the first handheld computers) had began it slowly but surely merge. Cell phones began to have memory modules in them large enough to keep address books, calendars and organizers, and eventually even simple games. 

I have no doubt that technology from the portable gaming industry was able to help spur advancement in phones on and it was not long until phone began to feature color displays which here common by 2001. Games on phones where still simple, until 2003 when Nokia would introduce the N-Gage. The N-Gage was a portable gaming system similar to the PSP, but unlike the PSP, the N-Gage was a fully functional cell phone and PDA. The N-Gage would play games on mini-cd's, much like the PSP

By now though PDA's and cell phones where almost entirely merged and phones like Palm's Treo's existed side by side with the N-Gage. The Treo's features touch screens using a stylus, had upgradable memory with and SD-Card, and had games that could be bought at a online store through the phone, and downloaded to it. Starting to sound familiar? To say the least neither the N-Gage, or the Treo exist anymore. I guess the N-Gage was either perhaps ahead of its time or no one saw the point.

Flash forward to 2008. Apple which had huge success with its iPod products releases the iPhone. The iPhone is a touch based telephone, PDA, iPod, or as they would soon be known smartphone. Initially (as with all iPhone to come) there where a lot of issues, up until the 3G series released about a year later, and we know the story from there. Hot on Apples heal cell phone giant Motorola develops the Android operating system, a knock off of iOS that's more Windows friendly. Well with the iPad and Andriod tablets we know where it goes from there. 

What wasn't expected so much though was the rise of casual gaming these systems bought. Games originally designed to just waste 5 minutes here and there suddenly became a huge market segment. On top of that so did the proliferation of down loadable content DLC, otherwise know as that annoying reminder that for $0.99 you can download this, that, or the next thing that will take you to the next level. 

For mid and hard core gamers DLC is often a huge turn off, since these types of gamers are use to just buying a game and earning powerups through play rather then buying them with real cash. To say the least it's a line in the sand between where casual gamers and mid/hard core gamers. 

The video game industry also tends to see mobile casual gamers and have a mainly female demographic. The basic idea on their part is that women tend to use and check there phone more then men so 5 minute time wasters suit them better then a 15 minute per level action packed epic. You can also see that the more popular games have somewhat effeminate touches as well, look at Candy Crush and Bejeweled for example.   

To say the least mobile gaming has changed the way game and virtually came out of no where to do it. The big question that most real gamers ask is, will mobile gaming ever replace portable consoles? Is there a point when Nintendo stops making 3DS, and Sony the PS Vita in order to become an app? 

I have to say I have my doubts the real portable gaming is in any danger since iPhone and Androids lack game controls necessary for real and intense gameplay. 

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

I Emulate You Man, I Really Do: PS2 the Unsung Hero

Emulation is nothing new, nor is it a phenomenon strictly confined to the internet. In Gen 3 we got a taste of emulation as Gen 2 Atari games such as Defender, and Mario Brothers made appearences on the NES although somewhat modified and/or updated from the original Atari form. In many ways it could even be argued that these where more like ports then emulations.

(Ports or Porting is the process of bringing games from one system to another, but making modifications to do so. Most ports where from arcade games to home consoles, but console to console porting has occurred as well.)

Console to console emulation has more or less always been around especially since Gen 3. In most cases though new consoles didn't see old titles until the consoles where a few years into or even near the end of their lifespan. Logically this would be becuase the money was in releasing new titles and not rehashing old ones. 

Round about Gen 6 though something changed, and that change seemed to focus on the PS2. Maybe it was the popularity of or the prolific sales of the PS2 that made it a good target. Or perhaps it was just the right system at the right time. But whatever reason it was, the PS2 became the benefactor of nostalgia, and one of the first systems to take on the retro gaming movement. 

By 2002 the PS2 began to see a lot of titles like the one above released on it. Video game developers suddenly saw a niche for some of their old titles, as older gamers began to feel nostalgic about thier old games and the simplicity of them. 

Developers loved the idea since the PS2 was a powerful gaming platform and could play the old games smoothly and without the gliches some of thier original platforms couldn't get past. On top of this the developers had the ability to make some additional money off old properties. Even if these game collections averaged about $20, and there where as many as 20 games on them it was still a way of making money off old titles that already had money invested in them long ago.

It wasn't to long until a lot of developers got into the act. The PS2 would see game collections from Namco, SNK (NeoGeo), Capcom, Taito, Sega, Midway, Activision, Atari, and Intellivision. Intellivisions Intellivision Lives title is probably one of the most famous of the game collection series released. 

Other systems in Gen 6 like the XBox, and GameCube would see some of these titles, but for whatever reason the PS2 seemed to become a retro gaming Mecca for this type of retro gaming medium. 

Overall, I would have to say if you own a PS2 you have a great way of doing retro gaming emulation with minimum effort. There are a ton of titles out there and if your will to bargain hunt online a little bit you may find whatever collection your looking for at a good price. When you get it just put it in, select the game of your choice and your retro gaming.  

In Gen 7 gaming systems would become online dependent, and each system would have stores to buy retro games through among other products. But, by now developers learned the value of nostalgia and retro gaming, and games became sold ala carte rather then in collections. 

In many ways the PS2 and it's contemporaries dwell in a strange limbo to where retro gaming enthusiast consider them modern systems. Yet unlike modern systems Gen 6 systems can live entirely offline free from moronic constent updates, and online game stores. It seems ironic that the PS2 would play such a huge role in bringing retro gaming and emulation into the public eye, yet the systems itself meets so much resistance in being considered a retro system. 

Monday, December 9, 2013

The Podcasts of Retro Gaming: The Retro League

I got into the retro gaming movement with a lot of vigor thanks to Podcasts. It's great to know there is a community out there full of folks who are passionate about this hobby and really willing to share information.

In my first part of this series I introduced you to the Atari 2600 Game by Game Podcast which I think is a shining example of a enthusiast sharing his passion. In this part I would like to introduce you to another podcast that is a great example of this; The Retro League

The show is currently hosted by Hugues Johnson and "Jungle Rat" Rob Anderson, but has had additional host and guest hosts in its past. If you are one of my readers and the name Hugues Johnson sounds familiar it's becuase I mentioned and article of his "The Madden Theory" in my piece about the WiiU a couple of weeks back. 

I enjoy this show becuase the host are both informative and funny, although it is a bit of dry humor. I also love that fact the Hugues Johnson is from the Chicago area like I am so he gives some really cool ideas as to where to find stuff semi-locally. Jungle Rat Rob who is currently in Utah is from Wisconsin so its nice for me to get a some Midwestern humor and outlook on things between him and Hugues. 

The podcast has also had a lot of cool series in it as well. One series on launch titles gave great insight as to games introduced with game systems, but also was a great look into the history of the systems up to thier actual luanch. On the opposite end their "Last Days Of" series gave great insight into the demise of certain systems and the final game titles launched with it. 

Hugues and Rob try to follow a similar format in each show as well, such as the "This Day in Gaming History", "News", and "Virtually Retro", portions to name a few. The "Virtually Retro" portion in fantastic becuase it gives some great insight into game re-releases and emulations, I often get the most out if the show from the portion. 

On top of the fantastic podcast you can also watch each podcast on YouTube. In addition to this the Retro League also maintains a great website with forums, This website is a fantastic website for retro gamers, and the forums are a great way to get information and get more involved with the retro gaming community. 

Overall I have to tell you to look them up on iTunes and start listening. Between the show and the website there is a lot going on you can learn from so you have to check it out. 

Friday, December 6, 2013

Who Will Be Left Standing at the End of Gen 8: Part 3

In parts 1 and 2 I took a look at the potential failure of the WiiU and XBOX ONE, in Gen 8. Now it's time to look at one last entrant the PS4.

Let's be honest the Playstation series has been a game changer since it arrived in Gen 5, stepping up to take on the gap left collectively by Atari, NEOGEO, and Turbo Grafix. In era in which console gamers where bailing out to go to PC gaming, gamers needed something new to place them back in front of their TV's, instead of thier computer monitors. I should know I was one of them, and Gran Turismo was one of the games that bought me back. 

In Gen 6 Sony gave us the PS2 an innovative multimedia platform, that sold just as many people on the fact that it was a DVD player, as it did on the fact that it was a video game console. Many consider the PS2 the quintisential modern gaming platform and the system that seperated the old from the new. The PS2 now holds the record as the longest living platform to still have games made for it just edging out the Atari 2600 in mid-2013. But the era of the PS2 also bought Sony's stiffest compitition in Microsofts Xbox. 
The rivalry between Playstation and XBox would only get worse in Gen 7 when Microsofts XBox 360 beat the PS3 into the stores by nearly a year. Sony took this in stride and hoped to repeat part of the PS2's success by adding a Blueray player to the PS3. But compitition remained tight. 

Of course if you know anything about the PS vs XBox thing you will know the PS devotees always seem to have these low self esteem issues, that will remind you of those of Android users. There's always these weird almost childish outbursts of "my system is better then yours" that you get from them. Now with Android users I get it since Android is always playing keep up and walking in the iShadows so to speak. But I always wondered why PS users where that way since PS came  before XBox and Sony has been a major innovator. Then it hit me, "Kinect"! You see Kinect was the decisive blow in deciding the winner if Gen 7. Wii kicked off the Wireless motion control thing, and XBox gave the final word on it, leaving PS3 to catch up by giving PS3 users ridiculous looking Wii style controllers with green balls on top. Trust me if I had been a PS3 user in gen 7 using those embarrassing controllers I guess I'd be childishly lashing out at XBox 360 as well.

So here we are in Gen 8 and Nintendo has taken an odd side step with the WiiU, XBOX ONE is a step forward yet a creepy one at that, and PS4 doesn't look all that different from PS3. Obviously all these systems have improved graphics and smoother game play, and the Xbox and PS have continued to offer more internet techno goodies the systems can do besides playing games. But what exactly does the PS4 have to offer to make it a suvivor in Gen 8? 

Let me sum it up, PS3 lost in Gen 7 becuase it didn't have what XBox has. In Gen 8 PS4 may walk away a/or the winner becuase it doesn't have what XBox has. You see the Kinect has gone from being a cool device that's a lot of fun to play with while making you look like an idiot in your living room jumping around, to a slightly sinister robot eye always on and always watching. Not to mention Microsofts insistence that XBox One must have a connection to the internet at all times for XBox Live has folks a bit worried about X1's Big Brother is watching potential. 

So PS4 may actually benefit from the fact that instead of going over the top as Microsoft has gone with X1, it had almost choosen to make PS4 and more modern and powerful version of the root PS3. But this may in time backfire since in the 6-7 year lifespan of a console generation there can be a lot of surprises much like Kinect was in Gen 7. Microsoft could after feedback allow X1 Kinect to be shut down, and X1 itself to only be online to update occasionally, not to mention Microsoft could also back off on its non-transferability of games issue. Although I think we all know Microsoft isn't keen on listening to customer feedback or admitting it made mistakes. 

For me I think the future looks bright for PS4 in Gen 8, but if Sony wants any kind of chance on gaining in Gen 8 it's going to have to be more innovative, and a leader in innovation at that. After all if Microsoft should get serious as it did in Gen 7, and there is a another Microsoft "surprise", it could permenently put PS in second place in all future genetations. 

Overall I believe each platform is bringing some impressive tech to Gen 8, but at the same time they are also all bringing some impressive caveats as well. I think PS4 will push its way through based on its Vanilla flavor approach of being a system that relatively simple in comparison to its contemporarys. Yet at the same time the techno push and/or gimmicky offerings of PS4 competitors may be a gamble in their favor. 

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Determining Destiny

I recently wrote article here about the possible outcomes we might see for systems entering the Gen 8 fray. In it I mentioned my concerns about XBOX ONE, and it's weaknesses mainly being in Microsofts rules as far as the systems connectivity, and software sharing. But, I also mentioned that Microsoft could use the XBOX ONE as it's last entry in the home console market, and simply develop games from Gen 9 on.

About two months ago I caught a trailer for a new game set to come out in June of next year named Destiny. If you haven't seen a trailer for it check it out its really cool, and had a lot of potential. But, it does have a Halo type quality to it, even down to the story line. 

One of the reasons this might be is becuase the game is being developed by Halo developer Bungie. In this case though Bungie has partnered with video game great Activision. So in a way we have Halo being married to Modern Warfare. But am I the only one who sees this as being awesome, yet slightly disconcerting at the same time? Especially considering Destiny is going to be available for both XBOX and Playstation. 

I can't help but feel that Bungie is starting to move past its relationship Microsoft. Or that maybe they no something we don't about the XBOX ONE? Is Destiny a sign of Gen 8 gamings destiny? Or of the XBOX's destiny? Who can tell? 

Time will tell about the XBOX, but I still think its funny that XBOX ONE is luanching without a new Halo title. After all Halo is one of XBOX's best known games. I mean I know what your saying "Wait, didn't Halo 4 come out last November?", well yes, but you think Mircosoft would have maybe held it for a year to luanch with the XBOX ONE, or given us Halo 5 as a launch title for XBOX ONE. Sorry that's just me. 

What are your thoughts, is Bungie just branching out with a new multi-platform franchise, or is a sign XBOX's demise? 

Monday, December 2, 2013

RC Pro Am vs Super RC Pro Am

You know a couple of weeks back when I first started this blog I was asked if I was going to do any reviews. I said "well I might", but I was non-committal since reviews aren't really my thing, but I realized that occasionaly the mood would strike me and I would just have to.

My first subject is RC Pro Am. I don't know if you remember this or not but RC Pro Am was always one of those titles you where told you had to own on NES. The weird thing is I was always told I had to get it, but no one I know had it. 

I bought Super RC Pro Am on Gameboy in the Fall on 1991 though, and at that point it was a new release. For me the game would always have good memories  since I bought it the weekend after being in the hospital for two weeks as a kid. And then later in January of 1992, I remember playing it on my 8th grade trip as we made the long drive to Northern Wisconsin with a friend of mine playing Nirvana in the background. So Super RC Pro Am was my only connection to the RC Pro Am franchise for a number of years. I loved the game not only because of the memories that went with it but the gameplay as well. 

But last month well picking up new games for my old systems I finally bought the original RC Pro Am on NES. It was interesting to play this game on the big screen but I have to say I was a little let down. I don't know what it is but it doesn't seem as if RC Pro Am has the same kick to it as Super RC Pro Am on the little classic Game Boy screen. 

With Super RC Pro Am you are constenly upgrading, the music is exciting, and you get into the car combat elements early. RC Pro Am on the other hand seem to take a while to get going. I mean don't get me wrong it's worth playing now and again, but it just seems to lack those elements of Super RC Pro Am. 

To give RC Pro Am its props though the concept was new to gamers at the time. Racing RC cars in a top down perspective, that was really unique. That and those colors too, wow the game was  vibrant and really a pleasure to play because of that. 

And that's the other thing, game play and control aren't too bad. I mean your playing a car game with an NES controller, so you have to expect movement to be angular. But you are playing with RC cars and you have to consider with a real RC controller motion would be the same. The same can be said about the Super RC Pro Am as well since Gameboy control is a lot like NES. 

Of course both games are missing the realistic momentum factors you see in modern games. So you aren't going to see momentum at the wheel here as much as you might in later games like F-zero, and of course further down the line Gran Turismo. 

Overall, I do believe Super RC Pro Am is the better of the two games. However they are both worth having in your collection if you do both NES and Gameboy. 

Friday, November 29, 2013

Black Friday Video Game Memories

Over just the past few years the entire identity of Black Friday has been a bit muddled and lost. It use to be about getting up in the dark and fighting the cold out to some store to possible get a good deal. Now days Black Friday doesn’t even take place of Friday, as stores such as Walmart, Best Buy and others open their doors while most folks are still chowing down on Turkey. It’s weird to say this but it seems as if the concept of Black Friday is now retro too. Don’t worry this blog post isn’t about me bitching about the lost meaning of Black Friday, so don’t worry.

What I actually want to talk about is video game memories of Black Friday, you see I have many myself some of which aren’t that old. I hoping you have some memories about video games and Black Friday too.

So here goes. My favorite Black Friday memory is when I bought Command & Conquer: Red Alert on PC in 1996. I was a huge fan of the original Command & Conquer and had been waiting long for a sequel. Although Red Alert isn’t exactly a sequel the game play is extremely similar, and Red Alert offered some really cool new elements. I like this memory the most because it involved me going out with my Mom that morning and having breakfast with her before heading up to the Best Buy in a neighboring town. You see a year later my Mom would be dying of cancer, so I hold this memory close. To say the least I got to Best Buy got my game and I loved playing every minute of it.

My next memory placed my back in high school as a freshmen, it had to be about 1992. My Dad who I previously mentioned hated shopping stayed home and I went out with my Mom and newly wed sister. They got such a late start that most of the day was a bust and the best deals they where looking for where all gone, plus traffic was so bad we never made it to the mall. Luckily some how I made it to a Funcoland, and I got a ton of NES games I had been waiting a while to get. Afterburner, Top Gun, and Captain Skyhawk where just a few of the games I got. Like I said in previous post I was into flight sims (I will use that term loosely for NES). I was just great to get a bunch of games like that.

Black Friday 2011 is another favorite since this is the day I got my Xbox 360. It was a bundle with the 250 GB hard drive, Fabel III, Halo Reach, and Fruit Ninja. I got a semi-late start and headed into Best Buy (which had been open since Midnight) around 10AM, I expected all the systems to be gone. Instead I walked in found a huge display with a lot of them grabbed one, bought it and left, total time in store 5 minutes. Anyway, I plugged it in at home Fabel III was ok, but Halo Reach blew my mind, I was up till 4AM playing it.  I’ve loved the Halo games ever since.

I imagine I have other game memories of Black Friday as a matter of fact I think it might have been a Black Friday I got Berserk on Atari 5200, but I cant remember that clearly.

So what about you what memories do you have of Black Friday video games? 

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Who Will Be Left Standing at the End of Gen 8: Part 2

We left off examining the potential downfall of the WiiU, and maybe even Nintendo in part one. We also established that in the in the less then 40 years of the video gaming industries history, that every decade had has its tribulations and victims knocked from the hill of success and into an oblivion of mediocrity. So as we sit here on the cusp of Gen 8 consoles who will be the victim(s) of the 10's?

We've covered WiiU's flaws, so let us look now at the XBOX ONE. The XBOX ONE has been stirring up controversy since we (and that includes Microsoft) knew the prototype as that XBox 720. Unlike the 360 the ONE comes with the Kinect as a standard feature, but unlike the 360 the Kinect on the ONE gets the creepiness factor of being on all the time. Meaning the f$&*ing robot is always watching you. Now if that isn't enough to potentially turn you off to the ONE, here are a few more WTF factors Mr. Gates and Microsoft want us to swallow. The ONE has to be connected to XBox Live at all times, and on top of that you have to have a valid possibly paid account to XBox live to do so. How are you feeling about the ONE so far? Well, I'm not done on top of that Microsoft is telling us once you put a game on your ONE, it can never be played anywhere else. So much for selling stinker games to Gamestop or playing XBox at a friends house with your own game.

To say the least a lot of XBox devotees are beginning to defect to the PS4 as soon as it comes out. The worst part is rather then listening to fans Microsoft seems to be taking a hard line and refusing to change its plans for the ONE. So you have to ask yourself if Microsoft is unaware the PS4 is a real competitor, if their completely arrogant, or both. 

What's even stranger is the new ONE will not be launching with one of XBox's most premier titles Halo. A Halo title will come out with the XBOX ONE, but it will be a simple and somewhat unspectacular reboot of the first Halo that came out with the original XBox. Doesn't that seem a little strange to you? 

So what's the deal here is Microsoft trying to get out of the video game market and doing it with a bomb? I mean let's be honest outside if Halo and a few other titles most of what comes out on XBox also comes out on Playstation. So Microsoft could abandon the market at the end of Gen 8 with very little impact to gamers and publishers. Microsoft could even just make all its in house games for PS4 or perhaps in this case we are talking PS5. 

Either way Microsoft seems to be taking the XBox to a direction most gamers and consumers are not crazy about. A failure in Gen 8 won't spell the end for Microsoft but it may end the XBox. So is the ONE another candidate for a victim of this decade? 

Now, don't get me wrong I like my XBox 360. I choose it in Gen 7, mainly because of Halo, and do to that fact that as far as online gameplay and downloadable content the 360 was or should I say is considered superior to the PS3. As a matter of fact when people with a PS3 come to my house the want to play Halo.  But, I'm not to sure about the ONE, or what direction I will go in Gen 8. What I do know is I went with Playstation 1 and 2 in Gen 5 and 6 respectively and I could make the move to PS4 easily. 

Until then I hope Microsoft will get smart about the ONE, but at the same time perhaps we are looking at a Gen 8 victim, but this one is by choice. 

Monday, November 25, 2013

No Respect for the Last Connection to Gamings Past

Video gaming whether modern or retro always has its 800 pound Gorilla in the room, usually multiple ones. There are the bad things we don't want to talk about like the whole Custers Revenge thing, and then there are the good things like educational gaming we don't want to talk about either. It's strange to think that in retro circles the unspeakable is a game like Math Grand Prix, or that Big Birds Egg Drop is on the same level of being shunned as Beat Em' & Eat Em'. 

But the fact of the matter is that we all have fond memories of educational games, whether we want to admit it or not. For instance I actually liked Math Grand Prix, and I have very fond memories of Oregon Trail, and Where in the World is Carmen San Diego, as I was wrapping up my 8th grade year. Of course lets be honest looking back the only thing educational about Oregon Trail may have been its title. 

Nowadays, educational games still exist and cover a wide range topics that extend far beyond the basic math, geography, and history questions of the games we knew as kids. As a matter of fact some educational games also have there own game systems, no doubt to assure parents that all the games for that system are educational and age appropriate, and avoid the mistakes of possibly putting the wrong game in on a standard system. Not to mention these educational systems have controllers that are easier to manage for small kids. But, there is one aspect of the modern educational game systems that I find to be very fascinating, and that is in an era of CD-ROMs and electronic formats, these systems use cartridges. 

To me nothing epitomizes the era of retro gaming more then cartridge based games. Every Atari from the 2600 to the Jaguar, Nintendo from the NES to N64, and other systems like the Sega Genesis, C64, and NEO GEO all used cartridges in that golden era. So in a way these educational game systems are the last descendants of the once great cartridge based gaming platforms. Yet, they hardly receive the recognition that one would expect. 

Having seen my sons Leapfrog and VSmile games in action I have to say they are not all that bad. For the most part they are 2D, which is very traditional and old school, but I think this is done more to come accross as more cartoon like so as to appeal to kids more. Yet in the grand scheme of things both system failed to garner his attention long enough for him to show a real interest. I don't know if this is because having to solve a math problem in order to get Superman to break down a door just wasn't any fun, or if it was that he just felt other systems where more impressive. I'm guessing it was the whole learning thing. 

Overall, though it doesn't seem as if these systems can get any respect. Go to any garage sale where the residents have pre-pubescent kids, or to many thrift stores and you will find these systems sitting out there totally ignored. In many ways as if the stigmatism of educational gaming we had as kids just seems to carry on. 

As a retro gamer and a father I have these systems in my house, although the VSmile wall adaptor doesn't work, and a few of the games went missing in a recent move. After I began to realize the signicance of the fact that the VSmile and Leapster both still use cartridges I decided to include these out of place systems into the fold of retro and modern video gaming, by hooking the VSmile up to the very same TV that now hosts my Atari 2600, Sega Genesis, NES, and PS 2 (and hopefully XBOX 360 and Wii if I replace them with an XBOX One and Wii U soon), and also give the games and portable game systems space in the same cabinet that now has games for these other systems, and holds my Gameboys, and DS. 

What are your thoughts? As retro gamers and collectors should we adopt or shun these educational systems? Let me know?

Friday, November 22, 2013

Sorting Out Your Game Collection

I have a pretty good memory, but there's games in my collection I don't always remember. This is particularly true in collecting Atari 2600 games, especially when you can pick up whole lots of 10+ each on e-bay fairly inexpensively. Having just revived my collection, remembering all the titles I had was a bit of a mystery. So looking through e-bay I held off on getting some lots out of fear of getting games I already have. 

To help me through this I decided I had to catalog my collection somehow. Luckily, there's an app for that and I want to share it with you.

Above are two examples of apps from Sort It Apps, the simply names Video Games, and Music are two examples. Each can be found on the iTunes Store for free and allow you to track your collections of video games, music, movies, apps and other items.

This is the sort screen here I can see all my games, on any platform. This video game app allows you to search you collection by platform too. 

This is the free version and allows you to search their database of games, or manually enter a UPC to find them. The full version is $5.99 and allows you to simply scan UPC's, and edit info on titles. Both versions have an eBay tool that will list your titles on eBay for you. Also there are areas that allow you to log if you loaned games out, rate them, and list the dates you completed them.

Overall, this is a really great app and worth looking into. 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Who Will Be Left Standing at the End of Gen 8: Part 1

You know the video game industry as a self contained unit is a fascinating thing. It's an industry that is totally driven by consumerism and it's products are purely  the purchases of those with disposable income. Meaning consumers can abandon the game market with little impact to themselves. It's like this perfect little example of monopolistic competition.

With that being said though is definitely a place of economic Darwinism and once a decade some competitor gets knocked off the the top of the hill. In the giant video game industry crash of 82' for instance many of Atari's clone making competitors disappeared and Atari itself almost lost everything. But Atari would only be king of the hill for so long as the American market became open to the likes of Nintendo, and Sega to name a few. 

In the 90's Atari would finally be knocked from the hill after the failure of the Jaguar and Lynx. And in the 00' Sega would be knocked from the hill after the Dreamcasts failure and new competition from the Playstation and XBox. But whats interesting about the video game industry is even though Atari and Sega are no longer big time players, they and many other video game companies don't so much as go out of business, its more like the bow out into oblivion. To paraphrase General MacCarther "Old video game companies never day,....they just fade away!". 

But here we are its late 2013, and we have Gen 8's best a brightest either out or coming out soon. But if we follow video game console history, should we prepare ourselves to see Gen 8 claim victims? We have our competitors the WiiU, the XBox One, and PS4. Which ones will be left standing?

Let's take a look at the WiiU. Really it's not all that impressive and doesn't exactly seem like a step forward for Nintendo. When comparing the quantum leap in technology between the GameCube and the Wii, the move to the WiiU seems like a bit of a letdown. As a matter of fact that handheld screen controller seems more like backward progress, or an attempt at an inter-generational mezzanine level if technology. Of course we know from the Sega 32x, and Atari 5200 mezzanine level tech never does well. But, here is something even more interesting to consider about the WiiU, in an article titled "The Madden Theory" by video game expert and host of The Retro League Hugues Johnson, Johnson shows compelling evidence game consoles that don't get the newest titles from the Madden franchise have short lifespans. The WiiU has not received Madden 25, and won't. Does this mean the WiiU is fated to a short life? 

Check out Hugues article below:

I personally find the article compelling, and when combined with the lackluster tech of the WiiU in comparison to its predecessor, and the XBox 360's Kinect you have to ask yourself about the WiiU's future. You also have to ask yourself about the fate of Nintendo. Has Nintendo lost its golden touch after nearly 30 years? And is Nintendo the company or one of them to be knocked from the hill in
the 10's? 

Monday, November 18, 2013

I Emulate You Man, I Really Do: Introduction

If your new to retro gaming then you are probably not aware that there two ways of retro gaming. One way is the traditional way and what is considered the most lagitimate way, that is getting an old counsel of your choice, the games you want, and playing them as they where originally meant to be played. Like getting an NES, getting Super Mario Bros 3, hooking it up to your tv and just having fun. 

The other way is emulation. From NESticle in the mid-90's to the new Ouya game emulation has been around for a while, comes in a lot of varieties, and more of it is to come. Essentially emulation is using some other system by which to play games of another. I know that sounds vague but emulation opens to door to vague. For instance if you own a Wii, WiiU, or 3DS then you know about virtual counsel through the Nintendo store. Here you can buy titles from the NES, to NeoGeo, to N64 and then play them right there on your modern Nintendo system. This is emulation but this is also just one example. 

Here's how emulation works essentially it takes the ROMs (Read Only Memory) from games and saves them online. ROMs are the game programs as they are designed, the heart of the game. If it's a catridge based game it's everything on the chip inside the plastic case. ROM's by design aren't meant to be changed, meaning your not suppose to add or take anything away from the game let alone copy it, but ROM hacking of games is relatively simple. Also the ROMs of most old games occupy very little space 2KB for some old Atari games and up to 64MB for some N64 games. Meaning a simple at home PC with a 500GB hard drive can literally hold thousands of games and send them online easily. 

All of this does not come without controversy. In many instances these ROM hacks are no different then any other kind of hacking, and copying them online is considered piracy. In other instances game designers are ok with the hacks, and sometimes are even the ones to hack and place games online they designed. So in some respects there is a whole late 90's Napster feel to the ROM thing but since retro gaming is not as big as the music industry your not going to know about it outside the retro-gaming community. 

Keep in mind though that there are also legal emulations. For instance I mentioned Nintendo Virtual Consel before, here you can buy games to play on your system. The benefit is that the games are legal, and supported by the seller. The downside is that a game you bought for one systems virtual counsel may not transfer to another. In Nintendos case some gamers are complaining that games bought on Wii are not transfering over to WiiU. 

Besides Nintendo though there are other systems out there with legally bought emulations, mostly with top notch quality. The Playstation Network, XBox Live, Windows 8, iOS, Andriod, Steam, Gog, and Ouya all offer retro emulation experiences. Of course at a price but the high quality experience is worth it.

In additional parts of this series I will cover various emulators and let you know my experiences. There are a lot of good ones out there I would like to talk about. Just keep watching. 

Friday, November 15, 2013

"In the Beginning.....," Part 2

I left off part 1 with finding Sega Genesis systems trending for lower prices then normal on eBay, and finding a system with everything I wanted, for $1 plus shipping. As I mentioned this Genesis had 2 controllers, 6 sonic games, the RF adaptor, and of course the counsel.

I had to take a chance, I e-mailed the seller. "Does it work?" but to reply back. Two days passed someone else started bidding on it low bid was $1.25, I waited till the day of the auction and at last minute bid in. It closed at $5.25, I sent another e-mail to the seller "before I pay does it work?", no response. Finally 2 days later "yes it did work when I last plugged it in a year ago, I will check it again tonight!" the seller replied. That was good enough for me, I paid and with my eBay Bucks, it came out to $15 out of my pocket. But, was the seller telling me the truth? 

I paid for the system on a Friday and got it by the Wednesday following. Pretty impressive considering the seller was near Seattle and I'm near Chicago. As usual though with my hectic life it was a few days till I could hook the system up, and also as usual it was a Friday night. So I got it hooked up, and guess what? I had a 100% fully operational system. No repeat of the Atari thing.

What happen next though I wasn't expecting. You see I know 8-bit, and I vaguely remember SNES 16-bit, but when I plugged Sonic into that Genesis.......WOW! I had a whole new respect for 16-bit, and Sega. I don't remember SNES looking that good. To say the least I am hooked and even though I have 6 Sonic games to get through, I want to see what else Genesis can do. 

Overall $15, for what was probably $300-$500 worth of stuff new is a hell of a deal. And considering I paid a 1/3'd for 16-bit magic that I did for my Atari, I think its worth it. 

So is my next step the 32x add on? I don't know well see what happens. 

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

The Podcasts of Retro Gaming: The Atari 2600 Game by Game Podcast

I have to admit in the short time I have been involved in the retro gaming community I have been impressed. There is a lot of love out there for old games, and a lot of really passionate people who pass the bug of collecting on so easily.

I'm writting this series of blogs about podcasts, because podcasts for me are how I came into the fold. There are a lot of really great retro gaming podcasts out there too, and I want to pass a few of them on to you to give a listen to. 

This first show I am reviewing is not the first one I started listening to initially, I'll cover that one later. But this podcast to me is true embodiment of the retro-gaming community, the shows how that love of this hobby shines from those who are into it.

The Atari Game by Game podcast was started back in February by the host Ferg. In each podcast he usually covers to Atari games, giving a brief synapsis of both games. For each games he provides a brief history of its development, the names of the designers, and technical data on each game. If the games are from a third party company Ferg will often give a brief summary of that particular company, or in some cases the division of it that produced video games. Ferg has also gone as far as tracking down and contacting game designers to ask them about games and has had a few successes doing that. 

Ferg's overall goal of his podcast is to present each Atari 2600 game in order by part (CX) number, squeezing in third party games here and there. In a recent interview I heard Ferg mention that even staying with his weekly format, there may be as many as two to three more years of material for him to cover in Atari 2600 games. 

As far as Ferg himself keep in mind he is not a professional podcaster, or a former radio personality, and that he is the only one on his podcast. So he's not mister booming radio voice, and you can tell he is a little nervous in his first few podcasts. But, his love for retro gaming has come shining through the whole time, and he has always put together a great podcast. 

What I like most about the podcast is the way Ferg describes gameplay, rather then critiquing it. He does share his opinion on games, but he concentrates more on detail. As a new collector and player of 2600 games learning about a new title and gameplay gives me a far better idea as to whether or not it's the type of game I want to add to my collection, and play. Also his part number basis for collecting has also inspired me to make my eBay purchase of games to follow along, I have to say after hearing his first podcast Combat was one of my first buys.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Super Jipped N 64 Degrees of Mad with Recent eBay Transactions.

If you have read any of my past articles you will know that I buy most of my systems off eBay. Yeah I know, when it comes to retro gaming I should save a little dough and hit garage sales, resale shops and rummage sales. But I work out of town and by the time I get home from work each day you can be assured all those places are picked over, if they are open at all.

I think you all also know that I have been trying to add consoles to my collection, and two of the prime targets on my list where an SNES, and an N64.  You see I managed to get a hold of a Super NES and N64 the week before last on eBay from two different sellers. And I have been anxiously awaiting the SNES, since I have so many fond memories of playing it. I even bought an extra controller, as well as some of my favorite SNES games like Starfox, Pilotwings, and F-zero, as well as a Super Gameboy adaptor. 

So let me put this next part to you this way you see I was one for one with eBay, my Genesis was in A+ condition, but my Atari needed a little help with a busted power cord, which luckily the seller was cool about. So I guess you could say that I was pleased in the end with that transaction. But let's just say my batting average just went down. 

The Super Nintendo arrived early last week and let's just say I'm not happy. For a few different reasons like:

Problem #1 - The RF adaptor is broken I mean the copper center post is gone among other issues. 

No big right the NES RF adaptor is the same, it's not an ideal set up but it would do for now.

Problem #2 - The on/off button sticks I barely got it into the on position, of course that doesn't matter since.....

Problem #3 - The F*cking this doesn't work.....AT ALL! 

Looking on the back of the unit where the power and RF adaptor enter the system there is a brown substance resembling rust coming out. Trust me that wasn't in the pictures. Was the thing under water at some point?

I bet your saying "That sucks", and you'd be right, but I bet your also asking about the N64. Well, let me tell you that story too. I find the N64, I buy it and then, nothing! That's right the communications from the seller, no package, nothing at all. So let's just say I'm batting 1 for 4 with eBay when it comes to consoles. 

Anyway, eBay may be the best place to find Retro game systems but so far I'm not impressed with what I have gotten. Hopefully the sellers will do something but they don't seem to eager too, even with a eBay and PayPal complaint out there. 

In the meantime though my money is tied up with Paypal until this is rectified, that also means that I won't have an SNES to play for a while even though I have a bunch of games for it. I'm glad I didn't make a grab for any N64 games, or I'd have that to contend with too. 

Oh, well guess I have to wait. 

Friday, November 8, 2013

Going Retro in More then One Way

Do you have more then one hobby? I do, I have several, and sometimes I wish I didn't so I could just be really awesome at one in particular. But, sometimes I'm glad I do have more then one, because sometimes your hobbies teach you something about yourself especially when you have a few of them.

What I find most interesting though is that two of my hobbies interconnect in a way I never thought they could. In a way dabbling in both of them is about reaching the same end, and appreciating what once was. And what are these two hobbies that can do this? Vinyl record collecting and retro gaming.

I know its odd to connect the two but you will see what I mean in a bit. See I got into vinyl record collecting back in late spring, but I had an interest in it for a long time. For me Vinyl record collecting is about really listening to the music. It's about the analog sound, the sound that represents analog music made by musicians going to my analog ears. Not perfect and corrected by clear digitilazation, but true and imperfect with a real sound. 

You see that's what the vinyl movement is all about. I mean sure in theory digital sounds better and is clear and crisp, but it lacks that connection of the artist at work. Even the record itself seems so much truer and realer then a CD, and that tangibility is definitely much more satisfying then electronically downloaded music. A record and it's cover just seem to be so much more. There is this whole unexplianable experience and nostalgia about it that you have to go through to truely understand and appreciate it. 

In a way though that same thinking isn't all that different from that of the retro video gaming movement. As matter of fact there are many parallels between the two. For retro gaming its about experiencing games as they once where, about the nostalgia, and about the feeling. The catridge or disc, and the feel of the controller of whatever type it is, all produce an experience new games can't give you. Retro games like vinyl are about the experience, and what memories those experiences can produce. 

There are even those times when the annoying things bring you joy. Like when a record skips, or a needle gets stuck, or when you have to blow into an NES catridge to get a game to work the right way, or keep taking out and putting back in an Atari cartridge. 

That is the thing about these two hobbies the memories, the nostalgia, and the wholeness that the real deal of the sights and/or sounds can put before you. The sensation of the controller in your hands or the vibration of those imperfect analog beats hitting you body, produce a sense of reality that is almost like a time machine. 

In a way that's what a record player or an old video game console are, time machines. Mechanical devices that have the ability to transport you back to someplace you use to be, even if it is just figuratively and for a moment or two. 

That's the other thing, for me it's not just about collecting, it's about actually playing and enjoying both games and records. I couldn't just gaze at a video game in its original box, or a record in its cover sealed up. I believe those things need to be enjoyed, and there would be no way I could just leave them alone on a shelf. 

I'm posting this on both my vinyl record collecting, and Retro video gaming blog and I would encourage you to visit this blogs counterpart. 

Diary of an Amateur Vinyl Record Collector

The Retro Video Gaming Blog for the Mid-Core Gamer