“All the excitement of pinball action can be yours!” Also, “Please don’t sleep!”

September 29, 2014 - By - Tags: , ,

If you lived in Pennsylvania between the mid 90s to early 2000s, and not only enjoyed video games but was also an insomniac, then you’re probably familiar with the late night local TV staple above. There are numerous many reasons why the TNT Amusements infomercial is so compelling, and many of them are as plain as day, so trying to even articulate a few feels silly.

But to me, it’s oddly heartwarming to watch a television program that depicts something that’s as youthful and hip and contemporary and edgy as video games, yet presented by someone who is essentially one’s “cool uncle”. The one who says that same dumb joke over and over again, expecting a laugh each and every time, and yet you can’t help but play along.

Plus anything that reminds me of the good old days in which a kid didn’t need an iPad to be content, but instead an old Bugs Bunny cartoon (projected no less), along with a small business owner who knows how to sell, sell, SELL also makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside.

I’ve actually written about the wondrous Todd N. Tuckey once before, back in the day for GameSetWatch; there was actually a second infomercial, and for my super detailed rundown, simply hit this link. And thankfully since then, TNT himself has uploaded this other infomercial onto YouTube; part one stars here.

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Red Bull Is Doing A Documentary Series On Japanese Game Music… And It’s Actually Really Good?

September 19, 2014 - By - Tags: ,

Hard to believe, but it’s true.

Diggin’ In The Carts, produced by Red Bull Music Academy of all people, kicks off a very simple slice of truth: “For many of us, the music of video games played more in our households growing up than any other form of music at the time.” And each episode seeks to trace its roots, which is firmly entrenched in Japan.

The entire thing is slickly produced and presents the facts ma’am in easy to process bits that are equally enjoyable to digest. But that’s to be expected with almost any documentary series these days. The most important thing is how it delivers on its promises by shining the spotlight on the men and women who pioneered the medium

Some are household names to those who are interested in such things, whereas others are finally getting the recognition that’s long overdue. There will be six episodes in total, and we’re basically at the halfway point. Episode one explains how Namco is “the godfather of game music” according to chiptunes virtuoso Hally, and also includes an interview with Hip Tanaka, who discusses his groundbreaking work on the Game Boy sound chip plus his love for reggae.

Episode two is a love letter to Konami, as well as tips the hat to Sunsoft, whose Famicom soundtracks are still largely unappreciated. Finally, the just released episode three is all about the move from 8 to 16 bits. I can’t decided what my favorite part is: Yoko Shimomura describing the last minute bit of inspiration that led to Blanka’s theme, or Hitoshi Sakimoto’s story about how he used to record audio from arcade games with his Walkman as a kid.

You can watch the whole thing here.

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Zac Gorman’s Ideas For Sega Themed Shirts, A-Z

September 18, 2014 - By - Tags: ,

Friend of Attract Mode, Zac Gorman, as part of a drawing exercise over at this Tumblr, recently presented his vision for a hypothetical series of Sega themed shirts. You can check out the full res versions here and here.

Zac also wonders if Fangamer, whom we’re also pals with, might be interested in making them a reality. Now, not to butt into other people’s business, but I myself have wanted a Rez shirt for the Attract Mode shop for ages now. Though I also now really want a Trouble Shooters tee!

Anyhow, if Fangamer ends up tapping into Zac’s suggestions for their own, as in all of them, that’s totally fine. I’ll just ask him myself for shirts based on titles he missed. Like Dynamite Headdy, Thunder Force 4, and Last Bronx. For starters.

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The Doc(Future) Is Back

September 17, 2014 - By - Tags: ,

The above, “Amateur Speedwalk: WarioWare, Inc.: Minigame Mania: Drifting Away in 11:57″, marks the long awaited return of Topher Florence, aka DocFuture.

It’s been over two years since we last saw the good doctor’s handiwork, which aside from being impossible to properly articulate is often impossible to fully comprehend as well. At any rate, it’s been way too long.

Been a fan since back in the day, and used to post his videos whenever I could over at GameSetWatch. Am especially fond of his Pro Speedruns, so this latest effort is a treat indeed. For those not familiar, here’s one for the obscure NES side-scroller, Shatterhand

Sonic 2

And finally, Batman for the NES…

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Google Translate Says: “This … this is dangerous!!” & “Fading CRT is retro-ish!”

September 12, 2014 - By - Tags: , , , ,

Perhaps you’ve seen the plush Mega Drive elsewhere; was all the rage earlier this week, across all the major gaming blogs. If it’s news to you, then you’re welcome. But if not, it’s still pretty rad right?

Now, not to brag, but I’ve had mine pre-ordered since last Thursday (will look great next to my Mega Drive Megatron, which is due any day now come to think of it). And that’s because I’ve follower of the source that broke the news for some time now: miki800.com.

I first became familiar with the site via its Instagram, which I’ve highlighted many times in the past. And I highly encourage anyone else interested in similar game centric curiosities to add the site to one’s list of feeds.

Cuz where else can you learn about the Shinobi sleeping masking?

BTW, the icing on the cake is the wackiness that Google Translate ends up spitting out; in the case of the Shinobi sleep aide: “This … this is dangerous!!”

Or how about this Xevious belt? Which I absolutely need around my waist (was the first game I feel in love when I was 5 years old)…

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“Congratulations! We Hope You Have Enjoyed Playing This Game”

September 5, 2014 - By - Tags:

The dust has settled, and Fangamer ♥ Attract Mode can be considered a bona fide success. In fact, according to word on the street, this year’s FG/AM shindig might have been the best one yet! Or so I’ve been told. Anyhow, can’t wait to share the full rundown once the photographer passes along her handiwork. Till then, myself and everyone else who was involved, i.e. all the artists, game makers, musicians, and everyone at Fangamer, will continue to bask in the afterglow of a job well done.

As silly as it might sound, it kinda feels like being part of the winning team, who won the big game at PAX Prime. Which is why I have to wonder if it’s similar to the euphoria that the victors experience after the Super Bowl. Hence the video above. That and how I just love it whenever something legitimately obscure from the 8/16-bit daze finally comes to light, in this case the ending credits to john Madden Duo CD Football for the TurboGraphix CD add on.

The story I’ve made up in my head goes like this: the game was made in Japan, and when the programmers asked the American marketing firm or whomever for footage to accompany the title sequence, presumably of actual NFL players in action, someone seriously dropped the ball and at the last minute decided to film themselves acting like total goofballs in their backyard one afternoon. Something like that.

I also love how it resembles the nonsensical title sequences and credits of assorted Film Ventures International releases from the early 90s, which were often the highlight of the early Joel seasons of Mystery Science Theater 3000 (you know, stuff like Cave Dwellers and Pod People).

Via @ferricide.

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Fangamer ♥ Attract Mode… Some Last Minute Details

August 30, 2014 - By - Tags: , ,

We are a little less than 6 hours away from the doors opening to 1927 Events, which is where Fangamer ♥ Attract Mode is taking place!

Am currently trying to figure out the placement of all the pieces, though it’s been a tad bit slow going since I can’t help but zone out on all the crazy little details, as well as the overall gorgeousness, of what’s on hand. Hence all the Instagram pics.

Here’s some more (btw, first one coming up is by Jesse Tise, who is the same guy who illustrated our Samurai Gunn shirts, fyi)…

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