are many reasons for playing and collecting classic
video games. But first and foremost, it is simply
a pastime. This
is how most of us entered the hobby. There are, however,
many factors as to why we stayed with the endeavor.
Listed within this article are a few that have encouraged
myself & others.
gameplay, or innovation
through ingenuity requires solid gameplay. Classic
games could not depend on tools such as full-motion
video, expanded color palettes, transparency, rotation,
and zooming effects. Good games had solid gameplay,
and could not be disguised or distract the player.
collectors play classic games for their simple
mechanics. Their gameplay is easy to learn,
since many games require only basic joystick maneuvering
and a button or two to press.
of challenge offers
much encouragement to players. Adjustable skill levels
and hundreds of game playing options (i.e. 2600 Space
Invaders), allow the user to customize his or her
playing experience. Virtually anyone of any age can
participate in our hobby!
Challenge of collecting is also alluring. Trying to
locate all the 2600 variations could last a lifetime,
while a 7800 collection could be obtained in a single
summer. Oh, the thrill of the hunt!
very nice advantage to collecting games is the requirement
of little resources; especially the minimal
expenditure needed to start the hobby.
Sure, obtaining some rare games can require some hefty
trading or cash resources, but overall, there is great
fun to be found rather inexpensively. Many classic
games are now available for fractions of their original
consumer retail price. Atari, Intellivision, and many
other games are easily found for a mere dollar. And
best of all, most of the pricier games are more expensive
because of their lower production runs due to lack
of popularity and inferior sales. This means, in most
cases, that the games which are more enjoyable to
play are the least expensive to purchase!
video game hardware and software constructed was very
stable and durable.
Cartridges from the early '80's will certainly outlive
their modern day cd-rom counterparts. Moveable parts
such as cd-rom drives, motorized doors, and liquid
coolant will not survive longer than an immobile,
but sturdy, Colecovision.
console games allows for various levels
of interaction. Few hobbies allow for such
interaction as classic video games. Sure, baseball
cards show an image of the player, and a few statistics
to read and learn about. Comic books tell a story,
and entertain the aesthetics of ones eyes, but no
other hobby has the interaction that is involved in
video games. A single video game can be played for
hours (RPG's -- months) with little or no duplication
of events. Even classic games, with few boards and
levels are NEVER the same game twice. No offense to
card collectors, but try having months of fun looking
at Pete Rose's ugly mug!
collectors and players enjoy games for their technical
merit. The feats many programmers pulled
off with only 2K of memory were amazing for their
time! Take into account the complexities of current
3D animation and programming, and games which utilize
heavy mathematical calculations controlling such forces
as true physics and complex lighting. That's just
programming, too! What about the tiny microprocessors,
integrated circuits, and miles of wire involved. Thomas
Edison would be very jealous.
course, since we are dealing with "classic" games,
there is the admirable factor of antiquity.
Aside from being collectables in themselves, there
is a lot to be said for Nostalgia. For many of us,
collecting console games is a part of our past. With
the entertainment form covering decades, many of
us simply remember fond times with our family and
friends in the safety of our living rooms. We know
that inside each of those identical boxes, with it's
wires running into the back of our television set
glowing blue in the sinking twilight, that there were
people with stories.