Joined: 10 May 2015
Last Visit: 28 May 2015
Location: Shepherdsville, KY
|Posted: Fri May 22, 2015 10:08 pm Post subject: Hi peeps. My early background with games.
|I'm pretty sure the first video game, if it could be called that, I got was a gray V-Tech thing that had red letters and numbers. Probably had it before 1988; I don't remember not having it around, which means we probably had it before 1989 when I was three, although I could be wrong. My memory cutoff point is around when I was four or five in 1989 and 1990. We didn't figure out how to use it until maybe 1996, and might still have it in the basement. We continually dug it up over the years, as late as 2003, and pretty consistently used it (but rarely could figure out what the different math or letter puzzles were supposed to be); as a result, I still know what the start up tune is (do do DOO do. DO. DOOdooDOO. do. bzzzz).
Around summer of 1994, we got a Simon clone or variant from some friends. The case was squarish, yellowish discolored white, with pentagonal buttons with opacity about what you'd see in car turn signal covers. I don't know which model it was.
I think it was New Years Day, 1995, when we got an Atari 2600 gifted from some friends. We had it until June 13, 1996, when my mom and sister threw it out for being broken, but I think they were wrong about it and didn't know they were throwing out a perfectly good console. We had Pac-Man; a side-scroller where you pick up "mutants" that are shaped like "X"s and drop them to some place safe--I never have re-discovered it; there was a sort of Space Invaders clone where some of the enemies looked like vultures, and the end boss was encased in a shield (that got pretty intense).
I can't remember when I got the following game; it was probably between January, 1994 and January, 1996; it's more likely it was earlier than later since I don't remember it well. I had seen an LCD watch in a Wal-Mart; it was a platform game on a watch, and I somehow was aware of platformers despite this being pretty much the first exposure I'd had to them (it may have had Mario branding or some kind of knock-off, which also carried appeal because of the recognition of the franchise). Maybe I'd played with it a little in the store. I'd had this habit of jumping into the closet like it was a one-way trip into Narnia or some place; that's where my parents had been hiding a game they got; it fell out and I found it. I got mad and threw a fit because the game they got wasn't the platform game, and got mad because I couldn't play with it because I had to wait until my Birthday or Christmas, and I wasn't supposed to be in my parents' closet. I don't remember the fallout of that incident; I think that's how the story went. Eventually, I got the game that I had found. It was shaped like a disc, and had some pale orange buttons. You played as a jet, and shot down the missiles and the jets on the right hand side of the screen. I got to the tenth wave, at which point it repeated infinitely.
It's hard to tell when we got several Tiger handhelds. I think my mom bought them for us for a car trip, or maybe it was relatives giving us Christmas presents or at some event. It might have been summer or fall of 1996, but it could have been as early as 1994. One was Dirt Track Go Karting, probably the 1994 edition; I remember one of us beat it and got the trophy icon:
One was Jurassic Park; it took forever to get to the end, and once you did, no one could figure out for months what you were supposed to do to activate the gate:
And the last one was Beauty & the Beast (that one was probably the easiest to beat, but a ton of button mashing):
We got one Game Boy for Christmas in 1996 as part of a bunch of presents that our church's singles group got us to help out my mom after my dad died in August, 1995. I'm pretty sure it wasn't Christmas, 1995. It came with Tetris. Eventually we got more games for it; I think we got Kirby's Block Ball in January, 1997 and Donkey Kong Land III for Christmas, 1997. We would continue to swap Game Boy games around (including Toy Story and Super Mario Land 2) until I sold my Game Boy around 2001, partly because it was broken, partly because I was forced by my parents to sell Pokemon, and only slightly because I was trying to save money for an N64 so that I could get Star Wars Racer--I didn't end up getting an N64 until 2006 or later.
Around 1997, us kids pitched in and bought (one) yellow Tamagotchi (probably with subsidies from our mom), which had to be shared between four kids. Not a good idea. My sister got a Giga Pet cat later in 1997 or 1998. Eventually we got a second Tamagotchi. Over several years, we probably went through two furbies and a shellby.
Around 1997 or early 1998, we started going to a library that had a DOS computer: it had Sega Swirl, Hugo 1, 2, and that one 3D Hugo game, and Jeopardy. A second computer had a demo for Fury 3, which I got as far as the giant snake that couldn't be killed, coinciding with the death of Benny, my Tamagotchi, because I'd been on the computer for more than three hours.
About late 1998 or early 1999, I was able to save enough money to get Pokemon Blue with my own money and from selling some of the older games. Eventually, my mom found an article about how Pokemon promoted shintoism (conservative Christian mom and step-father by this time; censorship and draconian policies on games and any competing views and materials really only started to ramp up around 1998 when my mom re-married), which, combined with constant fighting over possession of the Game Boy (it was co-owned by multiple siblings, although I'm pretty sure Pokemon Blue was at my property), prompted my parents to force me to sell the Game Boy and Pokemon Blue, and to stop watching the show. All paraphernalia of or relating to Pokemon was banned, including figurines, cards, game guides, and other merchandising featuring Pokemon. Some of it managed to be smuggled in, which included a charmander figurine, a cutout of a game guide of Mewtwo, and occassionally Pokemon Yellow when loaned from a friend.
We got a Windows Me computer (the horror. the horror...we used that stupid system until 2004 or later) in December, 2000, and since then handhelds fell by the wayside. The gap in between 1999 and 2000 was mostly filled by desperately begging neighbors to let me play their games or by temporary loans. Some of the games we own are ports of console games. My brother started to use emulators around 2008, which meant going back to some of the games we used to have, especially the Sonic series and Pokemon Red/Blue. I now have dozens of emulated games, few of which I've actually played. Maybe around 1997 or 1998, one of my siblings got a V-tech computer with voice and other audio; we had other games at the time, so it couldn't compete as a source of entertainment; it was notable for its strong inflection of weird parts of certain words, e.g. berry = BAARRy.
I got a Star Wars Quiz Wiz trivia game in 2001, and still have it (btw, one of the answers in the answer booklet is a misprint).
I've been keeping track of other games (handheld and otherwise) that I've been trying to complete. Lately I've been trying to beat the Game & Watch Gallery Game Boy series.