September 10th, 2004


Back In My Day...

So, for some fucked-up reason, yesterday, my brain decided it wanted to play "Mega Man". So, a quick search online got me a good NES emulator, and a shitload of old games. Spent most of yesterday playing "Kirby's Adventure"...yeesh, the old days...

OK, so I toss in "Ninja Gaiden", and realize that I cannot remember how to use the special attacks. No problem, bop over to and look it up...and proceed to laugh heartily. Let me give you an excerpt, and show you why...
"Upon first playing Ninja Gaiden, the primary realization the gamer has is the extreme level of difficulty. During the 8-bit era of the NES, games were typically excruciatingly hard, offering little to no saves and an insane amount of resistance to overcome. Ninja Gaiden is no different. Here is a game that expects you to beat it in one sitting, offering no save points or passwords to help your progress. This fact can be intimidating to a gamer not wanting a challenge. Ninja Gaiden requires you to memorize enemy placement, timing, and powerups, all while racing the clock. That's right, there is a time limit for each level, and more than likely it will expire before you finish one of the levels."

--from the FAQ by Michael Lemon, 12/09/02
That's right, kids. No saves, have to WORK to play the game, have to rely on SKILL. No "quicksave and see what happens" for you, bud. Yeah, the old games of my day may have been simple and look fairly crappy by today's standards, but we had to be GOOD at them, we had to WORK at it. There were no cheat codes for us, no GameShark or GameGenie, no 300 page book with all the secrets and stats and walkthroughs, no downloadable mods that gave you ungodly weaponry, no God Mode, no nothing.

And you know what? WE were the Gods of the Arcade. When we made a high score or finished a game, it was because we EARNED it...and anyone around watching KNEW it, and shared our triumph. It was a completely different time, in the videogame world.

Hi, my name's Frank, and I'm an old-skool game nut.