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Rodney Hester

How did you find out about The Crash(TM)?

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I'll add my 2 cents...  I was never aware that anything crashed at that time.

 

Back in the day I would get my ass handed to me by my father when I went to the local mall arcade and wasted the $5 he gave me... it didn't deter me from doing it anyway... I was completely mesmerized by the games, they called out to me and I was always wanting to see what was new. 

 

KMART had a whole games section with displays playing atari and Coleco demos.  

Sears had the same thing!

 

My friend had a test cartridge because one of his relatives worked at the Atari factory and smuggled it out.  He had a bunch of eproms he'd put into the cart and we'd play all night.

PacMan for the 2600 was around $80-$90 (someone correct me if I mis-remember it).  And when it first came out, you were greeted with a WALL of boxes.  Impressive

 

I had Colecovision, TI99/4a and an IBM PC with 5.25 disks running microsoft flight simulator.  It was very choppy but I'd sit there for hours with every 'tic' of the screen.   I got a 300 baud modem. Then my parents made the wise decision to give me a book for Christmas called 'BBS's around the USA'.  It was a veritable cornucopia of phone numbers that I would use to call around the country and see what topics/downloads were available without a ratio.  I had no understanding of what a 'Long Distance Charge' was and went through most of the book.  My parents nearly had a coronary when they got the phone bill.  $300 in 1980's dollars (would be around ~750 today).  Funny though, they never gave me any crap beyond complaining to me about the bill.  And they didn't take the book from me, but I knew better. 


Then I started going to afterhours clubs (18 and under) and was hanging out with my friends listening to Morissey/The Cure/NIN/whatever was gothy.  I was too busy chasing girls... during that time I ignored games until I was in my mid 20's.   And then we're on to the first iterations of mame... I was gobsmacked when I could play the arcade version of Amidar on a PC.  

 

Recently, it was fun and intriguing to discover that Atari released titles into the 90's.  Wow.  I feel like I missed out on alot, including those awesome discounted bargain bins.  I would have gone nuts.

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6 hours ago, OriginalJohn said:

I'll add my 2 cents...  I was never aware that anything crashed at that time.

Aside from it being a transition to 16-bit computers and eventually a 486, it was a time of sad loss. After the market reorganization, real arcades started thinning out and we needed to travel further and further to get to one. Way out of BMX range. It wasn't practical or compatible with teen life as much as I wanted it to be.

 

The last real arcade games I played were in the early 1990's, Assault, Blasteroids, Super Space Invaders 91, and a few others from 87-91. The early 80's stuff too hard to find. No renaissance was on the horizon.

 

Quote

I got a 300 baud modem. Then my parents made the wise decision to give me a book for Christmas called 'BBS's around the USA'.  It was a veritable cornucopia of phone numbers that I would use to call around the country and see what topics/downloads were available without a ratio.  I had no understanding of what a 'Long Distance Charge' was and went through most of the book.  My parents nearly had a coronary when they got the phone bill.  $300 in 1980's dollars (would be around ~750 today).  Funny though, they never gave me any crap beyond complaining to me about the bill.  And they didn't take the book from me, but I knew better. 

I had the same "problem" I ran the bill to around $450. They never took away my Apple II, it was sacred to me. And I think to them too, though they never used it. But it was understood I had to learn about prefixes and check to be sure the numbers were in my call-pack, or local.

 

I learned everything I knew about telecommunications from that little Hayes Micromodem II, its introductory manual, and ASCII Express. Soon I would graduate to a Novation Apple Cat II and play with the big boys at 1200 baud.

 

Quote

Then I started going to afterhours clubs (18 and under) and was hanging out with my friends listening to Morissey/The Cure/NIN/whatever was gothy.  I was too busy chasing girls... during that time I ignored games until I was in my mid 20's.

I never really ignored games, just had trouble finding or "re-finding" the stuff I liked from the arcade. That tedium was a distraction, because the arcade was always a cornerstone of electronic entertainment. Cars and girls and smoke'n stuff didn't help fix any of that.

 

Quote

And then we're on to the first iterations of mame... I was gobsmacked when I could play the arcade version of Amidar on a PC. 

I never bought a PC for gaming purposes. Ever ever ever. Never even thought about it. It didn't have any gaming chips like GTIA or Pokey or SID. And that was that. I wanted PC for mathematical simulations, astronomy & stellar cartography, and word processing. Especially word processing. And for college. I got a decent GW2K 486 with all the Microsoft trimmings.

 

Various games like Doom, Raptor, and Descent, came out and then I realized PC's could somehow play good games. Previously I only thought about "gaming" on PC in terms of Microsoft Flight Simulator. That was it.

 

It took some time, but the period from 1993 through 1997 was when I discovered a new thing called emulation. A 4-year whirlwind of nostalgia! At first it was pretty rough and some things were even re-writes. But a magic show was beginning! The opening acts being:

 

Microsoft Arcade (Windows 3.1)

Activision Action Packs (2600)

Digital Eclipse and William's Arcade Classics

Mike Cuddy's Gyruss Sound Emulator

DAS Arcade / Sparcade

MAME, Galaxian & Amidar

 

..to what we have today. Every new game MAME picked up was a blast from the past. Being some 10 or even 15 years since I played some. Never having hope of seeing them again. And, well, the rest is history.

Edited by Keatah
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5 hours ago, CapitanClassic said:

@OriginalJohn, I couldn’t find an ad with pricing closer to the Release Date of March/April ‘82, but the Sears ‘82 Christmas Catalog has it priced at $29.99.

https://christmas.musetechnical.com/ShowCatalogPage/1982-Sears-Christmas-Book/0646

 

My guess is the game couldn’t have been more than $35 when it launched.

Yeah, maybe i'm mis-remembering as $35 would have been like a $100 to a 10 year old :)

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It's interesting to me that it's called 'The Crash', which seems more immediate and abrupt end to things... like it happened all of the sudden.  IMHO for me, it's more of like slow change happened...  like beanie babies or cabbage patch kids, there was a frenzy because it was new, people went nuts, and then the hype died down.  Speaking of cabbage patch, my father became a master detective at tracking these things down. He would frequent the stores in a circuit, gleaning info from the employees and make secret strategies for acquiring them.  We'd be at the store the moment they rolled the palate from the back room past those back doors.  A frenzy would ensue, a huge crowd would descend upon the pile tearing through the boxes to which larger adults could not break into the mob.   So my dad sent me in.  I was small for my age and could navigate through the wall of bodies to get to the pile.   I would start throwing them over peoples heads to my dad.  He ended up with a closet full of them... I think they ended up eventually donating them to goodwill because at the time there was no sign that a collectors market for the 'Patch kids was surfacing.  

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13 hours ago, MrTrust said:

Right, but we're not necessarily talking about college kids starting games companies out of their dads' garages.  Would this have been the decisive factor for companies like Sierra On-Line, or Epyx, or Origin Systems and the like?

A lot of these companies did get their start that way.   Origin Systems--   Richard Garriott started coding games on his Apple II in his teens and sold them in zip-loc baggies in local computer stores!    Sierra On-line was a husband and wife team.  Infocom was a bunch of MIT kids

 

13 hours ago, MrTrust said:

That's one reason we never had any of these machines when I was a kid.  My dad was a console guy and was never going to use a computer for anything but games.  When we'd go over to his friends' houses and they'd show off their computers, we'd see a lot of games that were the same or similar to something on a console, but they either looked like shit if it was an 8-bit machine or played like it if it was 16-bit.

 

I just wonder why this didn't matter enough to get PC players to migrate over to consoles for gaming specifically.

I don't think anybody bought PCs in the early to mid 80s just to play games.    You might buy PC games if you already owned a PC, but I can't imagine that being anybody's first choice of gaming platform.  There are probably many people who had a PC for work and some other platform for games.

 

14 hours ago, MrTrust said:

I'm sure the input device matters, but does it actually influence what platform you choose, or do you just adapt your game to the input device you have?  Dual Stick shooters were kind of a thing in the 80s, then they went away for a couple decades except for Smash TV and Total Carnage.  Sony puts two thumbsticks on a controller, and all of a sudden it's a genre again, and there's a half dozen of them coming out every week.

The controllers influenced the games that got made on a platform.   Unlike the console controllers of today with a myriad of buttons, triggers, motion sensors, the controllers back then just had a few buttons and it wasn't very easy to map that to some games.   Some people will insist that keyboard + mouse is the superior control scheme for first person shooters and won't buy a console for that reason,  but I've never been one of those.   I hate mouse controlled action games, but I also don't like not having a mouse for simulation type games.

 

14 hours ago, MrTrust said:

Which is ultimately my point.  You could have done a lot of the kinds of games that were popular on PCs of the 80s on consoles.  Might not have been quite the same games, but close enough for jazz, and for whatever reasons, consoles tended to do a better job in a lot of ways.

 

Seems like these developments really track closely with the aging and tastes of a certain cohort of Gen Xers.  Arcades were big when they were really young, and that's where the big money went.  They moved on to more "serious" or "advanced" games in the late 80s, and then the 486 and 3D cards come out, and the 90s become this sort of graphical arms race and move into more "adult" games.  Then, the damn breaks at the end of the decade and every male younger than 40 is a gamer, and you get this proliferation of platforms and genres.

I think there definitely was a demographic break between computers and consoles back then.   Computers had the types of games I was looking for and console games just seemed to be aimed at kids younger than me.   Even the arcade games of the late 80s didn't appeal to me as much as the ones in the early 80s did.  

 

Unlike today, computers and consoles had almost completely different games libraries with some crossovers.   Today almost every gets released on both PC and console with a few exclusives.

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7 hours ago, Keatah said:

DAS Arcade / Sparcade

Galaxian & Amidar

I was following the emulator newsgroups when these things were introduced.  It was amazing to be able to play these games on my PC!  But still I just assumed that there would just be a handful of emulators of arcade games.  Never expected them to merge into a project like Mame and try to emulate everything under the sun.   But that was around the time when emulation exploded and everyone was working on an emulator for every system you could think of.  

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11 hours ago, CapitanClassic said:

@OriginalJohn, I couldn’t find an ad with pricing closer to the Release Date of March/April ‘82, but the Sears ‘82 Christmas Catalog has it priced at $29.99.

https://christmas.musetechnical.com/ShowCatalogPage/1982-Sears-Christmas-Book/0646

 

My guess is the game couldn’t have been more than $35 when it launched.

 

I think if you're talking Pac-Man;  That's the one game where most of us overpaid!

 

Unscrupulous stores began marking that one up because, like needing a plumber on a Sunday,  they knew we were desperate and would pay up.

 

It probably started as a $29.99 game at good stores which quickly sold out...I remember that one well.  My friend from just down the block called and said, "You gotta get over here,  You'll never guess what I got!"  I went over and we played Pac-Man...And I knew I had to have it!  Yes even after playing it haha...To me Pac-Man was iconic, and (even if I rarely played it and wasn't good at it) it symbolized 80s arcades in many ways.  As soon as my mom got home from work I told her it was out and could I please get a ride to the store to get it?  She said OK, and we ended up going to 3 different stores before I found it.  It was marked up to $37.95 ironically at a store called Pay N Save.  A victim of the hype/mania,  I bought it instantly,   trying to cure my Pac-Man fever haha...

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4 hours ago, zzip said:

Some people will insist that keyboard + mouse is the superior control scheme for first person shooters and won't buy a console for that reason,  but I've never been one of those.   I hate mouse controlled action games, but I also don't like not having a mouse for simulation type games.

I love the mouse & keyboard combo. In some games it's a requirement. Others complimentary. Fast scissors-action is always a win for me.

 

4 hours ago, zzip said:

I think there definitely was a demographic break between computers and consoles back then. Computers had the types of games I was looking for and console games just seemed to be aimed at kids younger than me.

I always saw the break as a financial and complexity one. Not anything to do with age, or kiddie appeal. Like with Flight Sim, the more complex the modeling the better. Simple up and down controls would not do.

 

Oddly enough I didn't for large campaign/RPG/strategy games. Yet I wanted more and more levels in Commanche, X-Wing, Nova 9, and Stellar 7. Couldn't get enough of those.

 

4 hours ago, zzip said:

Even the arcade games of the late 80s didn't appeal to me as much as the ones in the early 80s did.  

Yes. That's when I got out of planned/default weekly visits. It was likely 50% girls and cars and other teen activities, the other half because the premise & storyline of the new arcade cabs wasn't as appealing. Sometimes there could be too much of it. Or it didn't fit my imagination. Or I couldn't relate. Something.

 

It had little to do with emerging 16-bit styles. But that was a factor. Didn't like the excessive cut'n'paste sprite usage or paper cutout overlay look of some games. The look where the background was super detailed, ahead of its time, and you couldn't interact with it in any way. SHMUPS excepted, because the detail seemed to indicate level progression. And in a SHMUP the background is something you never interact with - all about the bullet storm and enemy designs and patterns.

 

4 hours ago, zzip said:

Unlike today, computers and consoles had almost completely different games libraries with some crossovers.   Today almost every gets released on both PC and console with a few exclusives.

Back then I'd have liked to've seen more crossover/ports. Today I totally get that CGA/EGA and CPU speeds weren't up to the task. In fact PC graphics for gaming, to me, didn't exist.

 

Tend to think the 386SX put PC gaming on the map. Fast enough to draw a game in the framebuffer directly, under total software control. A time when game developers didn't use game engines yet. If a sprite was needed, all the logic and actions had to be done in software.

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4 hours ago, zzip said:

I was following the emulator newsgroups when these things were introduced.

Newsgroups through AOL and AT&T Worldnet. MOSAIC and Netscape, affectionately known and Nutscrape Invigorator.

 

At that time I was still missing the BBS days and cozy local forums.

 

4 hours ago, zzip said:

It was amazing to be able to play these games on my PC!  But still I just assumed that there would just be a handful of emulators of arcade games.

That was my assumption too. Because of that I rather grew my emulation stuff organically, tree-like in shape and mapping. Had it been suddenly, with everything appearing at once, with release schedules, I may have developed a regimented database with strict categories. Much more curated - though less spontaneous, less creative, and most definitely less sustainable.

 

Being introduced haphazardly (1993-1997) to emulators was likely a good thing.

 

4 hours ago, zzip said:

 Never expected them to merge into a project like Mame and try to emulate everything under the sun.   But that was around the time when emulation exploded and everyone was working on an emulator for every system you could think of.

MAME is convenient, but I didn't care about everything coming together under one software roof. I mean it makes sense for huge categories like arcade cabs, or being a catch-all for lesser-known consoles like Astrocade or 7800 or Emerson Arcadia.

 

Today the winningest consoles have their own highly polished dedicated emulators that dive into controller nuances and memory maps and versions of firmware. For computers that'll also include virtualization of some peripherals.

 

Just fortunate it all happened on x86 DOS/Windows! That's my umbrella.

 

 

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2 hours ago, GoldLeader said:

It probably started as a $29.99 game at good stores which quickly sold out...

Yes. I'm pretty sure I paid $34 at most for it. Maybe that included tax or something. But defo didn't pay no $80 markups!

 

2 hours ago, GoldLeader said:

To me Pac-Man was iconic, and (even if I rarely played it and wasn't good at it) it symbolized 80s arcades in many ways.

It was a huge production, getting the game. Hoping the car would start. Trekking to the OSCO drugstore in Woodfield. Getting McDonald's on the way home.

 

I clearly remember being disappointed in the graphics, but allowed for home console concessions and limitations. It was more of a gotta have it thing than anything else. I sucked at it. Especially the overly difficult arcade cab.

Edited by Keatah
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51 minutes ago, Keatah said:

Back then I'd have liked to've seen more crossover/ports. Today I totally get that CGA/EGA and CPU speeds weren't up to the task. In fact PC graphics for gaming, to me, didn't exist.

Even well into the late DOS era when VGA/SVGA was the norm,  PC and console seemed to be separate gaming ecosystems with relatively few cross-over games.  By then, most PC games required hard drive installation using a fair amount of storage, something cart-based systems couldn't keep up with (not cheaply anyway),  and console CD-ROM random access was slow compared to PC hard drive storage.   So I think these are the things that contributed to the types of games that appeared on both systems.

 

28 minutes ago, Keatah said:

That was my assumption too. Because of that I rather grew my emulation stuff organically, tree-like in shape and mapping. Had it been suddenly, with everything appearing at once, with release schedules, I may have developed a regimented database with strict categories. Much more curated - though less spontaneous, less creative, and most definitely less sustainable.

Coming from an ST, there were a handful of emulators on that platform.   They were almost all commercial products, many were feature incomplete.   Also apart from the excellent Mac emulators, most ran more slowly than the target system.  So a lot were not particularly useful, and that set my expectation of emulation.   I got into emulation soon after I got my first PC mostly because I wanted to bring my ST software over.  Even then the ST emulators were far from perfect but good enough to run some things--  mostly non-game applications.  But within months it seemed like the whole world discovered emulation and all these emulators began to appear, all free of charge!   Many started to achieve higher compatibility rates than I ever dreamed possible.

 

I suppose it was the collaborative power of the internet that made the emulation scene take off when it did, this was just as the internet went mainstream.   Before that it seemed like most emulator efforts were a one or two man shop working on it as a second job for side income.

Edited by zzip
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11 minutes ago, zzip said:

By then, most PC games required hard drive installation using a fair amount of storage, something cart-based systems couldn't keep up with (not cheaply anyway),  and console CD-ROM random access was slow compared to PC hard drive storage.

PC games at that time always always seemed to take up too much HDD space. Like a shriveling dick HDD space dwindled with every visit to Comp-USA. Cart systems didn't have that problem.

 

Got a brief reprieve with DoubleSpace. Another genuinely magical moment. I knew about compression from the early days of Apple II with things like DDD, DiskSplitter, DiskRigger, and AxePacker (for pics). But to do it on-the-fly in realtime that was a gawking "whoaaa" moment. Suddenly 200MB became 300MB. 500MB became 700MB. And that meant more games.

 

I also learned more about redundancy and packed data and just felt good about the whole deal. Making optimum use of the stuff I paid good money for. 486 era rigs seemed right at the balancing point where the lesser data transfer amounts and fast speeds of decompression speeds combined to where DoubleSpace sped up access.

 

I tended to dislike early Multi-Media CD-ROM. I was somehow convinced that CD-ROM would be bringing a new kind of magic to the PC. Instead it turned into a lot of waiting and watching of progress bars. Few games were exciting. But it was alright for things like Encarta and Astronomy programs.

 

I wouldn't fully comprehend its advantage as a distribution medium till later. And then that quickly morphed into ISO files on external HDD.

 

I do remember the circus-like attitude that was prevalent everywhere, the free discs in magazines. The free shareware bonanzas. A media frenzy for enthusiasts. Ha! I remember DeLorme's mapping software, where you could SET-UP a GPS thing in your car. Consisted of a laptop, PCMCIA GPS receiver interface, power bricks for both, a mouse, the SLOW-ASS CD-ROM database, and receiver antenna cable. All that to plan the family vacation! Imagine the clumsiness of such a kludge! On the level of GM's moving map with paper scrolls. With wheel rotation sensors. Or Lincoln's active hydraulic suspension with those high-powered pumps and sensors to follow every road undulation. That's early adoption and marketing for ya!

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Old computers man, yeccch. I mean, I was there too, I loved them for what they were, despite the high prices and low power, but it's like middle school -- I'm glad I'm not there anymore. 

 

The post-crash dark ages where everything was super expensive, and Moore's Law would make anything you bought obsolete in 9 months were hard. During and after the crash, a $300 console or a $2000 PC was a really hard sell. 

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40 minutes ago, zzip said:

I got into emulation soon after I got my first PC mostly because I wanted to bring my ST software over.  Even then the ST emulators were far from perfect but good enough to run some things--  mostly non-game applications.

I never thought of emulation (until recently) as a way of bringing software from older systems to newer systems. It was all about nostalgia. And only nostalgia. But yet that's exactly what it was, old arcade cabs on spiffy new PC hardware. I just didn't see it that way.

 

Being a new 1st-time PC owner in the early 90's I was all gung-ho on finding x86 native equivalents of all my past computer software. Amiga & Apple II. I wanted to take advantage of the new hardware and not shoehorn myself into platforms I just moved away from.

 

40 minutes ago, zzip said:

But within months it seemed like the whole world discovered emulation and all these emulators began to appear, all free of charge!   Many started to achieve higher compatibility rates than I ever dreamed possible.

I was not impressed with compatibility (but was with the novelty) of early emulators. Knew there was a long way to go. Even dismayed that there's still room for improvement. Half the emulators of classic computers don't do cassette operations. And printing is even rarer. Hopefully that is changing.

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9 minutes ago, Flojomojo said:

Old computers man, yeccch. I mean, I was there too, I loved them for what they were, despite the high prices and low power, but it's like middle school -- I'm glad I'm not there anymore.

Perhaps that's some of the appeal of the hobby of vintage computers today. You can have the latest i9 for all the cool stuff. And yet slip back in time to reminisce simpler days.

 

9 minutes ago, Flojomojo said:

The post-crash dark ages where everything was super expensive, and Moore's Law would make anything you bought obsolete in 9 months were hard. During and after the crash, a $300 console or a $2000 PC was a really hard sell.

Especially with graphics cards and CPU speeds. New stuff coming out every 6-months. And pulp magazines didn't make you feel any better about what you just finished paying off. Just wanted you to buy the next best thing. I don't miss those rush-rush-rush days.

 

Anything I purchase today is like a NASA mission. A specified minimum goal, say good for 4 years. And longer extensions if circumstances permit. No 6-month turnovers to get 20MHz more.

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The crash didn't happen in my hometown. Arcade, console and computer gaming continued to thrive right through the 90's.

 

My family continued to order Intellivision games from a disttibutor in Edmonton until I got an NES.

 

I first read about the concept of a "crash" in gaming mags years later.

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Growing up in Dallas I was about 12 when "the crash" happened.

 

I would bike three miles to the Toys R' Us mostly, but also the mall, and we had a Federated down the street too.

 

A fun time of the same consoles I was used to, plus I was into the Atari Computer by that point so was kinda past the consoles at that point.  But a lot of cheap games to try, all kinds of accessories.   Even saw the 7800 in the stores years before the official release, and that was weird because I barely knew of the 7800.

 

Just a wild time.  I didn't have much money income, and yet I was able to buy a Super Charger for the 2600 for like $5.  :P   And remote controlled joysticks for $10.  I was always picking up curious things on close out or on sale like that for a while.

 

But again, I was mostly in to the Atari computer games and those were current products and holding steady in price.   Everything else was just tinkering.

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17 hours ago, Keatah said:

I tended to dislike early Multi-Media CD-ROM. I was somehow convinced that CD-ROM would be bringing a new kind of magic to the PC. Instead it turned into a lot of waiting and watching of progress bars. Few games were exciting. But it was alright for things like Encarta and Astronomy programs.

My experience was different, it did open up a whole new world of gaming with things like Myst, The LucasArts stuff, the "You Don't Know Jack" series. Also the old arcade Laserdisc games like Dragon's Lair and Space Ace were now fully playable in all their glory instead of the cut-down versions or complete remakes we had seen previously.  Games could now be fully voice acted instead of reading text dialog after text dialog as well as some crude full-motion video.

 

On the reference side, it was cool to have an entire searchable encyclopedia at your fingertips,  or a searchable map of the entire country on CD, and phone directories, dictionaries, etc.   Of course this was a short-lived era as the internet came home soon after and made those types of CDs redundant. 

 

Of course there were a lot of sketchy CD-ROMs published,  I ended up buying some of them.   Like I remember one called "Microshaft Winblows 98" which I bought mostly because of the cover and title, but it was mostly unfunny parody.  

17 hours ago, Keatah said:

I never thought of emulation (until recently) as a way of bringing software from older systems to newer systems. It was all about nostalgia. And only nostalgia. But yet that's exactly what it was, old arcade cabs on spiffy new PC hardware. I just didn't see it that way.

Ah, well emulation on the ST was all about bringing usable software over from other systems like Mac, CP/M and even DOS (slowly) with things like PC Ditto.   It was too early for nostalgia then.  :)      So that's why to me it seemed a natural thing to use emulators in that way.   It's also easier to emulate systems at an application level then it is to emulate all the custom graphics and sound chips many of them had.   So early ST emulators for instance were very good at running GEM applications,  they could even do accelerated draws.   But apps and games that hit the hardware directly and bypassed GEM-  they were very hit and miss.

 

I never really expected emulators to emulate the custom chips enough to get 99%+ compatibility, but many of them ended up doing that

17 hours ago, Keatah said:

Half the emulators of classic computers don't do cassette operations. And printing is even rarer. Hopefully that is changing.

I don't think I ever tried printing from an emulator ever,  but I do think on Linux, some combination of Ghostscript and Imagemagick could translate the output to be printable on modern printers.   I did have tool for Atari 8-bit where I could convert a cassette to a wav file, and this tool would convert the wav file to a format the emulators understood.   Of course you only need to do that once per cassette and you no long need the ability to read a cassette directly.

 

 

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The CD-rom was a big pull for me, and one of the reasons we got into the PC-compatible computers. Playing Sierra Online games as talkies was a huge improvement over the normal point and click with text. Gotta love the narrator in Space Quest 4,

 

Narrator: Along with the changes induced by an armed conflict, the city looks different. More modern with a heavy dash of post-disaster seasoning. Casually glancing at the status line, you happen to notice that you're in Space Quest XII.


Narrator: The artificial taste of the Xenon road makes you long for the all-natural flavor of unpaved country lanes.

 

Narrator: Surprisingly, no one has taken this small, innocuous-looking piece of unstable ordinance.

 

https://spacequest.fandom.com/wiki/SQ4CD_transcript

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I found out about it in the usual way: by myself and with a Victoria's Secret catalogue.

 

Wait, what were we talking about again?

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On 1/5/2022 at 1:40 PM, Keatah said:

Yes. I'm pretty sure I paid $34 at most for it. Maybe that included tax or something. But defo didn't pay no $80 markups!

 

It was a huge production, getting the game. Hoping the car would start. Trekking to the OSCO drugstore in Woodfield. Getting McDonald's on the way home.

 

I clearly remember being disappointed in the graphics, but allowed for home console concessions and limitations. It was more of a gotta have it thing than anything else. I sucked at it. Especially the overly difficult arcade cab.

Hey,  Bonus points for mentioning OSCO Haha!...My first job,  a very crappy job,  was bagging groceries at "Buttrey's"....Full name Buttrey-Osco Food & Drug.  It's an Albertson's now...Both locations are now Albertson's,  a store so crummy I don't plan on Ever going back,  (But that is another story).

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FWIW,  Whenever I talked of making a jump to computers,  I was referring to earlier.  Like, for me it was Coleco ADAM,  and for some others it was C64 and Atari 800s etc...  Unlike everyone else, I guess I never did make the jump to PC.  I mean yes I use the PC to buy games for my consoles, but, by and large, I don't use it to play games,...Although I do have (separately) a MAME bartop, a Modded PS1 Classic, a Modded Wii, and emus running on a PSP, (all set up by others, as I don't want to people to think I know anything haha), so those are kinda similar I guess...I only mention this as it relates to an earlier time frame...Directly following "The Crash" we were unaware of at the time...Once consoles caught up, or nearly caught up to arcades,  I think the Crash was over and the new era of video games had dawned (NES and beyond)...From then on,  consoles were fine and many people just saw the PC as another console,...That is to say another choice of machine upon which to play video games.

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