Archive for October, 2010

pip-boy mk2Yes, you make your Halloween costume of a Vault 101 jumpsuit.Yes, I was a “Vault 101 dweller” last year, but my Pip-Boy prop was cheap. Instead, I used a Garmin GPS(with a slideshow of screenshots), a Folgers coffee can & some AxMan-bought goods to make a much more realistic prop. The result? First place winner at my workplace’s costume contest! Figured since Fallout: New Vegas just came out, why not recycle the costume? Next stop? Discland’s costume contest.

Posted by s1500 on 10.29.10
Posted under: General & News
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Doh! Yesterday marked the 25th anniversary of the Little Console That Could: Nintendo’s Nintendo Entertainment System. More commonly referred to as the NES, it was released in the U.S. on October 18, 1985.

In 2006, Nintendo released its latest console: The Nintendo Wii. Not since the NES has Nintendo dominated the video game console market. Some might say, they’ve never dominated the market like they did back in 1985. For many people of our generation, the NES was their first Video Game System. Indeed even for myself. My family never owned an Atari 2600. We had to go to the neighbors house to play that. The first console I ever purchased with my own money was the Nintendo Entertainment System.

So if you still have an NES, dig up your NES today and celebrate the 25th anniversary of this revolutionary little console. If you need an NES… I know a guy. 😉

-=Edit=-

Both Nintendo Power (November issue) and Retro Gamer (Issue 82) feature tributes to the 25th anniversary of Super Mario and the NES. Check them out at your local news stand. Note: RG#82 is not yet out in stores but should be within the next couple of weeks. If you have a subscription, you should already have it.

Posted by Madaracs on 10.19.10
Posted under: General & News
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Over at AtariAge the 7800 Forum is abuzz with the news that Curt Vendel and the Legacy Engineering Group have been working on a new product release for the Atari 7800 ProSystem. As many of you know, the Atari 7800 ProSystem–or more simply–the “Atari 7800” was released in 1986 and at one time would have preceded the Nintendo Entertainment System (aka NES) in the U.S. marketplace as the next generation in gaming consoles if it weren’t for a number of unfortunate circumstances.  Well today we’re not talking about the days of old and who should have been the dominant video game system leader in yesterday’s economy. Today we’re here to tell you all about the exciting and new Atari 7800 Expansion Module:

NEW? That’s right. The Atari 7800 Expansion Module also fondly referred to as the 7800XM, might seem unusual to the traditional casual or hardcore gamer–but those that are a fan of the old-skool systems are well aware of this new product and what it means for the homebrew community that supports it. The group isn’t new and doesn’t just include middle-aged Atari fans who fondly remember the systems of yesteryear that brought them so much joy in their youth. It also includes a host of newer fans who respect the hardware for both its historical significance and who are discovering that simpler game systems can often be just as (if not more) fun than many modern systems.

So what could a 2010 product release for the 7800 possibly offer to the retro-video-gamer and his or her antiquated 7800 console?  Check this out:

(Bullets taken from the product page and my comments in italics)

  • Built in High Score keeping capability (compatible with approx 20 existing titles and any HSC coded games/programs in the future) HSC was something that was planned but never implemented on a large scale.  This device restores that capability.
  • 128K of Program Available Memory – A 7800 programmer’s dream which will hopefully yield some interesting creativity from the homebrew community.
  • POKEY audio/interfacing IC Chip for enhanced audio/voice synthesis and I/O Interfacing capabilities. The POKEY chip was a cartridge-based sound chip that was only ever used in a few games for the 7800.  It offered far superior sound to the native sound in the 7800 which was the same as the 2600 for backward compatibility reasons.
  • 2nd Audio Processor for higher end Arcade sound effects and music – Another interesting addition that should allow the 7800 to flex its muscles.
  • SIO (Serial I/O) Port for potential future use of Atari 8bit computer peripherals such as Disk Drives, Printers and Modems.  A 7800 on the web?  Cool…
  • 15 PIN Port for potential future use with a detachable computer keyboard. The Atari 7800 Computer System.  Nifty.
  • Will come professionally boxed in original Silver styled “Atari XL” type box with extensive User Guide and Technical Data manuals.  Obviously fans themselves, Legacy brilliantly executes their labor of love by preserving the idea the 7800XM might have been released around the same time as its parent.

In addition to all of the features listed above, Legacy has also carefully thought-out the age-old issue of certain Atari 2600 series cartridges not fitting quite right in the 7800.   The expansion module has been designed to allow direct pass-through for playing 2600 and 7800 titles.   The specifications are based on the tooling of 2600 cartridge guide while maintaining the 7800 pin-out architecture.  Legacy Engineering has insightfully allowed ample breathing room around the connector slot for the traditionally finicky Activision, Imagic and other 2600 titles in addition to fitting the cartridges of its native 7800 library.

Although many of you might think it’s “neat” and never order one, I have already placed my pre-order.  So if you don’t plan on getting one yourself, you can see it in action at the next Retro Video-gaming Party or at my place when you stop by. :)

~Product Link

~AtariAge Forum Link

Posted by Madaracs on 10.12.10
Posted under: General & News
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Just did a perfect Pitfall II run, 199,000. First time I’ve done this since the game first came out in 1983. This was part of this week’s Atari 2600 HSC. Conincidently, the ColecoVison HSC is doing Pitfall II right now. Will give that a go next. Timing is different for the CV version concerning avoiding the baddies, but it is the same layout for the level.

Posted by Zoyx on 10.10.10
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Atari Age’s Mame/Arcade High Score Club has two games this week – Space Invaders Deluxe and Pac-Man Speedup. Let’s mirror the competition here. Honor system, no screen shots required. The Roms are linked in the competition thread.

Posted by Zoyx on 10.03.10
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