Posted on March 30, 2007
Web Round-Up. Cool Retro Gaming stuff on the web.
If you are new to emulation, or just want to replace some old roms or emulators you have lost, Digital Press has a nice selection of older emulators and roms. This is one of the few places on the web where you can still find a section of roms for various systems. Also check out the Interviews section for a wide range of Q and A sessions with classic game programmers, authors, and pioneers. One of my favorites is with David Lubar who created games for systems as wide ranging as the 2600 all the way through the SNES. Also on Digital Press is the Kunkle Report. Bill Kunkle was one of the pioneers of video game journalism when he started Electronic Games magazine with Joyce Worley and Arnie Katz in the early 80’s. His latest article discusses the aftermath of his Rolenta Press published book called “Confessions of The Game Doctor”. We had Bill visit our day job about a year or so ago (Right after the book was published). He led our team in a discussion of game design and everyone, including those who had absolutely not idea who he was, were floored by his broad and deep knowledge of the subject. If you are interested in retro gaming at all, his articles on Digital Press are a great place to catch a read.
Twitch Guru has a great new article entitled Seven Ways to Succeed in Independent Game Development: The Introversion Formula. The article focuses of Introversion Software, makers of a little gem called DEFCON that won many Independent Game awards and was given very positive reviews in numerous gaming magazines and web sites. I won’t summarize the entire article here, but rest assured, it is a great read for anyone interested in game development, especially retro and casual games.
The Video Game Critic posts independent reviews of new and classic games on a regular basis. One of his latest is a review of Intellivision’s Auto Racing. He gives, what I remember to be a fine looking game at the time, a D-. I agree with them that the steering is very difficult, but this was one of the best looking games of the early 80’s. I distinctly remember playing this at Eric Barth’s house down the street. the Intellivision disc controller was completely useless for a game like this and the little plastic joysticks they sold to sit on top of the disc broke within 1/2 hour of use. Still I remember being amazed that you could drive off the road, through the houses and find other roads and parts of the track. It was the first game I can remember that felt like you were playing in a real world of some sort. Another recent review on the site is for an Atari Lynx game called Championship Rally. I never played this game, but it looks distinctly like an updated version of Intellivision Auto racing. They give it a great review (A). This game was released in 2000 by Songbird, so there probably is not a rom available.
Lost Levels has posted some cool info regarding a game lost in time. Hard Drivin’ was developed for the NES by Tengen games. Tengen was the home gaming unit of the Atari Coin-op division that split from Atari Inc when the Tramiels took over. They had a lot of trouble in the late 80’s / early 90’s with Nintendo and lawsuits dealing with creating unlicensed games for the NES. Lost Levels have culled together some pictures of the long lost Hard Drivin’ game from the Mean Machines Archive. Mean Machines was a short-lived UK magazine dealing with games and game systems. I’m not sure if they are still around (in some form or another), but they seem to have a wealth of great content on their Archive site. The game looks like it could have been a hit and seems to have been a technical marvel on the NES hardware.