Vintage Game Consoles Book

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Matt Barton
Matt Barton's picture
Joined: 01/16/2006

Hi, guys. Bill and I are working on a new book project entitled Vintage Game Consoles, which will do for hardware what Vintage Games did for software. To put it simply, we're looking at the most influential game platforms ever made (both computers & consoles), what made them special, their best games, and their fan communities. We want to hear your stories!

Do you have a favorite game platform? Perhaps you were enamored with the Atari 8bit, or the Amiga, or the original Sony PlayStation. Were you ever a fanboy of a particular brand, such as Nintendo, Sega, or Sony? Were there certain games that were the catalyst you needed to switch to a new platform? Did you experience "controller angst" where you direly missed the controls of a legacy system, such as the CX-40 joystick of the Atari, or paddles, or perhaps a spinner?

If you'd like to help us out, prepare to write a STORY. What systems did you own, and when, and what made you ante up? What were your favorite games for each? What do you feel made each experience special? Did you ever try to program your own games for any of these systems? Why or why not?

Sound off below!

Bruno Johnson (not verified)
Opinions on the following consoles.

I was a console kid and I'm now more of a PC guy. Here's my opinion on the console I've own/played the most.

The NES : our first console and I had a love/hate relationship with it, when I think about it. Who cannot remember having to blow 100 times in your favorite NES cartridge before it finally worked ? Another thing I remember, that is often forgotten because of nostalgia, is how many freakin' horrible game there were on this console. In my opinion, the standard of quality for a Nintendo game were much higher in the snes era. I remember me and my brother renting games, going home and becoming sick of it after 10 minutes. How disapointing. My favorite games were Mario Bros II (don't know why... I was young), Contra, Double Dragon, River City Ransom, Bubble Bobble. Still, I'd say there was too much crappy and hard as hell game.

The SNES : I've still got this thing running extremely well, right under my TV. There were a great diversity of really good games. JRPGs like Final Fantasy 6 or Ogre Battle (ok this one is more strategy). Sports game like NBA Jam, fighting games like Primal Instinct. Great sidescrollers like Donkey Kong, Earthworm Jim. Me and my brother must have rented a wrestling game called Royal Rumble at least 30 times... We lived in a hole, so finding places to buy games was difficult. One of my favorite game was Street Racer, I don't know if its a well known one. Each characters you could play was in a car with its own abilities/weapon and you could attack your opponent a la Mario Kart. The gameplay was awesome when you did these attacks ! I'm more of a fan of 2d gaming so that's why the SNES is my favorite console of all time.

Gameboy : I have a gameboy color that I bought to play Pokemon. Talk about a console selling game ! Now that I think of it, I've not even bought another gameboy game. Laugh at me as much as you want, but what an awesome RPG that was. Imagine playing Pool of Radiance and getting your ass kicked against some orcs in the slums of Phlan and being able to capture one of these orcs and add him to your party. That's one of the great things about this game. Random encounters were more fun than in most other games, because you never knew if you'd find a good pokemon to add to your party. The leveling system was great because of evolutions and the abilities to learn new attacks. The fighting system was also good because you had to think of your pokemon elemental weakness (like fire vs water). MMmmm thinking about it, I'd like to see a Pokemon game where you can fight with your whole party at the same time, like in the gold box games. I'd also love to see a game similar to Pokeon, but more adult oriented. I have much more troubles with the cheezy style of japanese RPG nowadays.

N64 vs Playstation : I hated the loading time on the playstation because the games were on CDs. There was the same sort of stifness you had with older PCs where there's always a delay following your actions that I had never encountered in a console before. I tried to play this console several times with many of my friends, but I never felt the urge to buy one. Also, i prefered the imagination I saw in the Nintendo games. Playstation had more realistic games and I've never liked those. I can go outside if I want reality. The most dull game I've ever played was Grand Turismo... why should a game be so realistic ? Put some cops chasing me, some helicopters shooting missiles at me, I don't know but it's supposed to be a game ! God I hate realistic driving game, give me some need for speed hot pursuit anyday. So I prefered the N64, but you really must talk about the horrible horrible gamepad with its horrible horrible joystick. There wasn't any Joy with it, my thumbs still hurt. The game I played the most was Golden Eye. One of my friend had a tent trailer and all the 7 boys in our street would sleep there from time to time, playing this game all night long. The multiplayer was fun. Another GREAT GREAT game was F-Zero X. Now that's a racing game like I love them. Futuristic cars going at light speed with little respect to gravity, racing around pipes and tunnels. Why should I play a realistic car game when I can play game like these ! It was the first time I had an overwhelming speed rush in a video game. Addicting.

Playstation II : last console I bought and it became a DVD player. I enjoyed playing NHL games on it, but got tired of the same game being released every year. I watched a good movie named Final Fantasy X on it, but I thought I had bought a game. There were good games on it, but I've been a PC gamer since the end of the Playstation I era. I really like playing game with a mouse. I have the same problem with my Ipad because of the touch screen : I can't find a game that I like and doesn't get bored of after 1 hours of gaming.

Good luck with the book Matt and Bill and thanks for the great stuff I've found on this website. I really enjoy these Matt chat and I've learned some great things on these Podcasts you've done in the past. I'll make a donation because I'm feeling kind of guilty watching all this hard work without contributing. Thank you guys !

Joined: 01/21/2009
Its a hard one, coming from

Its a hard one, coming from PONG to TANK and then a 2600.. it was such a HUGE leap, the 2600 and Intelvision are the BIG boys to me. I got a 2600 and loved every minute of it, and was far to lucky in my parents getting me INDY 500 with the controllers almost from the start. Never did i question the graphics, how a game played, they all felt awesome at that point in my life. But i distinctly remember console envy, one of my best friends had a Intelvision and they where fairly wealthy, so he had 20 or 30 games to my 10 or so on the 2600. I always felt I needed that system, but in hind site, i was not a sports fan, and almost every sports game on the Intelvison was 2 player, no single player so no matter how great they where, i couldn't have played them much. But some of the games just drew me in. Night Stalker, AD&D, SPace Wars.. and when the voice thing came out, wow did i "NEED" that.. I also had a close friend with the Odysee 2, there was some console envy there too, but after a few days playing it.. i never wanted one again (till much later in my life when I did pick one up). Almost every game was an Exclusive back then.. In the end I prefer the Intelvision as my favorite of those years, but the 2600 is really a close second. Nowdays i seldom look at 2600 stuff, but I can still sit for hours and play Tron Deadly Discs, Treasure of tarmin, AD&D, or AstroSmash.. they Still hold may attention.

as time went on Arcade ports where the big thing all systems started to blend.. 5200, Colecovision.. In that time fram the Colecovison was easily my favorite.. I resenlty dug mine out and started picking up the few missing games i have up on EBAY. it still is quite fun too..

but in the end, played the 2600 the most, wanted the Intelvison the most, and long term the Intelvison games held my imagination the best.

Frank47_1999 (not verified)
Vintage Game Consoles Book

The most satisfying game I have ever played was RED STORM RISING on the Amiga consule. There was hardly any graphics but the tactical and strategy game play was quite intense.


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