Local Gaming Store Goodness

OK OK, I’m terrible at blogging at the moment, it’s six days into a new month and I haven;t written anything new due to a certain Gun of Icarus Online game. And soon the new Sim City game will turn me into a chronic mouse potato. To be kind of honest, I’ve been a mouse potato for a long… time, heh! Anyway, today I went into town today and noticed a store with a Virtual Boy in the window!

I would have taken a picture of it, but I have a thing for not taking photos in shops, mainly because it annoys the crap out of my when people do it at my work; so I’m relying on Google for an image. There was an asking price on a tag that said “Higher than £100”, and when I went to ask them if they wanted £110 for it, they replied that someone has asked £180 for it. The system comes with five games, Vertical Force, Red Alarm, Virtual Boy Wario Land, Panic Bomber and Mario Clash. Weirdly no Mario Tennis to be seen; but each game were fully boxed with it’s manual, though it wasn’t clear if it the console itself with boxed as it wasn’t seen, and foolishly I didn’t ask. The Nintendo Virtual Boy is a bit of a black sheep in the eyes of Nintendo and gamers, as it’s Nintendo’s least selling console. It was released in Japan and the US between the Super Nintendo and the Nintendo 64 due the N64’s delays. It was simply released to keep Nintendo fans happy before they finally release the Nintendo 64 in 1996, but it suffered from low sales, and Nintendo lost a lot of money as some stock was returned to them. Due to this, the Nintendo Virtual Boy was not released in Europe and the UK, so to see one over here is a big deal, especially to someone like me who lived on Nintendo products as a kid. £180 might sound a little steep, but considering that the games are complete in box, it’s not too bad, though I wish there was a Teleroboxer game including in that price.

Not only was there a Virtual Boy in this place, they even had one of these!

A Grandstand Scramble!

Again, due to my manners, based on working in a shop myself, I didn’t take a picture of it, but they had a complete in box Grandstand Scramble that they were very nice to let me play, and dang! This thing looks like it was brand new, well, maybe not for the little bit of metal tape peeling of the corner of the bevel, but the unit itself was immaculate! I flicked the power switch and oh yes, it’s VFD, Vacuum Fluorescent Display, meaning that this thing is bright, really bright! These things would last for generations and still display a strong bright display! Play this game, it’s not quite the same as the Konami Arcade classic, but it’s a decent attempt at it. simply put, you’re a spaceship moving right, and the screen slowly scrolls, as enemies appear from the right hand side of the screen and head towards you, you have to shot them before they shoot you, so you have to dodge their lasers, but just like the arcade game there are enemy bases you can take our by dropping bombs on them. The bombs aren’t quite like the Scramble arcade game, rather than arcing forwards and then down, the bombs in this game just drop down from under your space ship. Bombing the bases give you points. I played this a little and I like it, despite the fact there’s no mountains and terrain in the game. I asked them what they wanted. The shop keeper said he got it for £37 and wants profit for it, so £40 or £45 would be a good guess at what he wants for it. Which isn’t a bad price considering that that RetroGames.co.uk want £40 for just the game on it’s own; that and it’s very scratched on the bottom of the game.

Before I end this blog, let me tell you a little bit about this store that I found these game. It’s a shop called Cambridge Toys and Games. They used to be located in a not so great part of town, but now they’ve gone up in the world in now located in Burleigh Street, right near the Grafton Centre.

They’re a good business that doesn’t focus too much on profit, and support the community. Providing second hand toys of very good quality at good prices. But they sell a lot of games too, mainly modern stuff, but as I mentioned above, they do sometimes hold some nice retro goodies too, so it’s well worth having a look if you’re in Cambridge!