Posted by: seanmalstrom | December 31, 2013

I own all the DOS games in this picture. All of them.

Click on the picture to get a good look at all the games.

I used to be a very voracious gamer. Not only do I own all the games in the above picture (no, that is not me, my games are in boxes in the attic), I also own hundreds of games for the Commodore 64 and other systems. The Commodore 64 boxes were really cool because they are like music albums like you are collecting records.

What’s interesting about this period of gaming (DOS and earlier) is that there was no Game Industry in the modern sense. EA only really became the corporate giant we know today starting with the 16-bit generation and the sports games. From the picture above, you can see Origin games, Maxis games, various adventure and RPG games, and games that defy a genre like Star Control 2 (is RPG? Is it action? Is it adventure? What genre is it!???).

One reason I like earlier console libraries is how wild the games were. NES boxes are my favorite for that reason. Every box is different in its design as there was no ‘console brand’ on it. It is very fun.

This is why I keep looking at today’s ‘hardcore gamer’ and burst out laughing. They are a joke. They buy whatever the hype marketing tells them to buy. They have no standards. They think they are all ‘sophisticated’ about gaming when they keep buying industry junk. They’re buying the same games with different graphics or different gimmicks. In the image above, there was radical change in game designs and invention of whole new game designs. Today, every game is ‘like’ some other game. This is why the ‘hardcore gamer’ can’t see new games even if it hit them on the head. Think of a game like Minecraft. I was blown away by it. “Whoa! Nothing I’ve played is quite like this!” But there are ‘hardcore gamers’ who won’t admit to its success until after the 360 retail version kept outselling their precious ‘hardcore games’ on the NPD top ten charts. These guys would scoff at Tetris and Super Mario Brothers if they came out today. They would scoff at Wii Sports. Oh wait, they did.

The point of this post is to point out there is TON more gaming out there than you think. The further you get away from ‘The Industry’, the more uniqueness you will see in gaming. Clearly, the periods where ‘The Industry’ was absent are the most wild.

Now excuse me while I go play Origin’s Privateer.


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