As most of you know, I tend to write very detailed and somewhat technical articles on various video game systems, focusing primarily on the obscure releases. When writing one of my last system reviews, a fellow RFG staff member recommended that I add a bit more color to my reviews; to add a bit more of my personality to them. I considered his thoughts in detail, but ultimately decided against incorporating this suggestion into my reviews. I want my reviews to be extremely objective, technical and informative for both the collector and gamer alike.
That being said, I do believe that the suggestion made by said staff member was correct, though I disagree with the forum that it should be delivered upon. The creation of this article, and its siblings, will be my attempt to meet this new objective of allowing more insight into the thoughts and rants behind my reviews. Yes – this might be a short lived series, not due to the amount of years I have left to live (40 year old gamer here – have to beat down those hecklers quick), but based upon interest in this venture. This first segment will focus on the question I am asked the most – Do you own these systems and play them allot?
Yes – I do own all of the systems that I review. My collection is around 130 systems, with 85 or so of those being unique (systems with both proprietary hardware and software code for game development). I cannot say that I play them a great deal – work and home life rather cut into the free time to be able to play all of them. My game library is not near some of the monster collections out there (I have around 1,000 games), but I do have games for every platform. I honestly don’t play many of the obscure systems that much apart from when they were acquired, though I always do fire them up and play the games when reviewing a system.
No, I wasn’t around when Ralph Baer was developing the first video game, but I do admit that the term ‘vinyl’ is an instantly recognizable term in regards to a music media type. Along those lines, the first system that my father got for me was the Texas Instruments TI-99/4A – a computer hybrid that accepted preprogrammed game cartridges but was more of a home personal computer. I’ll tell you what – talk about disappointment! While my buddies were blasting through waves of enemies or avoiding mud pits on their Atari 2600 or Colecovision, I got to climb a mountain and avoid some crazy bears on my TI-99/4A. I can’t really complain though – I did learn the BASIC and Q-BASIC programming language at a very early age (you could program your own games on the TI-99/4A).
Well, I think that is about it for now. As you know, us old folks tend to retire a bit early…