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March 2019 Retro Gaming Article


March 23, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Scrolling through choices on my FireTV's menu pales next to the days of vibrant video rental stores

Mom & Pop video stores were awesome
The selection process at a Mom & Pop video stores was as much fun as the flick you wound up renting!
Blockbuster brought organization to the video rental scene (perhaps some homogenization too), but the chaotic randomness of the small Mom & Pop video stores was an amazing experience. There was no limit - or family-friendly restrictions - on what you might find on those rental shelves. From rare documentaries to long-lost cartoons, inventory was not relegated to the latest big-budget films. When I think back on some of the crazy stores I used to rent from, it was an odd amalgamation of recent releases, porn and the option of VHS or Betamax.

Remember the thrill of finding a great game or movie at the rental store?
Regardless, the idea of going to a video store on a Friday night was a treat. It was an experience. I was exposed to so many titles I'd never heard of and wanted to watch. Being a movie-buff or cine-file in the age of video rental stores was grand! These days, you click on one horror film and you're served nothing but horror. What kind of logic is that?

Our perception of convenience has been betrayed. Sitting on your butt and let everything come to you robs you of a myriad of experiences brought on by a bit of social interaction. Is Amazon really the way you want to buy EVERYTHING?

Video rental stores were awesome Has going to the store become an online-only experience? When will you turn down a vacation on a beautiful beach because you can look at beaches all day in Google-Images? Get out there. See for yourself what's going on in the world around you.

I love retro games and playing all my favorites at home is lots of fun, but I love getting out to see what titles are on retail shelves. There's a buzz at local game stores - even GameStop - that offer incites and info. You shouldn't be in a bubble. It's important to widen your horizons and interact with people with your human skills, not a keyboard.

While gaming on my couch is fun, I like getting out to local arcades for a more modern experience or a barcade catering to all my 80's favorites. Get out and live life as though your entertainment depended on it! It kind of does... :)

Think back to all the amazing discoveries one could find in the Beta aile of an early 80's video store. Put your phone down and see what wonders await your discovery in the retailers of today. I still love finding VHS movies and music cassettes at thrift stores. It drives me to keep an eye out for all the cool stuff sitting on shelves in the real world.

Video rental stores were awesome

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