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Discovering retro games through ScrewAttack and VGVs

10/5/12 6:00pm
tl;dr

I had one of the 9999999999999 in 1 cartridges, which is just the way that we got them where I'm from. We didn't know any better, but it was good enough.

Let me tell you a story.

I am a 19 year old South African living in Arlington, Texas.

My very first gaming console was a knock-off NES, like the Golden China (look it up), but an even cheaper one. I had the 9999999999999 in 1 cartridges, which is just the way that we got them. We didn't know any better, but it was good enough.

When I was about 7 we had a PC in the house with the Duke Nukem series and I think we had Quake too at some time, but I wasn't really into gaming yet. A few years later I got my own PC, I got the original Red Alert, Warcraft 1, Half-Life: Blue Shift and Age of Empires. Things started to look good for the future of my gaming lifestyle. During this era a friend of mine introduced me to NAG Magazine, a monthly South African gaming mag. HOLY CRAP!! This magazine changed my life. Since we still had dial-up internet in our house (not uncommon in the early 2000's in SA), I was cut off from the rest of the gaming world. NAG was my only source of info. They had a CD and later DVD that came with every issue, filled with game trailers, demos, and free software. Probably 5 years ago a new folder appeared on the disc: ScrewAttack...

It blew my mind! It was only VGV's and some Top 10's, but it opened up a whole new world of info, and the best thing is that it was mostly about retro games, some of which I could find on my 9999999999999999 in 1 cartridges (btw, some of you might have guessed this, but there is never 9999999999999999 games on this 1 cart. You're lucky if you get 20). I was hooked on retro gaming because I missed out on the whole NES culture. When I found out that games actually came in boxes with manuals, I nearly went crazy. Let me just make it clear that the first really common console in SA was the PS2. PS1's were around, but that's just to give you an idea of how late we got into the console game. The fact that you could save your game on the original Legend of Zelda was just mind-blowing.

The more I watched VGV's and Top 10's, the more I wanted to play retro games. Once we got broadband internet (the first site I visited was ScrewAttack) I discovered emulators. It's not the same as the real thing, but I played the crap out of SMB, Tetris and the Legend Of Zelda. I am still in the market for all the retro Nintendo consoles, but right now being an international student in the US is quite costly.

This entry has no point. I don't have a soapbox to stand on. This is just a love letter to ScrewAttack. Thank you guys. You changed my view on gaming and I've been watching Sidescrollers non-stop since I got to the states. I love this website and I hope to see everyone at SGC!!

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