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New Collection Highlights of 2020


HDN
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So last night I was lying in bed when I had this sick idea. From discovering a local game store to my dad's cousin downsizing and giving me his old 2600 stuff, I have had an incredibly eventful year in retro game collecting. I have been playing old games for years, but it wasn't really until now that I would go out and actually buying the physical cartridges of these games. With money I got from family for my birthday and Christmas, I started on my collecting journey! Later on, I got those 2600 systems and like 30 games! Sweet! Plus, I did get a few games for said birthday and Christmas. Here are a few highlights. The coolest of the cool new stuff I got. Lets a go!

Here's the list, but I will take pictures of some of the things as well:

  • Game Boy Advance (Glacier,  AGB-101 (OG model))
  • Atari Video Computer System (Woody, 4-switch, manufactured on June 27th, 1981.)
  • Atari 2600 (Vader)
  • Atari 7800 ProSystem (1988 model)
  • Lots of cool boxed 2600 games (like Pac-Man, Sears Haunted House, Towering Inferno, Crackpots, Lock 'N' Chase, Outlaw, ET, Donkey Kong, etc.)

 

  • Tunnel Runner (Atari 2600)

As soon as I heard I was getting a 2600 system, I was on the lookout for this game. It took a while (mostly from the pandemic) to find it, but I did find it in early August, 5 months and 2 days after my 2600 journey started. I don't want to admit that I paid a whopping $20 for this game, as I usually only buy 2600 games if they are $5 or less. Worth every penny. Best 2600 game ever! Glad I convinced some people to play it. Dun dun dun dun dun dun dun dun...

  • Pac-Man (Atari 2600)

I'm just going to come out and say it, this is my favorite version of Pac-Man I have ever played. I especially enjoy mode #5. This "worst game ever made" is my #2 Atari VCS game. It has such a unique charm and I love it.

  • Miniature Golf (Atari 2600)
  • Donkey Kong (Atari 2600)
  • Moon Patrol (Atari 2600)
  • Defender (Atari 2600)

Sears Tele-Games version of my favorite version of Defender.

  • Galaxian (Atari 2600)

This game is special to me as I got it from someone here at the I/O. Thanks Rick. This is cool.

  • Venture (Atari 2600)

The first 2600 game I bought. I played this before I saw what the arcade game is and thought it was amazing. I still think it's a top-ten 2600 game, though I would like to play a more faithful adaptation someday on the Colecovision or maybe the Intellivision if I ever get one.

  • Breakout (Atari 2600)
  • Video Olympics (Atari 2600)
  • Kaboom! (Atari 2600)
  • Night Driver (Atari 2600)

Wait, why are all of these in here? Well, most of these games (Night Driver excluded as it works well with rolling the Wii Mote) were mediocre until I played them with real paddle controllers. Now these are all excellent games.

  • Super Mario World (SNES)

Wait, Mr. SNES, why did you not have Mario World? I did have SMW when I first had the SNES, but it never worked well. About 6 years ago it stopped working at all. I don't know where it is. My new copy has a tear in the label, just the way I like it. I love giving the damaged games a loving home. I love this game so much and I am glad to have it back in my collection.

  • Baseball (NES)

I found this in the clearance bin on my first game store run for three bucks and picked it up. I actually enjoy baseball much more than other sports, though I don't follow it closely at all. There's nothing like going to a baseball game. My dad and I played a ton of this when I got it and still do play it quite a bit. Later on I found out this game was a "bad" game? What? No way.

  • Ten Yard Fight (NES)

Another clearance bin find for the same price as Baseball. Not a big football fan at all, but I really like this game.

  • Castlevania: The Adventure (GB)

This game I would probably never have gotten as I have heard such terrible things about it. But I did get it for Christmas and, guess what? I really liked it. A very fun one and an underrated classic.

  • Super Mario Land (GB)

Had this on 3DS Virtual Console. Happy to have it in my physical cart collection. In my opinion better than its sequel.

  • Super Mario Advance (GBA)

A really good version of Super Mario Brothers 2 on the GBA. Check it out! It's much easier than the SNES and NES versions, so take that how you will. I like the difficulty of the SNES game the best, probably as its a childhood version. But check SMA out. Lots of bonus goodies and completionist goals.

  • 1943 (NES)
  • Bump 'N' Jump (NES)

Thank you, Grandma and Papa for this wonderful birthday gift!

  • Gangster Alley (Atari 2600)

This is on here as it is probably the worst game I have ever played. I would rather scrub mud off of tennis shoes than play this crappy game again.

  • Mario Kart 7 (3DS)

Found this on sale for $10 at my local video rental store, whose last day is today. By the time this is posted they will be closed for good. :(   Lots of fond memories there. We didn't get streaming services until later and we were regular customers. I got the case with MK7 and it is very faded from the sun. It tells a story.

  • Breath of the Wild (Switch)
  • Mario Kart Super Circuit (GBA)
  • Kid Icarus: Of Myths and Monsters

I need to take a closer look at this game. I will post about it in my blog soon, I hope. 

  • Crystal Castles (Atari 2600)

This is the last game I will be able to buy this year. I hope it is fun with the 2600 joystick. I haven't played it yet.

 

Here are some pictures! Of a few of them at least.

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What are some of the coolest things you added to your gaming collection over the past year?

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On the PC side, RickR sent me his "old" computer motherboard with the CPU and fan still installed, and a power supply.  I provided the graphics card and hard drives and I upgraded the RAM.  What I ended up with is a low-end but decent gaming PC whose full potential has yet to be unlocked.  I've said it before and I'll say it again...I could never thank him enough.

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No...it's not in a standard PC case.  I simply used a poster board and hot glued "blocks" to outline what to put where.  It works and doesn't overheat but dust is a pain.  I use this computer everyday!  My favorite non-Atari computer so far.  Although the nVidia GT 210 struggles sometimes and I can't play Rocket League or some newer games on it...but I can Borderland all day long if I want to.  I don't mean to brag, and I'm not trying to, but it is the most powerful IBM PC I've ever owned.

As for Atari things...these got added this year so far:

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Krull on the 2600 is actually a fun game.  Better than I expected it to be.  This one was a gift and one I was not expecting at all.  When I first seen it I was like, "oh dear" because most games I played that were based on movies (NES and up) I didn't like.  And I've never seen the movie.  But, once I read the manual and played the game it is quite fun.

Other than that I've been concentrating as much as I can on Atari 400/800/XL/XE stuff.  Mostly software on disks but, hey, if it's for an Atari computer and I don't have it then, yea, I'm all for it.  I don't have many and most of what I have is by Microprose of Railroad Tycoon/Strike Eagle fame.  I'm finding these to be of great interest and I'm getting to discover a part of Atari I missed long ago.

Pit Stop is great fun but I have experienced a bug in the game after racing on one track that happens all the time.  I'm not sure if it is from me playing on an XE or not but it always happens.  Otherwise the game is fun.

Sargon III has to be one of the most detailed computer chess games I have ever played.  I'm not good at playing chess but I love the game because of the strategy and I can go at my own pace.  I don't have to rush anything.  But the things this game keeps track of and the manual alone are worth every penny spent on this game.  It also has a section dedicated to a list of the best played games in chess history around the world.  Do you wish to see those games in action?  You can!  Load them up and watch the screen, every move they made is recreated on the computer screen.

Solar Star I discovered by accident through YouTube.  I was looking through a list of games and trying to find YouTube videos on them to see what they were about.  This one turned up and I found it of great interest.  While not graphically too impressive it gave me that TRON feeling.  This is one of my top favorite Atari computer games to play.

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This is a great topic!  Let's face it...2020 has been crappy in so many ways.  Maybe this will highlight a little positivity.  

Collection-wise, things have slowed down a lot for me this year.  The focus has been on staying safe, integrating grown children back into the house, setting up usable work spaces, and having all 4 adults working on the computers from home all day (I need to buy my router some flowers or something for all the hard work it's doing this year).  

I've been focusing on getting boxes for my 2600 games.  Below is a picture of what I have.  Before, I was at 2.5 shelves.  Now, I'm up to 3.5.  Highlights for the year include "Superman" and "Yars' Revenge".  The one I'm looking for now is "Video Pinball".  

I really enjoy finding boxes that are squished or all-alone with no game or manual.  In many cases, I can bring them back to life by building an inner box to give shape.  And sometimes some felt-tipped pen to get color back to whitened creases.

 

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9 hours ago, HDN said:
  • Baseball (NES)

I found this in the clearance bin on my first game store run for three bucks and picked it up. I actually enjoy baseball much more than other sports, though I don't follow it closely at all. There's nothing like going to a baseball game. My dad and I played a ton of this when I got it and still do play it quite a bit. Later on I found out this game was a "bad" game? What? No way.

  • Ten Yard Fight (NES)

I like Baseball a lot too.  Does it have a "bad" reputation?  My feeling is that the game is fine, but as most early NES sports games, it was surpassed by later versions.  The best early NES sports title IMO is "Ice Hockey" with a close second to "Golf".  Simple, fast, and fun.  That's what makes them great.  

10 Yard Fight in the arcade is one of my favorites.  When I run MAME, you can bet your buns it's the first game I always play.  I like the absurd voices and the simple gameplay.  The NES version isn't close IMO.  The vertical scrolling is way too slow (what happened there?) and there are no voices at all.  It does look the same, though, which is nice.  I do like to play it, but it always makes me run back to my PC to play the arcade version.

You have a very varied collection, and it's cool that you enjoy them all so much.  

 

 

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11 hours ago, Atari 5200 Guy said:

Krull on the 2600 is actually a fun game.  Better than I expected it to be.  This one was a gift and one I was not expecting at all.  When I first seen it I was like, "oh dear" because most games I played that were based on movies (NES and up) I didn't like.  And I've never seen the movie.  But, once I read the manual and played the game it is quite fun.

I have never much cared for Krull on 2600. That widow of the web or whatever it's called screen kills it for me. I have played the game before on emulators and seen many YouTube videos on it. I came downstairs one night and my dad was watching Krull. He was a bit surprised I knew as much about it as I did. I have never seen the movie myself however.

11 hours ago, Atari 5200 Guy said:

Sargon III has to be one of the most detailed computer chess games I have ever played.  I'm not good at playing chess but I love the game because of the strategy and I can go at my own pace.  I don't have to rush anything.  But the things this game keeps track of and the manual alone are worth every penny spent on this game.  It also has a section dedicated to a list of the best played games in chess history around the world.  Do you wish to see those games in action?  You can!  Load them up and watch the screen, every move they made is recreated on the computer screen.

The "greatest games ever" feature is pretty cool. I like chess as well, though I am terrible at it. I was seriously considering Video Chess for my last 2600 game. Really fun game and much, much better than Checkers. I also almost bought Video Checkers as it was only $2! I could have gotten another Cheap-O game with it, but I ultimately decided on Crystal Castles as it was marked down to the point where I could get it for free with my discount. There is an alternate universe where I have Video Chess in my collection!

4 hours ago, RickR said:

I've been focusing on getting boxes for my 2600 games.  Below is a picture of what I have.  Before, I was at 2.5 shelves.  Now, I'm up to 3.5.  Highlights for the year include "Superman" and "Yars' Revenge".  The one I'm looking for now is "Video Pinball".  

2600 games are the only boxed retro games I have. I do have a loose Video Pinball, and it's a really fun game. My dad's cousin saved a lot of his boxes, though I have a feeling some Atari 2600 games (like Pitfall, Frogger, Spider-Man, Star Trek SOS, etc.) are missing from my collection that my dad swears he had at one point. I'm wondering if he has some of the boxes somewhere for some of my loose games. I have boxes for some games I don't even own. Maybe Video Pinball is in there, who knows?

4 hours ago, RickR said:

I really enjoy finding boxes that are squished or all-alone with no game or manual.  In many cases, I can bring them back to life by building an inner box to give shape.  And sometimes some felt-tipped pen to get color back to whitened creases.

Something makes me just feel good about getting damaged games. "Ugly games" if you will. I helped my Defender lose some white spots with a ultra fine-point black Sharpie.

4 hours ago, RickR said:

10 Yard Fight in the arcade is one of my favorites.  When I run MAME, you can bet your buns it's the first game I always play.  I like the absurd voices and the simple gameplay.  The NES version isn't close IMO.  The vertical scrolling is way too slow (what happened there?) and there are no voices at all.  It does look the same, though, which is nice.  I do like to play it, but it always makes me run back to my PC to play the arcade version.

I have seen footage of the arcade version. The problem is, if I remember correctly, you don't play defense? My dad and I play the NES version a lot together. It works better when both players play at once in my opinion. This past year I have played a lot more sports games than normal. I don't much care for sports in general, but I have found some really fun sports games this year. Like the aforementioned NES Ten Yard Fight and Baseball, Blades of Steel, One-on-One, 2600 Basketball & Football, Home Run, Miniature Golf, GBC Mario Golf, etc.

I liked the NES Ten Yard Fight. It was a fine play.

 

I think next year I'm going to get some version of OG Arcade Mario Brothers for one of my systems. I love that game so much.

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