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The Future of Gaming is in the Past

retrovgs

Recently an article came up in my feed  called, “The 20 Greatest Things About to happen to Your PS4.” http://www.gamespot.com/gallery/the-20-greatest-things-about-to-happen-to-your-ps4/2900-197/

Granted there were about 3 or 4 games on that list that I am genuinely excited about (the Final Fantasy VII Remake is not one of them, just in case there was any confusion). But it made me realize how completely ho-hum I feel about this current console cycle. A few of my friends have talked about how both the PS4 and the Xbox One have been big wastes of money and I’m almost always an optimist about the potential gaming consoles can have, but this is it? We should totally be in full swing of a new console cycle and I can’t get excited for more than just a few games?

I still play my old cartridge games way more than any of this next gen stuff.  Luckily, there has been a huge influx if indie-developed, retro-style games released as of late. However, they always feel like they take backseat to their high profile cousins. I miss the majesty of opening a new game. Yes it’s friggin majestic! I miss not having to install a game for a half hour before I can play it. I miss not having another 15 minutes of updates and then a 5 minute loading screen thereafter. I MISS INSTRUCTION MANUALS! If you’re going to make me wait 30 minutes to play the game I just got, at least give me a manual to read while I take a dump and wait.

Some months ago I heard about the Retro Video Game System; Something I thought was a joke based on the name alone. Turns out it’s a thing that’s actually happening and they’re going to be starting up a Kickstarter campaign in September. What is Retro VGS you ask? Retro VGS is a full cartridge based console with brand new games being developed for it that the big publishers hopefully will be keeping their hands off of. I’ll repeat that again: Brand new game IPs produced in cart format.

At first I was a little skeptical, and still am to be honest. There are 3 things I can see as hurdles for this system really gaining traction.

1) I’m still worried about price. Not of the console itself, but the games. Cart games cost more to physically manufacture than disc games. But we’ll see. I’m sure they know that in order to be relevant, they can’t have restrictive pricing.

2) Retro and cart gaming is really a niche market. I’m not sure I see this really gaining mainstream success. Even those that consider themselves retro gamers tend to download and emulate the software.

3) It’s modeled after the Jaguar. To be more specific, they actually acquired the tooling from Atari for both the console and the game shells.  This saved money and explains why it looks this way. But modelling it after a failed system is like asking a known sex offender to babysit for you – it might turn out OK, but why take that risk?

Either way, I’m super excited for this console. There’s already been a handful of games announced and it’s even going to get a pack-in game – another long dead tradition. Barring an absurdly Neo-Geo-like price tag, there’s nothing that would keep me from hopping on the Kickstarter campaign. The only way to get one of the custom colored consoles mind you. You can head to the official web page here: http://www.retrovgs.com/ to check out the systems specs and get a look at some of the games planned.

Mega Man 2 American Box Art

Ok, so this is totally like over 20 years of relevancy, and I know it’s kind of like an accepted joke, but what’s with the Mega Man American box art? Specifically Mega Man 2. Did the art designer even play the game? Was he denied very important information? Aside from moving far away from the original art design – whatever, I’ll accept that; there are two things done terribly wrong.

257098-MegaMan2BoxPistol

1. Dr. Light is hiding behind Crash Man, pointing at Mega Man, as if to say attack.  Dr. Light would not be doing this, Dr. Wily should be there instead.

2. Mega Man is using a pistol. When, in the entirety of the game does he fire a pistol? No, Mega Man uses the Mega Buster, an arm cannon that extends from his forearm.

Yeah, this is something I think about regularly, today, it just got to the boiling point I wanted to talk about it….these are the biggest concerns in my life….not my newborn son or paying my mortgage or anything. Cuz, ya know, that’s not important…

On a somewhat related note, why was Clash Man, in the Japanese release renamed Crash Man in the American release? I can’t imagine it’s for any sort of infringement or special interest groups reasons. The only thing I can come up with is that Clash Man pronounced by a Japanese person comes out sounding like Crash Man.

Super Mario Bros. 3 Mix Cart Ready

Super Mario Bros. 3 Mix, a rom hack made by Southbird, completed and available on cart. Max and myself did a complete playthrough of the game to “test it out”, plus it’s just awesome Mario fun. There’s a lot to do in this game. It has so much more than the original NES could offer, including game saves, alternate stage exits, unlockable stages, etc. If anyone’s interested, I could make this one for $40. I also have an alternate label available.

mario3mix

SonSon NES Cart Finally Finished

Been kinda busy with things, but I managed to finally finish the label for SonSon. I kind of messed up cutting it a bit, but whatever, it’s my copy so I don’t care. I used the classic Capcom label style, a-la GunSmoke and 1942. I do plan on making an alternate label using the later Capcom label version such as on DuckTales and Rescue Rangers. Of course, if you are interested in purchasing on one of these carts, shoot me a message or send me $35 through paypal to gdraudt@gmail.com with your shipping address. I’ll knock $10 off that price if you send me a donor cart. Message me for possible donors.

sonson

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