Resident Evil: Surviving The Horror

Wow, when Resident Evil was released on this day (March 22) in 1996, who would have thought that we would be talking about it all these years later!

Our first encounter with Resident Evil was quite memorable. Upon loading the game on our Playstation, we were subjected to some cheesy B-grade acting, but it was the rabid zombie dog at the end of the intro sequence that scared the pants off us when watching it at the dead of night – we still have nightmares!

We quickly learn that Raccoon City is a foreboding place, where an outbreak of the T-Virus (created as a bio-weapon by the Umbrella Corporation) starts spreading from the nearby Arklay Mountains, turning humans into zombies and other creatures into horrifying monsters. The protagonists, Chris Redfield and Jill Valentine, both members of the Alpha S.T.A.R.S. (Special Tactics And Rescue Service) special forces from the Raccoon Police Department (RPD) are trapped in the Spencer mansion, attempting to find out what all the eeriness is about. This is where things get interesting in this awesome survival horror game; from encountering supernatural enemies – some that make you jump off the couch, to finding typewriter ribbons to save your progress and the dread you feel when opening a door to transition to another room, there were scares aplenty!

Interestingly, the game is known as Biohazard in its native Japan. When the Biohazard project kicked off, Capcom were planning a spiritual remake of their 1989 horror game Sweet Home. Once they found that a DOS game had registered the Biohazard title in the US, the company held an internal contest to choose a new name. This contest lead to the title, Resident Evil, which we know and love outside of Japan. Resident Evil/Biohazard was also first to be dubbed a ‘survival horror’ game – the term coined for the new genre.

Capcom weren’t convinced that Resident Evil would do well, with sales projections pencilled in at just 200,000. Once critical acclaim was widespread, Capcom were truly gobsmacked when Resident Evil went on to move 5.8 million copies (original, Director’s Cut and Director’s Cut DualShock), making it a massive hit.

Hit us up on Facebook or Twitter to tell us about your most memorable encounter or scary moment from the original Resident Evil. Oh, and a ‘Jill Sandwich’ is a thing!

image source: games revisited

 

Retro Gaming Anniversary: Nintendo 64

N64_NA_Launch_titleimage source: IGN AU

On this day [September 29] in 1996, those lucky North Americans got the latest (and last) cartridge based system from Nintendo – the sublime Nintendo 64! I say lucky, because we had to wait till the following year (March 1, 1997) to get our hands on Nintendo’s 64-bit beast. But spare a thought for gamers in Brazil, they had to wait till December 1997 to play Super Mario 64 on the N64!

The Nintendo 64 console seemed to polarize gamers – from the use of cartridges (Ed: CD-ROM was huge at this point in history), to the three-pronged controller. To be honest, we loved the fact that the system was cart based, and we absolutely love (and still do) that controller. It was typical of Nintendo to go against the grain and do their own thing.

There were heaps of stand out games on the system, but the early ones are still seared in my memory, from Super Mario 64, Wave Race 64, Turok: Dinosaur Hunter, Blast Corps and of courses, Mario Kart 64, to GoldenEye 007 and International Superstar Soccer 64, we had a blast on the grey beast.

Considering we still love playing on the N64, it is a great testament to Nintendo for building such an awesome system for all of us to enjoy. What are your favourite memories of the N64? Hit us up on Twitter or Facebook to let us all know!

 

Atari VCS: Happy Anniversary!

Atari_VCS_TitleImagine it is September 11, 1977. If you were living in North America, you may have been lucky enough to receive the console that would transform the video games market forever – the Atari VCS (Video Computer System, later rebadged as the Atari 2600).

On this day (September 11) all those years ago, Atari made history by releasing their Atari VCS console, the first commercially successful home video gaming system. The video games market exploded with the VCS, and then imploded in the early 80s, but we won’t speak of the implosion here. Today is a day we celebrate the Atari VCS, that beautiful wood-veneer machine that brought many a joy at home, with families huddling around their TV in the lounge room to play Space Invaders and Pitfall.

I remember my first memory of the Atari VCS as if it were yesterday. My dad and I were walking along the local shopping strip when I stopped at the electronic retailer’s window TV display to be mesmirised by a little triangle shooting dots at flying rocks. The game was of course Asteroids, and I fell in love with the Atari VCS right then and there. I begged my dad to buy the console, but at $300AUD, the answer was always going to be no. Luckily for me, I had cousins that got the Atari VCS, so I liked visiting them even more than I used to. Ah, to be young again and enjoy the wonders of simple games. What were your first memories of the Atari VCS? – engage with us on Twitter or Facebook!

Well, with 30 million units sold worldwide and a long lifespan (games were being released for the VCS/2600 till 1992!), the Atari VCS built the foundation that latter consoles would stand on and make history for themselves. Happy anniversary, Atari VCS/2600!

Atari_playing

image sources: gamester81 and blacknerdproblems