RF Generation.  The Classic and Modern Gaming Databases.RF Generation.  The Classic and Modern Gaming Databases.




Posted on Jan 5th 2009 at 11:15:26 PM by (NESman93)
Posted under Atari 2600, video games, Atari, 2600, classic gaming, review


Back in the 1970s, in a time when video games began to increase in popularity after the success of games such as Pong, companies, such as Atari and Magnavox released home versions of the game. Then, Atari's engineers designed a way to play video games at home via cartridges, making it possible for home gamers to own one system, but play many different games. Finally, in October 1977, Atari released the Atari Video Computer System, or Atari 2600. The system didnt become an instant success until around 1978, when Atari gained the rights to the game Space Invaders, and ported it to the 2600, becoming the world's first ever ported arcade game.

Now, like many of you on the site, along with me, consider the Atari 2600 to be one of your favorite video game systems. Many of you may remember the hours you spent in front of your tv playing favorites such as Missile Command, Asteroids, Pitfall!, Berzerk, Combat, Centipede, and Ms. Pac-Man.

Looking at the system, you see that the system is very simple, despite the number of switches on it. Originally, the first run of Video Computer Systems came from the Sunnyvale, California plant with black plastic, a woodgrain front, and six switches. The weight of the system and the number of switches on the front, the early run of the systems became known as the "Heavy Sixer."  As time went on, Atari continued to downsize the system. Some revisions were a 6 switch with less weight (Light Sixer), woodgrain front with 4 switches (4 switch woody), and an all-black 4 switch model (the Darth Vader model).

Another good point of the system was the controller. It remains today as one of the simplest controllers for a video game system. The controller is simply a joystick and one button. The other controllers made for the system are the paddle controllers and the driving controller. The paddle controller is a simple spinning knob made for pong and breakout style games. The driving controller was the same as the paddle controller, but the paddle is a continuous 360 degree spin. On top of this, literally hundreds of third party controllers were designed and released for the system.

As the 80s came around, more arcade games made more possibilities of ports for the 2600. Unfortunately, these were also the years when the 2 worst 2600 games were released. First off was the 2600 port of Pac-Man. The biggest problem with the game was the fact that it looked nothing like the original arcade game. This was because of the fact that when Todd Frye, programmer in charge of the game, presented the prototype, Atari released the prototype. Millions bought the game and were extremely disappointed. The other game is the infamous E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial. The game was so bad that the 5 million unsold copies were buried in the New Mexico desert.

In the mid 1980s, fierce competition came from companies such as Nintendo, causing people to begin to abandon the 2600. At this time, Atari redesigned the 2600 as the new Atari 2600 (called the Atari 2600 Jr.), with a new "The Fun Is Back" campaign. This boosted sales of the 2600 for a few years. Finally, Atari discontinued the Atari 2600 in around 1992

As you can see from this review, the Atari 2600 has had a very long and exciting history. As of late, popularity of the 2600 has exploded, and fandom of the system is alive and well. Recently, homebrewers have began creating and releasing brand new Atari 2600 games, via Atariage. http://www.atariage.com/store/  (link to the atariage store)

Even though I wasn't even born when the system was out, it has become one of my highest rated video game systems. This one deserves a perfect 10/10.



Posted on Nov 27th 2008 at 08:04:15 AM by (NESman93)
Posted under Sega Genesis, video games, Sega, Genesis, classic gaming, review

 In 1989, at a time when the NES was increasing even more in popularity, Sega, who already had some popularity in the United States with the 8-Bit Master System, and Arcade games such as Altered Beast and After Burner II, released a video game console that was meant to take on Nintendo's NES, the Genesis, which became one of the greatest 16-Bit consoles of all time.

 At the time of it's release, Sega's main success was in the arcades, and overseas in the UK, where the Master System was extremely popular. On October 29, 1988, Sega release the MegaDrive in Japan. About a year later, on August 14, 1989, Sega release the Genesis in the United States. Sega pushed the Genesis on American consumers with the classic "Genesis does what Nintendon't" commercials. Those who paid the money for the system got the system, controllers, hookups, and the arcade port of Altered Beast. Many of the games released at launch were arcade ports and sports games. These include: Strider, Pat Riley Basketball, James "Buster" Douglas K.O. Boxing, and Michael Jackson's Moonwalker. The graphics of the system made people question why they were still playing on the old 8-Bit NES. Some kept their Nintendo's, and some took the leap into the 16-Bit era. Early in the Genesis' lifetime, Sega released a peripheral for the system called the Sega Power Base Converter. This peripheral slid into the cartridge port of the system an allowed the user to insert Sega Master System games into the converter, giving it backwards compatibility with practically all Master System games, and game Cards.

 As the years went on, the Genesis saw some fierce competition coming from Nintendo, with their Super Nintendo Entertainment System, and NEC's TurboGrafx-16. Sega held on, however, and gained even greater popularity with the release of the game Sonic the Hedgehog. Sonic was, as most today know, a blue, bad ass, in-your-face hedgehog, and was much more fierce when compared to Nintendo's little Italian plumber, Mario. Also, Sega was able to beat out Nintendo with one fighting game, Mortal Kombat. While the Genesis version of the game didn't look as good or sound as good as the SNES version, the Genesis version had full blood, and no censored fatalities.

 As the Genesis passed into the 32-Bit era, Sega tried to keep up with the graphics of the more advanced systems. They began to push the games to their graphical limits, and even released a couple of add-ons to make the system more powerful. The first of the two was the Sega Mega CD, released in Japan in 1991, and released in the United States in 1992 as the Sega CD. As the name states, this add-on was a disc drive that attached to either the bottom of the model 1 Genesis or on the side of the model 2. The add-on also enabled the Genesis to play audio CDs. Most of the games on the Sega CD were crappy FMV (full motion video) games. Some of the better ones, however, were Sonic CD, Snatcher, The Terminator, and Mortal Kombat. Mortal Kombat on the Sega CD featured the same Genesis graphics, but arcade sounds, speech, and music. Later on, in 1994, Sega released the Sega 32X, which was inserted into the cartridge port of the Genesis, could play all of the regular 16-Bit games, and also had its own line of 32-Bit games such as Mortal Kombat II, Knuckle's Chaotix, Star Wars Arcade, Doom, and Virtua Fighter. These add-ons are infamous for their low amounts of killer titles, and extremely high prices at launch.

 In closing, Sega made their greatest benchmark on the video game industry with the Genesis, and many gamers of today swear by the old Blast Processor. This system gets a 8/10.



Posted on Oct 15th 2008 at 04:06:01 AM by (NESman93)
Posted under SNES, review, system, Nintendo

  On August 13, 1991, 4 years before the discontinuation of the NES, Nintendo released the new 16-bit Super Nintendo Entertainment System, in North America. The system was already widely available in Japan under the name Super Famicom, when it was released there on November 21, 1990. This system promised to further Nintendo's domination and popularity in the video game market.

  Because the system came after the NES, it was launched with the sequel to Super Mario Bros. 3. Of course, that game was Super Mario World. The game itself practically sold the system. The SNES also offered continuations of NES favorites such as The Legend of Zelda, Mega Man, Double Dragon, Battletoads, etc. Also, some sets of the SNES came packaged with Super Mario All-Stars, which was a compilation cartridge that had the NES games Super Mario Bros., Super Mario Bros. 2, Super Mario Bros. 3, and Super Mario Lost Levels in better 16-bit graphics and sound.

  The console itself is pretty plain-jane. It was very boxy, with a standard Power, and Reset button. The console does, however, have an eject lever on it allowing the player to simply press down on the lever to pop the cartridge out of the console, as it is a top loading system. That is good because the games get firmly seated onto the pins and would just about always boot right up.  On the front of the console, there are the standard 2 controller ports. The bottom has an expansion port on it, but was very rarely used, and the back, of course, has the AC, RF, and AV ports.

  The controllers, are a huge step op from the NES controllers. They have rounded sides, a d-pad, 4 face buttons, and 2 shoulder buttons. The shoulder buttons were a new thing back then, but are now a standard on video game controllers. The 4 face buttons were arranged in a fashion like this:
         X

Y                 A

         B

  The controllers are very comfortable, and very responsive. The buttons are arrange perfectly for games like Mortal Kombat.

  In 1994, Nintendo release a new SNES game that kicked the Super Nintendo's popularity into overdrive. That game was Donkey Kong Country. This game had some of the greatest graphics and gameplay of any SNES game. The game sold more consoles and millions of cartridges. In the last 45 days of 1994, the game sold 6.1 million copies, making it the fastest selling video game to date. There were even 2,500 competition cartridges released. The game was followed up with Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest, and Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble.

  As with the NES, in October 1997, Nintendo released the SNES 2, a smaller and lighter version of the SNES, with Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island packed in with the system for only $100. The things removed were the expansion port, RF port, and eject button. The power and reset buttons were confined to the left side of the system. Finally, on November 27, 1997, the last first-party SNES game, Kirby's Dreamland 3 was released and the SNES was discontinued in 1999.

  Games from the SNES library continue to live on through different systems. Many of the games, such as Super Mario World, and Donkey Kong Country, were ported to the Game Boy Advance, and many of the Super Nintendo's games are available for download on the Wii's Virtual Console. The SNES also has a huge emulation scene, as virtually every game is available for download to be used on an emulator.

  As you have seen, this console was a favorite of 1990s era gamers, and was the first game console that i ever played. I can remember the countless hours that I spent playing Super Mario World, Super Mario All-Stars, and Donkey Kong Country. Many gamers probably have those fond memories, too. Well, again, this one deserves a 10/10.



Posted on Oct 1st 2008 at 02:56:49 AM by (NESman93)
Posted under Game Boy, Nintendo, review, system

  Ahh, what can be said about the original Game Boy, that hasn't been said a million times before? This one handheld, released in 1989, completely revolutionized the handheld video game market. Before the Game Boy was released, there were literally hundreds of different kinds of handhelds, but they were the cheap, lcd screened systems that you would find in small discount stores.

  At first glance, the Game Boy does not seem like much, but when you pop in that Game Pak and boot on the system, you know that it is more than you expected. The Game Boy is vastly more powerful than lcd handhelds, and will probably last longer (which is true, seeing as how there are some from '89 that are still working flawlessly).  The system is instantly easy to use for any gamer who grew up playing the NES, as the controls are exactly the same as those on the NES controllers.  Another thing, the system has a screen, but is green for some reason. This was also the first handheld that was able to link up to multiple Game Boys to play multiplayer games.

  Nintendo made the perfect choice to secure the rights to Tetris as the system's pack in game. This meant that anyone that bought a Game Boy had a game that they could play right away. Tetris was obviously not the only game on the system, as Nintendo made sure that all of the NES favorites were available to be in your pocket (game such as Super Mario,
Donkey Kong, Metroid, Tetris, Mega Man, TMNT, and newcomers such as Kirby). 

  As you can see, this is only a brief overview/review of the game boy.  It may seem very old and very outdated by today's standards, but will always live on in the hearts of classic gamers as one of their favorite systems of all time. This one gets a perfect 10/10



Posted on Sep 26th 2008 at 07:48:18 AM by (NESman93)
Posted under NES, Ice Hockey, Nintendo, Review, sports

  Well, any classic Nintendo NES fan will know that, like other consoles, the NES has its own number of sports games, such as Slalom, and 10 - Yard Fight by Nintendo. There are even games from third parties such as Tecmo's Tecmo Bowl and Super Bowl. One in particular, Ice Hockey, is the one that I will be reviewing here. Starting off, you will notice the cartridge and box art are different than most Nintendo sports titles. Most come in the black boxes that we've all seen at one time or another. Strangely, Ice Hockey comes in a bright blue box with a picture of some random ice hockey player. This is the only Nintendo sports title that hasn't had the cartoony style characters on the box and cart.

  Now, as you first boot up the game, you are treated to some quite cheerful music and some small hockey players on the screen. Like most NES games, Ice Hockey has the option of either 1 or 2 players. As you press start on the controller, you get a screen of several options. On this screen, you get to choose your team (USA, Canada, Russia, Czechoslovakia, Sweden, and Poland), your opponent's team, the speed of the game, and the length of the game, ranging from 7, 10, and 15 minutes. The last thing that you will set up before the game begins, is the setup of your team. You choose which type of players will be on your team. Once all of the options are selected, the match can begin.

  As the game begins, you will start out at center ice to battle for the puck. The gameplay mostly relies on being able to pass the puck, shoot, and how you selected your team. From the get-go, none of the teams have a statistical advantage over the others. Before the game, each team has five players (a stocky player, 2 average players, and a skinny player). The stocky players are the best at shooting and bowling over other players (which is pretty entertaining), the average players are average all around, and finally, the skinny ones are the fastest but tend to be the ones that get bowled over the most often. Also, each team has a goaltender as well. The controller only controls the player that is selected, but it will also control the goaltender no matter which one is selected. Fights can also ensue, and will continue until the ref stops it and sends the starter to the penalty box. Goals can be kind of hard to achieve at times, but when you do score one, it is damn satisfying! One other thing to note is that, when the game is paused, the pause sound is the same pause sound from Super Mario Bros.!

  As you can see, this is one of the greatest sports titles to be released on the NES, and is personally one of my favorite nes games of all time. I'll give this game a 9/10


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               
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