Tuesday, 12 February 2008


So, gaming. Pretty well established past-time right? Pretty much well defined itself as a mainstream form of entertainment? NO! A mere 26 years ago, the spectrum was doing its thang, and how different that thang was. Those glorious, halcyon days of yore still bring a bead to the eye, and a tug to the heart. Its sometimes difficult to believe how recently games have come to the place they're in today. GTAIV, Bioshock, Wii Play? How has this happened? What an extraordinary age we live in! Think load time are bad now? You young whippersnappers don't know you're born! Its easy to forget how young gaming is as a medium, so you should pause to reflect on this the next time its getting a bashing from fuckwits on Fox news, no wonder they struggle with the concept. Those old enough to remember the speccy and all its joys may have given up their gaming habits to get mortgages instead, but many of us press on with the new fangled bastardised hobby of ours. Some of us still love it, and even suggest that games are much better now and the old ones are merely ghostly reminders of an age long since improved upon, best viewed through the rose tinted specs glued stubbornly to our eyeballs.

But thats all bollocks of course because we can still play this wondrous heritage here and now, in this age of hd, surround sound, 5.1, 2.non-sense. The retro scene is thankfully alive and well, presumably organised by many of my generation who probably did get mortgages and who firmly refuse to play anything with more than seven colours. Some of these technological refugees saw fit to compile the wholly remarkable World of spectrum and its incredible archive, which I've been meaning to big up for a while. This wonderful resource can plunge you back into the heart of your earliest gaming memories in the time it took you to eat your toast this morning.

And while many of your fond memories may prove to be ruinously pinkified, many are still solid prospects, and the nostalgia of even bad games with amazing music can be enough. Get yourself an emulator, download ALL of your favourites (except Ultimate play the game, or Rare as they call themselves these days, or party pooping gits as I call them) stick your oldest Now album on i-tunes and pretend like its 1982. Now this is living!

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