ION Gives iOS Gaming a Mobile Makeover

Posted by Tim Sheehy on Feb 16, 2012 in Tech, Videogames

When it comes to mobile gaming, I’m always in the market for a decent control interface. Recently I wrote about Ten One’s Fling Joystick which allows you to stick an analog nub to your favorite tablet or smartphone. While it’s a great alternative to fussing with a touchscreen interface, it has its shortcomings such as a lack of buttons, and so on. Fortunately, there are plenty of alternatives such as ION Audio’s iCade series. Read more…

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Retrode Does Retrogaming Right

Posted by Tim Sheehy on Jan 4, 2012 in Tech, Videogames

Retrode

Introducing Retrode, a USB adapter for 16-bit retrogaming. I’m not sure if there’s a simple term for what Retrode does, but I certainly dig its purpose, so I’ll try to describe it. The adapter delivers an authentic retrogaming experience by allowing you to use your own cartridges and controllers with the emulators you download. With ports for both the SNES and Sega Genesis/Mega Drive , Retrode gives you driverless emulation, complete with data access and the ability to save to sram, without the need to obtain your roms via the net. Of course, you can still use the controllers with one you’ve downloaded, but its nice to know you’ll have options. Read more…

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Modern Retrogaming for the Road

Posted by Tim Sheehy on Dec 13, 2011 in Tech, Videogames

a320 Pocket Retro Game Emulator 2

There was a time when I would look at portable gaming with disdain. The products, ranging from Tiger handhelds, to even Nintendo’s GameBoy, always struck me as poorly developed, delivering casual experiences just to kill time. A lot has changed since then and, in recent years, I’ve grown new-found respect for the medium. These days, developers have found ways to offer the deep, immersive experiences that were once exclusive to the consoles and PCs of old. Even some of those classic titles I once held in such high regard have made their way to our smartphones. But what about the ones that haven’t? There’s options.

Read more…

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This Pac-Man Ghost Lamp Will Have You Reaching for Your Pills

Posted by Tim Sheehy on Nov 29, 2011 in Hobbies and Collections, Videogames

Pac-Man Ghost Lamp

As those of us who spend our evenings glued to our laptops can tell you, nothing’s worse than accidentally knocking over your coffee in the dark. I’ve made the mistake more than once, so I’ve been looking for a solution that doesn’t involve leaving the lights on, and I think I might have just found it. Check out these awesome little Pac-Man Ghost lamps. Not only are the conveniently small, just four inches tall and just bright enough to light up my desk, but they speak to the retro-gamer — those of us who grew up on rolls of quarters and joysticks. Best yet, I can take it anywhere I take my laptop. The Ghost is powered via USB, so all I have to do it is find a port to plug it and I’m good to go. It’s also incredibly cheap, ThinkGeek currently has them on sale for just $10.  Read more…

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Namco Bandai’s Pac-Mac DX is Like a Rave You Won’t Want to Miss

Posted by Tim Sheehy on Nov 16, 2010 in Videogames

There has to have been countless iterations of this game over the years but it’s looking more and more like Pac-Man Championship Edition DX may be the best to date. Scheduled for release via Playstation Network and Xbox Live!, this sequel features multiple game modes, and gameplay tweaks such as slow motion, bombs and a new type of ghost. Much like the original Pac-Man Championship Edition released back in 2007, the visuals are stunning, clean, and colorful. If you haven’t seen for yourself, check out the video above. Pac-Man Championship Edition DX is scheduled to release sometime this week.  Read more…

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Retrogaming Goodness; The Atari 2600 USB Joystick

Posted by Tim Sheehy on Nov 4, 2010 in Videogames

Atari 2600 USB Joystick

Remember these? The classic Atari 2600 joystick — I’m feeling nostalgic just looking at it. It brings back fond memories of classics like Defender and Frogger. Trying to gator infested chasms in Pitfall! or defending my cities from the constant barrage of missiles in Missile Command. Even though my old Atari is broken and sitting in my closet collecting dust, I still enjoy playing those classic games via modern emulation. I’ve had to settle for whatever controller I’ve had on hand, be it an Xbox 360 wireless, or some piece of Logitech hardware, but fortunately, the guys over at ThinkGeek finally have a solution to that problem. Someone decided to finally create a replica of the original Atari 2600 joystick with a USB input. Amazing, right? If you want one of these one-button bad boys, they’ll run you about $25. That’s pretty reasonable if you ask me. Read more…

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A Pokémon Tribute Tune

Posted by Michael Pinto on Mar 1, 2010 in Animation, Fandom, Videogames

This heartfelt videogame filk song comes from Alex Day who is based in the UK: It’s the first of a trilogy of tunes which also includes tracks dedicated to the other retro gaming gods — Mario and Sonic. Day got his start in music when he sold his deck of Yu-Gi-Oh! playing cards and used the money to buy his first electric guitar — which was followed a year later with his own YouTube channel. I first discovered Alex when he uploaded a Dr. Who song to YouTube and I’ve been a fan ever since — it’s great to see someone celebrate their nerd passions with music. Read more…

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Adorn Your Christmas Tree with the Gaming Spirit

Posted by Michael Pinto on Nov 29, 2009 in Hobbies and Collections, Videogames

Controller Ornaments

Fans of videogames and interface design will love these Controller Ornaments which are based on a wide range of videogame units from the ghost of Christmas past. The set was created by industrial designer Dave Rollins who has a nice sense of whimsy in his work: Read more…

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Contra: The Rebirth of a Ramboesque Retro Game

Posted by Michael Pinto on Sep 9, 2009 in Videogames

The 1988 NES game Contra

The 1988 NES game Contra

Contra Rebirth is a WiiWare title that’s based on the 1987 Konami arcade game Contra ((魂斗羅) where you get to play an mutant killing commando (as a game the plot owed a great deal to the popular films of that era like Predator). The original game did so well that it was ported to NES in 1988 and has a well deserved rep of being the toughest game to beat. I’m really glad that we’re starting to see the market for retro games move out of the hobbyist era and into something more mainstream. Here are some screenshots: Read more…

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Vintage Computer Festival East: A Must Attend Retro Computing Event

Posted by Michael Pinto on Sep 2, 2009 in Fandom, Tech

If you live in my neck of the woods you may want to think about attending the Vintage Computer Festival East this year: It’s running from September 12th until 13th at the InfoAge Science Center in Wall, New Jersey. Shown above is an amazing video from last year which shows an ancient PDP 8 computer running Space War. This year the fest will feature an 8-bit music concert, a by-the-pound book sale, a build-your-own PockeTerm workshop, and the BASIC Programming Challenge. The keynote speaker is Ted Hurewitz who worked on RCA computers in the 1950s. A single day is $10 and a weekend pass will cost you $15 (hell that’s coat check tip at one of those fancy web 3.0 conferences).

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A Commodore 64 on Your iPhone: An Exclusive Interview with Manomio

Posted by Michael Pinto on Jun 22, 2009 in Tech, Videogames

A C64 on Your iPhone: Apple you've got to do this!

If you’re a retro computing fanboy like me on Saturday you were devastated to learn that Apple denied permission to the developer who created a Commodore 64 emulator for the iPhone. Now normally this news wouldn’t surprise me, but what broke my fanboy heart is that the developer jumped through all the right hoops: Not only did they get a license from the owners of Commodore but they even got positive signals early on from Apple. Read more…

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Enter the Space Fantasy Zone: The 1991 Retrogame That Never Was…

Posted by Michael Pinto on Nov 24, 2008 in Videogames

Space Fantasy Zone (スペースファンタジーゾーン)was the unreleased followup to the 1985 Sega arcade game Fantasy Zone (ファンタジーゾーン) which was later ported to a wide range of systems from the Nintendo Famicom to the Sharp X68000. The reason Space Fantasy Zone was never released was because NEC developed the game without getting permission from Sega who made it a point of not letting them put it out. The 1991 title was created for the NEC PC Engine Super CD-ROM2 platform which is known in the United States as the TurboGrafx-CD. Over the years a prototype of the game has been floating around (which is what this video is from) and rumor has it that an ISO of the SuperCD has been leaked in the past. Read more…

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