Phew, a very looooong day today but one that has seen many, many laughs and a whole bunch of retro gaming goodness with friends old and new.
A cold, dark, wet and very early start for the RCM admins as we needed to meet up at HQ early enough to pack up around 30 computers/consoles, associated games, attachments and monitors, transport them all to the event in Derbyshire and have anything set up before the doors opened at 10am.
We must be getting good at this after all these years as we soon had everything organised, loaded up and ready to roll within record time. Who says bloke’s aren’t organised!….o.k, I got slightly lost on the way to the venue because I’d forgotten the postcode
We were met on arrival by our hosts Chris Snowden & Shaun Bebbington and got stuck into to setting up the three rooms with everyone’s favourite gaming gear.
Yet another TV for the pile Jim.
In this room we had the MB Vectrex, C64, ZX81, Atari 2600, PC Engine, Amiga 1200, Commodore 64GS, Atari 800, Nintendo Gamecube…
…and not forgetting the VIC-20
Into one of the areas linking the next room we had the BBC Master, Nintendo N64 and a Sega Megadrive/Sega CD setup and Karls Everdrive SD cart playing a rather funky looking port of Angry Birds…on a Megadrive!
I didn’t get chance to take a good look at this today but will certainly be giving it a try when I’m back there tomorrow.
The next room housed an Xbox 360, Nintendo Virtual Boy (was being a bit stubborn at the beginning due to a loose mains cable but we managed to get it going in the end), various hand held electronic games, SNES, NES, Sony PSX, Atari Jaguar and Chris’ iCade with Mame and various emus.
Finally, we had one of the smaller rooms housing a Sega Dreamcast, PS2 with twin steering wheel setup (I rather enjoyed a spot of 2-up rally action with Jim this afternoon), Amstrad CPC 664 and a Sega Master System.
There was also, various Commodore C16/Plus 4 hardware set up from Chris humongous collection. All in all i think that there was something here for everyone and so with the doors opened and a few eager retro gamers ready to get going, we had a coffee and got cracking.
As the event was being held on the outskirts of Derby City centre and only a stones throw away from where Core Design had their office, I thought ‘When in Rome’, I’d re-play some of the games they produced including Lara Croft – Tomb Raider, Chuck Rock and the AGA-Tastic Banshee. The latter is a game I didn’t really play a great deal when it first came out but had since rediscovered it a few years again. It’s certainly one of the finest looking Schmups on the Amiga.
A good start to the day
I don’t stand a chance of getting anywhere remotely close to the type of scores that Jackie was racking up on Drop Zone on the Atari. A real pro in action! Note the cartridge in the the C64GS…it’s a port of the classic C16 version of Kickstart.
Max was kind enough to show me his (wip) port of Cosmic Ark to the C64. Damn well addictive, can’t wait to see the finished results.
Well, my score on Mayhem on the ZX81 is improving, but my 51 is no match for Stu’s 65. The challenge has been set for tomorrow
After lunch and getting to know a few other folk that arrived this morning and then the now obligatory Soul Caliber tournament on the Sega Dreamcast. I was also looking at some of the emulators running on the DC, and noted the how well they ran from CD and in particular with VGA box, how crisp they looked. Mental note to investigate further on my own setup.
Checking out some homebrew games for sale. Mmm Commodore games!
Andy sampling a bit of Commodore Plus/4 homebrew gaming with Adventures In Time
Impressive (but unfortunately not complete) this next game plays and looks very similar to Amalyte on the C64 and has an amazing soundtrack thanks to the use of the SID chip addon cart that Chris has for his Plus/4. I forget the name of the game (X3no, Xe3o?) so I’ll take another look tomorrow and capture some footage.
One system that I don’t really play a lot on is the Atari Jaguar. Apart from the odd game of Tempest, I rarely sit down to explore some of it’s other titles and RCM has got quite a few so I thought I’d take a look at some of them this afternoon. I was certainly impressed by Power Drive Rally, Cybermorph and the conversion of Syndicate so that’s another note to take a closer look into the Jag.
More homebrew and I spotted a few new cartridges for the C64/C64GS including one of my favourites, the truly bonkers – Quod Init Exit. <see previos blog post - http://stiggyblog.wordpress.com/2012/02/19/c64-homebrew-quod-init-exit/
That pretty much wraps it up for day one. As always, bags of fun when the RCM chaps get together and nice to meet and chat with a few new people. Bring on day two!
Oh and one last thing..Beam Rider on the ZX81 – That little black box continues to surprise.