Man Vs Snake – The Long and Twisted Tale of Nibbler

Man Vs Snake – The Long and Twisted Tale of NibblerWhat the heck is Nibbler? Oh, the Rock-ola arcade game from 1982 which is a mash-up of Pac-Man and Snake? Nah, doesn’t ring any bells. Anyway, Man Vs Snake – The Long and Twisted Tale of Nibbler tells the story of high scoring Nibbler players’ quest to become the undisputed world champion.

Just like Billy Mitchell and Steve Wiebe competing to become The King Of Kong, Man vs Snake (MvS) introduces the main protagonist, Tim McVey (no, not that Oklahoma City bomber bad guy), the dude whom in 1984 was the first video gamer to clock Nibbler with a billion point high score, earning him the Rock-Ola arcade machine in the process. Then enters the dark horse, one Italian named Enrico Zanetti, whom had held the unofficial high score for Nibbler (not recognised by Twin Galaxies) and the main contenders to Tim’s high score, Canadian video game champion Dwayne Richard and “The Machine”, Rick Carter.

With a cast reading like a who’s who from the US arcade world including Walter Day, the theme is set – so what’s a high-score challenge documentary without some controversy aye? Just like The King Of Kong, it seems as this is the genre du jour. Not wanting to spoil it for anyone, an unfair advantage is uncovered which leads to accusations of, well let’s just say it, cheating! Balance could have been given here by allowing the accused to elaborate on their side of the story, but that may have spoiled the narrative of the documentary.

The film fulfils its primary objective by capturing the essence of not just the players wanting to beat one another, but showing the tension, determination and sacrifices they go through to conquer the mountain that is the Nibbler high score. In the end, the real battle in Man Vs Snake, just as the title eludes too, is between man and machine. If you were a fan of The King Of Kong: A Fistful Of Quarters, then Man Vs Snake – The Long and Twisted Tale Of Nibbler is compelling viewing!

Man Vs Snake – The Long and Twister Take Of Nibbler will be available from June 24 on all major streaming platforms. Visit the Man Vs Snake site for more details.

Man Vs Snake

Man Vs Snake

Nibblerimage source: Man Vs Snake


The Fate Of Atari Is In Your Hands

TheFateOfAtari_TitleIf Growing The 8-Bit Generation: The Commodore Wars film is anything to go by, 8-Bit Generation (the creators) are on a winner with their latest in the series of gaming documentaries, Easy To Learn, Hard To Master – The Fate Of Atari. To make The Fate Of Atari film happen, 8-Bit Generation have gone to Kickstater to raise a modest 20,000EUR.


Just like their successful first film, The Fate Of Atari will feature interviews with Atari heavyweights that have seldom appeared on film, including Manny Gerard and former Atari President and CEO, Ray Kassar. The late Ralph Baer, the father of video games, also makes an appearance.


The Fate Of Atari will concentrate on the meteoric rise and equal fall of the gaming industry icon. The best part is, there is zero risk with this campaign, as the interviews and additional footage has already been completed! No matter if you are a gaming history buff or not, the story of Atari should be known by all! Pledge now!

source: 8bit generation


Geeky Gift Idea: Gamer Greeting Cards

PlayerNo2_titleHow many times have you gone through the trouble to find the right gaming gift for your player number 2 only to be let down by the crappy Hallmark cards available in stores? Well now you can complete the perfect gift package by getting one of the awesome gamer cards for that special occasion created by playerNo2!

The playerNo2 Etsy store is dedicated to cute and nerdy greeting cards for anniversaries, Valentine’s Day and all other special occasions in-between. So if you are after a unique gift card for your partner, then playerNo2 should be your one stop shop!

Our friends at playerNo2 have been kind enough to provide us an exclusive 20% off coupon for our readers (use AUSRETROGAMER at checkout) which can be used on any purchase in their store! Through these awesome gamer cards, like-minded people can now share their greatest moments with the people they care about – grab some now!


Everyone is a winner!

No one gets in the way of true love!

The great birthday 1,3,2 card!

The Perfect Match!


Mum’s like to game too, show your mum that you care!

image source: playerNo2


Didn’t You Have That When You Were 12?!

DYHTWYW12_HDRWhen filmmaker, director of Knightfall, retro gaming enthusiast and podcaster Ben Campbell asks you to be on his Didn’t You Have That When You Were 12?! podcast, you can’t say yes fast enough!

I was privileged to be Ben’s inaugural guest and I must admit, I was nervous. Being a British expat now living in Australia, Ben was surveying the land down under for retrogaming friends and found yours truly. To say we hit it off would be a gross understatement. Making his guest feel comfortable, I found myself opening up and discussing personal matters interwoven in the narrative of my retro gaming story.

Take a listen as Ben and I nerd out about the Vectrex and discuss the best port of Double Dragon. I go on to reveal the bittersweet moment my dad and I found a Sega Dreamcast kiosk on the side of the road and I delve into a few of my most prized pieces in my collection. To hear the rest you’ll have to hit play on the Didn’t You Have That When You Were 12?! podcast.

source: Didn’t You Have That When You Were 12?!


Retrospective: E3 1996

E31996_TitleWith E3 2016 being the biggest news this week, we thought we’d rewind the clock twenty years, back to 1996 when  Nintendo, Sega and the newest player on the console block, the Playstation were the headline acts.


After wowing the crowds with their hardware the previous year, Playstation ensured that the 1996 E3 event was going to be even bigger and better by announcing a price drop to get the console into more homes, sending shivers down the spines of the old guard, Nintendo and Sega. Not to be outdone in the gaming stakes, Sony Computer Entertainment introduced everyone to Crash Bandicoot, who would go on to become a PlayStation mascot (and get remastered for the the PS4 20 years later!) and Lara Croft, whose appearance in Tomb Raider was the first step towards becoming a cultural icon.


At this second ever Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3), Sega was showing off the latest and greatest games for their Saturn in the hope of making a dent in the Playstation’s armour. With games like Virtua Fighter 3 (which was ultimately cancelled), Fighting Vipers, Virtua Cop 2, NiGHTS into Dreams, Panzer Dragoon II Zwei and Daytona USA (among others) from their own stable, Sega was ensuring that heads would be turned towards their 32-bit beast.

Third-party Saturn games were also announced by Acclaim (Alien Trilogy, Battle Monsters, The Crow: City of Angels, Dragonheart and Space Jam), Ubisoft (Rayman 2), Capcom (Marvel Super Heroes), Crystal Dyanmics (3D Baseball, Ghost Rider and Legacy Of Kain) and Konami (ISS Deluxe and NBA Hangtime).


Sega also wanted to show that there was still (some) life left in their 16-bit Mega Drive (Genesis) by showing off Arcade Classics, Sonic 3D Blast, Vectorman 2, X-Perts and X-Women (which never saw the light of day!). Perhaps Sega should have given up on their 16-bit console (and it’s many add-ons) and concentrate their might on the 32-bit battleground. Ah hindsight, it’s always 20/20.


And then there was Nintendo. The Kyoto giant chose the 1996 E3 event to showcase their latest hardware, the Nintendo 64. Nintendo chose to up the ante in the ‘bit’ wars by leaping over their two main rivals with their 32-bit systems. Basking in the glory of their 16-bit success with the SNES and full of confidence, Nintendo chose to stick with cartridges rather then the now-accepted CD format. To ensure that the Nintendo 64 was going to pull-in the crowds at E3 that year, Nintendo had a number of launch titles available to experience – Wave Race 64, Pilotwings 64, Star Wars: Shadows Of The Empire and Super Mario 64. New hardware needs a ‘killer app’ that captures the public’s imagination and makes consumers snap up a machine – Super Mario 64, just like Super Mario Bros did for the NES, did exactly that! With Mario entering 3D for the first time, Nintendo no doubt were the best in show at E3 1996.

What product will wow us and become best in show at E3 2016?


sources: [IGN | Sega Retro |]


Highlights: Oz Comic-Con Melbourne 2016

OzComic-Con-HDR 2Oz Comic-Con commanded us to ‘unleash your inner geek’ – and we were very happy to oblige. We came, we saw, we played, and we conquered Oz Comic-Con Melbourne 2016.

From the awesome cosplay (which never ceases to amaze us!), freeplay gaming areas, fantastic artists, comics and pop culture gear, to the TV/movie superstar celebrities (like Lucy Lawless, John ‘Captain Jack Harkness’ Barrowman, Robert Patrick, David Anders and Rose McIver) – Oz Comic-Con 2016 had something for everyone.

Of course we spent a considerable amount of time in the gaming zone – the Spider-Man Vault Edition pinball machine in particular – but we were also sure to check out the rest of the con. We walked the floor and were thoroughly impressed with the range and quality of cosplay as well as the stunning artwork on show.

Rather than waffle on, we thought we would let our photos give you a glimpse into what was an awesome Oz Comic-Con!

We hope Mulder and Scully have their Oz Comic-Con tix!

What should we do first?
Oz Comic-Con

Look who we found in the gaming zone: Oz Comic-Con Content Manager Guy ‘Yug’ BlombergScott Kellett and Rob Caporetto)
OZ Comic-Con

Whoa, a surprise celebrity dropped in – Tony Stark wasn’t on the guest list!

Who you gonna call?

The cutest Marty McFly at Oz Comic-Con

Gaarrgghh! My eyes!!

Oo’er, that Marvel artwork!

LED goodness!

My spidey-senses are tingling!

The TARDIS found some time for a game
Dr Who pinball

Blast those pesky aliens!

On-site movie make-up

Teenage Mutant Ninja … Turtles?

This Clone scout trooper wants you!

What posers!

I’m a very cool Batman cosplayer

Watch out for the Blue Elf Death Knight

Forget Conan, this Female Barbarian means business!

The Flower Card – beautiful!

Awesome display at Cosplay Central part 1

Awesome display at Cosplay Central part 2

Who got water on the Mogwai?

Amazing TARDIS dress made from duct tape at the I’m a Craftaholic booth

This cosplay makes my millenniumOzComic-Con-Beetlejuice

Cool retro bikes spotted outside the MCEC

We worked up a decent thirst

I spy with my little eye… great cosplay

By the power of Grayskull!

Poor C-3PO!

What’s in the box?

Na Na Na Na Naaa

Radio controlled R2-D2 – wow, nice!

Stern concentration

Gotham City Sirens


Tabletop action

Awesome TWD cosplay

The Baseball Furies came out to play

Rebel scum!

Ms ausretrogamer completes level 1!

Ready to fight!


Steam Punk-tastic

Where’s Rick Grimes when you need him?

Game on


We have no complaints about this awesome ‘No-Face’ cosplay 

One more go before closing time

So, there you have it – we had a great time at  Oz Comic-Con Melbourne 2016. We’re already looking forward to 2017.

Film Review: The Amiga Years

TheAmigaYears_TitleAnthony and Nicola Caulfield, the writers and directors of the critically acclaimed crowdfunded feature length documentary From Bedrooms to Billions, which charts the history of the British Video games Industry, have just released a follow up film called From Bedrooms to Billions: The Amiga Years

From Bedrooms to Billions: The Amiga Years is a 150 minute feature documentary exploring the influence of the Commodore Amiga and how it took video game development, music and publishing to a whole new level and played a key, defining role in the rapidly evolving video games industry!

As with the original From Bedrooms to Billions, the film-makers balance The Amiga Years with nostalgic archive footage, stills and music with newly shot interviews with some of the original Amiga design team as well as with some of the biggest names in video game development, publishing, music and journalism from the last 30 years!

BlahjediAaron Clement: I’m ashamed to admit it, but outside of games, my knowledge of the Amiga’s history is pretty poor. As a Commodore 64 boy growing up, my exposure to its 16-bit big brother was limited to seeing screenshots in Zzap! and C&VG, or going around to my best friend’s place to fire up his Amiga 500 whenever we could. After having watched The Amiga Years, I can say that the detail presented here far and away fills the gaps in my knowledge, as well as providing a positive and entertaining story to boot. Delivering it’s narrative through a series of interviews with a veritable “who’s who” from the Amiga’s history, creators Nicola and Anthony Caulfield have done a solid job weaving this documentary together.

Featuring industry veterans like Trip Hawkins, RJ Mical, Larry Kaplan, Chris Huelsbeck and more, there’s an incredible variety of stories on offer from all sides of the Amiga’s past. Spliced in among this is archival footage from the 70s and 80s, ranging from Ralph Baer introducing his original PONG machine, to Andy Warhol at the Amiga Launch event, right through to the super-daggy “Only Amiga” video clip (Seriously – what is it with Commodore and their theme songs?). With that said, I did find that some of the earlier parts covering Atari’s history and later discussions around the demo scene dragged on a little too much. Given how massive the demo scene was in Europe however, I can definitely understand why it gets the attention it does!

So what did I think overall? I thought The Amiga Years was an enjoyable, in-depth retrospective featuring a whole lot of incredibly passionate people who clearly love the system. The positivity is great (Molyneux’s cheap shot at the ST aside), and there’s not really any negativity or spite on display – even Jack Tramiel gets presented and talked about in a respectful manner. If you’ve got a spare couple of hours and even a passing interest in vintage computers or gaming, The Amiga Years is well worth checking out.

alex bozAlex BozWith The Amiga Years, Anthony and Nicola have literally picked up where they left off with their first film, From Bedroom To Billions – which is actually a really GOOD thing! Their pedigree in documentary film making is second to none, and The Amiga Years is no exception. With the subject matter at the centre of this film, Anthony and Nicola have lovingly pieced together countless hours of interviews and archival footage into a 2.5hr tour de force on the Amiga.

The historical context of the film is set perfectly with a background on the industry from the 70s, with the Atari vs Commodore war to how it all lead to the genesis of the Amiga. Discussing the Amiga with all the important people that had a role in its creation, including the late Dave Needle, the film’s authenticity on the subject matter is unparalleled. The Amiga Years managed to surprise with the inclusion of the ever so pervasive Amiga demo scene, which includes interviews with demo group members and their ever so eye-catching cracktros – this, in my opinion completes the Amiga story beautifully.

With their highly lauded first feature film, From Bedrooms To Billions, The Amiga Years is another triumph for Anthony and Nicola Caulfield (and their production team) – they have yet again set the bar (very) high to what a historical documentary on our computing past should be. You need to watch The Amiga Years (and its additional special footage) right now! Even as an Atari ST fan (and there are plenty of references to the ST in the film), I was absolutely absorbed from start to finish!

From Bedrooms To Billions: The Amiga Years and its awesome special features set are available now to watch on Vimeo.

The Amiga Yearsimage source: From Bedrooms To Billions: The Amiga Years