Bill Loguidice's blog

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A Long Visual Look at the Rare Panasonic JR-200U Personal Computer (JR200, JR 200 U) (1983))

In lieu of doing this as a traditional Photo of the Week - Know your History! feature, I decided that this extremely obscure, but not particularly valuable vintage personal computer deserved a bit more attention.

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The First Bally Astrocade Homebrew in the Modern Era - "War", the Colorful Warlords Clone

I've been following this development on the Bally Astrocade (ballyalley) mailing list and it looks like the author will soon be ready to go into production. I'm slightly disappointed that this game is not an original concept, but it looks undeniably great, even with the rash of quality homebrew Warlords clones on Atari systems in recent years (Castle Crisis, Medieval Madness). Paddle games are obviously ideally suited to the Astrocade since it has joysticks that double as spinners. Check out more info and a video here. As you can see, it makes superb use of color and really pushes a system with infamously limited system memory!

Commentary from author Mike G. from the list:

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November Promotion - 20% discount on Egg vs. Chicken!

Egg vs. ChickenThrough our affiliation with PlayFirst, we are able to offer a 20% discount to our readers for the entire month of November for Egg vs. Chicken, the hilarious action puzzler from Gamelab. The following coupon codes expire December 1, 2007:

PC version - noveggvschicken
Mac version - noveggvschickenmac

Click here or on one of the links below to go to the PlayFirst Website and enjoy!

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Gamasutra's "A History of Gaming Platforms" - The Commodore 64 (Loguidice and Barton)

Just an FYI, Gamasutra will be running the ongoing A History of Gaming Platforms from myself and Matt Barton, which will be a series of excerpts from my book that has been over two years in the making. They are committed to an initial run of six excerpts (six systems of the 40+ covered in the same detail as this modified C-64 entry). Today it's on the front page of Gamasutra as their cover feature, but the direct link to the article is here. In regards to the book, there have been some issues with the publisher I had (even though it's still listed for pre-order at Amazon and elsewhere), so we are in search of a new one at this time, but there are plenty of prospects out there and I'm certainly curious what the reaction will be to some of these modified excerpts. I can't say the C-64 entry is my favorite entry, but some of the future entries certainly are. I'll be curious to see how my own perceptions gel with public reaction as this will be the first time some of this material will be widely available.

As a heads-up, the next entry will be on the Vectrex and will run sometime next month. I also believe I have finally found a photographic technique I'll be happy with, so you should also see greatly improved images to go along with that. Enjoy and let me know what you think!

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Wizard's Crown Chronicles (03) - The Beginning

(See the prior entries in this ongoing feature)

NOTE: The format of these for now are going to be the REVIEW (semi-walkthrough) portion first, followed by the STORY (fictionalization) portion. Each portion is stand alone and I'll separate them with headers.

REVIEW

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Sinclair QL on a Stick

For those interested in the obscure, but very intriguing Sinclair QL from the mid-80's, you can now get a type of turn-key QL environment for use with a modern Windows PC that can be transferred to a USB memory stick (minimum 128MB). This is a great idea and I'd like to see implementations of this for other systems. I personally own a very robust real Sinclair QL setup, but I think this would also make a fine companion for that, particularly in regards to data exchange. More information here.

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New Evidence - The Nazca Lines were made by robots!

Yes, you read that right, the famous Nazca Lines in Peru were made by robots and I have proof! After unleashing...

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Halo 3 Legendary Edition - Feelie Envy...

Well, my Halo 3 Legendary Edition came today from Amazon.com, which I pre-ordered all the way back in May. What awaited me when I got home from work was one honking huge box...

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Wizard's Crown Chronicles (02) - The Setup Part III (Final)

(See The premise at the end of this posting for details on this ongoing feature)
OK, I'm sure you're getting tired of "setup" at this point, but this is finally it. Frankly, it was bothering me that I'd have to type on the same system I was using as a display that I was also capturing direct images and videos on, so I decided to be a bit technically poor and split the composite video/mono audio signals coming from the C-128D into two outputs. There appears to be little-to-no noticeable degradation, so there you go. This will now allow me to be as "authentic" as I prefer to be, meaning I'll be playing "Wizard's Crown" on a real Commodore 8-bit system with a vintage monitor, while still having full capture capability on my laptop.

So, once and for all, here are the specs for the review and chronicle:

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Wizard's Crown Chronicles (01) - The Setup Part II

(See The premise at the end of this posting for details on this ongoing feature)
With most of the setup behind us, with the two prior features, (00) and the unnumbered preparation, it's time to provide the last of the build-up before the actual feature starts to unfold. I have scanned the complete box and complete manual. Go to the set, here. First the box is presented (all sides), then the rather long manual, then the rest of the photos as the chronicles continue. You can view this as a slideshow or click on the individual photos to get high resolution imaging options. Enjoy!

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