Fake consoles

Check out this hilarious article at C&VG regarding the wonderful world of knock off video consoles. Anyone fancy a Chintendo Vii, Game Child or PS3 Next System Playstation Meeting?


I’ll take a Treamcast though.

Space Rawks on my Arcade machine.

Ever since I first watching my old brother play Asteroids in a cafe near to our school , I’ve always been drawn (in a straight line ūüôā ) to vector based arcade games such as Omega Race, Lunar Lander, Battlezone and Star Wars of course…it’s just something about those intense glowing lines moving incredibly smoothly against a darkened backdrop. To a much younger me, vector graphics were a symbol of the future. Today, they symbolise retro and boy do I love my retro.

As such, I’m a Vectrex player and alongside emulation with Mame/AAE I’m always seeking out all forms of vector styled games be it new concepts or remakes of original arcade classics. One developer that’s been releasing some truly outstanding games over the past few years is Sokurah of Tardis Remakes.

Available predominately for Windows PC (although there are quite a few for OSX now) his current roster of Vector styled games are –

Omega Race (2006 and 2009 edition) – Brilliant rendition of Midways classic.

Rip Off – Sadly, I never came across Rip-Off in the arcades as it’s one of my favourites on my Vectrex. Sokurah’s release is such a joy to play and looks amazing with those digital backdrops.

Star Castle – Another arcade/Vectrex classic. Check out the Atari 2600 port if you haven’t already.

Black Widow – A brilliant remake of Atari’s dual stick shooter (even more so than the original I think) and plays incredibly well when setup with a PC dual stick controller.

Zektor – It’s like Omega Race, Rip-off, Star Castle and Asteroids all in one game! Again, another machine that I didn’t come across in the arcades although I fear my pocket money would not have lasted very long if I had.

Space Fury – Intense Schmup action which gets even better (see below)

Arcadia – A vector styled re ‘imagine’-ation (sorry!) of an early 8-bit hit. I spent many happy hours playing this way back then on my humble Vic-20 , and this new version is just as fun and looks amazing with all that neon glow.

….and finally, his latest game, Space Rawks which is based around Asteroids Deluxe but with a shed load more rocks, plenty of power ups and frequent visits from those pesky saucers.

Just look at those gridlines…heaven ūüôā


As with previous games, you’ll find plenty of useful options including redefinable controls and the ability to jack up (or down) the amount of vector glow.


‘Sir, the possibilities of successfully navigating an asteroid field are 3,720 to 1’. I’d say, twice that judging by my score!


I didn’t think that playing these game could get any better but man, how wrong was I after transferred them over to my arcade machine.

Classic controls and extra bass from the wooden cabinet.

IMG_4376 (Custom)

Space Fury – Of all the games I’m tried, this one plays so well on an upright cab and feels just like a genuine coin-op arcade game from the 80’s.

IMG_4380 (Custom)


IMG_4379 (Custom)

I do hope that Sokurah continues to make these games so spread the word and show your support by visiting –


Colecovision Homebrew on Ouya

With thanks to Robert Broglia and his ¬†awesome series of ‘.emu’ emulators and huge thanks Lon Seidman’s Youtube channel¬†tutorial, I can now play Colecovision games on my Ouya…and in particular, a couple of rather funky homebrew titles too.

If you fancy having a go ¬†with your own Ouya, you’ll need three things (plus some games to play).

Download and install the MSX.emu emulator from the Ouya Store.

Download and install a File Manager on your Ouya –¬†I’m currently using ES File Explorer which I found via Google and sideloaded to my Ouya ¬†via my USB stick. It’s a little clunky to use and I’m sure that there’s better file managers out there (any suggestion would be welcome) but once you get used to navigating around, ¬†it’s not too bad.

My Ouya ‘Make’ folder.


Download the¬†Coleco BIOS files from Robert Broglia’s website, extract the zip files and copy the folder (and ¬†contents) called ‘COL – ColecoVision’ ¬†to a USB stick. Do not rename the folder or files.

Download link –¬†http://www.explusalpha.com/home/msx-emu

This next bit wasn’t overly clear in Lon’s tutorial, but what you need to do is copy the Bios files to folder that is found on the root directory of the Ouya. The root folder is actually called ‘SD card’…I’m not sure why, but as the Ouya OS has ties with the Android OS, I’m guessing ¬†it relates to the fact that most user account root folders found on Android devices are generally SD cards?

This is the root (sdcard) folder of my Ouya. Note the MSX.emu folder…inside there is another folder called ‘Machines’ and inside that folder, ¬†copy the ‘COL-ColecoVision’ folder (and it’s contents) from the USB stick.



So…the full path name should be – SDcard/MSX.emu/Machines/Col-ColecoVision – and inside there should be the two Coleco bios files.



To change MSX.emu emulator from MSX mode to Colecovision mode, fire up the emulator, go to the Systems Options  Menu and you should be able to change the Machine Type to COL РColecoVision. Then all you need to do is browse to wherever you store your game files, Load and blast away.





As I mention above, the two Coleco homebrew ¬†games I’ve been enjoying on my Ouya are –

Space Fortress by John Dondzila – ¬†He’s the chap behind so many of those great homebrew Vectrex games –¬†http://www.classicgamecreations.com/

Pound away at the enemy shields whilst dodging incoming fire in this homage to  Coin-op and Vectrex classic, Star Castle

Make a hole and destroy the cannon at the centre.



Next up is the most excellent classic shooter – Terra Attack by Scott Huggins.

It’s plays sorta like a mixture of Missile Command and Pleiads. You control three cannons at the bottom of the screen. Each have limited ammunition in which to ¬†destroy the alien craft flying about that are hell bend on introducing you to a pixelated death. The game is played over a few levels offering different enemies and attack patterns until the final showdown with said aliens mother.

Terra Attack is one outstanding retro shooter and if even if you don’t have an Ouya, ¬†it’s well worth locating a suitable Colecovision emulator and give this one a go





ZX Spectrum – Eric and the Floaters.

Eric and the…..ew!

It doesn’t sound like a game you’d want to play but on trying it, it actually turned out to be a mighty fine game of Bomberman…in fact, taking a closer look at the ZX games catalogue I unearthed a few months ago …it appears that it was actually written by Hudson Soft themselves so yeah it is in fact the original Bomberman.

Scan from my catalogue – Might Bubble Buster be the original Pang?




You can complete the level either by destroying all of the floaters or walking over the exit portal (once uncovered with one of your bombs).

eric1 (Custom)


Eric has an unlimited number of bombs to start off with, so from the outset, you can lay down a wall of napalm. Take that yer pesky floaters!

eric3 (Custom)

For a laugh, place a bomb next to the exit portal. Once it’s destroyed it will be replaced with umpteen floaters. – Run Eric Run!

Oops, didn’t make it and poor Eric is mutilated beyond recognition. I wonder were his top hat went?

eric2 (Custom)

A vintage arcade classic that never gets old whether you enjoy it on the original rubber keyboard, online via WOS or any number of emulators (currently running on my iPad via iXpectrum).





Also, powerpall by Hudson soft also turned out to be an early port of Pang – which just so happen to be another of my favorites from both the Arcade and Amiga.

I had no idea that Hudsonsoft started out making games for the ZX Spectrum

Arcade and Pinball at Play:Expo 2013

The UK’s biggest Retro Gaming event Play:Expo is rapidly approaching and with just a little over a month to go, lists ¬†of some of attending arcade cabinets are starting to appear on various community forums. ¬†Play:Expo are hoping to showcase over 100 cabs this year.

The guys at Jamma+ have posted this WIP list –

Bombjack Midi
Bubble Bobble cabaret
Capcom Tourney Cab SSF2 New Challengers
Century Star Fighter
Chase H.Q.
Cosmic Alien
Cosmic Guerilla
Crazy Taxi
Criminal Termination (Chase HQ Pt3)
Cruisin’ World
Daytona 2
Daytona USA
Dedicated Neo Geo
Dig Dug
Do! Run Run DK Repro Cab
Donkey Kong
Donkey Kong Jr.
Electrocoin ZX2000 Cockpit Konami GT
Final Lap 3
Ghouls n’ Ghosts Mini
Hyper Sports/Track And Field
Ice Cold Beer
Indy500 Twin
Juno First midi
Killer Instinct
Lethal Enforcers 2
Lordsvale Neo Geo MVS Cabaret
Midnight Resistance
Missile Command
Monkey Capsule Vendor
Monkey Mole Panic
Mortal Kombat II
Mr Do! Midi
Operation Thunderbolt
Operation Wolf
Operation Wolf 3
OutRun 2 SP Cockpit
Outrunners Twin Sitdown
Pac & Paint
Pac Man
Pacland Midi
Pacman midway
Parrot Capsule Vendor
Phoenix mini
Planet Harriers Cockpit
Playchoice 10
Punch Out
PuzzLoop 2
Ridge Racer
Royale cabinet with IGS PGM Knights Of Valour
Sega MegaTech
Sega Rally Twin Sitdown
Shadow Warriors Midi
Silent Scope
Silver Strike
Silverstrike Bowling
Space Firebird cocktail
Special Criminal Investegation
Spy Hunter
Star Wars Cockpit
Subelectro Scramble cabaret.
Sunset Riders
Supersonic Blastman
Taitel Track & Field
Tekken 2 midi
The Simpsons
Turbo Outrun
Virtua Fighter 2
Virtua Racing
Zeon Cab SF2 EX2

There’s a fair few of my favourites here ¬†including the return of ¬†those ¬†Juno First & Phoenix midi cabs which I ¬†spent so much time on them last year, Robotron of course and that awesome Missile Command cab which I haven’t played since it was on loan to RCM. Hopefully the Spy Hunter cab will be well enough to attend this year and I’m also hoping that it’s not a typo and that there’s actually a Star Wars Cockpit cab attending too.

Here’s a look back at the arcade cabs that appeared at last years event.

As a starved pinball fan, last years event was simply mind blowing and I got to play on some great tables. This year, main contributor Northern Light Pinball have stated they’ll be bringing¬†with them an even bigger collection of machines than ever before!

Here’s a look back at last years collection.

Of course all this is just a section of Play@Expo you’ve still got the 100’s of classic consoles to play, browse the trade stores to hunt out that classic game you’re after or…well the modern gaming tournaments and Cosplay stuff doesn’t really interest me but it all adds the atmosphere of making of a great weekend.

Will you be attending? ¬†Maybe I’ll see you there?