Wednesday, May 13, 2015

The Best Of What Video Gaming Can Be.

Even though I'm a life-long video game player, I'm not one of those guys who goes out and purchases every new console the moment it hits the market. Hell, the newest game system I own is a Nintendo Wii. That being said, it's not that I completely dislike the new systems, there's just little incentive for me to spend hundreds of dollars on an over-priced gaming console that'll be retired in a few years anyway.

Perhaps the biggest reason why I haven't purchased a new Playstation or XBOX is that I still really enjoy playing old games. My original Nintendo gets just as much use as any modern system would. There's just something about firing up an old console (now referred to as retro by the video gaming community) that gets me excited. Remember the first time you played Final Fantasy on the NES? I recall reading the warning label on the back of the game, which told you how to turn the system off carefully, as to not erase your save data. That made me handle that cartridge very carefully! Or what about the first time you shot at the birds in Duck Hunt? Of course, you'd try to shoot at the dog instead! Modern gamers might consider the games of my youth to be simple, but they've got it all wrong. There were no achievements to unlock. There were no online interactions. There was no downloadable content. It was just you and the game. Some were easy, but most were HARD (I'm looking at you Silver Surfer for the NES).

Another thing I prefer about old games is that they were on cartridges and not discs. I can buy used, beat up, heavily worn cartridges at yard sales and flea markets, yet they still function without so much as a hiccup. Some of those old games remarkably have the original owner's save data still preserved -- that's insane! The same can't be said for games released on optical discs. Once a disc is heavily scratched, it's done for. There's no coming back from that. Yet, a game cartridge can take a beating and still work after many decades. That's a mark of superior technology in my book.

Release the Kraken!

Video games have come a long way, but that's not to say the older generations of games and consoles are obsolete. Far from it, if you ask me. If anything, older consoles like the SEGA Genesis, Super Nintendo, NES and the SEGA Master System represent the best of what video gaming can be. Maybe consoles will return to that standard one day.

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