Retro Gaming – Hardcore To The Maxxxxxxx
It dawned on me after downloading some ROMS to play on the Genesis Emulator on my PS3 a few weeks back and the more I thought of it, the more I realised how true it is.
Back in the day, I’d spend aaaaaaaaages waiting for cassettes to load on my Amstrad or my Spectrum ZX. After that, I moved onto the Amiga and, in between, I used to rent the NES/SNES/Master System/Mega Drive from my local video rental shop.
The time I would, as well as countless others, spend on such games in an era where the internet was unheard of for the most part or just for the posh people who could afford it so there was no form of guidance or cheating as there is now and we lacked the ability to save. Games back then were hard. Even playing some of them to this day I still get stuck at the same place as I did then or, in some cases, I can’t even get that far!
Games didn’t have epic story lines or ground-breaking cinematics. They weren’t even necessarily LONG games, just so challenging that you couldn’t plough through them like some of the current gen games.
After a number of years, some games allowed a very primitive form of saving but most were a case of end of level passwords to resume your position at a later stage. I had notepads filled with them.
I remember the days of waiting for Paperboy etc to load, sitting through screeching noises as if I was sat in the middle of a fax machine orgy. I would wanna throw the machine out the window if the game failed to load.
They don’t make games like they used to (in most cases this is a good thing), but there’s still something special with games back then that can’t be replicated with HD re-releases or even remakes. Emulators allow some of those memories to be relived.
What I found quite difficult to believe though, is the fact that the ROMs for the Mega Drive/Mega Drive II are around 2MB in size. Games these days are in the GB range and a lot don’t last or entertain as much as the oldies.
It’s insane to think that just over 2 decades ago I was playing in 16-bit or less and now I’m in the realms of HD gaming and a superior multimedia age.