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frootloop
04-02-11, 09:54
I signed up on the forums not to long ago, and have been lurking for a while. This is my first post, so forgive me if its longwinded!

EDIT: OOPS, my second...I submitted my other post first :P

I got hooked on your show as the world you guys paint is fascinating. During the arcade boom years, here in South Africa it was during the heart of the Apartheid era and we were facing economic sanctions, so original machines were all but unknown. The bulk of our machines were manufactured locally with bootleg boards. That didn't stop arcades from being a premier destination for my friends and I though. I fondly remember the only arcade I had regularly snuck into: Timeout - a veritable Alladin's Cave of what was surely forbidden delights! It was a dark, dingy, smoke filled cavern with the arcade machines in the narrow front hall, lined up against the grim encrusted walls, flickering with arcane lights, staring at you like some sort of battered futuristic parade of soldiers. They called to you with their intriguing sounds and patterns, mesmerising in their alien, imperious presence. The pool tables and pinballs were in the back hall with dodgy looking, nicotene scented guys stalking between the tables and eyeing you threateningly should you wander too close. While my mom did her shopping, I was given R1.00 (11 Rand SA money) to entertain myself for the 2 hours or so she'd be busy. That R1.00 translated to five games (20 cents per game here, as opposed to the 25c in the US). That meant you learned to get REALLY good so you could make that R1 last as long as possible! I remember the first time I played R-TYPE and had my mind blown....or beating Street Fighter 1 for the first time....or the bitter disappointment at how much I sucked at Ghost and Goblins. Moon Patrol and Popeye were the first games I got any good at - mainly because my dad was a fan and had a bootleg unit with the boards at his work. Of course, you didn't start out any good, so often you blew through your R1 way too quickly, which would then initiate plan B .... low grade vandalism ;) Once we ran out of credit, my buddies and I would do a circuit of all the games, hitting the 1up and 2up buttons in the hopes that somone left in a hurry and left a few credits in the machine - it was surprising how often this happened! Once we had exhausted that avenue of extending our playing time, we engaged in a slightly more dangerous game of cat-and-mouse with the huge, scarred, sullen and hawk-eyed robot that was the arcade supervisor / dude that made change for you. The first time I saw The Terminator, the arcade supervisor dude's identity was clear! One of my buddies would keep watch while another one of us would bash the coin return, counting on the fact that the coin mechanisms often jammed up and coins would occasionally get stuck. This would without fail score us a few credits...the downside was of course being thrown out should we be caught!
Ahh....Good times!

Classic consoles were also fairly limited in the circles I moved an as the cost was prohibitive at the time. Your show has inspired me to actually dig out and play some of the classics that I painstakingly tracked down over the years and have stored in the garage. I recently got my hands on an Atari 2600, a console I'd always thought of as inferior until your show. It appears to be working but I'm getting very distorted sound and the image appears to be drifting - might just be my new TV's tuner not liking the ancient hardware...or maybe the console needs some love. Would be cool if Scott covered some basic diagnostics of older consoles in the hardware flashback!


Thank you for one of the most educational and entertaining shows in any medium!

Keep up the stellar work guys :)

-Shafi Ghansar
Your number one South African fan....also possibly you only South African fan from the looks of it, but that doesn't make my self proclaimed title any less accurate ;)

..
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Dammit, now that I think about it....a better title would be Lord Supreme Commander of the South African Retrogaming Roundup Forces...someone send me a badge :P

miner2049er
04-02-11, 01:45
The pool tables and pinballs were in the back hall with dodgy looking, nicotene scented guys stalking between the tables and eyeing you threateningly should you wander too close.

It's funny how pinball was shoved in the back and not up front with the video games.


Once we ran out of credit, my buddies and I would do a circuit of all the games, hitting the 1up and 2up buttons in the hopes that somone left in a hurry and left a few credits in the machine - it was surprising how often this happened!

We did that too, it is surprising how often it worked.


I recently got my hands on an Atari 2600, a console I'd always thought of as inferior until your show.

People see games running on it or look at screenshots and are put off immediately by the poor graphics. The 2600 had some of the most compelling gameplay there ever was. It's where most of this began after all.


Lord Supreme Commander of the South African Retrogaming Roundup Forces...someone send me a badge :P

http://www.retrogamingroundup.com/podcast_icons.htm

Print one ;)

miner2049er
04-02-11, 01:49
... or print yourself a lovely poster.

http://www.retrogamingroundup.com/donate.htm

frootloop
04-02-11, 02:58
It's funny how pinball was shoved in the back and not up front with the video games.


Pinball was quite far in decline during the mid 80's when I frequented the arcades. The machines could not be easily bootlegged or manufactured locally and were therefore quite expensive when they were available. In addition, for a number of years during that period they were classified as gambling related and made illegal (if memory serves correctly, according to my dad). Adding to that, the machines were considered only of interest to the older crowd (my dad's generation) and seen as a bad investement, taking space that could be used for the profitable arcade machines. I cant remember seeing a single pinball machine in a public place from around '88 onwards. Its quite sad...pinball tables a quite rare here and very expensive if you do come across one for sale. Importing them is also an expensive excercise give the size / weight of a typical machine and the loacation of SA relative to the USA / Europe.




We did that too, it is surprising how often it worked.

:LD I guess it just goes to show people have more shared similarities than you'd think :)



People see games running on it or look at screenshots and are put off immediately by the poor graphics. The 2600 had some of the most compelling gameplay there ever was. It's where most of this began after all.

I completely agree, now that I've had a chance to actually experience games on the original hardware with the proper controllers. Many of today's genres have their roots here. Some of the graphics were also quite impressive compared to the ealier games - Solaris comes to mind.




http://www.retrogamingroundup.com/podcast_icons.htm

Print one ;)


lol, thanks!! Going to modify one of these and put it on my desk at work :)
</salutes>

GameGavel
04-02-11, 03:38
South Africa? Damn. Welcome! It is always interesting to hear about the gaming scene from other countries from around the world. Loved your bit about scoring credits in the arcade. I think we all did that in some form or fashion. Definitely glad to have you as a listener and now contributor to the forums. I hope you stick around.

frootloop
04-02-11, 07:48
Thanks for the warm welcome :) You guys run a briliant show and these forums are quality. I think it speaks volumes of your listeners. Pretty sure I'll be a regular here from now on :)

miner2049er
04-02-11, 10:25
Cool.

So, the vuvuzela then ................................................

SubaruBrat
05-02-11, 02:42
You know there is allot of high tech stuff in SA coming from the Afrikaans types over the decades. Currently some of the best aviation electronics come from SA, MGL makes some of the best aviation radios and flight instruments in the world. So cool to have you here, welcome aboard, I am sure your English is better than our Afrikaans.

miner2049er
05-02-11, 12:19
I am sure your English is better than our Afrikaans.

Go with German, he'll understand you. He just uses a bastardised version.

RetroPom
06-02-11, 02:27
Hi frootloop :)

Saw you post on the Weather Thread.

Guessed you must be Southern Hemisphere - But wrongly plumped for Australia rather than SA LOL

Welcome (from NZ)

Andy

SubaruBrat
06-02-11, 02:46
There is a whole lot of Dutch in there too, of which I know NOTHING of.

frootloop
07-02-11, 08:55
You know there is allot of high tech stuff in SA coming from the Afrikaans types over the decades. Currently some of the best aviation electronics come from SA, MGL makes some of the best aviation radios and flight instruments in the world. So cool to have you here, welcome aboard, I am sure your English is better than our Afrikaans.

Thanks for the welcome :) Wow that's seriously high praise! I didn't realise that SA defense / avionics tech was much known outside of Europe and the East.

frootloop
07-02-11, 09:18
Hi frootloop :)

Saw you post on the Weather Thread.

Guessed you must be Southern Hemisphere - But wrongly plumped for Australia rather than SA LOL

Welcome (from NZ)

Andy

<GRIN> Thanks Andy, pleased to meet a fellow Souther :)

Gettinga SA confused with Australia and New Zealand appears to be a common mistake - I get the same confusion with my accent when speaking with Europeans / Americans / Asians :)

frootloop
07-02-11, 09:21
Cool.

So, the vuvuzela then ................................................


Yes...brilliant isn't it! The wondrous sound of enthusiasm and grass roots support for the beautiful game! The gentle sound of swarms of buzzing bees - really gets you back to nature. Whats even better is, if its an SA contingent of fans with vuvu's - you dont get stabbed with broken bottles, regardless of the team you support ;)

frootloop
07-02-11, 09:33
Go with German, he'll understand you. He just uses a bastardised version.

Ah, I bet thats what you say about American English as well :P

These days my German is not to good - as confirmed by my German friends recently;)

Actually, we have 12 official languages. Afrikaans spoken nativley by a fairly small segment of the population - Xhosa and Zulu are the most widely spoken. I speak Afrikaans as a second language. English is the language of business and academia, and pretty much the primary common language.

SA English is very similar to British...the main difference being , going by your British Hour segements, is that we speak in an accent you can understand, with colloquialisms that make sense, and generally less risk to life and limb and property :P

frootloop
07-02-11, 09:45
There is a whole lot of Dutch in there too, of which I know NOTHING of.

LOL, same here if its spoken Dutch you are referring to, as I found out :)

Back in 1994 I was lucky enough to spend a month in Germany. While I was there I popped over the border to the Netherlands. I got a bit lost and decided to ask a guy about my age passing by for some directions. Spoken Dutch was very hard to understand for me with an Afrikaans background....the accent and pacing is completely different. It was almost impossible to pick out individual words. I did pick up that the Dutch seem to have less of a problem understanding me if I spoke Afrikaans slowly. Seeing as I was close to the German border, I decided to ask for help in my (poor) German. Blank look, no response. So I switch to very slow Afrikaans. Sam blank look, no response. Finally in desperation, I switch to English...and it emerged the dude was an American tourist! We both burst out laughung. Turned out to be a cool guy, helped point me in the right direction. Was also the first real life American I'd met - way to go showing your country off in positive stereotype-atypical fashion!