I wasn’t expecting to write this article up, but once I was there with my kids and had such a great time with them playing all the old console and arcade games I couldn’t help myself.
Cuteness warning: This post includes pictures of my kids.
I’ll start this by saying I wasn’t expecting to be going to Rose City this year, but then they shot me an email about coming down again, invited me to the Stumptown Press QnA, I just couldn’t pass it up. They had the retro gaming are last year (I believe) but I didn’t spend any time in it. Last year we have (I think) all five kids with us so it was a bit of an “event“. I’m not sure how else to describe it, and if you don’t have kids you might not get it. Let’s just say if anything in life feels too easy, add kids to mix, it will spice things right up!
I love that conventions are starting to include some retro-gaming into the mix. They had it down in San Diego this year as well as ECCC and of course it was at PAX (come on, it’s a video game expo, that’s a no brainer). Now that I think about that, they even had an area like this when I was at the San Fransisco Comic Con a few years ago.
It’s a cool thing for two reasons. It let’s us old people relive our glory days. More so for those older than me cause if we are being honest I’m the generation of the Street Fighter II, Mortal Kombat and NFL Blitz. A lot of the retro arcade games I experience them the say way my kids do, without nostalgia and with historical admiration.
Don’t get me wrong, I 100% love playing the old arcade games, and the ones I mentioned above ARE old arcade games, however a lot of the ones you see at these shows are older than that. Games from the 70’s and 80’s from the dawn of the arcade. These arcade games are vastly different than what I grew up with, and my kids don’t really even know what an arcade is. To them it’s Chuck E Cheese or Game Works, which builds it’s games and quick replays and tickets. No skill and un-winnable scenarios. But they sure look pretty.
To quote my 5 (almost 6) year old today
“These games are hard! But I love it!”Jack Nolan, 5 (almost 6) at Retrocade at RCCC
Next to the Retrocade they had an area set up with a ton of retro consoles that you could sit and play, as well as some PS4’s with Street Fighter V (I think) hosting a little tournament. I say little but I’m unsure the level of seriousness the players put into it.
Now I grew up in the generation of SNES/Playstation/N64. I never had a Sega growing up, even though I had it on my Christmas list for like 5 years, my mom still said no. They had Ataris, Dreamcasts, N64s, Sega CDs, Sega 32x, Turbo Grafix 16, Colecovision (fun story, I had one of these in high school and it caught on fire) and more! Jack was in heaven! Dozens of consoles he could just sit down at and play? What more could a boy want!
We played a little Turok on the N64, we trie to play some SEGA CD game, but it wouldn’t load for us. He really dug Missile Command on the Atari 2600. I should not that if you look at the picture of him playing Turok on the N64, he didn’t understand the controller but once I showed him to use the center stick he got it.
They did have Aliens vs Predator on the Atari Jaguar, which if you’ve never played it I wouldn’t be surprised. It’s about the only game worth playing on the Jaguar. There are a few other, but when I had one (did I ever tell you I used to collect video games? Cause that’s something normal adults do) it was the only game I really enjoyed playing. Jack thought it was too slow. By modern standards, it is buddy, it is.
The Retrocade and the Console Arcade were pretty awesome. I had to pry Jack away from the console arcade because he did not want to leave. He is already talking about heading back there tomorrow to do nothing but play games. Which makes me just want to build my own little Console Arcade at home! I know this can be done pretty easily with a Retro Pi (which I have) but with the low cost of TVs/monitors these days, I could easily get a few and throw up a little arcade of my own.
I wonder how Kaylie would feel about that?
Anyway, I’m off to bed cause I have to get up and head to the show again tomorrow and see what other things this show has to offer!