The Origin of Species of GamersThe Origin of Species of Gamers

Posted on Oct 15th 2017 at 09:36:28 AM by (bickman2k)
Posted under People of RF Generation, Shadow Kisuragi, achievements

Name(First only):



Central Florida

Where does your screen name come from?

Shadow came from the Ninja/Dragon I was playing on a MUD (text-based MMO) at the time, inspired by Shadow from Final Fantasy IV. The other portion of my name is an intentionally corrupted form of Kusanagi, a common Japanese family name and taken from Motoko Kusanagi of Ghost in the Shell (and, in a unintentional reference, the name of a legendary Japanese blade).

How did you find RFG?

I was introduced to RFG when I was first learning about variations on Sega CD, and Nebrazca on Digital Press mentioned that the Working Designs variations were tracked on RFGís collection tools. I looked at the collection tools, noticed that there were large gaps in the tools vs. my collection, and started submitting first day.

What made you stay and become part of RFG?

First, I was determined to get a submission to pass without it getting rejected by Apollo! After that, I just genuinely loved learning more about the various games and consoles by researching and adding to the database. My activity and passion for the database eventually led to where I am today.

Have you ever met or personally know anyone at RFG?

Iíve met a few people on their way to events or Disney, and try to gift people a souvenir of some sort for the trip. Iíve met Bickman and wildbil52, and Crabmaster2000 was my first visitor to my house. Iím sure Crabby will refute the story, but I beat him at Street Fighter II Hyper Fighting with a Perfect while answering the door. He got me back in Blood Bowl afterwards though.

Number of Games Owned (at time of printing):

Donít even bother checking the tools - my collectionís unmaintained since moving to my house. Itís likely somewhere around 2500 games.

Number of Games on Wishlist (at time of printing):

I have a wishlist?

Number of Systems:


When did you start collecting?

I started as a kid, when my mom would take me to the flea market every paycheck and pick up something that was $10 or less for the NES. Birthday gifts and Christmas gifts were ordered from the Funcoland catalog, and she would give me money for good grades on my report cards. This slowed down once I started playing newer systems, but we ended up with about 500 NES titles. After high school, I stopped collecting until my wife and I saw a Play ĎN Trade store open up in a nearby town, and we checked it out. She surprised me one day at the office with a box with a 3DO and 40 games for $250 in it, and we started picking up a few other games for the systems we owned at the time.  I started looking for Rarity Guides, and would often carry around a HUGE binder with everything printed from Digital Press with games highlighted for what I owned. That...became a problem at the local flea market, as they thought I was looking to buy thing for resale. One day, I went into the local store, and couldnít believe my eyes - a copy of Cheetahmen II for $2.99. I ran up to the store owner, and told him the price wasnít right, and he should recheck it. He said it wasnít in his system, so it was default price, and he only paid $0.50 for it. I gave him one last chance, and purchased it for $2.99, and told him that Iíd repay him the missing amount by picking up a lot more games. We ended up getting ~1000 games in 3 years from him, so I think he ended up on the better end of the deal.

What was your first system you owned?

Technically, an Atari 2600, but that was sold quickly by my grandfather. My mother bought me an NES when I was 5 years old.

What was your first game?

If weíre going back to the 2600, Frogger. For the NES, Super Mario Bros./Duck Hunt of course!

What was your first game you bought yourself?

Iím sure that I bought a few games from the flea market myself, or games with money that I earned from gifts, but the first one I distinctly remember purchasing with money I earned was Kessen II.

What made you decide to buy that particular game?

Why Kessen? I love Romance of the Three Kingdoms, and it was made by Koei. I had just purchased a PS2 for myself, and wanted a game to go with it. It was brand new at the time, and Target had it on the Clearance shelf. I argued with the Electronics manager, and got a brand new game for $20.

First game you ever beat?

Super Mario Bros. I used to try to speedrun it all the time.

Have you ever broken anything due to frustration from a game?

Be honest, we won't tellÖ  Controllers. Lots and lots of slammed or thrown controllers. I learned to stop that habit though, especially after my mom started making me purchased new controllers.

Are you collecting now, if so what anything specific?

No, Iím not currently collecting anything. Iíll pick things up when Iím at a thrift store, but thatís about it these days.

When did you feel a tipping point from gamer to both gamer and game collector?

After that point of picking up the 3DO, I started picking up anything I could find rather than looking for specific titles.

What are your goals as a game collector, how have you developed them, and how do you feel about your progress toward them?

Originally, my goals were just numbers - I wanted as many consoles and games to go with them. Now, my goals are more targeted, such as completing my 32X and Sega CD systems.
How many games, systems, etc. are "enough"?

I think whenever you can look at your collection and feel happy at what you have would be what Iíd consider ďenoughĒ.

What's your proudest moment as a game collector?

While you would think it would be my cheap pickup of Cheetahmen II, itís actually whenever someone goes into my game room, picks out a game, and talks about their memories of it.

What's your least proud moment as a game collector?

Spending $4000 in a month picking up games, many of which I donít remember picking up...

If you had to give part of your collection away for a worthy cause what part would it be, and why?

Iíve had to consider this quite a few times lately, as my wife and I had to declare bankruptcy due to medical debt and weíve had to sell a few of the more pricey items to get by at times. I would be more than happy to give my collection to the local Childrenís hospitals, or to a local museum dedicated to gaming so people could get enjoyment from playing games that I grew up with.

Where/how do you store it all?

Storage has always been an issue for my collection. Right now, itís on a myriad of shelves and supported floating shelves that are always in some form of transition, and the rest scattered across the floor due to lack of space.

What's your favorite part of your collection?

I always love looking at my big box Sega titles. Those are the two systems that always interested me growing up that I was never able to play, and when I have people over, I like to pull out the Super Battleship 32X configuration for the ridiculousness of it.

What about a favorite series?

I love the Donkey Kong games, like Donkey Kong Country, Diddy Kong Racing, and DK64. I loved the secrets and exploration in DKC and DK64, and Iím a big Kart racing fan.

What is your guilty pleasure when it comes to gaming?

Playing through KOEI Romance of the Three Kingdoms titles. I can sit and play a Dynasty Warriors game for hours just mindlessly grinding kills. I love the history and story of Romance of the Three Kingdoms, and the mindless grinding just lets my brain rest for a bit.

What is the most valuable part of your collection (Value or sentimental)?

Sentimental wise, anything that someone has donated to my collection or has a connection to I keep in a special area, to display and never be sold.

What game do you have the most nostalgia for?

Oddly, Kickle Cubicle on the NES. My mom picked it up for me from the local video rental store, and woke up early the next morning and saw me playing it. Her roommate also got up early, grabbed some coffee, and we all sat around taking turns playing it in our pajamas until we got to the end.

What would you like to improve in your collection?

Remove anything in bad condition to make room for everything else, and eventually replace it with better condition items (CIB) once the collection is properly displayed.

What do you think was your best deal while game buying?

Cheetahmen II, overall, was the best deal I had.

What item in your collection do you feel you overpaid for?

Fortunately I havenít overpaid for much, but I recall when we first started collecting that we mistook a Daytona Championship Edition for a Netlink version, and overspent picking that up.

Good spending is crucial in collection. What do you feel is the strangest or weirdest item in your collection?

I picked up a lot of 100 Japanese Saturn games and a console for $200 shipped. Some of the games included were Hentai games, which made me laugh, but itís always awkward trying to explain those games to people.

What item(s) do you not have in your collection that people are surprised to hear you don't have?

Most of the Pokemon games. I played them religiously for Red/Blue and the Trading Card Game, but have never really picked them up since. I got a copy of Black/White from a co-worker, but thatís been it.

Is there any way you'd ever stop collecting?

Itís on hold for now, but the only way Iíd stop would be due to finances and lack of time playing. The interest is still there.

Do you have a funny story about your collection?

When we moved to the new house, the movers asked where to put the boxes. We had labeled the boxes for the collection, and they ended up putting 75% of the boxes for the move in the game room.

Have you ever had to move your collection to another house? What was it like?

Harrying, to say the least. We hired professional movers, who didnít know we had arcade cabinets. They werenít insured to move them from the 3rd floor apartment we had, so I had to waive any damage to them (no damage, fortunately). Packing away close to 2500 games and consoles took a significant amount of boxes (close to 70 flat-rate boxes, if I remember), and unpacking them still hasnít been accomplished. Setting up an entirely new room for your collection, with an established collection, can be a very daunting task.

It sucks, period. If your significant other told you no more games, what would you do?

I used to think this was a significant problem, but itís not now. Iíd likely take the opportunity to finally catch up on all of my reading, and probably watch a lot of movies - something we can both do.

What percentage of your games are still sealed?

2%, maybe. I purposefully avoid sealed titles, because there are opened ones out there that are cheaper.
What percentage of your games have you actually played?




Do you own any complete collections?

None at this time, but was close to completing 2 before having to sell off the expensive titles.

Time to bring out the fanboys! What is your favorite game of all time?

Final Fantasy VII, but not for the story. It was my first experience with the PS1 and JRPG systems, and my friend who owned it let me stay over for 2 weeks while we played through it and had a blast. I loved all of the side-quests and the bosses, maxing out the materia, and all of the things you could do in it (like the Saucer!).

Least Favorite?

Tiger-Heli, only for an infamous story of when I was a kid and rented it. I played it for 30 minutes, and couldnít even survive for 30 seconds. I got so frustrated my mom returned it and picked up a different game from the rental store. Iíve since played it and Iím not sure why I had such a block with it - itís not a bad game.

Do you collect anything else besides games?

Books and strategy guides. I think at last count, we had 18 shelves of books in the house.

What do you outside of games?

Work on websites dedicated to games and work on gaming projects (such as my PiKEA table). Is there something truly outside of games?

What other features would you like to see more of at RFG?

Iíd like to see more multimedia features on the site, such as trailers and gameplay videos for the game pages so people can see what a gameís like and maybe even link them through to purchase it.

douglie007, the previous interviewee, asked, ďWhat kind of games do you like to play with your significant other?Ē

We play all types of LEGO games, and in the past have played games like Baldurís Gate: Dark Alliance. We made it through most of ĎSplosion Man and FLOCK!, but those types of games test your relationship. Weíre slowly playing through LEGO The Hobbit now.

Thanks for your time!

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Nice to finally put a face to my the name of my rfgen "boss". I never realised he looked like Optimus prime :-)
That was a Christmas photo from a Zagnorch package. Cheesy
This is more of the standard photo:!Ao0rPwxKX9yHlqsXuxqLsstmamqPsg
@Schlibby: As long as he doesnīt rip open his ribcage to take out The Matrix, but a beating heart, thatīs Optimus Tongue
Nice to see the man behind the name and to get to know Ray. Everything Ray and his wife have been through hasn't stopped the time and effort for the behind the scenes stuff for the site from happening. Great help for us submitters and approvers. Hope the future becomes so much brighter.
I do in fact dispute your claim of destroying me in Street Fighter was Soul Calibur IV that you dominated me in while in another room Sad
Ray!  Nice you see the...  real you.  Anyway, I love the way you played FFVII: With a friend, with the intent of wringing every cent of entertainment out of it that is possible.  I did something like that with a friend and Resident Evil on PSX, but certainly not over a two week period.  That would have been pretty cool though.  I also dig your collection binder.  I didn't really get into heavy collecting until after 2000 and I would carry around a cheap PDA for collecting (which took hours of work to keep up).  Thanks for sharing!
I still have the binder around the house. It's a 3" binder with every list printed out. Cheesy

I honestly miss social gaming. Everyone's moved to various parts of the world now, so there's actually very little gaming done in the house these days.
Shadow has helped me countless times and always seems to know what obscure game I'm talking about. Thanks! It's great to learn more about this RFGen hoarder... errr... collector.
Nice to get to know you. I am big into koei games myself.

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As much as the world has changed, our still somewhat niche spot as gamers has adapted to the times as well as the games. We have created our online museum of our past. We share our experiences about the present. And we will evolve together as the gaming community continues to change. I hope to write about some of my experiences with gaming, as well as on some topics that were not directly relevant to me, but to the community or you personally.
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