Super Mario Land (1990)
When I revisited Super Mario Land not long back, I thought I was playing a calculator, never mind a Game Boy. We had to buy scientific calculators in school in order to keep up with some of the ridiculous maths stuff that was coming our way – things likes xs, ys, and many other letters. I ask, what was wrong with numbers? Then there was sins, tans and coses… we were getting hit by these daily, and even our shiny new calculators couldn’t deal with whatever on earth an asymptote was. But I used to be seething with envy at our school colleagues in the US, who had access to Texas Instruments calculators, machines which I’m led to believe are the Rolls-Royces of computation and arithmetic. We really were deprived schoolchildren.
Continue reading “A scientific calculator is no match for exploding Koopas”
Game Boy Camera (1998)
Although my Instagram is by now world-famous (no less than 300 followers, and a Verified blue tick surely in the post), I’m no photographer. If I’m vomiting a picture of my collection all over ‘the Gram’, or worse still, if I’m plastering my mug up there, I don’t even take the time to take the perfect shot. Much better, I feel, to take a scattergun approach, clog up my phone with four thousand images of my gurning mug, put the heaviest, most flattering filter I can find over the best of that poor bunch of 4,000, and put together some witty caption. Hashtag it into oblivion, and there you go – another slice of fried gold.
Continue reading “I was taking black-and-white selfies before it was cool”
Pokémon Red/Blue/Yellow (1998)
Latest stats for the year reveal that Fortnite (Battle Royale) has been making hundreds of millions of dollars each month in revenue, for a total well in excess of one billion USD, with over 125 million total players. And I would conservatively estimate that it’s seen a total of two zillion game-hours total. The whole thing is a phenomenon, and even I tried it once. That’s right, I tried a modern and popular game, but I ought to quickly clarify that it was free.
Continue reading “Don’t hate on Fortnite too much – all it ever did was make me feel a little bit old”
The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening (1993)
You should have seen me last night, readers – I was unstoppable. I started my whimsical journey by taking flight, just bloody well jumping into the air and propelling myself forward. With the freedom of the entire world and its majesty before me waiting to be explored, I decided to start seeking out all my old enemies and slapping them in the face instead. I flew to each of my nemeses at breakneck speed and issued them loud, satisfying slaps before gleefully whisking myself away for my next target.
Continue reading “Naff off, and stop waking me up from my harem dreams”
Pokémon Trading Card Game (2000)
It’s just crazy how quickly a popular fad can take a young generation by storm. Even in the late 1990s, I’ve seen pogs, marbles, conkers, slaps, Royal Rumbles, knife fights, games based on the IRA and co-ordinated sexual assault all gain huge popularity among my young contemporaries. But the reach of all of these rather popular things, even the IRA games at the height of all that bother, never got anywhere near as widespread as that infernal cash-machine known as Pokémon.
Continue reading “I always knew Pokémon cards would dominate the economy”
Race Drivin’ (1992)
I do love witnessing bad driving and the road rage that often follows – it’s a perfect opportunity to see humans at their basest. Look, it’s always understandable. You’re operating heavy, life-threatening machinery. And then some white van man is cutting you up, brake-testing you, giving you rude hand gestures and shouting things in bottom feeder at you. Of course you’re going to give a bit of welly back. After all, you’ve convinced yourself that you are the world’s greatest driver. Or at the very least, you’re country miles better than the constantly-beeping, wrong-direction-indicating, roadsign-ignoring, non-mirror-checking rabble that you always seem to be surrounded by.
Continue reading “It’s your chance to play as Hans Moleman in a thrilling deathrace”