Classic Video Game Blog of Rants, Raves, News and Info

8 Bit Central - Retro Gaming Blog

Archive of Classic Video Game Blog Articles
Fourth Quarter 2019 - October, November, December



Just when you think there cant possibly be any more innovation in retro gaming, a new creation, concept, or development arises. Even forty-year-old game consoles are seeing products and titles added to their ranks. We love tracking down these gems. Join us and explore the ever evolving realm of retro gaming!



November 2019 Retro Gaming Articles:

November 15, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Motorola is bringing back the Razr flip-phone, in 2020, as a folding smartphone

At $1,499 and foldability, I can do without it, but I'd love to see another season of The Simple Life.
Motorola is bringing back the Razr Motorola used to be a force in the cellular world. These days the iPhone is all the rage with Samsung repping the house of Android. Gone are the days of cool phones. They're all rectangles full of Tweets and Snaps. Ugh!

Neo's Nokia 8110 slide out from The Matrix had people scrambling. Phones all look the same. Cars all look the same. Movies are all boots. We live in a world devoid of originality and risks. Everyone wants to go with proven concepts rather than take a risk.

There won't be any awards fro originality, but Motorola is bringing back the Razr flip-phone in 20220. For $1499, I'll pass, but some of that cost comes from the "foldability" of the screen. I guess the satisfaction-meter won't hit 100% until I've got a Trinitron in my pocket. Folding phone screens seem about as necessary as 3D tV - and look how fast we wrote that tech off.

Phones today cost more than a laptop, which is hysterical because most phones are crappy computers and equally awful as phones. They're sort of like amphibious cars - they seem great until they fill with water.

There's a growing trend among smartphone addicts that's causing an increase in non-smartphones. Some folks are trying to break the screen-to-face addiction by purchasing an old-school type of phone to use in emergencies, not Tweets and selfies. That's the kind of Razr I'd like to see. Taking a popular model like the Razr and stuffing a folding smartphone inside it kind of ruins the retro vibe for me. Once they kill the blast-from-the-past element, I'm not as interested.

Gimme a 3W bag-phone! Now that wold pique my retro interest! :)
November 14, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Mike Winterbauer's Clouds of Xeen and DarkSide of Xeen art are part of his Might and Magic Art Prints Portfolio

Might and Magic Art Prints
His Kickstarter campaign is funded - stop by and see which prints you want!
Mike Winterbauer is an artist known for his many amazing works in the gaming industry. He started in the 80s and 90s with his illustrations adorning many computer game box-covers as well as game manuals and other add-ins. Known to pose for his own creations, he takes a wonderfully unique approach to capturing gaming in his illustrations.

Focusing on Might and Magic, Winterbauer has a Kickstarter campaign (already funded) for the cover art from Clouds of Xeen and DarkSide of Xeen. He's offering posters, prints, and art cards with some great stretch goal pieces as well. If you want to add some of his work to your game room or office, check out his Might and Magic Kickstarter campaign.
November 13, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

A recent Sony patent led to speculation about a cartridge for the upcoming PS5

Sony patent for a PS5 cartridge
Though the image circulating the web says “Game Cartridge”, it's likely a way to add external storage to the console.
A patent filing was uncovered and it's been assumed it's a component of the PS5, set for a holiday 2020 release. Naturally, the retro gamer in me wanted to believe that Sony was following Nintendo's lead and reverting back to game cartridges, but that's highly unlikely. It wouldn't be a Sony experience without a 30-minute update of some sort.

It's been said the PS5 will use a solid state SD drive that will hopefully be faster with a longe life cycle. This patent may be part of an external storage system for adding more storage. The PS5 is also said to have a BluRay drive, capable of reading 3-layer discs. This may allow more game-play to remain on the game disc without the need to transfer so much data to faster drives.

It's largely accepted that patents are fairly poor forecasters tools for gaming's future. As more games are developed for launch and the end of 2020 arrives, we will have all the info we now salivate for in the interim.
November 12, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Disney Plus launched today and speaks to a larger issue than just, Maclunkey

The original film has some odd, newly-added clarification added to the Han versus Greedo shootout. But we still have silo'd content and need the cable company.
Disney Plus logo George Lucas has tweaked various elements of Star Wars with each subsequent release, but this one really goes pretty far and coincides with Disney's launch of their new streaming service. If you've subscribed to Disney+ and managed to log in successfully - kind of a rocky launch - you may have jumped right into Star Wars and seen how they changed murder to self-defense with a change in timing and the utterance of "Maclunkey."

The Star Wars universe continues to be a baffling place. These micro-edits are pretty pointless to me. Trying to change a storyline decades later is a strange move. Why bother? It's a beloved series, just leave it alone.

Star Wars edit - Maclunkey

More Than Maclunkey

As for Disney's new streaming service... it seems to me this is just another silo added to the myriad of possible subscriptions. Wasn't the original idea of streaming to cut ties with the dreadful cable TV industry that has drained us of every dollar they can? Ditching cable no longer saves a significant amount of money and all the subscriptions are becoming a similarly tangled mess.

Make no mistake - ditching cable is the right thing to do. They are heartless greedy monopolies eager to bleed you dry. However, many of us still get our internet (that's where streaming services come from, btw) through the very same cable TV companies. We are essentially saving $40 by dumping cable TV, but the cable industry will soon enforce data caps and get their money by overcharging us for internet data.

Has Cutting-The-Cable Cut The Bullshit?

Just because you don't view your TV shows via a cable-box, doesn't mean you've severed all ties with those dreadful cable companies. Their egregious greed will never subside and they will never settle for losing money because you thought getting Netflix was a super-secret move that would go unnoticed. They will get you... but it's worse than that.

We used to be silo'd by device. If you had a FireStick versus AppleTV or Roku, this hardware determined what services you could access. That's changed. Content is king again. Original content often guides which companies we subscribe to. Disney Plus can put Star Wars and Marvel behind their pay-wall, forcing anyone who wants to watch The Empire Strikes Back or Spiderman to pay for Disney Plus.

It's the same crap we dealt with via cable companies. Their pre-defined packages offered some good channels and lots of useless ones. The wider our viewing interests, the more we had to buy (pay). Only difference now is we pay a variety of companies to stream their content, while the cable companies devise new ways to charge more for internet access as opposed to cable TV.

Same game. Same shortcomings. New players. We've gone in a big circle and are desperate to convince ourselves we chose the right route... right back to where we started.
November 12, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

If you're in the area, check out Fire Tiger at the Viper Room on Sunset

With original songs and a classic retro sound, this band will take you back to the 80s!
Check out the Fire Tiger website where you can see their touring schedule and buy a CD. You can buy their music as a digital download, but they have such a classic vibe, we're sure you'll want a good old fashioned CD. Physical media rules!

Fire Tiger at the Viper Room
November 11, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

BlackPink's DDU-DU DDU-DU video hits one billion views as the group wins three People's Choice Awards

BlackPink's DDU-DU DDU-DU video hits one billion views
They are bringing a whole new energy to pop performances and their awards and accolades are proof of their global expansion!
Earlier this year BlackPink came to America to appear on several TV shows as well as perform at Coachella - which was a huge break for them! They even garnered a US record company representation. This K-Pop group is taking over the world and gaining fans across the globe. It's crazy to see them explode into so many different areas.

They recently won three categories at the People's Choice Awards: Group of 2019, Music Video of 2019 (Kill This Love), and Concert Tour of 2019. Can't wait for their next album... hoping it's a full LP!

BlackPink won three People's Choice Awards
November 7, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Jenny Lewis traveled across the country to “Video Armageddon”, in The Wizard, and later fronted Rilo Kiley

The Wizard staring Jenny Lewis
This film is laden with NES products and mirrors the infamous Nintendo World Championship. It also stars Jenny Lewis who later founded Rilo Kiley!
Jenny Lewis of Rilo Kiley The Wizard (1989) is one of those classic 80's films that's chock full of nostalgia. It's like a long Advertisement for Nintendo NES products - but in a good way. Never achieving critical acclaim, The Wizard went on to be a cult-classic, loved by gamers and nerds alike.

We still love The Wizard and love to add it to a retro film weekend binge. It's as much fun today as it was all those decades ago. As time passed Fred Savage and Christian Slater went on to other film and TV projects. What about Jenny Lewis who played Haley Brooks and meets up with the boys as they travel to ward California for Video Armageddon?

I should have realized this long ago, but Jenny Lewis went on to front the alt rock band, Rilo Kiley! Not sure how I missed this connection back in 1998 when the band formed. I even have a few of their albums. After disbanding in 2014, Lewis went on to release four solo albums.

I still get a kick out of seeing Christian Slater in Mr. Robot, but it's cool as Hell that Jenny Lewis went on to be a rock star!

Rilo Kiley band
November 5, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Jeff Minter took the cult-level status of Polybius and created a kickass tunnel shooter

If you're familiar with Minter's work, then you'll be stoked to know Polybius is coming to physical media for PS4, via LRG
Jeff Minter's Polybius on physical media From Tempest 2000 on Atari's Jaguar to countless titles under Llamasoft, Jeff Minter's games are amazing. He has an amazing command of his games from code to the screen, creating immersive inspiring games. In 2017 he released Polybius for PS4 and included PSVR support, meaning it's compatible with VR, but doesn't require it.

He often puts in special add-ons, the first I heard of was support for a rotary dial on the Jaguar version of T2K. Neither Atari or third parties ever released a dial (spinner) controller for the Jag, but hackers added them to Pro Controllers and Minter's code gave them life! Clever guy...

Limited Fun Games is bringing this gem to physical media for the PS4. If you have the VR setup, this could be sweet, however Minter never settles which nearly guarantees you'll love the game on the plain old PS4 too! Great music and a fun retro style!

The Urban Legend of Polybius

It sounds sinister, but even the urban legend - never proven nor debunked - is about an arcade game. Polybius was rumored to have appeared in arcades in the Portland area around the beginning of 2000. It appeared much the way games do when being field-tested. I've not heard much about the game's actual content or even what kind of game it was, but it was said to be very addictive. So addictive, that kids were literally going insane - literally.

Fueling the conspiracy theories was mention of men in black coming to off-load info from the game. Some say they were taking the high-score names. With no proof of any of this, the tale has been passed down as a fun urban legend to debate among gamers. Others allege that the FBI raided area arcades looking for signs of gambling. All good legends have bits of truth woven into odd stories.

The only thing we now is the legend still attracts attention and now that there's a slick shooter attached to the Polybius name created by a legendary game designer... well, now there's even more reason to talk about it. Grab a copy from LRG - great game with all the expected wildly vivid imagery of a Llamasoft creation.

Jeff Minter's Polybius screenshot

October 2019 Retro Gaming Articles:

October 31, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Limited Run Games is putting the Stranger Things 3 video game on physical media

Full of 80s references, the video game follows the show's plot with a mix of RPG and beat-em-up elements.
The Stranger Things 3 video game for Nintendo Switch was originally released this year on July 4th to coincide with the Netflix TV show. It closely follows the season 3 plot. At the same time some say it also feels like it goes beyond. Limited Run Games is releasing the game on physical media for Switch.

Stranger Things 3 video game From the official Nintendo website:
Stranger Things 3: The Game is the official companion game to Season 3 of the hit original series!. Play through familiar events from the series while also uncovering never-before-seen quests, character interactions, and secrets! This adventure game blends a distinctively retro art style with modern gameplay mechanics to deliver nostalgic fun with a fresh new twist.

Just like in the show, teamwork is at the heart of Stranger Things 3: The Game. Fans can team up in two player local co-op to explore the world of Hawkins, solve puzzles, and battle the emerging evils of The Upside Down as one of twelve beloved characters from the show.
October 31, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Singer Rebecca Black takes on Halloween as David Bowie

Rebel Rebel!
Singer Rebecca Black Singer/Songwriter Rebecca Black gained popularity when her 2011 song "Friday" went viral on YouTube. She was thirteen years old and the internet was cruel to say the least. It wasn't a very good song, but it was a kid's dream to record a song. Still known for "Friday," she's come a long way and deserves to be judged on her adult accomplishments.

She's built up her YouTube channel and released several notable songs. I saw her on that horribly toxic show, The Four, where she sang Natalie Imbruglia's "Torn." Rebecca totally killed it - so good! However, that show's toxic nature isn't much of a stepping stone to anything which is likely why it hasn't been renewed.

So here's Rebecca Black as David Bowie for Halloween and she had a new interview on Billboard today.

Alas, even Billboard can't get it right. They can't let go of "Friday" and grill her about it before moving on. That's a shame because she's released a several songe recently, but Billboard still does a lazy job and simply rehashes the past.

I'd hoped they would be more progressive in their interviews. She's hella cool. Go check out Rebecca Black's music!
October 30, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Just as Overwatch is released for Nintendo Switch, Version 2 is rumored as a BlizzCon 2019 announcement

As rumors fly about an Overwatch sequel, will it too be released for the Switch? And When? Will we have another long wait for switch?
We play Overwatch on the PS4, so getting it for Switch isn't a real priority, but it makes me wonder if it's sequel will also take years to arrive for Nintendo. Rumor has it that Overwatch 2 may be announced at BlizzCon. With the recent Switch release, its odd timing for a new version.

As far as eSports goes, would a new version cause issues? I've heard they stick to single version games that are updated, but not replaced by complete new releases. I don't know enough about it. I guess the weekend announcements could be interesting.

Overwatch 2
October 30, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Van Halen's Japanese singles are being released on 7” Vinyl from Rhino

Van Halen's THE JAPANESE SINGLES 1978-1984
This collection features replicas of the 13 singles And B-sides previously released exclusively in Japan
Van Halen released 13 singles in Japan between 1978 and 1984 that have been collected in a new 7” vinyl set from Rhino. Each replica single features the original sleeve artwork and they all come packaged in a cigarette-style box. Two versions of THE JAPANESE SINGLES 1978-1984 will be available on November 1: a black vinyl version and a limited edition version of 750 copies on red vinyl. Both versions will be released on November 1st with a suggested retail price of $129.98.

THE JAPANESE SINGLES 1978-1984 spans the first six albums released by Van Halen. If you love vinyl and Van Halen, this looks like a really nice set of 45RPM records for your collection.

THE JAPANESE SINGLES 1978-1984 7” Track Listing

  • Disc One - A. "You Really Got Me" B. "Atomic Punk"
  • Disc Two - A. "Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love" B. "Runnin' With The Devil"
  • Disc Three - A. "On Fire" B. "Jamie's Cryin'"
  • Disc Four - A. "Dance The Night Away" B. "Spanish Fly"
  • Disc Five - A. "Somebody Get Me Doctor" B. "Women In Love"
  • Disc Six - A. "And The Cradle Will Rock" B. "Could This Be Magic?"
  • Disc Seven - A. "Unchained" B. "So This Is Love?"
  • Disc Eight - A. "(Oh) Pretty Woman" B. "Happy Trails"
  • Disc Nine - A. "Dancing In The Street" B. "The Full Bug"
  • Disc Ten - A. "Jump" B. "House Of Pain"
  • Disc Eleven - A. "I'll Wait" B. "Girl Gone Bad"
  • Disc Twelve - A. "Panama" B. "Drop Dead Legs"
  • Disc Thirteen - A. "Hot for Teacher" B. "Little Dreamer"
Van Halen's THE JAPANESE SINGLES 1978-1984
October 29, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

AtGames rolls out the Atari Flashback X for the holidays and it links to the Legends Ultimate arcade cabinet

AtGames - Atari Flashback X
This season's variation on the Atari Flashback has 110 built-in games and wired controllers.
It's been a while since I've bought an Atari Flashback. I tried out the Pong Blast HDMI dongle from last season, but the Atari Flashbacks kind of lost their luster for me. Each year it's the same 100 games with a few switch-ups. Sure, they improved the wireless joysticks and added an SD card slot, but their quality has been in question for so long, I just stopped.

I'm not seeing any specs on this model mentioning an SD slot. Makes me think that was a short-lived addition of Flashbacks past. The manual mentions compatibility with original Atari Paddle Controllers for some of the 4-player games. Sam's Club has a model that includes 10 additional games, but the list includes games on the primary game list. I'm not sure what the additional titles are.

This year's mini console has a new cosmetic design, 720P output, wired joysticks, and connectivity with the Legends Ultimate Arcade cabinet (allowing use of the controls and monitor). Upon looking at the game list, I spotted H.E.R.O. and Fatal Run which is pretty cool. I'm on the fence as to whether or not I really need another one of these minis.

AtGames - Atari Flashback X

Atari Flashback X Game List:

  1. 3D Tic-Tac-Toe
  2. Adventure
  3. Adventure II
  4. Air·Sea Battle
  5. Amidar
  6. Aquaventure
  7. Asteroids
  8. Asteroids Deluxe
  9. Atari Climber
  10. Basketball
  11. Beamrider
  12. Black Jack
  13. Bowling
  14. Breakout
  15. Burger Time
  16. Burnin' Rubber
  17. Canyon Bomber
  18. Centipede
  19. Championship Soccer
  20. Chopper Command
  21. Circus Atari
  22. Combat
  23. Combat Two
  24. Cosmic Commuter
  25. Crackpots
  26. Crystal Castles
  27. Decathlon
  28. Demons to Diamonds
  29. Desert Falcon
  30. Dodge 'Em
  31. Double Dunk
  32. Dragster
  33. Enduro
  34. Fatal Run
  35. Fishing Derby
  36. Flag Capture
  37. Football
  38. Frogger
  39. Front Line
  40. Frostbite
  41. Golf
  42. Gravitar
  43. Gyruss
  44. H.E.R.O.
  45. Hangman
  46. Haunted House
  47. Home Run
  48. Human Cannonball
  49. Indy 500
  50. Jungle Hunt
  51. Kaboom!
  52. Keystone Kapers
  53. Lock 'n' Chase
  54. Maze Craze
  55. Megamania
  1. Millipede
  2. Miniature Golf
  3. Missile Command
  4. MotoRodeo
  5. Night Driver
  6. Off-the-Wall
  7. Oink!
  8. Outlaw
  9. Pitfall!
  10. Polaris
  11. Pong (Video Olympics)
  12. Pooyan
  13. Pressure Cooker
  14. Radar Lock
  15. Realsports Baseball
  16. Realsports Basketball
  17. Realsports Soccer
  18. Realsports Volleyball
  19. Return to Haunted House
  20. River Raid
  21. Saboteur
  22. Save Mary
  23. Seaquest
  24. Secret Quest
  25. Sky Diver
  26. Slot Racers
  27. Solaris
  28. Space Invaders
  29. Space Raid
  30. Space War
  31. Sprintmaster
  32. Stampede
  33. Star Ship
  34. Starmaster
  35. Steeplechase
  36. Stellar Track
  37. Street Racer
  38. Submarine Commander
  39. Super Baseball
  40. Super Breakout
  41. Super Cobra
  42. Super Football
  43. Surround
  44. Swordquest: Earthworld
  45. Swordquest: Fireworld
  46. Swordquest: Waterworld
  47. Tempest
  48. Tutankham
  49. Video Checkers
  50. Video Chess
  51. Video Pinball
  52. Warlords
  53. Wizard
  54. Yars' Return
  55. Yars' Revenge


AtGames Atari Flashback X game list
October 28, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Chance The Rapper put eSports in a familiar light for many of us, on SNL

Chance The Rapper as an eSports announcer on SNL
When it comes to eSports, I feel like a fish out of water as portrayed by Chance The Rapper on Saturday Night Live.
Chance the Rapper's portrayal of an NBA reporter suddenly thrust into covering eSports was a familiar vibe for me. I'm not much of a sports fan, but I've been to live football games and tennis matches. I enjoy watching tennis on TV, the grand slap matches, but I'm baffled by eSports.

I get the idea of spectator sports, but the notion of watching someone play video games seems a bit foreign to me. Sure, I'll look over someone's shoulder in an arcade, but I don't want to sit in a stadium watching PC games unfold on a jumbotron. Even if it's a game I know, like Overwatch, I want to play. I don't want to watch others play it. The idea is just odd to me, even though some have tried to put it in the context of watching a game in an arcade.

I'm not against eSports. I just don't understand the interest in watching others play. I love playing video games and I'll reference YouTube videos if I'm stuck in a spot for a while, but I don't consider watching video games an event. Is this even a sport?

I know I'm going down a rabbit hole and probably sound like my parents when they tried to understand my interest in video games and computers. When I hear about eSports becoming (is it already?) a mega-billion dollar industry, I smirk and can't really believe it. I swear I don't live under a rock and I like to learn about new things, but I don't get eSports.

Maybe when competitive Yar's Revenge comes on the scene, I'll give it another look.
October 25, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

iam8Bit is offering the original Aladdin and Lion King games on cartridges

iam8Bit Aladdin and Lion King games
Back in the day, these games were released for both platforms, but Aladdin is on a Genesis cart and Lion King is for SNES.
When 16-bit games first came on the scene, I was into space battles and easily passed over any Disney fare in my quest for shooters. Thus, I missed out on these gems. However, a resurgence in interest has brought them to moden platforms once again. Both Lion King and Aladdin are available for Nintendo Switch. but what about retro gamers? Glad you asked...

Iam8bit is bringing both games back to their former platforms on cartridge. While both were available for Sega's Genesis and Nintendo's SNES, you can purchase Aladdin on a Genesis cartridge and The Lion King on a SNES cartridge.

I love the lion-colored SNES cart and that they went to both platforms for these games. However, the original games are not rare and can be found for about $15 each online. Iam8bit offering these limited release (4,500) of each game for $100 per cartridge. Keep in mind these come with a box and manual and really cool colors :)

If you're a gambler at heart, it's also worth noting that ultra limited versions of each game will randomly be sent to buyers. They say it's a one-in-eight chance of getting Aladdin in Ruby Red or Lion King in Serengeti Sunrise. You can't order these ultra limited versions - it's luck of the draw. It's an interesting tactic, but this is out of my price range, even if they have really cool translucent rares.

Even though pricey, it's nice to see a company giving such games the royal treatment and re -releasing them CIB with some really cool options. If this is the kind of collectible you crave, head over to Iam8bit and check out these cool cartridge-based games on the Iam8Bi website, for Genesis (Aladdin) and SNES (Lion King)!

The Lion King for SNES from iam8bit The Lion King for SNES from iam8bit.
Aladdin for Genesis from iam8bit Aladdin for Genesis from iam8bit.

iam8Bit Aladdin and Lion King games

iam8Bit Aladdin cart in a Sega Genesis console
October 24, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

As we wait for info about the Atari VCS console, we discover Atari doesn't even understand Pong

Atari doesn't really understand Pong
Pong is not like Asteroids. You don't get a high score... you either win or lose. Atari has clearly lost.
Atari has been taking a casual convo approach to social media lately. They don't bolster their development of the new VCS. They don't discuss game titles or developers. Instead, they completely ignore their $3 million backed project - shipping in December - to ask offbeat questions of their social media followers.

Today they asked folks for their high scores on Pong. Pong?!? Yes, Pong.

The best answer was "11." I'm sure there are various iterations of Atari's infamous arcade game, but you don't get high scores! You play to a pre-determined score and whoever gets there first is the winner. Defender has high scores. Berzerk has high scores. Missile Command has high scores. Pong does not. Wake up, Atari!

As funny as this seems, it's an awful reflection on Atari. It would seem Atari doesn't even understand the IPs they allegedly manage. As backers of the Atari VCS console get angry about the insane lack of information, Atari keeps showing signs of ignorance that make one wonder what's going on over there.
October 24, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

I'm really excited to pop these awesome little carts into an Evercade

There's a tactile aspect to all physical media - from magazines to video games. A download is dull. A cartridge is grand!
When I first heard of the Evercade my first thought was how cool it is to have cartridges with multiple games by renown developers from Data East to Atari and Namco. The carts have between 6 and 20 games from a single developer. Love Namco games? buy the Namco cart for Evercade. I'm excited about this handheld console.

Evercade handheld and game cartridges
October 24, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

A new series of Kiss comics is coming from Dynamite - Kiss Zombies

Dynamite - Kiss Zombies
I still remember buying Kiss' Destroyer album and that feeling of having discovered something amazing.

I always get excited when a new series of Kiss comics is launching. Dynamite is coming out with Kiss Zombies in November and I love the cover art! Mixing in a zombie tale set in post-apocalyptic Detroit and we're off to a good start.

I still remember their publicity stunt in the 80s when the red ink at the printing house was mixed with blood from all four members. As a kid - THAT sold comics. I was so upset I never got those books, but I've made up for it over the years.

Decades after a zombie invasion has made humans an endangered species, the city of New Detroit is under siege. The people in charge have banned music, as the undead are attracted to sound, and have tried to rid the world of evidence that the greatest band in history have ever existed. Unwilling to live this way and take the leadership at their word, a group of teenagers set out on a dangerous trip to find KISS!

From Ethan Sacks (Old Man Hawkeye, Star Wars) and Rodney Buchemi (Death of Hawkman, Uncanny X-Men) comes a story of survival and rebellion in a post-apocalyptic landscape devoid of rock'n'roll!
Dynamite - Kiss Zombies I love the Kiss Zombies "Destroyer" vibe of this premier issue cover.
Dynamite - Kiss Zombies Another alternate cover for Kiss Zombies.

October 23, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Bethesda has launched a $100 yearly subscription for Fallout 76 to drive revenue

For a game riddled with bad publicity, I'm not sure a $100 yearly subscription is the solution gamers seek.
The Internet was quick to remind Bethesda, they don't like their game and are not going to throw $100 at private servers and DLC. Thanks, but no thanks.

Fallout 76 has had it's share of issues, so a lot of fans were a bit irked by the notion of a subscription. Others were quick to point out the subscription is optional. While I'm a fan of voting-with-your-wallet, this game seems an unlikely choice for a stand-alone subscription. As I understand it, this $100 per year only allows access to Fallout 76 content. Most subscriptions tend to offer a bit more than a single game.

Bethesda Fallout 76 subscription
October 20, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Game Boy's original Pokemon Red and Blue get a metal Makeover by Ro Panuganti

Metal Trainer
Metal Trainer is a thrashin' metal tribute to the original Pokemon games by arranger Ro Panuganti and Materia Collective
Materia Collective has released Metal Trainer, a thrashin' progressive rock and metal cover album featuring nine tracks from the original Pokemon Red and Blue for the Nintendo Game Boy. Arranged and performed by Ro Panuganti - best known for his game music remix performances on YouTube and past albums dedicated to Metroid and The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. Metal Trainer captures the fierce battles, intriguing locales, and remarkable moments Pokemon's heaviest journey yet.

"Metal Trainer was started as a simpler, more traditional rock album that people could enjoy hearing live and playing on the go, or working out," comments arranger Ro Panuganti. "I quickly got pulled in the nostalgia of those first Pokemon games, and realized that I had to keep things more progressive rock and metal to properly capture that epic journey."

"Some of my proudest arranging happened for 'Lavender,' where most of my ideas came when I just had my guitar in a room with no computer. I played with how that song should go in a story, and eventually wrote some of my proudest, spookiest music yet. I hope that listener's feel that innocent charm of Pokemon's city anthems, that fire in your belly from wanting to beat the intimidating gym leaders, and those ghostly chills that came from traversing Lavender Town."

The nine tracks on Metal Trainer:
  1. Pokemon Master
  2. Viridian
  3. A Wild Encounter
  4. Pokemon Hospital
  5. Mt. Moon
  6. Cerulean
  7. Lavender
  8. Pokemon Mansion
  9. Gym Battle
Ro Panuganti is an active musician, recording and playing in the avante-garde yet remarkable style of progressive rock/metal and more. His skills range from electric guitar to bass, vocal, piano, and a slew of traditional Indian instruments. Influences range from Steve Vai, Joe Satriani, and modern prog artists to Van Halen, Iron Maiden, Metallica, and varieties of musicals and soundtracks.
October 19, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Rob Halford's holiday album, Celestial. injects some metal into your favorite Christmas songs

If anyone has the skills to amp up Xmas, it's Judas Priest's Metal God, Rob Halford!
Judas Priest's Rob Halford just released an album of Christmas songs and they rock hard. I'm not sure if Metal is the right spin for holiday classics, but Halford makes them work. This album should be in your collection to ring out the metal spirit during the holidays!

Once I feel a chill in the air and the summer-arcades have shuttered for the season, I start to feel a need for some holiday music. While I enjoy the classics, I'm not above cranking up some alternate renditions of Christmas music. Among my favorites are Twisted Sister's "Twisted Christmas" and Cheap Trick's "Cheap Trick Christmas".

My new favorite is Rob Halford's "Celestial". He adds some great metal touches to a variety of holiday classics. Among my favorites are "Deck the Halls" and "Hark The Herald Angels Sing". Brilliant metal versions. If you love metal and want to spice up your holiday season, check out Halford's Celestial!

Rob Halford's Celestial
October 18, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Nintendo's fitness app, Ring Fit, launched and I want to play Namco Museum with it

I like the concept of Ring Fit, but fear there won't be enough diverse games to keep it fun while masking the underlying fitness element.
I'm excited about Nintendo's Ring Fit. Who's better than Nintendo at concocting crazy control-schemes that turn out to be pretty cool? With the fifth version of the PlayStation arriving with another same-old-controller, you have to admire the variety of controllers in the Nintendo stable.

Nintendo's fitness app, Ring Fit As I see it, Ring Fit can be used as an exercise routine or as a game that helps fool you into following an exercise routine. I fall into the later category. I want to become involved in a cool game that lets me forget I'm exercising. I'm sure there's no universal compatibility, so I can't use Ring Fit to play Pac-Man, but I hope Nintendo will put enough games behind this device to let it grow.

As an example, one of my complaints about Skylanders was they only released one game with each new set of characters. Activision could have easily put two or three games behind each set. Like the Swap-Force characters that were so unique compared with the others. More games!

The Ring Fit pack-in game seems to have some diversity, but if it's the only title supporting the Ring Fit, it'll be in the WalMart clearance area in three months. Thus I'm hoping Nintendo will put enough behind it to entice third parties to develop for it.

If you look at LABO, it's already been clearanced out and I don't foresee any additional games coming out for it. It was fun, but the fun is over... i guess. I still want the VR model. Looks very cool!

As someone who could use a good excuse to get up and move a bit more - I need to be more active - Ring Fit is quite appealing to me. If I can delve into a game that also gives me some exercise, that's great. Alas, most initial games for experimental ideas... well, they often suck and cause good hardware to go unused and the revenue model falters. I'm stoked to give Ring Fit a whirl!
October 17, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

We only keep up with one Kardashian and she's technically a Jenner

Kylie and Kendall have jobs.
How does the rest of this family make a living?
Occasionally, I'll watch Keeping Up With The Kardashians and I always come away from that show thinking the Jenner kids are too smart for this crap. Kylie has a billion dollar cosmetics business and Kendall is the highest paid model in the world.

So... those kardashian gals... I can't figure out what they do to make money. They dine out. Fly places. Throw lavish parties. Travel abroad. I never see them work. I wonder if I could adopt this scenario.

Kendall Jenner I'd play a few rounds of Wizard OF Wor with Kendall. It'd be a fun co-op sesh!
October 16, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

The Analogue Pocket handheld will play an array of Gameboy carts on a kickass screen to boot

Analogue Pocket handheld
This FPGA-based handheld plays GameBoy, GBC and GBA cartridges with adaptors for additional console compatibility!
Analogue has gone into bold new territory. After modernizing Nintendo's first two consoles and Sega's Genesis, They have brought their renown treatment to hand held gaming. The Analogue Pocket seems to be taking their successful living room devices out on the road. I'm very excited for this!

Analogue has crafted consoles that brought many beloved games into the modern era. Their devices play original game cartridges and offer seamless play on modern flatscreen televisions. And they do it with no emulation! Based around Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGA), these gorgeous looking consoles use no software emulation.

The Analogue Pocket will play Gameboy, Gameboy Color, and Gameboy Advance cartridges out-of-the-box. But that's not all. Via adaptors, you'll be able to stuff your Atari Lynx, Game Gear, and Neo Geo Pocket carts into this handheld. This astounding piece of hardware will bring your ofd games to life. It is priced at $199.

It comes with dual FPGAs that provides an extra FPGA for developers to port their own cores. How cool is that? The screen specs seem equally awesome - 3.5" LTPS LCD at a 1600×1440 resolution with 615ppi. It's arrival in 2020 won't come soon enough.

Combined with ruthless enthusiasm from gamers, it's hardware like this that will have dramatic impact on retro gaming preservation. Creating high quality devices to play aging games on the latest televisions gives much needed life to the amazing games we grew up with and more.

Analogue Pocket handheld
October 15, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Lots of good candidates are up for Rock Hall induction, but it's such a random non-event

Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame
The nomination process seems pretty loose as if it's just a roomful of aging rock fans picking their faves over a few beers.
I don't really know the process behind selecting nominees - and I'm OK with that - but it doesn't seem to involve metrics or statistical analysis. Should it? I'm not sure, but if there isn't a calculation of some sort, how valid is the process?

Everything in life shouldn't be assessed via mathematics, but no one's coming out to say the Rock Hall of Fame's nominees aren't part of a popularity contest based on random opinions. While I can rant about the blatant injustice of not inducting Judas Priest years ago, I'm not really upset by it because it doesn't matter.

Many bands themselves are quoted as say something along the lines of, "Induction would be nice if it happens, but if it doesn't... life goes on." If rock stars don't care about this odd award, why should anyone else? The Rock Hall seems to be the JD Power of music. If JD power can rate vehicles based on the style of cup-holders, I guess a roomful of self-appointed fans can pick their favorite rocker.

Induct Judas Priest into the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame
I'd love to see Judas Priest get the recognition as well as Pat Benatar. There are probably three or four others I'd like to see get in, but The Hall has to have some names to toss around next year.

Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame 2020 nominees
October 14, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

See Thomas Howl delivers the spooky on his first Halloween EP, “Mischief Night”

Mischief Night from See Thomas Howl
If you wanna talk "Holiday albums" in October, you better be offering Halloween mayhem. See Thomas Howl delivers for the 31st!
See Thomas Howl gets it. He knows his holidays and put out a stunning EP a few days before October came about. It's his first Halloween EP and it'll raise the dead and thrash your pumpkin patch. Mischief Night is available on Bandcamp, offering 5 sinister tracks that will delight your nights until its time to deck the halls away in a manger.

lately, I've been on a rant about Holiday music. Whether it's February, July, or October we always take this to mean Christmas music. Now I'm a hug fan of Joan Jett's Little Drummer Boy and Judas Priest's Rob Halford is delivering some metal-infused cheer with Celestial, but let's face it... Xmas is a ways off.

Now is the time to fire up the jack-O-Lantern, make some mischief, and invest heavily in Candy Corn - food of the gods, on my turf. For sonic inspiration while yanking the sloppy guts out of a pumpkin, we highly recommend See Thomas Howl's Mischief Night!
October 13, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Fortnite's season ended with a black hole that lingered on the game's network and Epic's social media

Fortnite's black hole
Fans were alarmed, children cried, and haters said "Good riddance." Is this a marketing stunt or a spacer before the next season?
It bagan as downtime... thought the many players unable to connect. The black hole was certainly a mystery, then bordom set in and agitated fingers do what they do best and discovered the Konami Code would initiate a rudimentary minigame. If you had no friends, books, or other hobbies you could play this shooter-game while awaiting Fortnite's return.

I don't play Fortnite and was unaffected by this except for the flurry of activity about black holes on social media. OK, I have a bit of FOMO about being a slice of pizza shooting at burger heads, but I'm sure a few YouTube vids can fill that void.

I presume everyone is waiting for the next season to start, but I'm a bit worried about the folks who are just staring at their screens... waiting. If you've stared at it for more than twenty minutes, please go read a book. You should return to normal soon.

I think the best response was a tie between Porn Hub and Lady Gaga...

Porn Hub's tweet about Fortnite's black hole
Lady Gaga's tweet about Fortnite's black hole
October 12, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Check out the classic 80s vibe of Fire Tiger's “Way To My Heart” off their upcoming album

We're stoked to get our hands on “All The Time,̶ their third album!
Fire Tiger T-shirt How many of today's top artists play instruments or write their own songs? When I read stories about faltering guitar sales, I need an injection of he good old days and Fire Tiger delivers it all as a retro power pop and classic rock band.

We've loved Fire Tiger's previous albums that bring authentic 80's style to a modern age needing an infusion of solid music. They're a refreshing force of driving beats, incredible vocals, and a sound we crave. If you loved powerhouse pop-rock from the Eighties, Fire Tiger is a band you should check out!

Full of energy and diverse style, they form albums that span various styles while staying true to a classic sound I always adored from the 80's. They create original songs, but aren't afraid to take on covers like “Slide Away” by Miley Cyrus. Check out their new song, “Way To My Heart”, below.



They have a new album coming out - their third release - “All The Time,̶! Check out the Fire Tiger YouTube channel for more great music.

Tiff Alkouri - Fire Tiger
From Fire Tiger's website:
Fire Tiger is a retro power pop / classic rock band from Los Angeles, fronted by contralto singer / songwriter Tiff Alkouri, along with co-writer / keyboardist James Ramsey, guitarist Jordan Lucas, bassist Tyler Renga, and drummer Lorenzo Meynardi.
October 12, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

As you await Hyperkin's "light gun" for HD televisions, you can get the older Zapp Gun for $5 on Amazon

From what I've read this older model is best suited for shelf display.
While it won't work on your moder flat screen HD TV, this older model is raring and ready to shoot ducks on an old CRT television. And it will look swell on your shelf if you like displaying your gaming items.

Hyperkin Zapp Gun for NES
October 11, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

An artist's creativity should be praised, not dismantled by those micro-focused on their own self-importance

Charli XCX - White Mercedes
All they saw was a burning car and cried out about pollution, oblivious to the care and creativity behind the scenes.
We live in a time where we're entirely focused on being politically correct and shunning anything that doesn't please everyone. Some people can't enjoy anything because they strive to be self-appointed watchdogs for anything even remotely controversial. This rampant behavior trains us to seek fault in everything, under the guise of improvement, when all we achieve is destructive rhetoric.

For example, giving a positive Yelp review to a business is for the weak. However, doling out a scathing bad review is the new sign of intelligence. Only a person who is "truly smart" can find faults. This seems to be the mindset. Thus we see most reviews - across the board - are negative (and largely baseless).

Artists Are Forced To Defend Their Art To Moronic Inquisitions

Along comes mega pop star Charli XCX, who has written many of today's popular hits for other artists, with a music video for "White Mercedes". Seeking opinion from fans, she's met with self-righteous idiots who force her to defend the pollution and toxicity of the car in the background. Fighting pollution is a commendable act, but social media gives morons access to confront all the wrong people. They make lazy allegations based on simplistic thoughts without having done any due diligence.

Charli XCX explained that the car was previously drained of all toxic fluids and the flames and smoke are special effects used in movies. Music videos are kind of like short movies. Get it?

Only YOU can prevent forrest fires, but don't be a moron about it.
Aside from putting an artist on the spot to defend safety concerns, I'm routinely stunned by the public's stupidity. First of all, you can't simply hoist a car on a crane and set it on fire. There are permission and permit issues, many of which are in place for safety. If you've ever seen a fire roll through a field, you may realize you can't hang a flaming car above such a field and expect to live.

People see a burning car - made real through special effects - and assume it to be as reckless as it appears. There's a reason for the term "Hollywood magic." It refers to the realism of such scenes that are safe for those involved. But the moronic public has to assault the artist, forcing them to defend random safety issues.

These ardent trolls can't fathom anyone smarter than themselves and assume Charli XCX hoisted a burning car, shot some film and left. Moron trolls assume no one had accounted for safety concerns and demand answers from the artist. Trolls do zero fact checking, jump to conclusions, and take the lazy route of accusing whoever they can reach with least effort.

Charli XCX - White Mercedes
October 11, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Erin Gray from the 1979-1981 TV series Buck Rogers in the 25th Century

My Dad was a big fan of Buck Rogers. When I was a kid, we watched this TV series together.
It was about a 20th century astronaut coming out of centuries of suspended animation into our future to become Earth's greatest hero. Alas, Buck Rogers in the 25th Century only lasted two seasons.

Erin Gray from Buck Rogers in the 25th Century Star Wars was the catalyst for many scifi creations in the late 70s. Battlestar Galactica began as a theatrical release and did well at the box office. NBC decided to follow that model after Buck Rogers did well in theaters and created a TV series.

The TV series starred Gil Gerard as Captain William "Buck" Rogers and Erin Gray as Colonel Wilma Deering. 70s scifi was pretty cool. We need more of that. I also loved Space 1999. Good stuff!

Buck Rogers Planet Of Zoom for Atari 2600 & 5200
October 10, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

With exactly one year until release, Intellivision's Amico game console has a new website

The Intellivision Amico launches one year from today
With a strong plan and working prototype, the Amico sounds destined to impact gaming for the better. And you can buy a T-shirt!
The Intellivision Amico T-shirt Tommy Tallarico's Intellivision sent out an email this morning to remind us the Amico game console will launch exactly one year from today. What a great email. When I think of all the veiled lies coming from Atari regarding their VCS reboot console, getting Tommy's email was a breath of fresh air. By comparison... Atari is a stale fart.

The Public Relations supporting the Amico is wonderful. They communicate. They reveal actual information. They delight. Atari - take note.

I'm really excited for the AMico because it's different and aimed at family. Back in the day, Nintendo were staunch supporters of family values and wouldn't allow games they felt were too violent. They've let that stance wane quite a bit, but still have a juge selection of family-friendly games. They've broadened... and that's cool.

Amico seems to be taking on that set of values with games designed to bring people together, centered on fun. In a world full of death and destruction it's nice to dive into Animal Crossing where the stress of managing a town is delightful. I think Amico is carving out a great niche with a slick console, great pricing on games, and a unique approach to expanding their game library.

There's plenty of great info on the Amico website. Head over there to sign up for their newsletter and buy an Amico T-shirt while you're there.

October 9, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

When Kim Petras drops a holiday album: it's gonna be lit and Halloween

She's been dropping amazing tracks weekly. Harnessing them all on Turn Off the Light could easily blow your mind!
If you're tired of holiday music, maybe you need to stop focusing on Christmas. So many artists strive to release their personal rendition of Good King Wenceslas as if that hasn't been done before. Although "Bring me flesh and bring me wine" is my kind of Xmas lyric... just saying.

Pop star Kim Petras has her own notion of a holiday album and her holiday of choice is Halloween! More artists need to get off the Christmas wagon and deliver some creepy fun tracks in late October.

Turn Off the Light is a combination of Petras' Halloween release last year and a slew of new tracks for this year. It's 17 tracks that I'd love to see released as a CD! digital can be convenient, but physical media rules!

Kim Petras - Turn Off The Light
October 9, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

After learning it's backward compatible with PS4 games, the PlayStation 5 has many other great features

PlayStation 5 development console
Nintendo has been the king of backwards compatibility in an era when the others shunned it. Glad to see PS4 compatibility onboard.
Not long ago, a PS5 console picture was "leaked" and people flipped over it's crazy "U" shape. Rumors swirled around until it was revealed this odd device was a development console, already in the hands of some developers. This doesn't mean the actual retail version of the PS5 will look like this, but it certainly got the conversation started.

To no one's surprise Sony officially stated their console, arriving with Santa next year, will indeed be called the PlayStation 5. As one might expect, the controller looks very similar to past controllers, but this one uses a USB Type-C connector. It also has additional programable features, like adaptive triggers which allow varying degrees of resistance. They relate this to shooting a bow and arrow, where the bow's tension is felt when pulling the arrow back.

Raise your hand if you would love PS2 compatibility in the PlayStation 5!
I bought the original Playstation on launch day, but waited years on subsequent releases. Each new console lacked the ability to play prior system games and didn't feel the graphic improvements warranted immediate purchase. The drawback is that the new systems are launched before I feel ready to move ahead.

An interesting feature to the PS5 is ray-tracing. This allows for much more complex lighting and sound within a 3D environment. Sony has made a point of stating this feature is achieved via the GPU's hardware. Many feared it would be a software level addition that wouldn't amount to much. IN theory, this should make games much more realistic and vibrant.

Finally game consoles make the move to SSD hard drives. The access time for these solid state drives is much lower than traditional drives.But this makes them quicker in more ways than one. From a programming standpoint, there has been a lot of duplication of elements to form data-blocks that can be accessed faster. However, the toll is having multiple instances of the same thing. For example some assets in the Spiderman game are duplicated up to 400 times!

So the SSD drive saves time and space. There's even talk of allowing gamers to choose which elements of a game to install. Non interested in multi-player - don't install it. Sounds cool.

The user interface has always been a bare-bones affair. That sounds like another area of improvement on the PS5. I haven't seen any hint of this, but many are saying it is a much more robust display going forward. My only enhancement to the UI was a holiday sweater background that plays a Christmas song.

Backwards Compatibility

All the new stuff sounds grand, but my primary interest is in the PlayStation 5's backward compatibility. Good news. It's got some. The PS5 wil play PS4 and PSVR games, however, it will not go any farther back. You'll still need your old consoles to play any games prior to the PS4.

While this is good news, I often wonder if Sony is aware how much passion still exists for it's PS2 game library. If the PS5 went back to the beginning with backward compatibility, I'd buy one on Day One for sure! As is my customary habit... I may not need one until 2023 or thereabouts.
October 8, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Thief steals 43 new games and sells them to GameStop for a total of $336

At first I thought this story was a meme, but GameStop did give the thief $7.81 per game :)
A break-in at Valve's Bellevue office resulted in theft of $40K in various merch. From controllers and collectables to laptops and games, the thief used a rolling cart to move the items from the office. The police discovered he had sold games to GameStop.

Once it was revealed there was a GameStop trade-in component, the comment section turned into meme-central. lol!

loot stolen from Valve
October 8, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Atari works diligently to put a better spin on their VCS project labeled as a “Shit Show”

Atari VCS fail
“pre-production” can't be underway if your prototype is less than 30 days old! WTF!
This morning, Atari sent out a message to their email subscribers stating the VCS was in re-production. This seems to be in response to an article quickly circulating online claiming Atari only received the VCS prototype motherboard, this past September. Yes, less than 30 days ago.

I'm astounded by the idiocy surrounding the Atari VCS. An article from The Register details the exit of the lead architect, Rob Wyatt, who quit for lack of payment and reveals the prototype board was only received by Atari this past September. They've had the prototype for less than 30 days and they claim to be in Pre-Production!?! Shouldn't proof-of-concept come first?

There really aren't words for this whole project - described off the record by a developer, as a "shit show." And the ardent fans are the worst. Atari says they're in pre-production and they eat it up as though the consoles are being loaded on a truck for delivery. I will be stunned if this console is ever delivered to any indiegogo backer. And you will never see an Atari VCS on a retail shelf. NEVER!

It's Hard To Be A Fan After This Failed Campaign

It still pains me to be this harsh on Atari, but the game company I fell in love with in the 70s is long gone. The new owners are ill-equipped to maintain Atari's former glory and have tainted it's name. As much as I complain about the mismanagement of this project from tech to PR, I'm in it too. I'm backer #6,383 having backed the project for one of their funky new classic joysticks. I hope they can deliver, but all signs point to the same dismal outcome as their former hardware offerings. Abandoned upon failure.

Atari VCS board
From Atari's email about the VCS' status on October 8:
Hello Backers, Fans, and Followers!

Things have gotten really exciting around the Atari offices and in the Atari VCS engineering lab. We know people are talking about our big Antstream Arcade announcement, but the PCB board photo we shared triggered plenty of its own conversation and speculation as well. While we definitely have plans to follow-up the Antstream partnership with more news about games and content, we will now shift the conversation back to the status of the Atari VCS hardware. Jump over to Medium and check out our newest Atari VCS Developer Blog to find the latest on the development process as we rapidly approach mass production. We have lots of new photos and illustrations to share, and hope that you find the latest peek behind the scenes interesting.

We can't believe we need to say it again, but backers please complete your BackerKit surveys! There are way too many of you who still need to do this. Save yourselves the frustration; find one of the many emails from BackerKit or just go to https://atari-vcs.backerkit.com/ and request your survey. Your survey and backer profile is the single best way to ensure that the right products get sent to the right place at the right time. Please do not confuse this with your Indiegogo profile, which is different.

Thanks again for your ongoing support!

- The Atari VCS Team
October 6, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Ghostbusters: The Video Game is back, remastered, and exclusive to GameStop for physical copies

AtGames Legends Ultimate Arcade Machine
The favored game from 2009 returns to consoles and PC, tiding you over until the 2020 movie.
I have Ghostbusters: The Video Game on Wii, PS3, and PSP... and I'm excited to buy it for my Switch. Yes, the Switch version (also on PS4, PX and Xbox) is a remaster of the 2009 video game, launching October 4th. With a new movie coming out in 2020, some may wonder why not create a brand new game based on the new film. I can see that, but the original game is very special to the franchise.

For starters, both Dan Akroid and Harlod Ramis wrote the script for the game and all four actors (including Hudson and Murray) voiced their roles in the game! Other actors from the movie also reprised their roles, giving the game a real connection to the beloved film.

Physical release of the 2009 game is exclusive to GameStop.
I liked the 2016 reboot with the female Ghostbusters. It revived and reminded us of this amazing franchise that hadn't seen much attention since the 2009 video game. The splendor of that game nearly served as a third Ghostbusters film with it's likeness and attention to details. I'm excited to see what the 2020 film will bring. Too many films have dreadful tie-in video games. These games seem thrown together at the last minute.

Remastering this game breathes a new life into Ghostbusters with more universal appeal than the 2016 film. It's interesting to me that they decided to go with GameStop as an exclusive retailer. This applies only to the physical release. Those seeking to download the game can do so from all the usual places.

I'm sure the exclusivity benefits Gamestop by briefly staving off the competition, but how long is their exclusivity? I'm guessing Target, Walmart, Kmart, and Best Buy will have physical copies in a week or two. Exclusivity is often short lived.
October 6, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Best Phone case ever: Commando

Phone cases have become fashion accessories. Are they even protective anymore... aside from having a rocket launcher?
Arnold Schwarzenegger phone case As soon as I saw this phone case, I smiled. This image of Arnold Schwarzenegger is perfectly aligned to let the phone's camera blend into the rocket launcher seen in Commando. Every now and then, something THIS good comes along. As fun as this "case" looks, most phone cases are fashion accessories designed to highlight an aspect of our personality.

Every time I upgrade my phone, I buy a protective case for it. As phones become thinner an cases are designed to be less invasive... do they even protect your phone? I usually buy my cases online and buy a plain black style that looks protective rather than decorative.

Phone Cases Have Become Fashion Accessories

I see those stores at the mall that only sell phone cases. No phones. Just cases. I often wonder how they stay in business. Do people need that many phone cases? No, they don't, but that rarely stops our consumerism.

I can see getting a case with my favorite band's logo or pic, but I love a lot of different bands. Should I buy a phone case to represent each one? Now I see how those case stores stay in business. It would be fun to have an AC/DC phone case, but I'm too annoyingly practical for that. I want to be able to accidentally drop my phone and not need to buy a new one.

Arnold Schwarzenegger in the film Commando Arnold Schwarzenegger in the film, Commando
October 4, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Technos comes to the Evercade handheld with an 8-game cartridge full of retro games

Technos Collection 1 for Evercade
It's exciting to hear about more developers coming to the Evercade handheld!
The Evercade is an upcoming retro gaming handheld console that utilizes proprietary cartridges for it's gaming content. The interesting facet, besides being a cart-based retro gaming console in 2019, are the multiple games on each cart. Arranged by developer, the Evercade has Namco, Atari and Data East among others. Technos has just signed on with an 8-game offering.

Technos' first collection of games (on one cart) brings: Double Dragon, Double Dragon 2: The Revenge, Super Double Dragon, River City Ransom, Super Dodge Ball, Renegade, Super Spike V'ball and Crash 'N The Boys: Street Challenge.

I'm excited about this device. It's new. Retro focused. And soliciting companies to bring forth their best games on cartridges. It feels like a wonderful step backwards - in a really good way! I love the multi-game format and the idea of collecting carts for it. I really dig this idea.

They are located in the UK and will be selling through Amazon among other retailers and claim it will be available globally. They are selling the handheld for $80 with one cart and $100 with 3 carts. Individual game cartridges are $20. Looking forward to it!
October 4, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Retro Fighters have released a modern controller for the new Genesis Mini console, Switch, Mac, and PC

Retro Fighters BrawlerGen USB
With a ten-foot cable and all the amenities of a modern controller, you'll love your Genesis Mini even more!
The mini console craze extending from the NES to the Genesis and soon the TurboGrafx-16, gives gamers a nice jolt of nostalgia. We all remember our favorite games from childhood and these mini consoles fill a void for some of us. However our memories of beloved games don't always come with fond memories of the controllers we had to use way back then - compared to today's ergonomic controllers.

Retro Fighters have created the BrawlerGen USB, a modern joystick compatible with the new Genesis Mini console as well as Nintendo Switch, Mac, and PC. As much as those original controllers may delight you, the two that accompany the Genesis Mini are the 3-button variety. The BrawlerGen features six buttons, D-pad and analog stick.

From personal experience, I can say Retro Fighters makes phenomenal controllers. I've use their modern controllers on my NES and N64, On both consoles they change the way I play. It's amazing to discover new ways to play due to their modern layout and control options. I imagine this Genesis controller adheres to their high standards as well. Being able to use it on Nintendo's Switch and computers is an added bonus!

From the Retro Fighter' website:
  • Compatible with the Sega Genesis Mini, the Nintendo Switch, PC & Mac
  • Ergonomic and comfortable modern design
  • High quality, responsive D-pad
  • Comfortable, responsive analog stick
  • USB connector supports both D-input & X-input
  • Added "L" & "R" shoulder buttons
  • Extra long 10' cord
October 3, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Jay & Silent Bob's Mall Brawl is coming to the NES and now you can buy the soundtrack on vinyl

A game set in the View Askew universe only gets better when you can crank the soundtrack!
Head over to Limited Run Games to snag a copy of the Mall Brawl soundtrack on vinyl. If you act fast, you can still snag a copy of Mall Brawl for the NES. It comes in three different colors on a playable NES cart. I never imagined we'd get such a retro helping of Jay & Silent Bob!

AtGames Legends Ultimate Arcade Machine
October 3, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Nancy Wilson rocking through Barracuda at iHeart's Music Fest showcased what rock and roll is all about

Nancy Wilson rocking Barracuda at iHeart's Music Fest
Nancy Wilson's performance at iHeart is exactly what made me crave a guitar!
Last night I watched the first night of iHeart's Music Festival and I was very pleasantly surprised. From De Leppard to Miley Cyrus covering Pink Floyd, it was full of great performances. Many dug back in their catalogs for a great retro feel. Of all the performers... Heart really killed it with Barracuda!

Nancy Wilson was phenomenal! Her guitar ripped through everything else and gave the song a savage edge that she totally put forth. It was the kind of performance that sells guitars - thousands of guitars. Hearing that kind of performance was what made me crave the guitar when I was a kid.

Last night I wanted to pick up my guitar and rock out! She was that good and then some.
October 2, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

A few years ago Kanye West wanted to name his next album, "Turbo GrafX 16"

Kanye kept missing his release dates on Yandhi. We suspected he was looking to tweak it into the perfect TurbboGrafX-16 for the masses.
A few years ago, Kanye West said he wanted to name his next album Turbo Grafx 16. I attributed this to being another of his quirky oddities that makes him easily forgettable. But hey... if he did name his album after NEC's video game console, I'd pay a bit more attention to him and even consider streaming a song or two.

I guess his NEC concept album will have to wait - maybe a Taylor Swift colab - as Yandhi dribbles into streams.

AtGames Legends Ultimate Arcade Machine
October 1, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Who saw Debbie Gibson on the Mixtape Tour this past summer?

Classic games go hand-in-hand with classic tunes.
A local arcade had a stand-up Chase HQ cabinet that was a ton of fun to play. Over time the cabinet deteriorated until it was simply a reminder of days gone by. This past summer it was gone.

It's sad to see such a treasure disappear after playing it for the last few years. The same arcade had a Deluxe Space Invaders which they sold. This venue may be coming to a close as far as retro arcade games are concerned. At the same time a arcade recently opened with some freshly shined up retro games from the 80s.

I'll have to fire up Super Chase HQ on my SNES and crank up some "Shake Your Love." Did you catch Debbie on the Mixtape Tour?

AtGames Legends Ultimate Arcade Machine
October 1, 2019 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Will multiple lawsuits impact AtGames most ambitious product - the Legends Ultimate Arcade Machine?

AtGames Legends Ultimate Arcade Machine
350 games in a full-size cabinet is tempting, but AtGames has been plagued with tech issues in the past and lawsuits in the present.
I was excited when I first heard some solid info about AtGames' Legends Ultimate Arcade Machine with 350 games and a full suite of controls from 6-button clusters to trackballs and spinners. The main drawback for me was AtGames track-record with come of their smaller Flashback-style consoles.

The Sega Genesis model has been plagued with issues from color accuracy to faulty sound. It was all traced back to their emulator, but it was never fixed over all the years they sold the console. So, what issues might this new Legends Ultimate cabinet have?

I'm a stickler for build quality in the cabinet and having robust buttons and controls. This is not an area where I want to see a company trying to save a few dollars. Speaking of dollars, AtGames has become involved in two seemingly large lawsuits this year.

It began with claims of trademark infringement with Bandai Namco over Ms. Pac-Man and more recently with Walgreens claiming breach of contract over returns on the Blast HDMI dongle consoles

Regarding the impact of these lawsuits, my main concern stems from the lack of info in recent weeks. The Legends Ultimate Arcade Machine was mentioned in a press release last October and moe recently in June/July. However, there seems to be no news lately. I'd love to know which retailers will carry this machine and when it will go on sale. The dearth of info makes me nervous in light of the Walgreens lawsuit.



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