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Keatah

Do you find yourself drifting away from the scene?

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Lesser interest in homebrews. They're popping up like flies.

 

No interest in retrogaming apps, especially single-game apps.

 

No desire to play on mobile platforms.

 

Not interested in limited editions because companies are trying too hard to make these and they're still all the same.

 

None of this (to me) seems like drifting away from retro gaming. I've never had an interest in homebrews, single-game retro apps, retro mobile games, or limited editions. OTOH I'm pretty passionate in my love for games from the 80s and 90s (and 2000s and 2010s, for that matter). I guess I just have no interest in the cash-grab monetization attempts.

 

Well-executed throwbacks, though...I like those. Sonic Mania is a good example. The recent Capcom collections on current-gen consoles, too.

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or their personal definitions of technical mumbo jumbo they half-understand

oh god, yes. Probably my biggest retrogaming pet peeve.

Edited by dj_convoy
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For me, it's all about preservation, and the enjoyment of developing on these platforms. It's something I can't get from modern software development (which I also enjoy). So, I don't mind that the bubble has gotten bigger. it's inevitable. It'll collapse again at some point, and I'll still be here.

 

-Thom

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I've found modding to be an interesting aspect of the hobby. To a point at least. Watching RetroRGB, they keep coming up with new mods and cables for consoles, while I'm still happy with the original SNES 1-chip AV mod I did. At some point it's just more stuff piled on top of solutions that are already good enough, and news fatigue sets in.

 

No idea why so many people in this thread indicated interest in mobile gaming. That is purely a casual realm and holds no appeal to me.

Edited by DJ Clae
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In replying to my own 1st opening post. It may simply be a shifting interest in the hobby. I've got tons of things preserved and recorded - and that was a big part of my time in the scene. Now what's next? IDK.. Maybe this week and next I'll try dreaming up some new feature requests for emulators, maybe explore the differences in 5200 vs 8-bit computer software. Seems there are more than I originally thought!

 

I wonder if the ongoing popularity of mobile gaming is because of the simplicity of the tablet. Windows 10 is pretty lousy with its constant updating. Tablets are less bothersome. A wider audience understands them compared to PC.

 

I still enjoy going to a buds home and bringing everything in a NUC, or more impressively bigger, a Shuttle XPC cube. To my childhood self it's still incredible and amazing that gaming can be done that way. All-in-one.

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The opposite, actually; I've found the scene drifting away from me.

When I got into classic gaming in the '90s, the whole scene was much, MUCH smaller and had a very different vibe to it. As far as the games and consoles themselves, there was still so much that was undiscovered and unknown. It was exciting and, to me, a grizzled veteran of the Bit Wars who never really knew anything other than the Nintendo-Sega dichotomy, it was new.

Classic gaming meant Atari, Odyssey, Intellivision, Coleco, Pong...generally anything before the NES (though the 7800 was lumped in there as well). That's where my fascination was, and that's where it's essentially remained after all these years. That's what classic gaming was at that point. Now it's YouTubers talking about rare SNES titles in front of their walls of games. Flippers and price speculation. Corporate-sponsored conventions measuring in the dozens of thousands (or more) of square feet. $80 limited edition homebrews and the homogenization of classic consoles as more and more of the same old games are cross-ported. Cosplay. Self-described historians waxing academic and drinking in their own farts. Entire generations likening the NES to the Monolith that appeared before the apes in 2001. You're not even a "real" classic gamer unless you have a YouTube channel now.

That's all fine and well, I guess, and a natural generational evolution, but it doesn't have anything to do with me. It's all moved past me. It's like retrogaming (that is, "the scene") and I were buds growing up, playing guitar and writing crappy songs in our parents' basements for fun, and he went off and became a rock star, leaving me to occasionally wistfully reminisce about the times we had back then.

My involvement with Midwest Gaming Classic is a perfect illustration. I first went in 2004--the show was four or five rooms in the basement of a Sheraton Hotel. And I though it was amazing. I'd never seen anything like it. I had no idea that many other retro enthusiasts even existed (keep in mind I'm talking about maybe a few hundred people here). I started volunteering selling tickets, loading trucks, tearing down, and covering GOAT Store in '07 before I switched to full-time Museum exhibitor. Every year was bigger and generally better than the last, to the point it's an absolute monster now--a true testament to Dan, Gary, and the community that supports it. Consequently...the show wouldn't miss me if I stopped doing it. It doesn't need me anymore for any of things I used to do for it. There are so many other volunteers (and in some cases, actual contractors) to handle every imaginable task involved with setting up and running that show that I'm a drop in the ocean. And the show itself has almost nothing to do with what I bring to the table anymore. My half-dozen late '70s systems in the Museum are effectively a token nod to gaming's founding era, and would be missed by nobody if they weren't present. If I didn't bring them, somebody else probably would anyway. At one time, I couldn't imagine missing an MGC; now I have to talk myself into even going at all. I do it now mainly to hang with out-of-state friends I don't get to see otherwise.

And then there are specific console scenes--not gonna name systems or names--that I've been effectively boxed out of, as well, as greater influxes of enthusiasts came in and made it about different things than I was interested in. I don't really have anything to contribute anymore, since I'm not really about the same things they are. I still love the system, but the scene is a mostly annoying clique that I'm not generally interested in participating in.

TLDR: I'm content live in my own retro bubble and play the same old games on the same old systems (and new old games...and new old systems...and select homebrews :-D), and explore, tinker, and contribute to discussion within those realms, and share whatever wisdom or knowledge I have with whomever may seek it. The rest of the retroverse can do what it will. :)

[/crankyoldman]

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I'm a little from column A and a little from column B from many of these posts. I'm actually probably *more* into retro gaming as a whole than I used to be, but I've also expanded the breadth of my interests to the point where I feel like I look more at high level things now than specific systems or games. I'm more interested in looking at things like how genres developed, different trends in PC vs. console gaming, different trends in American vs. Japanese computers and consoles, the rise and fall of various developers, etc.

 

I still buy a ton of stuff and I still play a ton of games. But I'm less interested in the nitty gritty of how to "beat" those games and more interested in how and why they came to be, what techniques were used to differentiate them, what effect they had on the industry, etc.

 

I do feel like that early period of gaming that used to be the focus of most retro gamers is becoming less and less relevant over time, to me as well. But at the same time, I don't feel like the post-crash era is really "retro" at all, and I probably never will. Just for me personally, anything that happened after I became an adult feels like the modern era, and getting from there to here has just been one uninterrupted process. I started out in this hobby as a way to preserve stuff that I felt was otherwise lost. Atari, Mattel, NEC, Magnavox, Coleco, even Sega are no longer making game consoles or, in most cases, even games at all. But Nintendo is, and there's not a lot of conceptual difference, game-wise, between what they were doing in 1983 and what they're doing now. Nothing's been lost. There's nothing to preserve. Ditto for Sony and early MS stuff. With a few exceptions, the good stuff just gets updated and re-released, maybe with a different name, definitely with better graphics and probably with a new mode or two. But basically, they're the same games.

 

I have developed more of an affinity for Sega since they dropped out of consoles, for the same reason I initially got into retro gaming in general. For me, it's only when a company drops out and the industry moves on without them that I really can start thinking of them as "retro" or "classic". Because every console maker has their own house style, and when that's gone, a void is left and things do change. Then when you look back at those games, you can instantly see something different than exists now, and something that has value and shouldn't be forgotten. But I feel like a lot more people are adding Nintendo to their list of "classic" stuff they're interested in than Sega, so I feel like I'm kind of branching off a bit there too.

 

I think that might be the main underlying difference between what classic gaming used to be and what it is now. I don't think it's a stretch to say that most other people who got into this were like me; wanting to preserve stuff that was lost (and/or relive childhood memories, but those things are anything but mutually exclusive). But now, it seems like that's flipped, and a lot of new people in the hobby just want to go back and see what their favorite current companies were doing a few years ago.

 

There's no right or wrong way to be into this hobby, but it's definitely a different perspective that I don't intuitively grasp. And I have found myself sometimes getting into arguments with people about it, which never used to happen. The only argument I ever remember having here in the old days was about whether or not the Alamagordo Atari dump existed :)

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When it comes to drifting I was always pretty much a High Plains kind - participating in some projects and conversations but mostly keeping to myself. Perhaps because a curious thing about the retrogaming scene is how many people seemingly loathe the "retro" bit. Do you love CRTs and want to talk about them? You will be told they suck and you should upgrade to a flat tv already. Original consoles/micros? They suck too, take up too much space, you can't save a game or put a crappy filter on: use emulators, same for games: who needs boxes, go digital. That old game you really like to play? Guess what - the gameplay & fx suck: play the remake or let's just talk about modern games anyway.

 

Scene, uh, it can be hard work, I tell you :) Some of these elements are present here too of course, but the good thing about AA is that it's rather big and there's room for maneuver - unlike some smaller, clique dominated boards which can be quite suffocating. There's also lots of devs, modders and generaly people who do stuff and keep the hobby alive. Plus, people who actually play games - the HS clubs are really great, especially the 8-bit one, not so much about scoring high but more about just playing games and talking about them (shoutout to therelalbountybob for keeping it so fun)

 

One bit of advice to folk perhaps bored with it all is: try the microcomputers. The games for them may not be the snazziest fx-wise but there are heaps upon heaps of amazingly fun and inventive ones.

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Something like that. I've always made my own way, like most of us. Though in order to experience something new, you must let the scene guide you and get you going. Let you know new stuff is there.

 

What's bothersome is filtering and determining what is fluff and what is worth preserving or getting into. In the early days it was easy, today the shit proliferates like a bacterial colony.

 

I'm not trying every new thing the scene presents either because it's all a money grab. Or it doesn't have personal meaning to me.

Edited by Keatah
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And then there are specific console scenes--not gonna name systems or names--that I've been effectively boxed out of, as well, as greater influxes of enthusiasts came in and made it about different things than I was interested in. I don't really have anything to contribute anymore, since I'm not really about the same things they are. I still love the system, but the scene is a mostly annoying clique that I'm not generally interested in participating in.

 

 

 

Those Turbo Neo-tendo guys are the worst.

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Yes, the main problem they need a lot of time for management before you actually start playing with them,

 

I didn't used my REAL Atari console in the last 5 years...

 

On a system like the VCS, plug in a cartridge, turn it on, hit the red button/press Reset and you're playing. The process hardly takes 3 seconds.

 

Turn on a modern console... wait through a BIOS/splash screen. Wait for a disc to load. Wait as you download an update to the system. Wait as you install an update to the system. Wait as you download an update for the store. Wait as you install an update for the store. Wait as you download a game. Wait as you install a game. Wait as you download an update for your game. Wait as you install an update for your game. Wait as you sit through a tutorial on a game. Wait as you watch previews, disclaimers, terms of use and commercials for other games. Wait as you watch a games' intro. Wait for your wireless controller batteries to charge. Wait for your 3D glasses to charge. Wait as you play around with your TV settings as you try to minimize lag. Etc., etc., etc.

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As I get older my free time seems to be disappearing (job, family, house, etc.) so I've had to really concentrate on one or two systems rather than the 'everything under the sun' approach I took years ago. I still have tons of systems and computers hooked up, but sadly most are underused these days. With what little free time I have these days I usually play modern RPGs and sometimes something on the Apple II (and the occasional quick 2600 game now and then). I imagine most people my age are in a similar situation.

 

To echo what BassGutari wrote, the scene isn't what it once was. Not to say that it isn't vibrant and active, it's just radically different than when I was first involved 20+ years ago. It's gone from a small but dedicated group of people to a large mainstream thing, with all the good and bad that comes with it. I'm still involved (obviously) but not in the same way I once was. Quite frankly, sometimes I feel like a stranger. Like coming back to your college several years after you graduate and realizing that things have changed and you don't quite fit in any more. That's why I've been gradually stepping away and doing my own classic gaming thing outside of the 'mainstream' hobby. Everything changes I suppose. It's not good or bad, it's just something that happens.

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I don't really participate in any 'scene' aspect of retrogaming ither than conventions, and everybody I have met are really great. Outside of random lurkingof other forums, this place is all the community I need. Like a group of fans you are going to get people who don't get along. But after a long time, even those who have different opinions, as long as they don't come across as zero social skioped neckbeards?...it's all good. And even if it ain't great all the time, totally normal to take a step back for a bit.

 

But I don't ever see the day come that I stop enjoying these games because of 'the scene'. No way. Few rounds of any game will take the edge off the elitist jibber jabber that occasionally rears its head.

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I think there is a bit of a small bubble that will soon pop. Too many companies are jumping on the retro bandwagon, without really any other intentions than to make a quick buck.

 

I am already preparing for it and working on things to ride it out.

 

I think I am addicted to retro gaming, but I don't collect anymore really, I sold my SNES collection to JJgames in 2017. However I do feel like I collect IPs. I think it is soo intriguing, and interesting and cool to buy old IPs. To hear the stories of the original developers, to (on a handful of times) get the source code and dig through it, to get design documents and see everything.

 

That is my thing, and it would be damn hard to drift away from that.

 

I doubt retro gaming will ever die, but definitely people will stop buying new consoles, and new homebrew, if the only intention is to make a buck. If you are doing homebrew games to better your self, do something better for the platform never done before, etc. Or on your console fix problems done in the past because you didn't have the ability to do better at the time, I think those people will thrive and will stay alive. Others, will die, drift away, and will be hardly remembered.

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As I get older my free time seems to be disappearing (job, family, house, etc.) so I've had to really concentrate on one or two systems rather than the 'everything under the sun' approach I took years ago. I still have tons of systems and computers hooked up, but sadly most are underused these days. With what little free time I have these days I usually play modern RPGs and sometimes something on the Apple II (and the occasional quick 2600 game now and then). I imagine most people my age are in a similar situation.

 

To echo what BassGutari wrote, the scene isn't what it once was. Not to say that it isn't vibrant and active, it's just radically different than when I was first involved 20+ years ago. It's gone from a small but dedicated group of people to a large mainstream thing, with all the good and bad that comes with it. I'm still involved (obviously) but not in the same way I once was. Quite frankly, sometimes I feel like a stranger. Like coming back to your college several years after you graduate and realizing that things have changed and you don't quite fit in any more. That's why I've been gradually stepping away and doing my own classic gaming thing outside of the 'mainstream' hobby. Everything changes I suppose. It's not good or bad, it's just something that happens.

 

:thumbsup:

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I'm so far out of the "scene" that I feel like an impostor every time I stop by. Which, given that I felt that way when I first got into the hobby (at the age of 14) means things have come full circle.

 

I'm playing what I like, and I'm enjoying the experience and aesthetics of my games, more than the actual purchase or ownership. I've stopped caring so much about industry trends and politics... that's quicksand to me. And I almost rejoice when I see the announcement of a major product that doesn't interest me-- it means I'm about to save a lot of money.

 

I've gone through several distinct phases in my game playing life... this latest one is very low key.

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Tempest has it figured out for me as well here.

 

I've been in this hobby for nearly 20 years as well and at first it was a much smaller and tighter knit group where everything discovered was new and fresh. Now...there isn't so much new to discover in our hobby. There are homebrews and I really enjoy the fact that people are willing to put in the time and dedication required to put their games out there. Having said that, I'm also picky on the games I've been willing to pick up and play. So I don't own every homebrew just like I never owned or bought every new game that was released on the original 2600 back in the day or now. But I've also gotten to the point in my collecting where all the stuff I've pretty much wanted to pick up to want to play and have...I now have..so the desire to go on the hunt certainly isn't there as much anymore. We get older, we more tired, I'd rather catch a few more ZZzzz on Saturday morning than wake up like I did in the military to go to yard sales or garage sales...

 

As for mobile gaming...not really my thing either. Sure I own a 3DS and I take it with me when we go on trips etc. But I certainly don't play any games on my phone and just don't desire it.

 

I also haven't that much interest in the retro remakes or the hardware. Systems like the Retron77 or the recent flashbacks just don't really do much for me either. To me I own all the original hardware in working condition and have that same hardware setup ready to be powered on and used. So there really isn't an incentive there for me to get these systems. Combined with their sub par quality and performance in some cases and I just don't see a reason for them. But then, I'm clearly not their target audience on these things I don't believe.

 

I will say that I do enjoy the aspects of modding the console though. I do understand both sides of the fence with purists wanting to keep machines pristine and those that like to have more options for playing their systems. So as an example I'm not really willing to mod a heavy sixer but most other consoles I don't have a problem with. Having said that most of my retro consoles hooked up for play are modded in one or more ways for convenience, but I also usually have another console just like it that is still factory stock or in some other cases. Still in the box complete.

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I also haven't that much interest in the retro remakes or the hardware. Systems like the Retron77 or the recent flashbacks just don't really do much for me either. To me I own all the original hardware in working condition and have that same hardware setup ready to be powered on and used. So there really isn't an incentive there for me to get these systems. Combined with their sub par quality and performance in some cases and I just don't see a reason for them. But then, I'm clearly not their target audience on these things I don't believe.

I wouldn't think the AtariAge community would be the target audience which is why I scratch my head when these systems get so much attention on here in the form of posts.

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I feel the drift, but for now I want to think of it as waxing and waning. Not a lot of hobby time left over, these days.

 

I think how fast you drift depends a lot on your hobby focus. If your interest is just on old games, the time to put your stuff away comes much quicker.

 

I enjoy the technical aspects of the scene, which I hoping will have a longer run. It's a hoot participating in the dev communities for "my" consoles, and just as much fun to compare and contrast what technical feats are being pulled off elsewhere with consoles I never owned.

 

 

Having shade thrown around about the miracle that we even HAVE new games makes me question the scene for sure. [...]

I get where he's coming from. Go back in time, and you see a lot of excitement for any new 2600 brew, with people requesting carts for brews that weren't even games. Now "2600 homebrew" is this big encompassing thing with tons of titles under it's belt, and tons more on the way. It's a good time to be a homebrew enthusiast, but I think it's natural that any single titles generates a lot less excitement now.

 

It's similar to the mobile gaming market. I haven't been excited about a mobile game in a long while. It's just hard to stand out in crowd of millions.

 

 

I still love the gaming aspect of it, and will keep trying the various incarnations of these games when they seem interesting - but what I'm really tiring of is the unavoidable personal attacks and nastiness in this hobby.

Here, or elsewhere? To me AA is still pretty much the tamest corner of the Internet. Most people are reasonable, and the mods do a great job with the rest.

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A "scene" can be quite cancerous. There's so many negative factors to deal with with gaming that it can burn some people out. There's elitists, fanboys, scalpers, and general negativity out there.

 

I always say "You do you" but I also scratch my head on some things that just don't make sense. Paying someone roughly $300 to CPU upgrade an og xbox so xbmc will work a bit better but it doesn't help games or anything? The concept is cool at a diy aspect under $50, but a Kodi setup that's cheaper and better exists. $600 on a dream C64 setup? Ok, I don't have any desire to play C64 but if the build makes sense and makes you happy, cool.

 

There's a lot of "my biased opinion is fact" types that'll ruin any intelligent gaming discussion as well, so I completely understand why some people won't go near a scene

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A "scene" can be quite cancerous. There's so many negative factors to deal with with gaming that it can burn some people out. There's elitists, fanboys, scalpers, and general negativity out there.

I always say "You do you" but I also scratch my head on some things that just don't make sense. Paying someone roughly $300 to CPU upgrade an og xbox so xbmc will work a bit better but it doesn't help games or anything? The concept is cool at a diy aspect under $50, but a Kodi setup that's cheaper and better exists. $600 on a dream C64 setup? Ok, I don't have any desire to play C64 but if the build makes sense and makes you happy, cool.

There's a lot of "my biased opinion is fact" types that'll ruin any intelligent gaming discussion as well, so I completely understand why some people won't go near a scene

This is a factor for me, too. I just don't have the time or energy to justify my likes and dislikes to the general public, and gaming really does encourage people to do that. Elitism is everywhere outside AA, and on rare occasions makes an appearance within our walls.

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I will say that I do enjoy the aspects of modding the console though. I do understand both sides of the fence with purists wanting to keep machines pristine and those that like to have more options for playing their systems. So as an example I'm not really willing to mod a heavy sixer but most other consoles I don't have a problem with. Having said that most of my retro consoles hooked up for play are modded in one or more ways for convenience, but I also usually have another console just like it that is still factory stock or in some other cases. Still in the box complete.

 

Done with care and attention to detail, you can mod most consoles without cutting. Just use a ribbon cable and "breakout box" to the necessary connectors.

 

With thoughtfulness applied to the new mod, its easy to return the console to stock. No need to cut holes and traces or any of the housing plastics. No permanent alterations need be done.

 

 

I feel the drift, but for now I want to think of it as waxing and waning. Not a lot of hobby time left over, these days.

 

I think how fast you drift depends a lot on your hobby focus. If your interest is just on old games, the time to put your stuff away comes much quicker.

 

I enjoy the technical aspects of the scene, which I hoping will have a longer run. It's a hoot participating in the dev communities for "my" consoles, and just as much fun to compare and contrast what technical feats are being pulled off elsewhere with consoles I never owned.

 

Currently my interest is focused around Atari 400/800, Apple II, and VCS. And of course some modern complex simulations and technical tools and such. Should be good for another 6 months.

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Done with care and attention to detail, you can mod most consoles without cutting. Just use a ribbon cable and "breakout box" to the necessary connectors.

 

But now you are getting into what I call 'tacky' looking territory. Not to mention that additional wiring if not properly insulated and shielded just allows more interference into the wiring that you are trying to get rid of with modding it in the first place LOL. But I get what you are saying. I also think that if done well, even panel mount jacks on a console can look good.

 

But sure you can run all the wiring and connection jacks externally. I just happen to think that looks even worse in most cases. I hate the FBs because they have their AV cords attached for example. They make the power supply able to be pulled loose, but not the AV wiring?!

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