Game Discussions What was your first exposure to video games?

My older cousin had pong and a tank style shooting game, I am guessing that was some sort of Atari.

Like others here I can do a credible impression of the noises from Defender, Galaga etc as these formed most of the cabinet games I had access to in 80s Wolverhampton!

I sunk lots of cash into Operation Wolf and went down the Spectrum route for home computing.

My old man brought a 286/386 home for work, but that had a flight sim on it, which was great. The one I am looking for the name for was a 286/386 era 3D RPG where you cleared dungeons, BUT on the first dungeon level, the main corridor had pit traps and my young self could not make head not tail of it
 
In the following order:
  • Pong
  • Atari 2600
  • Commodore VIC 20
  • Commodore 64 / 128
  • Commodore Amiga
  • Sega Genesis
  • PC (386-Pentium)
  • XBox (pre 360)
  • PS3 & PS4
  • PC with VR

Interesting growth, I like this timeline of yours.
For me it would be like:

• Game boy pocket
• Playstation one
• Playstation 2
• PSP
• Nintendo wii
• Nintendo DS
• PS3 slim
• Nintendo 3DS
• Wii U
• PSvita
• PS4
• Nintendo Switch

But now I also collected some of the older consoles when I was old enough to buy online. So N64, Gamecube, GBA, NES Classic, and SNES Classic helped me complete my nintendo library. It used to be that I was the playstation person, and my cousins were the nintendo nerds, and we would visit each other to try out the games available. Now that I am actually old enough to get a job, buying and playing various consoles became a hobby of mine.

Interesting question, let me think... in the order:
-POD by Ubisoft was my very firs racing game, lovely times. Still have it thanks to GOG, still play it occasionally!
-ISS space station educational "sim" where you can build your own ISS from real life modules. No clue what was the game real name, it was very old and simple but I remember it as something magical at the time.
-First Elite, yes that what's got me in to space stuff in the first place.

And finally:

windows-minesweeper.png

Minesweeper was my jam, I often play it on my Dad's computer, that and solitaire were early memories playing games on PC.

Also Elite fascinates me, is it the same elite as the elite dangerous we have now? Cause that franchise has been around for years now, the oldest I know of was for the NES.

In my hometown we had a couple of arcades thanks to being near the sea. I never had enough 10p's to play them very often, but favourites were "Gorf", "Galaga" and there was even a sit-down version of the Star Wars vector game.

All before I got a computer of my own.

Arcades were a thing we had here too for a while. In my island, our options of arcade machines were limited but were fun. We had titles like the house of the dead, marvel vs street fighter, metal slug (Which was really popular), and pinball machines. Of course most of my memories were just pressing buttons expecting a response since I had no money as a kid, which is sad to see when I grew up that the arcade machine places disappeared and those that remain are mobile game ports or made to win tickets for prizes.

Hopefully, it is a dream of mine to actually build a custom arcade cabinet of my own. That way I could relive those arcade and Neo Geo classics at the comfort of my home.
 
Last edited:
Atari 400 Star Raiders at 4 or so did it for me. Explains a lot, really.

Later on I'd go to work with my father on weekends or to Stevens Technical Institute and play games on mainframes and PCs - a lot of Infocom, Flight Simulator 1 and 2. We then got an XT with blazingly powerful 2 360k drives, no hard drive, CGA. I think it cost him three thousand dollars.

I lived on that thing for the next few years until 386/486/Pentium/etc. Ultima V sticks in my brain. Lots of the early infuriating Sierra Online stuff, I'd correspond with folks there and do some primitive BBS thing, tested some games in a precocious attempt at trying to get a job there before they were swallowed up and dissolved in battery acid. So much for that plan! Judging by the testimonials of the folks around at the end, wasn't missing much. I hear Ken Williams just wrote his memoirs, would be interested in checking out his take.

Discovered modems and CompuServe on that thing, and the world of folks who used it was so small it was a very strange assembly of people, on the game forums there bumped into an ever-procrastinating way-behind-on-a-deadline-by-YEARS Douglas Adams who loved burbling about Mac vs PC and going on at fannish length about the Pythons. I peppered him with incredibly nerdy questions about his small contributions to the series and the experience of babysitting Graham Chapman. His responses were so funny and I'd kill for copies of them now. Who do I need to find at the remains of CompuServe, who has all the private messages. I think I learned procrastination at the digital feet of the master, thinking back on it. Now, about that second bath...
 
Last edited:

Jens Erik

Senior Community Manager
Frontier
It's difficult to pinpoint the exact thing, but I think it was these Nintendo two Game & Watch games: Snoopy Tennis and Mario's Cement Factory. I have no idea why my parents had them when I was young, since they've never really been into video games, but they did and we played them a lot when I was younger. Growing up I also had friends who owned NESes and SNESes, and when I was around 4 or 5 I got a GameBoy (the old grey brick) as well.

The GameBoy doesn't work anymore, sadly, but the Game & Watch games are still ticking! They just needed new batteries! :D

IMG_20200608_194631.jpg
 
It's difficult to pinpoint the exact thing, but I think it was these Nintendo two Game & Watch games: Snoopy Tennis and Mario's Cement Factory. I have no idea why my parents had them when I was young, since they've never really been into video games, but they did and we played them a lot when I was younger. Growing up I also had friends who owned NESes and SNESes, and when I was around 4 or 5 I got a GameBoy (the old grey brick) as well.

The GameBoy doesn't work anymore, sadly, but the Game & Watch games are still ticking! They just needed new batteries! :D

View attachment 185578
Cherish those G&W games!

I could relate. I am the only gamer in my family growing up, and they gave me my gameboy thinking it would be a simple phase in my life that I would outgrow. Well..... hehehehe.
 
Hopefully, it is a dream of mine to actually build a custom arcade cabinet of my own. That way I could relive those arcade and Neo Geo classics at the comfort of my home.

Have you seen the Picade suite of products, where you can basically use a Raspberry Pi 4 as an emulator for old arcade games?

The Pi 4 runs MAME very well, and through that, you can run thousands of different classic arcade games. So it can be done quite cheaply nowadays.
 
I had this video game that was played on a board, ludo I think it was called.

Also this boxy thing that plugged in the TV aerial socket and played sports, tennis, football, etc. Top notch graphics, completely dark screen, with a few light bars dodging around controlled by an analogue rotational switch.
 
Have you seen the Picade suite of products, where you can basically use a Raspberry Pi 4 as an emulator for old arcade games?

The Pi 4 runs MAME very well, and through that, you can run thousands of different classic arcade games. So it can be done quite cheaply nowadays.
True, I did see those kinds of arcades. However, it is one of those things where I want to invest a lot into and make a full blown arcade cabinet, at least 2 players with a nice Atari-esque wood grain look to it. It has been on my mind and I want to know if I want it to be usable for 4 players, have the roller ball controller, and maybe even 2 light guns attached.

This is basically my equivalent of a midlife crisis purchase, but it won't be a car nor a crisis 😂

Genuinely something I want to share with my kids and grand kinds if I hopefully ever reach that point in my life. At the very least I would be the coolest uncle.

1598434266194.png
 
I know a guy who's currently working on this kind of project in his garage. He has no interest in modern video games, but he's way, way into retro stuff.
He sounds like my kinda guy 👍
I love videogames both old and new, but there is something truly amazing when looking back at old games, and I don't mean nostalgia (though it does help). It's like looking at a large library of books that span to the dawn of written culture, but instead of books, they are video games, and instead of reading the past, you get to play the past!

KrJ.gif
 
It's difficult to pinpoint the exact thing, but I think it was these Nintendo two Game & Watch games: Snoopy Tennis and Mario's Cement Factory. I have no idea why my parents had them when I was young, since they've never really been into video games, but they did and we played them a lot when I was younger. Growing up I also had friends who owned NESes and SNESes, and when I was around 4 or 5 I got a GameBoy (the old grey brick) as well.

The GameBoy doesn't work anymore, sadly, but the Game & Watch games are still ticking! They just needed new batteries! :D

View attachment 185578
Ooh, I had a couple of these! A king kong double screen. Some with a kraken guarding a treasure chest. I made the score roll over on that one.
 
Stand up arcade games in something like '81-'82.
I cant really remember what game it was, but boy... i did spend all my allowance on them for quite a while, plus whatever i could extra-beg from my parents.
 
I was five. Uncle Keith convinces Nana to rent him a NES while im sleeping over for the weekend. I mostly watch but occasionally get to play a round of Mario and Duckhunt all weekend...

Here we are.
 
True, I did see those kinds of arcades. However, it is one of those things where I want to invest a lot into and make a full blown arcade cabinet, at least 2 players with a nice Atari-esque wood grain look to it. It has been on my mind and I want to know if I want it to be usable for 4 players, have the roller ball controller, and maybe even 2 light guns attached.

This is basically my equivalent of a midlife crisis purchase, but it won't be a car nor a crisis 😂

Genuinely something I want to share with my kids and grand kinds if I hopefully ever reach that point in my life. At the very least I would be the coolest uncle.

View attachment 185597

I wasn't really meaning the wee Picade pre-built desktop arcade machines... more the fact that all the parts are available individually and you can put it all in any kind of cabinet you want. I would built a similar cabinet if I had that urge or any skill whatsoever. 😄 But it would be powered by a Pi 4.

There's a GPIO daughterboard for the Pi that lets you connect all this stuff easily.
 
I wasn't really meaning the wee Picade pre-built desktop arcade machines...

Whoops sorry about that, they were the first things I saw when I opened the link 😅

I have to look into it then, it feels like something I need to invest. What would the screens be like? Are they light gun compatible? How easy would it be to program it? How could I maintain and fix it? What would the costs be like? Also shipping would be a pain for sure 😂

Just talking about it has gotten me excited, and I see the Pi 4 being brought up a lot for custom stuff. I want to even make a custom menu for me to display the arcade games, I may use Super Hang On for the menu misc as well :D
 
Whoops sorry about that, they were the first things I saw when I opened the link 😅

I have to look into it then, it feels like something I need to invest. What would the screens be like? Are they light gun compatible? How easy would it be to program it? How could I maintain and fix it? What would the costs be like? Also shipping would be a pain for sure 😂

Just talking about it has gotten me excited, and I see the Pi 4 being brought up a lot for custom stuff. I want to even make a custom menu for me to display the arcade games, I may use Super Hang On for the menu misc as well :D

The Pi 4 is basically a micro computer for £50, so you can run almost anything you want on it. So how easy it is to program depends on what you install and what you're used to.

All I know is that a lot of people are using their Pi's for this purpose, and so there's a lot of activity in the builder's forums & a wide range of specialised products available. Most of it you could probably order from AliExpress or similar for literally pennies, if you don't mind the wait from China. 🤷‍♀️

The thing that put me off a wee bit from building one myself is that the maximum screen size they supply is 10". Now I'm pretty sure you can swap that for a regular LCD at 19" or 24", but that means taking one apart and putting the screen into the cabinet. You'd probably have that issue whatever - although the 10" one is "ready to go" as it were. And you have to bear in mind that the resolution of retro games isn't what we're used to nowadays - bigger screens = bigger blocks/pixels.

Loads to think about. 😄
 
Either space invaders or missile command at my youth club 10p a go and I can't remember how I did it but there was a nack to getting it to spit out your 10p as well as give you a credit .

I have a home made full sized arcade cab at home to relive them and dump my old gaming pc in it to run it. My raspberry pi 3b+ in the lounge does a damn good job of emulating anything untill the early 90s however and you can get ready made images all good to go from sites like arcadepunks.

I recently had to finally replace the CRT screen in it and now have a 16:10 24 inch flat screen in it. With scan lines it actually looks much better than I expected.
 
Last edited:
Top Bottom