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Classic Games (Games) Entertainment Games

Are Neo-Retro Game Releases a Fad? 266

Posted by Soulskill
from the new-starcon-game-please dept.
With modern console technology making it easy to develop and distribute small games, more and more companies are taking advantage of gamers' nostalgia to re-release decades-old hits, and to create entirely new titles in older styles. Gamasutra takes a look at what the retro game fad has become, and where it can go from here. What old games or series do you think would translate well onto today's consoles? "Many gamers who bought Mega Man 9 did so because of the game's inherent nostalgia, or because they never had a chance to enjoy the older games on the Nintendo Entertainment System when they were younger. Mega Man 9 is very much a product of its context. Its gameplay is fantastic, but it too is a product of the time period in which it reigned supreme. It suggests the question: can neo-retro games stand the test of time? Will games that mimic or lampoon the 8-bit era remain relevant and interesting to the masses long after its original audience has disappeared?"
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Are Neo-Retro Game Releases a Fad?

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  • Nope. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Cowclops (630818) on Saturday November 08, 2008 @12:55AM (#25685417)
    Well they won't keep making recreations of NES era games when nobody remembers NES anymore. They'll make recreations of newer games that people still remember playing as a kid.
    • Exactly. There's nothing special about the NES era, as the article insinuates. It's just that gamers who cut their teeth on NES are old enough to be nostalgic now. In the future, gamers will be nostalgic for the games they grew up on. Nostalgia is the driving force here, not something special about the NES.
      • Re:Nope. (Score:5, Insightful)

        by jmorris42 (1458) * <jmorris@[ ]u.org ['bea' in gap]> on Saturday November 08, 2008 @01:28AM (#25685571)

        > There's nothing special about the NES era, as the article insinuates.

        You are right there was nothing special about the NES, but there was something special about that time period, across both console, early 8bit PCs and the arcade scene. That was the period when everything was new, the genres were being defined and every month or two some development house was putting out something that was actually new and different.

        For example, a lot of good fantasy has been written after J.R.R. Tolkien blew open the genre, but each generation keeps going back to his work. Same thing is games. Donkey Kong might not have been the very first 'platform' game but Mario's enduring legacy traces back to it and because it and the Mario sequels forever left such a stamp on the genre designers still, even unconsiously, follow in Nintendo's footsteps when doing anything that resembles a 'platformer.'

        > In the future, gamers will be nostalgic for the games they grew up on.

        And will pine away for them in vain. Emulation saved the old 8bit world from oblivion because DRM, even when used, wasn't a serious obstacle. There still hasn't been a proper crack for any of the current generation consoles. Hopefully the proven nostalgia market in this generation will induce teh publishers to do a port to the platforms of 20 years from now, but since the effort will be non-trivial and the die hard fans won't be able to do it themselves.....

        • Hopefully the proven nostalgia market in this generation will induce teh publishers to do a port to the platforms of 20 years from now, but since the effort will be non-trivial and the die hard fans won't be able to do it themselves.....

          If the current trend continues, in 20 years making a game of today will be trivial compared to making a game of that day.

        • by kesuki (321456)

          people won't buy the NES or SNES era games without the gaming magazines that go along with them. that's not an opinion, it's a fact. i could never have beaten zelda without nintendo power. and i am not alone. in fact there are at least 2.7 million people just like me who can't keep up with classic games without period specific game guides.

          i just made the number up, but it sounded cool.

          • Now we have Google and Wikipedia to find on-line gaming guides. I don't think you need worry about this lack.

            Some of the X-com and Thief games have shown up on Steam, the PC gaming service that includes Half-Life and Darwinia. I'm thrilled: now I don't have to hang onto my old media, and I can play it on any PC I have access to.

            • by kesuki (321456)

              there was always gamefaqs, but text walkthroughs are so much less worth it, even at the price of 'free' pictures which belong to say Nintendo in the case of Nintendo power, make zelda walkthoughs for instance much faster, especially if you have dual screens, one for zelda and one for the walk though magazine.

              downloaded pictures of copyrighted materials, is a crime in some countries.

              • You wrote:

                > downloaded pictures of copyrighted materials, is a crime in some countries.

                Not necessarily. The 'fair use' exceptions, while not as clearly defined as a programmer might like, certainly exist and allow 'criticism' of copyrighted work. I think that careful use of screenshots would be fair use, especially if you're careful not to violate the trademarks and claim that your guide is official material from the game designers.

          • Oh, if only there was a place where you could still get those hints. It could even be a website, so that it could be more easily accessed, with a web search service to help you find it. Alas that there is no such thing...

      • In the future, gamers will be nostalgic for the games they grew up on.

        My games of nostalgia will be SimCity 2000 and Civilization 2

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        There's nothing special about the NES era, as the article insinuates.

        Not so. The NES was the first game console with a significant library of non-sucky titles. I tried playing my old Atari 2600 a few years ago and gave up, because it's all crap except for maybe a couple of games (Adventure, Outlaw, ... I can't think of a third title, and I had dozens and dozens of games). On the other hand, there are a ton of great NES game. Tetris had an NES version, and it's still gold. (OK, so the NES version was crap c

        • by hairyfeet (841228)
          Yar's Revenge and Pitfall. And yes I am old. But while I agree on the NES,I always thought Sega Genesis had the better lineup. Sonic,Eternal Champions,Shining in the Darkness,Phantasy Star 3&4,Mutant League Football and General Chaos(not sure if the last 2 were Sega only). But I wholeheartedly agree that the games of the Genesis/SNES era are still enjoyable today just as they are.
      • Re:Nope. (Score:5, Insightful)

        by hairyfeet (841228) <bassbeast1968@@@gmail...com> on Saturday November 08, 2008 @02:38AM (#25685805) Journal

        Nostalgia may be part of it,but I also think there is something deeper. When there were serious limits to the hardware the develops HAD to come up with new and interesting things to be noticd. Even the early PC FPS,which at the time would have been "state of the art" seemed to go that extra distance. Like the sheer fun of blasting to the NiN soundtrack in Quake, or the first time I played SoF and actually shot the gun out of the bad guys hand(is there even a game you can do that trick with now?) or of course the big boys- System Shock 2 and Deus Ex. Deus Ex allowed you to play it YOUR way while actually giving you more than go and kill X number of bad guys,and what can you say about SS2,it was just so damned good.

        But now,because of the incredible cost to keep up with the Jone's graphics wise,there just doesn't seem to be nearly as many risk takers out there. Instead we get to fight WW2 for the bazillionth time. More and more we just get sequel after sequel after sequel. Yet I still keep finding myself going back to Quake,SoF,Freelancer(best damned mods I've ever played) Deus Ex,etc. Why? Because they were FUN then,and you know what? They still are. Maybe the whole retro thing will hit more and more genres as the little guys see that they can find a market with them. Because I don't care if a game looks like 8-bit Mario,or the first DOOM, or the mitten hands of the Win9X shooter era. All I care about is the FUN,and if it has something different to it,like those games I mentioned,so much the better.

        Because I don't know about you guys,but I'm really getting sick of fighting WW2. Of course with some of the nasty DRM that the PC games companies are pushing you'll spend more time fighting it than Japs or Nazis,but fighting DRM isn't my idea of fun either.

        • The reason old games can be so compelling was indeed the lack of spectacle. We couldn't be wowed by a scripted sequence or cinematic effect, so the gameplay had to. This is what's missing from games nowadays: the gameplay being interesting for its own sake, and the game demanding your constant attention and input. Developers now are all about creating this quasi-cinematic experience that doesn't feel like a movie, and doesn't feel like a game either. It's really doing a disservice to the medium, which is ir
        • by springbox (853816)

          or the first time I played SoF and actually shot the gun out of the bad guys hand(is there even a game you can do that trick with now?)

          Fallout 3

        • by drsquare (530038)

          Yet I still keep finding myself going back to Quake,SoF,Freelancer(best damned mods I've ever played) Deus Ex,etc. Why?

          Because those were the first ones you played and you're looking through rose-tinted specs. Someone brought up on Crysis or Call of Duty or Halo would think Quake was a piece of shit. You might be tired of WWII, other people might be tired of shooting monsters in brown corridors.

      • by mattack2 (1165421)

        I never had a NES, but bought the MegaMan Anniversary collection for my PS2(*), since it was a set of games that looked like fun. (I've only gotten partway through the first, and it is hellishly hard like the reviews talk about.) I had an Atari 2600, I'm of the age that could have had a NES. (One housemate at college in the late 80s did bring one to our apartment.)

        (*) Which I actually got only several years ago, after the PS2 had been out a LONG time. (It was free due to Sony credit card points.. but s

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      Well they won't keep making recreations of NES era games when nobody remembers NES anymore. They'll make recreations of newer games that people still remember playing as a kid.

      I'm not sure I agree with you. My 5 year old really enjoys Atari 2600 games as well as Pac-man and other old arcade games. There's something to be said about the simplicity of many of the older games. She also loves playing Spore, so it's not like she can only handle simple games.

    • Er. wait a mo... (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Fallen Andy (795676) on Saturday November 08, 2008 @04:00AM (#25686041)
      Dead wrong. Some of us (and I'm 50 this year) are discovering most of those old console games for the first time!! (Disclaimer: I've been playing games back to c.a. '77 - the original "adven" on a PDP-11 in a research lab). The nice thing is that many of them can be played as casual games so I'll go off and play a little Dragon Warrior IV (NES), Summon Night (GBA) etc. My friend's son in the shop two doors down is probably playing Mario 64 (N64) right now...

      Andy

      • My friend's son in the shop two doors down is probably playing Mario 64 (N64) right now...

        This proves the GP's statement. Already the N64 era is starting to become the fond old memories. Give it 10 years, and N64 stuff will be the retro gaming. What you're saying is that people enjoy playing quality games, which is always going to be true. Open-minded gamers will always play through old classics they never had, and discover how great they are. The primary driving force, though, is nostalgia, which is going to manifest itself differently as different generations of gamers grow up.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by bonch (38532)

      My 10 year old sister obsesses over Zelda and insisted on getting every version available on the Virtual Console. She did this on her own, playing the original Legend of Zelda and also Super Mario Bros. Even though she's growing up in an era when 3D graphics are nothing special, the old games still appealed to her and will be part of her childhood memories. Now she's getting into Majora's Mask, and that came out almost a decade ago. It's new to her.

      I think these games, rather than being relics of the pa

  • Real neo-retro games (Score:3, Interesting)

    by davidwr (791652) on Saturday November 08, 2008 @12:56AM (#25685419) Homepage Journal

    Making old-fashioned new games is nothing new.

    In the '60s Star Trek gave us 3-D Chess.

    In the '70s gave us Sudoku, similar to Magic Squares number puzzles.

    The 21st century is giving us modern versions of Monopoly, which uses pre-real-estate-market-crash valuations.

    Me? I like Pong.

  • The Retro games often have some staying power that newer games lack. When the new video games are more like interactive movies and less like a game, it creates a niche market for people who actually want to play the games, the old way with simple controls and not having to remember hundreds of key combinations to use all the features. But in terms of releasing them using the old 8 bit graphics I see that dying out as the people who plays them die out. Unless they reincarnate them in dirt cheap hardware f

    • by phulegart (997083)

      Just an FYI... anyone with a Wii can be playing NES games. Most of the NES titles are available as extras that can be downloaded to the console with a net connection. Miss that old 3 level Donky Kong? Download it. Have a Yearning for Castlevania? Download it. Then sit back, turn your Wii controller sideways, and play.

  • Neo-retro? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 08, 2008 @01:11AM (#25685493)

    I'm not sure of the definition of 'neo-retro.' If this means creating 8-bit games just for the sake of nostalgia, then they'll probably die out. But games that build on and improve old styles of gameplay (here I'm thinking of the Castlevania series for the DS) will, I hope, always have a place in the video game universe.

    Here's hoping for Super Paper Metroid.

    • Excellent idea - some of us are almost done with Colossal Cave!
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Eli Gottlieb (917758)

      How about...

      neo-retro (adj) -- Deliberately creating a game for an older style, thus cutting development costs and allowing developers to concentrate on fun and gameplay instead of media presentation while still allowing developers to take advantage of modern technologies.

      For example, "Braid" and rhythm games are neo-retro.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by cluke (30394)

        Yeah, kind of like Dogme for films. From Wiki - "The goal of the Dogme collective is to purify filmmaking by refusing expensive and spectacular special effects, postproduction modifications and other gimmicks"

        It would be an intriguing experiment to set down similar rules for video games.

  • Does anyone else feel like Nintendo dropped the ball with the Virtual Console? There aren't that many channels, Wii Ware selection is still sparse and uncompelling, and the titles released from old console systems don't interest me, partly because what they have put out is crap that didn't sell in the first place.

    I've had 2500 Wii points sitting unspent waiting for the Final Fantasy and Dragon Warrior titles from the NES and SNES. The only reason I can think of preventing this is some licensing issue with

    • Wii Ware selection is still sparse and uncompelling

      Are you serious?

      - Defend Your Castle
      - Toki Tori
      - World of Goo
      - Mega Man 9
      - Alien Crush Returns
      - Lost Winds
      - Bomberman Blast
      - Tetris Party
      - Art Style: Orbient
      - Dr. Mario RX
      - Star Soldier R
      - Strong Bad
      - Wild West Guns
      - Gyrostarr

      While a few of the items do not appeal to me personally, I included them because they appeal to a majority of other gamers I've spoken with. However, the super-majority of the list are games I have downloaded and enjoyed. (WiiWare is going to send me to the poor house at this rate! :-P) The games I didn't like on that list are merely a difference in gaming preferences.

      So there is certainly more than enough to choose from. If you can't find a bunch of great games on WiiWare, you either are too picky or have already played them all because you've got WAY too much time and money. ;-)

    • by bitrex (859228) on Saturday November 08, 2008 @02:40AM (#25685813)

      Personally I can't say I miss some of the NES RPGs. A few years back I dusted off my NES console from a closet and fired up Dragon Warrior. Somehow my saved games were still intact from 1989, but first I started a new quest. After 20 minutes I was pretty well bored. These games were the ultimate grindfests; killing slime after slime to get enough gold to upgrade my bamboo stick to a sharpened bamboo stick or whatever comes next without even the social interaction or plot that makes WoW or modern RPGs interesting respectively. Sometimes nostalgia is well placed, in this case old is definitely not better.

      I remember that some of the later titles in the Dragon Warrior series were more interesting. I did get a kick out of loading up one of my nearly 2 decade old games, saved right near the end, and killing the Dragonlord once more for good measure.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by atraintocry (1183485)

      Can't say I agree. River City Ransom is on there! But you're going to be waiting a long time for FF or DW games. As others have said, Square would rather sell you remake upon remake. Just grab the ROMs.

    • I've had 2500 Wii points sitting unspent waiting for the Final Fantasy and Dragon Warrior titles from the NES and SNES.

      And you'll continue waiting because they're making a ton more money by reissuing/reworking them (well, FF at least) for the GBA and DS. And they've done a great job of it. If you want to play them, that's the way to do it. And a nice thing is that you can then leave the TV on and listen to it while you play the game.
  • Hmm. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Saturday November 08, 2008 @01:24AM (#25685547) Journal
    One phenomenon that I think we'll see a lot of(aside from simple "Hey, we paid to develop this game in the early 90's, slap an NES emulator on the sucker and any sales are pure profit!" cash ins) is the obsolescence/nostalgia response curve.

    New stuff is love or hate: Either it is new, improved, shiny, and exciting, or shoddy crap that ruins the original.
    Current stuff is ok: You can see the flaws and have some ideas about what could use fixing; but it is familiar and mostly comfortable.
    Old stuff blows: It is largely the same as current stuff; but the flaws that used to be merely niggling are horrific now that you've been using stuff that fixed them for a few years(I got into shooters pre-mouselook; but I'll be damned if I could go back).
    Quite old stuff is awesome: It is so far from memories of practicality that its defects are part of the charm, and most of the worst elements(remember all the NES games that aren't timeless classics?) have either been forgotten about or are now old friends.

    The above is quite vague, I admit; but it fits my experience of how the desirability of things like tech toys and video games change over time. Cutting edge PCs are cool, and fun to read about/drool over occasionally. My current rig is adequate; but unexciting. The couple before that suck, exactly the same feel as the current one; but slower, louder, and more expensive. My old-school Compaq portable rules, even though it is only really good for doing stupid basic tricks, I don't actually have to get any use out of it, so its limitations are quaint and endearing rather than annoying. Games are similar in many respects.

    Now, this is just a general outline. Some things are genuine classics, most things sucked from day one. I think, though, that it fairly well explains the current pattern in retro gaming. 8-bit is big because it has a lot of nostalgia for many of us, and because it is qualitatively different than current games.

    A little while back, I gave GoldenEye a try again. It was horrific. I don't know how I ever enjoyed it. The experience was qualitatively equivalent to a modern 3D shooter; but with gaping holes where all the stuff we've improved between now and then should have been. Same thing happened with Dune II. A true classic of the RTS genre; but all I could think about was how Dune II's interface was missing all the refinements that it had picked up by the time Red Alert was released. It's like picking up an old Pentium machine, it's exactly the same deal as whatever beige box is under your desk now, none of the exoticism of an old C-64 or apple or amiga, but it's a zillion times slower, you can't get RAM for it, and you had completely forgotten that it predated ATAPI CDROMS.
  • Don't forget.... (Score:5, Informative)

    by carbon 68k (309023) on Saturday November 08, 2008 @01:29AM (#25685587)

    Those of us who didn't have consoles as kids, and are enjoying these titles and genres for the first time!

    • by lokedhs (672255)
      I agree. I was a Commodore 64 user during the 8-bit era. My first experience with MegaMan was quite recently when I played the Nintendo games on the NES emulator on the PSP. I bought MegaMan 9 for my PS3 the day it came out, and I'm really enjoying it.

      I think that we have recently seen a resurrection of 2D gameplay, both in terms of rereleased 8-bit games as well as completely new games (including the amazing Super Stardust HD [wikipedia.org], Bionic Commando Rearmed [wikipedia.org] and the new king of 2D platformers Little Big Planet [wikipedia.org])

  • Wonder no more! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by DerekLyons (302214) <fairwater@gmail. c o m> on Saturday November 08, 2008 @02:07AM (#25685711) Homepage

    And people wonder why Hollywood keeps retreading the same old stuff...

  • There's always going to be a market for retro games, but the definition of "retro" will change depending on the market.

    8-bit games like MegaMan 9 will be big with the set who remember playing them back on the NES. As will parody games, like Strong Bad's Snake Boxer 5 and Alge-bros. (:

    I never owned a NES (only console my parents ever sprung for was the Intellivision); I spent my halcyon youth playing Sierra games. So stuff like the VGA remake of Quest for Glory 2 by AGD Interactive [agdinteractive.com] are like gold to me.

    As tim

    • by HappyEngineer (888000) on Saturday November 08, 2008 @03:01AM (#25685867) Homepage
      But there will always be a small minority group of classical gamers who will act akin to Shakespeare lovers. Imagine 100 years from now people are lying back in their Matrix-style brain boxes chatting about the beautiful simplicity of Pac-Man.

      Imagine the professors of late 20th century gaming who fight with the professors of early 21st century gaming about how the 21st century was just a dumping ground for mindless copies of the true classics. Mario Tennis is after all just a graphical update for Pong. Fallout 3 is really just a graphical update for Bezerk.

      Imagine the angry depressed loners with digital fingernails and LED hair who fight about how ET for Atari was the best game of all time.

      And, of course, there will be people like me who still write text adventures for the yearly ifcomp. (If you've forgotten, check out ifcomp.org. This year's contest ends on the 15th of November!)
  • ...that was plugged on slashdot recently. It's very 80's-arcade style. I can't even tell that it's about emacs and vi (no, keep reading! seriously!) when I'm playing it.

    What I do know is that it has a heavy metal soundtrack, explosions, wireframe graphics, spaceships, lasers, shit blowing up left and right, and MORE.

    I haven't been able to get more than, like, a minute into the first level, but just playing it cracks me up. The geekiness of it (e.g. bumping into "kernel space" at the top of the screen) mak
  • by rtobyr (846578)
    Oh PLEASE remake Atari 2600's "Adventure" with today's technology. Holy shit! The Red Dragon! Run muthafucka, run!!!!
    • Dragon? What Dragon?

      Personally, I can't figure out why more games don't have killer ducks. Those mofos were the scariest fowl ever rendered on a low-res display!

  • Who cares if it stands the test of time? If I enjoy it now, and it is cheap, isn't that a winning combination? It isn't like I'm paying $60 for Mega Man 9 and expecting it to stand up against Gears of War.

  • What it's become is an easy way to make money. Why make a new Megaman and sell it for $10, rather than emulating a bunch of older, tried and true games? Why doesn't Sony create a way for volunteers to develop retro/homebrew games for the PS3, and then distribute them freely/cheaply over the PSN? It's all about money.

    With digital purchasing made easy on the consoles, the potential for an endless profit stream is huge. Realize this, and you'll start seeing that it drives everything the console makers do, espe

  • by Waccoon (1186667) on Saturday November 08, 2008 @04:44AM (#25686157)

    I think it's backlash against 3D gameplay. I'm not talking about 3D graphics, but rather 3D gameplay and interacting with things in a 3D world.

    In 2D, you can do a lot of really cool things because you don't have to think about depth, like how far you have to jump to get to a platform. In 2D, it's obvious. You also don't have to worry about camera angles, which have gotten better in the last 10 years due to improved AI, but they still pretty much suck. I hate backing against a wall in a 3rd-person platform game and seeing the camera go berserk.

    I also believe that 2D games, especially platformers, give you more freedom to goof around. If a game has a good "feel", you can go all kinds of cool chain-reaction moves which are pretty much impossible in 3D games. 3D games have usually been more procedural due to the interface complexity. I can jump off a platform, smush rows of goombas, and punch a brick to get a coin in one shot. With a typical 3D platformer, you pretty much do one thing at a time -- walk up to something, jump, move again, pick something up, shoot, walk, talk, then walk some more. That's my theory as to why the Wii's 3D controller is wasted on waggle games. Thinking in 3D is actually very difficult.

    Of course, style matters, too. 3D graphics often lacks the color and graphic power of good 2D. I like remakes of old games, but they cannot either be exact replicas of the old games, or use too much technology. Geometry Wars is a real favorite of mind, as it brings back the old arcade feel, but still offers a pretty fireworks show. Games like Mega Man 9 really turn me off. I have fond memories of 8-bit gaming, not 8-bit limitations.

    • I feel about the same way. I am a big fan of the more recent 2D Mega Man games, like X4. There's a 2.5D remake of Mega Man X for PSP that's decent.

      On the other hand, there's something charming about the limitations themselves, and how developers worked with and against them to make art. Chip tunes, for instance. Some people don't like it but I love the style of the original Mega Man serious music, or Castlevania, etc. Granted, I don't drive around listening to it, but when I play the games it definitely add

    • by 4D6963 (933028)

      Very true. I think that since the widespread advent of 3D graphics, 3D has been seen as a must-do, i.e. well feel that 2D belongs to the early 90s. And therefore, 3D is forced onto any genre because well you don't have the choice, people still enjoy the relative novelty of 3D.

      However, sometimes, often, as you pointed out, it makes the gameplay worse, by making things harder to control, to see, and so on. Sonic the Hedgehog was never better than when it was in 2D. It should have stayed this way, unfortunatel

  • I've said it before and I'll say it again, if a game is fun and challenging it will win no matter how sophisticated (or "unsophisticated") it is.

    So if "fun games" is a fad then fuck it I'm on the fad bandwagon.

    • I think the article was talking specifically about Mega Man 9 and Contra 4. Not just about simple games or 2D games, of which there are plenty on the online stores for each console. But actually reviving old franchises and making games in a specific style, down to the palettes and music composition, etc.

      What they did with Mega Man 9 was probably more sophisticated than it would have been had they not been trying to artificially recreate an NES-style environment. They went even beyond that, by setting out to

  • The good games keep you coming back. Whereas in the 8-bit days games were cheap you could keep buying new ones, I was shopping yesterday and all the new PS3 releases were 60-70e (about $100). Probably ok value for money considering all the work that has gone into them but no longer in the realm where you can play for a couple of days and then forget about it. The retro games fill a good niche for a bit of variety in between the more 'serious' purchases. My favourite 8-bit game was Elite, and I recently disc

    • by Dogtanian (588974)

      Whereas in the 8-bit days games were cheap

      Although I was fortunate in that by the time I got my 8-bit Atari 800XL there was a healthy budget games market (UK £1.99-2.99) and most games were cheap, I understand that this wasn't always true earlier on, particularly with the Atari. Some of the early Atari home computer games were apparently very expensive, and AFAIK 8-bit console games- whether for the early Atari VCS or the later NES- were *never* that cheap. In fact, taking inflation into account a lot of those games were just as expensive.

      T

    • by Dun Malg (230075)

      60-70e (about $100)

      the Euro is only 1.27 to the dollar. 60e-70e is only $75-$89

  • So are pockets, shoes... Florescent dyed hair..

    • by 4D6963 (933028)
      Everything that won't always be necessary to our survival (sex, food, breathing) will eventually be a fad. Everything that will disappear will be deemable of having been a fad. Maybe even we will be deemed a fad of nature, when we disappear.
  • Consider all the people who play games on cell phones and portable platforms, as well as apps on websites such as social network games. Those usually have limited graphic capability that are close to 8-bit era, or marginally better. This is because of a very simple fact: good gameplay trumps good graphics every time! Have you ever played a game with awesome graphics that you put down quickly because it was simply no fun at all? (I'm looking at YOU, Monster Hunter Freedom!)
    • by 4D6963 (933028)
      Funny you should mention cellphones, all the commercial game demos I've tried on my N95 all have "flashy" (by modern cell phone standards) 3D graphics, but abysmal gameplays that cannot compare to any standard during any era in the history of the video games.
  • Hard to think that MAME is just a fad.

    Then again, wait until all the people who grew up in the 80s can't play, and ask that question again.

    By that time, WoW will be considered "retro".

    --Toll_Free

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