So what was it like going to the store and picking up a single NES game? Do you remember it ever occurring to you that the game was tiny, or did you really think it was the best thing ever?
I love all the NES titles, but I can't imagine going to a store and buying a cart with one single NES game.
It was exciting. You'd save up your birthday money for such an occasion. It wasn't "tiny". What do you mean by tiny? The fact that a ROM of a NES game has a small file size? Nobody cared about that. The fact that, in theory, you could possibly beat the game in a single sitting? That wasn't a problem, as it usually wouldn't happen. And when you did beat it, you'd play it again. Over and over again. Games had replay value simply based on the fact that they were fun. You didn't need trophies, achievements, unlockables to keep you going. You enjoyed yourself. You had your friends over, you all got together, and you had a good time playing games simply because they were fun. The challenge was part of the fun. The exploration was part of the fun. It was all about fun. We didn't give up when we died. Some people may have hurled a controller in a moment of anger, but that was only after dying for the 30th time, not the first. Even after the controller was flung, we didn't give up. We picked it up and kept going. The challenge made us determined. We didn't stop until our mom came in the room and made us, because we were playing to win, and having a great time doing it.
Username for pretty much everything: BngryBt
We could also go to stores and rent them. That was how I played Metroid for the first time.
I'm sure your kid will say the same thing about your games.
I work at a school myself. I tell my students this right after I finish telling them about the Golden Age of Video Games.
From what I have heard, the PSP Go not only replaces your regular PSP, but Sony sends it's secret goons to your house to set your UMD's on fire.
Remember this when you have some kid ask you if you REALLY thought a game as small and visually ridiculous and unappealing as Crysis was amazing. Did you REALLY buy that game expecting some great experience? Don't even get me started on portal.
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Also, games were a crapload more expensive back then, especially the good ones. I'm Canadian, so we had the weak dollar to deal with back then. You wanted Super Mario 3 or Street Fighter 2? Be prepared to fork out $80-$100 for it. You might be able to find a cheap game for $30, but it'd be something like Paperboy. The good games demanded a premium price, much more than they do now. And the price didn't drop a few months later. They were still that expensive for the next two years, easily.
Username for pretty much everything: BngryBt
Honestly? I had a vague notion.
The thing is, Super Mario Brothers really set the bar for how "big" a game should be. I remember when my brother and I rented Donkey Kong, how cheated we felt that the game was only three levels that repeated. LAAAME. Duck Hunt was a small game. Pac Man was a small game. Basically, anything arcadey that you could see all of the levels in ten minutes was small.
Some of the games I thought were big? Zelda. All three Super Mario Brothers, but especially SMB3. Double Dragon II. Metroid. Simon's Quest.
Thing is, I still think of most of them as "big"; I'm daunted by the idea of playing through them start to finish, especially in the cases where you'd have to complete a game in one run without breaks. On the other hand... I don't value them as much as I used to. I think they're worth VC prices, but I wouldn't drop the $30-$50 on them these days. But I think that's more a measure of the technology than the amount of use I get out of them; it just doesn't feel right to have to spend that much on a game that looks 8-bit-y.
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I remember going to Wal Mart when I was like 6 years old and fighting with my brother over whether we should buy Bucky O' Hard or a football game lol. Of course we bought Bucky, and I played that game like there was no tomorrow.
The main difference between then and now is the selection. People now are able to choose between tons of different games. Back then, we just had a handful of games on 1 or 2 systems, and when NES came out we just sold the Atari, further limiting the selection.
I played Mario 1, 2, 3, Bucky, Megaman, and Castlevania so many times that it was insane.
Nowadays I'm lucky to complete one game before I've already bought 4 more.
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I remember back in the day, Final fantasy on the nes was an amazing thing. I would work myself stupid trying to beat some of those boss fights.
If I died, i never blamed the system, i just tried again. I liked the challenge.
i'll admit I am loving some of the nes games, mainly because my poor nes is shot to heck.
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Well, there were the... computer stores...
Oh, like the Apple store or Valve's multibrain synth-link virtu-forum?
Oh my no, they were dank, dimly lit places, with rows upon rows of floppies... and you had no idea what they were. Picture of a dragon on the cover, tamborine playing bear inside...
I've used to regularly go to one of them places about 6 years ago. It closed in 2006, though. Sad, sad day it was. That odd smell that lingered in the air, the bookcases devoted to 9(?) inch floppies, the other bookcases devoted to the 3.5 diskettes. Hell, they had ZIP disks. Yes, that's right, there's such a thing as ZIP disks, with their own special drives, too. Stupid things were bloody expensive, though. I usually went to that place for parts or games for my DOS Box. Every now and then, pieces would die and they'd need replacing. Once the place died, I stopped maintaining the machine, though. Couldn't tell you what the hell it was most of the time.
Keep in mind, I am currently 19, and my dad used to fix computers and build "custom" rigs (get together the innards, not physically building the parts) for a living. Now he's phone support for Telus. Poor guy, I know he misses the building aspect of his old job.
Anyhoo, I do see our generation being looked at as archaic in as few as 15 years. We may be leveling out in terms of tech for now, but I feel it isn't long before someone comes up with something that radically changes games.