Tag Archives: eighties

Remember those water games?

I have no idea how this came to mind, but remember those water games back in the eighties…?

Yeah, for some odd reason, I reminded myself of these games. It’s simply a tank of water, a pump, some plastic rings and a set of hooks. The game is really simple, it’s a skill game where you press the button and depending on how hard you press the button the rings will get launched with an air bubble and you hope that you can get some rings on the hooks. Very similar to those ring toss games at fun fairs, except this is done with water, and made to look as if it’s a faux video game.

Ring-Toss was the most common Tomy water game that I used to see in the eighties and early nineties.

 There were a few Tomy Water games based on actual video games.

There are plenty of Water Games that were not made by Tomy that took a lot of their ideas

I never owned any of the water games back as a kid, however in 1997, I received this GameBoy shaped water game, with shower gel inside, at Christmas; along with my copy of Lylat Wars on the N64, and a second controller. Made by Grosvenor, not Tomy, the game was pretty the classic ring toss game of old, except this time there were two pumps. These were on the A and B buttons on the GameBoy shaped water game (the d-pad is just decoration), the B button would control a pump on the left hand side of the screen, and the A button would control the pump on the right hand side of the screen. So yeah, Ring toss with two pumps! Well, at the time, with my N64 and all, a Water Game wasn’t terribly exciting, and the most use that it ever got was to use it’s generic smelling shower gel. But if I got this as a kid of 6 years old I would’ve loved the damn thing!

For some reason I wanted one as a kid, but never asked for it… Maybe there was just some toy I wanted over the Water game that I got instead, but I just look at these with rose tinted eyes and remember the late eighties and early nineties… UPDATE: After talking to Focus from the GameGavel forums about water games, he told me that he has one on his iPhone, so after a bit of searching, low and behold, there’s a water game app you can get on iOS and Android…  Crazy…  It’s fortunate that it’s free, I wouldn’t pay for it! >:P

Water Bubble Ring Toss for Android…
Water Bubble Ring Toss of iOS…

Why do I still own an Xbox360?

OK, it got me thinking, after my last post about my little rant about screwed over you get if you’re a non-live user. So…  Why do I still own a 360 then?

Pinball Simulation…

Arabian Nights without the financial limitations and finding physical space? Count me in!
One thing I do like about the current generation is how Pinball Simulation has improved little by little. Now granted, you can play these games on the PS3, Wii, and even tablet computers. But it so happens that I got these pinball games on the Xbox 360 before I even owned a PS3 and a tablet computer. But even then, that’s not entirely true as there’s a very good set of pinball games made for PSP that are very good too, infact I would even say that the PSP games got me into getting Pinball games for the 360.

Pinball FX1/2

Pinball FX was the first Pinball game I got the Xbox 360. And for a pinball game that’s not based on actual real tables, it’s a very good effort. It certainly feels like pinball, and Pinball FX 2 even goes far as including franchises such as Marvel, ‘Splosion Man and Plants Vs. Zombies. Plus it includes a great tables called Epic Quest where by it mixes pinball with role playing games very well whilst mixing a good dose of humour!
A pinball quest of finding loot!
The Arabic themed table, Pasha, is a very entertaining table in Pinball FX 2
The Street Fighter 2 table from Pinball FX 1 might not be based on the real Gottlieb SF2 table, but it’s still great fun!

Williams Pinball Classics

This game is actually hard to come by on disc over here in PAL territories, but fortunately, Microsoft made this available as a download for about £15. Feels a little steep, but when people are selling copies on eBay for a whopping £25 second-hand, a £15 download sounds damn cheap to me!
Medievil Madness, one of my favourite pinball machines, now to own in digital form!

Who wouldn’t play FunHouse!?
The masochistic yet awesome Black Knight!

Pinball Arcade

Unlike the Williams Pinball Classics on the 360, and the Gottlieb Collection on the PSP and Wii. The Pinball Arcade is a collection of great pinball machines from Bally, Williams, Gottlieb and Stern to give you the best Pinball simulation experience possible. To do this, FarSight Studios, the developers of the game, took each pinball machine, took it to pieces, examined each piece and made a 3D model of it. Then they put the 3D model pieces together in the game to build the most realistic pinball tables in digital form.
Bride of Pinbot in all of her metal cladded glory on your Xbox 360.
The very luminescent Black Hole.
The Famous KickStarter funded Twilight Zone Table.
So with all these awesome pinball tables, with descent pinball physics, and great gameplay, plus not being anywhere close to a descent pinball arcade, my Xbox 360 is my number one place to play some good pinball!

What’s my greatest gaming possession?

The Crown Jewel of my gaming collection…
The greatest piece of gaming material I possess is my Game & Watch Multi screen Donkey Kong! Not only do I have this complete, with it’s battery cover in place, but it’s a historic piece of video game history, because of it’s worlds first…
…Direction Pad!
Yes, Nintendo created the first direction pad, and it was used first on the Game & Watch Multi Screen Donkey Kong.
More Instagram! …Hey at least it’s not food right?
That and the Multi Screen series of Game & Watches would be the inspiration towards Nintendo’s DS portable console!
The evolution of the Game & Watch Multi Screen.
The way that the two screens would work together is a very thin ribbon cable between the hinges made of laminate paper and copper strips that connect the two screens together.
When you install a pair of LR44 button cell batteries into a Game & Watch, the LCD screen does this, where it shows all the LCD on the screen until you press the Game or Time.
The game itself is Donkey Kong, but it plays a little different to it’s arcade predecessor. There are no hammers, you can get hurt from suspended girders, and Donkey Kong himself is standing on a platform raised with hooks.
The bottom screen, shown above here, plays pretty much like the original Donkey Kong, where you’re jumping over rolling barrels, but something new in this game are suspended girders that move from right to left just above Mario’s head on the second platform. If Mario jumps under one of these girders, he hurts his head and loses a life.
Not a great picture, but I managed to snap a picture of one of the girders in the game.
Fighting DK is a bit different, just as you enter the top you have to press left on the directional pad to activate a swing that raises a crane with a swinging hook on it. In a kind of Pitfall style, you have to time the jump right to reach the hook, whilst avoiding barrels been thrown at you and than grab another hook that’s holding up DK’s platform. There are four of these hooks holding up DK’s platform, grabbing the fourth hook and making DK fall awards you with twenty point, and you keep playing the game again with DK’s platform built, and with slightly faster moving barrels.
So ok, it’s not the original Donkey Kong machine by any stretch of the imagination, and there parts of the game where you might be stuck standing in the spot jumping over a horde of barrels. But this is a piece of video game history, plus it’s better than some other Game & Watch games too. It’s a shame that Donkey Kong Multi Screen on eBay fetches for a lot of money, especially if you don’t own one. But if you do find one at a reasonable price, get it! It’s enjoyable, and a part of history, which you can tell to your children to generations to come!

Before the internet… Part 1

Before there was the internet there was Television, and what television was good for back in the eighties and nineties was advertising and commercials. It was a time where if you weren’t reading gaming magazines, you would find out about games through television Adverts. Here’s a few I remember from back in the day…
This advert for Super Mario Bros 3 was just epic, as a kid I always wanted to know how they pulled off having so many people to make that mosiac of Mario across the United States…  Well it was all computer generated!

“To be this good takes Sega” was a set of adverts I really remember well with it’s crazy mechanical and robotic themes with a dude living inside a huge American eighteen wheeler lorry. As much as I was a Nintendo Fan Boy at the time, they used to show these adverts a lot in the early nineties.

I got into reading gaming magazines when I saw a cover of Nintendo Magazine System with Super Mario Land 2 on the front of it, I had to have it! I needed to know what the next Mario game is like, and just as I saw this Magazine cover, this advert appeared on TV around the same time in winter of 1992. Just the crazy look on Wario’s face in this advert made Wario Mario’s next big enemy!

Sony’s “Double Life” TV ad in 1998 is by far, the darkest, but powerful advert I’ve seen, that makes people know that as much as society has a habit of labelling gamers as antisocial individuals, we have witnessed a form of art they are not aware of…

“Up to 6 Billion Players” was the slogan Sega used for their adverts when the Dreamcast started to release Online games such as Chu-Chu Rocket, Phantasy Star Online and a bunch of Football and sports games.
With the internet age on our hands, at least I don’t need adverts to tell me what game to get, websites, blogs, podcasts and game news and reviews can be seen on the web. However in Part 2 of “Before the Internet”, I’ll be blogging about TV shows about video games in the early nineties.