Retro gaming article from 1997

I found this interesting (from video games history foundation)

“The retro-gaming movement is officially underway.”

“Many of these complaints are echoed by Chris Crawford. “The world is full of cockroaches: this is not because the world is a bad place but because there’s a lot of uneaten garbage lying around. In the same way, the world of games has been taken over by a lot of stuff that don’t care for. Indeed, I think that the games community has lost its soul. The current designs are too slavishly trying to make a buck by catering to whatever they think the
market will bear.”

…if Chris only knew, lol


Hah, reminds me of what Gunpei Yokoi lamented about the direction of gaming in the mid-90s:

Yokoi: There’s a huge variety of console games out now, but to me, the majority of them aren’t actually “games”. The word “game” means something competitive, where you can win or you can lose. When I look at recent games, I see that quality has been declining, and what I’m seeing more and more of are games that want to give you the experience of a short story or a movie.

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I’m with those guys.

I don’t really care for stories in games. I prefer the win/lose and risk/reward mechanisms of classic arcade and “retro” games.

I love content like this. The gaming landscape was so different in the last millennium, but already you see some of the sea-change that is more cinematic gaming and “ornamentation” over gameplay.

The interview with Yokoi is especially eerie, with the trend he spotted over 20 years ago seemingly in overdrive today. My wife started Spider-Man 2 on PS5 yesterday and I can most certainly feel the lack of “game” when there are constant pop-ups reminding the player every minute to use such-and-such power they just unlocked or to go to this side of the room and press this button to advance the story.

Yokoi pointed it out then but especially now, it feels like these big cinematic AAA games are maybe 20% satisfying gameplay and 80% story and polish.

Love this interview, full of wisdom. Yokoi was a genius…

Love it.

I think old magazines are one of my next nostalgia/vintage ‘things’.

The vibes were so different and quite siloed and varied based on location and focus.

LMK if you run across any of my writing when you start collecting. lol!

Don’t be coy now. What’s your byline and which pubs did you write for?