Brutal 8-Bit Fatalities

Could you imagine the media frenzy if our beloved 8-bit video games had gruesome fatalities just like in Mortal Kombat? Now that would be an awesome dream come true. You can never have enough fatalities in video games (Ed: settle down!). I would personally like to see those pesky Galaga bugs get obliterated in the most brutal way!

Hang on a second! Steven Lefcourt has made this dream come true in his great artwork depiction of 8-bit fatalities. Splat – take that Goomba! Damn the ignorant media!

Brutal_Galaga

Brutal_Pacman

Brutal_Mario

Brutal_Arts

Brutal_Kirby

Brutal_DigDug

Brutal_Icarus

Brutal_MegaMan

Brutal_ALL

Brutal_mario_luigisource: Steven Lefcourt

Vintage Pokémon

Damn it, I totally missed it! On February 27, those pesky pocket monsters, oops, I mean Pokémon, celebrated their 19th anniversary! Wow, how time flies when you are hunting wild Pokémon.

Instead of hurling a Poké Ball around here (Ed: you have no idea, do you?), we thought we would share some awesome rustic Pokémon ads created by the talented Mexican artist, Chuz0r.

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Pokemon1

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Pokemon4

Pokemon6

Pokemon7source: Buzzfeed

Made In Australia: NES Games

AussieMade_MainTItle

In the early days of the video games industry it seemed like all game development was being done out of bedrooms across the UK and Europe. The North Americans were also pumping out games from their hive in Sunnyvale. It is a little known fact that Australia also made major contributions to game development in those early days. Australian pioneers like Alfred Milgrom (co-founder of Melbourne House and Beam Software) were designing and producing games like Hungry Horace and The Hobbit. Melbourne House‘s other major release,  Way Of The Exploding Fist, went on to become a massive hit on every 8-bit micro back in the mid 1980s. After Australia II won the America’s Cup in 1983, Armchair Entertainment cashed in on the craze by creating the sailing sim, Arnie’s America’s Cup Challenge. The game was bundled in the Commodore 64 Family Pack that was released to coincide with the 1987 America’s Cup event in Fremantle.

But what of the 8 and 16-bit consoles you know and love, like the NES, SNES and the Mega Drive? Did Australia produce any games on these world dominant systems? Of course they did. Australian talent continued to churn out classic games that went on to become major hits on their respective platforms.

In this maiden Made In Australia voyage, we will reflect on the games that Australians produced for Nintendo‘s world beating 8-bit console, the NES! I bet you will be surprised.

720° (1989)
720_degrees_NES

Bad Street Brawler (1989)
BadStreetBrawler_NES

Defender of the Crown (1989)
DefenderOfTheCrown_NES

Airwolf (1989)
Airwolf_NES

Road Runner (1989)
RoadRunner__NES

The Last Ninja (1990)
LastNinja_NES

RoadBlasters (1990)
Roadblasters__NES

Smash TV (1990)
SmashTV_NES

Aussie Rules Footy (1991)
AussieRules_NES

Star Wars (1991)
StarWarsNESPAL

But wait, there were more Aussie made NES games, like: Back to the Future (1989), The Three Stooges (1989), Battle Chess (1989), Days of Thunder (1990), The Hunt for Red October (1990), Back to the Future Part II & III (1990), Bigfoot (1990), Dash Galaxy in the Alien Asylum (1990), Fisher-Price: Perfect Fit (1990), Fisher-Price: I Can Remember (1990), The Punisher (1990), Rocket Ranger (1990), Bo Jackson Baseball (1991), Family Feud (1991), George Foreman’s K.O. Boxing (1992), International Cricket (1992), Nightshade (1992), Power Punch 2 (1992), Mickey’s Safari in Letter Land (1993) and Mickey’s Adventures in Number Land (1994).

In the next Made In Australia feature, we will reflect on the Mega Drive games that were Aussie made! You will be surprised to learn the number of hit games that Aussies had their hand in! Till next time, game on!

image sources: Moby Games, Tomorrow’s Heroes, GameFAQs, retro gaming australia

Back To The Nineties: Magic Eye Pictures

I got excited again about magic eye pictures after reading about how they work and why some people can’t see them on Mental Floss. Here are some retrogaming-themed magic eye pictures for a dual hit of nostalgia.

Goomba
goomba

 Galaga
galaga

Atari
atari

Pac-Man
pac-man

Pac-Man no.2
pac-man 2

Commodore
Commodore

Mario
mario 2

Yoshi
yoshi 1

Hopefully you’re not like poor Willam from Mallrats who just couldn’t see that sailboat!


Source: YouTube

…but maybe that’s because there WAS NO SAILBOAT!


Source: YouTube

Now I need to rest my eyes, I think it will be another 20 years before I’m ready to look at another magic eye picture!

Source: Magic Eye Retrogaming on Flickr, Mental Floss, Super Mario Broth

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msausretrogamerMs. ausretrogamer
Content Manager at ausretrogamer – The Australian Retro Gamer E-Zine. Lover of science fiction, fashion and TV. Player of games, old and new.

Follow Ms. ausretrogamer on Twitter

From Bedrooms to Billions: The Amiga Years

TheAmigaYearsFollowing their critically acclaimed first feature length documentary, From Bedrooms To Billions, Nicola and Anthony Caulfield are back with a follow-up film based on Commodore‘s wonder computer, the Amiga. Coinciding with the Amiga‘s 30th anniversary, Nicola and Anthony have kicked off their From Bedrooms to Billions: The Amiga Years Kickstarter campaign with a bang!

This film will have a whole new set of interviews to add to the already extensive list to create a standalone, immersive and highly nostalgic film that really explores why the release of the Commodore Amiga and the era that soon followed, was a key period in the evolution of video games.

Regardless of your allegiance to Commodore or the Amiga, this is one Kickstarter campaign you cannot miss. Back this project now!

Amiga_Ballimage source: From Bedrooms To Billions: The Amiga Years

The Jaguar Bares Its Claws

Jaguar_titleThe Sega 32-bit fan-people (Ed: that’s very politically correct of you!) may have their SaturnDay, but the diehard Atari fans also have their Jaguars purring on SatAtariDay!

There is great pleasure in sharing the intoxication of nostalgia with like-minded gamers. Weird and Retro’s Aleks ‘Serblander’ Svetislav definitely captured the nostalgia to provide the Atari Jaguar hit I was seeking.

With a huge Jaguar banner greeting me upon arrival, I knew I was in for a treat. Like a kid in a candy store, it was difficult to focus on any one thing that Serblander had in his awesome Jaguar collection.

My attention was quickly grabbed by the mouth-watering Jaguar gaming bling on show – from the never released Tiny Toon Adventures, to the ever-rare BattleSphere Gold! Oh yeah, let’s not forget the hardware bling, from the BJL’ed Jag, Pro-Controller and M.A.S. Super Pro-Stick, to the the beautiful CatBox connected to the back of the Jag with its eerie red eyes glowing when the big cat was purring.

With the Atari’s big cat out to play, it was time to get down to business and do the math – play some games! SatAtariDay truly was purr-fect!

Let the SatAtariDay shenanigans begin!
SatAtariDay
The Jag Bling!
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Let’s get cracking then!
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The Jaguar loot in box 1 (of many many boxes!)!
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The ‘better’ Jaguar controller. And it’s Pro!
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Ello ello ello, what do we have here then, aye?
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More Jaguar loot! Woohoo!
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Shhh, this is top secret stuff!
Jaguar4

Are you an extremist?
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Setting up just a few Jaguars!
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Oh yes, games!
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Oh yes, more games! Virtua Fighter, I mean Fight For Life anyone?
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SLAM DUNK!
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Forget Super Hang-On, go Super Burnout!
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The sublime Impulse X – on cart and CD
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Serblander smashing it on Impulse X! A rotary controller is the only way to go!
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Value for money – Impulse X (cart) comes with two additional games!
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Sheer Madness!
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*wipes drool* BattleSphere GOLD baby!
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Awesome rare platform action on Tiny Toon Adventures!
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Let’s kick some ass!
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Wanna make your own Jaguar game?
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Woot, the BJL’ed Jag – more dev nirvana
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This is the only way to play Raiden
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Rayman was meant to be on the Jag
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Preserving Atari’s big cat
Jaguar2

 

Interview With Steven Cousins: The Retro Gaming Gun From The West

Steve22I love social media. I keep on banging on about how awesome it is to connect with like-minded people, and social media provides the perfect platform, especially when people are on the other side of the country! The world certainly is a smaller place with all these online channels allowing us to meet great people.

Steve ‘Steevo‘ Cousins is a classic example of meeting a down-to-earth, like-minded dude who is also a very cool gamer. We hit it off immediately with our passion for retro gaming and common love for Double Dragon and anything and everything to do with Atari. In recent times, Steve’s love of retro gaming has branched to the Neo Geo MVS! Since the SNK beauty is close to my heart, our online friendship has hit a new level. Once Steve showed me his games room, I knew that I had to ask him to join us for an interview and share his love of gaming and his awesome setup with you all.  Here we go!

AUSRETROGAMER [ARG]: Hey Steve, thank you for your time. Let’s get straight into it – when did you get into gaming? What was your first home system?
Steve Cousins [SC]: Gaming has always been big in my life. It all started with some people I knew that had an Atari 2600. All I wanted to do was go around and play the system, though I never got to play it much as I was never allowed. I could only watch! So each year I begged my parents for one and finally when I was 7 they ventured out and got me my first ever gaming system for Christmas. I still remember that Christmas morning, I opened the wrapping and out came a magical Atari XEGS system. I was very excited to get an Atari system, although I was confused as I asked for an Atari 2600 and never heard of this system. My parents assured me that this was a superior system as that’s what the man at the store told them. It did become a problem a year later though, as games were stopped being made for them. My parents felt bad about this, so I remember us searching high and low at retail stores in Tasmania and found a store an hour away that sold the games for the system and they were all bargain basement as no one was buying them. My parents ended up buying nearly all the games for me. I was set!

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ARG: Do you have a favourite game (of all time) or genre?
SC: For most gamers this must be the hardest question of all! I seriously cannot name a single game or genre as hard as I try. I go in phases as I have my whole life, so I will answer the best I can by answering this way – my favourite games as a child, were: Lode Runner, Dark Chambers, Double Dragon and Streets Of Rage. Double Dragon holds a very special spot for me as I was playing it at home and would make special trips to the arcade just to play it [ARG: Good man!]. Even when it was outdated when NBA Jam and Mortal Kombat were the coolest to play at the arcades, something about Double Dragon just kept me coming back to it. From there I went onto Street Fighter II and then on to Tekken. I still play Tekken to this day. Games like Road Rash, Super Off-Road, Rock N Roll Racing and Micro Machines kept me occupied for ages! I even got into the stealth style games like Metal Gear Solid. I got into FPS as well, thanks to Doom! I’ll stop there, otherwise I can go on listing heaps more!

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ARG: What is your favourite old school home system(s)?
SC: There are 4 I hold dear to me, with the main one being my Atari XEGS. I have also found another collector who loves the XEGS as much as me, Weird and Retro. We are both after the final piece of the puzzle to complete our XEGS collection – Karateka! Ah, one day! I also hold the Sega Master System, Mega Drive and the sexy add-on, the 32X, dear to my heart.

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ARG: What made you start collecting?
SC: It was about 5 years ago. I still had a lot of consoles, but I always wanted to get back the consoles I mentioned above as I sold them to fund a very expensive console at the time, the PlayStation! Even then, I said to myself that I would re-buy these machines again one day. Finally I decided to and the retro gaming train just kept going and I cannot stop it.

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ARG: What is it about collecting that brings you the most joy?
SC: Just finding the game you sort of forgot about and then finding it dirt cheap! Just searching for the console but knowing the price you want to pay so you pass 1000 chances to get it but then you finally find it and get it at the price that’s not breaking your budget – that is just so satisfying! Many collectors will hate me for this, but I’m not a sealed collector type of guy. So I have busted open seals to play the games knowing it will decrease the value but doing so still brings me joy, just like when I was a kid! I believe that, if I have it, then it is meant to be played! Now it’s just casually going to potential places and trying to find some console or game treasures. They aren’t always there, but when they are, it just makes my day!

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ARG: Do you have a prized gaming possession (if so, what is it)?
SC: I do. Actually, I have a few to be honest. One of my favourite games for the Master System was Power Strike – I have 1 and 2 complete for the system now. Both pretty rare games and both were cheap! Another is my Atari 2600 Sunnyvale Heavy Sixer! I got that one via eBay. The seller had it listed as an “Atari” with a Buy It Now price of $20USD with $25USD for shipping – I snapped it up immediately. It works like a charm! My collection of Atari XEGS games and boxed system will always hold a special place in my heart! I could go on, but recently I purchased a 6-slot Neo Geo MVS arcade cabinet! The machine came with 7 games, all in a workable state. I am relatively new to the Neo Geo machine, so I had some help from the man, ausretrogamer! He was certainly very helpful along the way. [ARG: Aww man, you are making me blush. It is always great to introduce someone to the big red SNK beast.]

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ARG: What item (or items) do you have your eye on to add to your collection?
SC: I’m still after the elusive Karateka for the Atari XEGS. As mentioned previously, I know that Weird And Retro is also after it. It will be a long time before either of us complete that set, but it would be brilliant if we both did!

It’s also time for me to grab myself a Commodore 64. I still remember playing it to death with a friend. I still can’t believe I haven’t got one in my collection (yet). I also would like a Neo Geo AES, but the PAL version – I’m guessing because it’s harder to find. So that will take a fair while to get.

Slowly I am trying to get all PAL Sega 32x games. It is probably unlikely I’ll complete that set because the prices are super crazy! So many more but you will see them over time if you follow me on Twitter.

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ARG: You recently got yourself a Neo Geo MVS 6-slot arcade machine – what made you choose this machine and what do you think of it so far?
SC: I played the Neo Geo games at the arcades as a kid. I always wanted an arcade machine, so this is just the perfect machine – you just interchange game cartridges! It’s like having multiple arcade machines in the one system. I am absolutely loving it! It came with a 100 in 1 game cartridge, so I am playing many games I had never got to play before. Seriously one of the best, if not the best thing I have in my games room!

Steve3

ARG: Tell us about your gaming room – how long did it take to get it setup and are there going to be further additions / modifications?
SC: Well,I had a lot of the systems all hidden away in boxes and I just wanted to display them. I convinced my lovely wife to get some shelves and it went from there. We moved house almost 2 years ago now and I now have my ultimate games room / man’s cave! There is a massive bar, billiard table, foosball table, arcade machines and a bucket-load of consoles! [ARG: Oh man, party at your place!] My thing with the consoles is I have to have every system (not multiples or variations) hooked up the the TV, so basically I can play any game I have, on the one TV. Sometimes it just takes me 10 minutes to remember which switch box I have set up to what console. I really have to organise it all a bit better. [ARG: You should do what I do, create a diagram of what is connected to what].

The games room will have many more modifications to it, as I know I will be adjusting my console section to make more room for even more games and more consoles. I will be sharing my progress on Twitter, slowly, but surely! My wife wants a pinball machine, so one day, that will be in there too!

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ARG: Like all of us that collect, we struggle to find time to enjoy it all – how do you find time to have fun with your gaming collection?
SC: For me, I still play my PS3 and PS4 the most. I do get the urge to play some older game system, especially when I get a game for it – then I’ll fire it up and play most of the games I have for it. I love it when my nieces or nephews come over because they love playing it all! I am lucky as my lovely wife understands my love and lets me get lost in all the nostalgia any time I wish. So, whenever I have free time and have the urge, I’ll duck away to the games room and just play some games.

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ARG: Thank you very much for your time, Steve, and for sharing your thoughts and your awesome games room with us all.
SC: Cheers Alex! Sorry it’s taken ages to get this interview done, I have been mega busy with real life stuff and I also needed to clean up the games room for the photo shoot [laughs].

As we leave Steve to play his beloved Atari XEGS, we thank him once again for his time and for providing us with a heap of mouth-watering photos of his brilliant games room. Next party is at Steevo’s place!