Monday, 4 January 2016

Commodore Loving.

On a recent trip home I brought back my first computer.  The champion of the 80s that is the Commodore 64,  it is my original breadbox, chunky fudge model.

The stuff of 80s gamers dreams.

Wholly expecting it to require some maintenance I was seriously chuffed that after not seeing any use in about 22 years (that I can recall) it powered on straight away.  Admittedly I couldn't remember which socket the power adaptor plugged into but, after a quick Google I realised I was being a muppet and it fired straight on.

Fantastic,  now to test out some games.

Thankfully I have them easily accessible in a storage tub in the garage,  so I pulled out a few choice titles.  Given that all bar a few of my C64 games are on cassette tape and suspecting that time would have degraded the media,  I hunted around for some carts.  I know I have a few somewhere namely a couple released with the C64GS  console, sadly I do not have any of the classic carts.  Whilst I was unable to find Robocop 2 or Chase HQ 2  but, I did manage to locate the multicart that was originally supplied with the GS. Amusingly this cart was never tested and purchased on a whim long after I had stopped using old faithful.

Never really going to set the world on fire was it?

Wow, it only worked!

Great stuff had a blast on Flimbo's Quest, which is still an awesome game and one I remember fondly from my tape version back in the day.

OK right now feeling brave.... dare I break out my 3rd part C2N Phonemark cassette deck with the LoadIt style tape adjuster?

Why not, lets give it a whirl.

Whilst hunting in the game box I picked out some choice games in the form of the Thalamus collection (all the first games.... Sanxion, Delta, Quedex, Hunters Moon, Hawkeye and Armaylte) and also my copy of the fantastic Rowland Brothers Thalamus classic Retrograde.

OK fingers crossed.

Wow  the Delta MixiLoad appears, and instantly I am taken back in time.
I was a big fan of Delta back in the day and it still holds up very well but, boy am I crap it it.  Right,  let's change joysticks.  So off to my bookcase which has a display of old joysticks, picked up my first Zipstick....OK now I remember why I purchase the 2nd one (it seems to be lurching to the right constantly).  Zipstick number 2 works like a dream and I soon remember some of my Delta moves.

Right sticking with the Delta theme, lets rock out the sequel Armalyte.  Gosh darn it, it works....well OK only to the point it crashes but, that's OK.

OK lets get a bit braver.  Lets fire up Retrograde.

Oh...oh bugger grrrr the tape is stuck...damn it! and I mean really stuck, wound etight around the tape drive wheel. Crappity crap, minor surgery later and I realised that the tape will have to be cut :(

Alright stuff this.  We need a better solution that using tape based media.

Tune in for part 2.

Friday, 7 September 2012


One of my pickups from this years Kapow was a 2000AD trade called Insurrection I thought I would compile a mini review now that I have finally got round to reading it.

Set in the 2000AD Judge Dredd universe but not featuring the signature Judge or his Psi division compadre. The title is set on a mining planet which is rebelling against the rule of the Judges and Mega City law. After fighting and winning a war with an alien force on their own the population of the newly christened Liberty are fed up with the rule of the Judges.

The first thing that you notice about the trade is the fantastic art courtesy of Colin MacNeil. Greyscale almost pencil like art that actually looks as if it was in originally in colour then rendered monochrome , stunning stuff.  Artwork also has more than a nod to the Warhammer 40K universe.

When you get into the story it is just what you would expect from Dan Abnett who is a guy that really knows how to right cosmic tales (as very ably demonstrated in the Abnett/Lanning Guardians of the Galaxy trades).

I was seduced by the artwork and teased by the Dan Abnett writing … I wasn't disappointed. 

Friday, 10 August 2012


Quick update on the retrogaming side of things, I've made a bit of an impulse purchase.  Scrolling through eBay mainly looking for PC Engines at bargin prices I decided to have a quick search for a Sharp Famicom Twin,  nothing came up but I did get a listing for a "TV Computer Game" Famiclone.  I put in a random bit to test the waters and it held!  So I am now the winner of a bargin priced Famicom clone system.

Looks in good nick, says its in working order and with all cables plus some games (not the best selection and I think I will be selling the Barbie game!).  I've bid and won a few other Japanese Famicom games including one of those 4 in 1 type clone carts.

Hopefully it will all work and it was a bit of an impulse buy but, I figure I'll have a bit of fun with it and then sell it if I get bored.

Will do a YouTube vid when I get a chance!

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Kapow Pickups

After watching allot of pickups videos recently I have decided to get in on the action.
The plan is to vlog some of the comics, games and blu-rays I have picked up.

First vlog is up  and features some of the comics related items I purchased from this years Kapow Comic Convention.

Some of the editing in the video is a bit choppy.  Chiefly due to the youtube 10 min upload restriction and my capacity to ramble somewhat whilst talking quickly.  Bare with me...they will get better

Wednesday, 27 June 2012


Its been a while since I have done anything with this blog so about time for another post.

Lately I have been rekindling my interest in retro gaming. 
I went through a phase for quite a few years untill about 5 years ago when I was obcessed with
emulation.  MAME, PC Engine and Neo Geo were the main ones  I even used RAINE (RAINbow islands Emulator?) to play more of the Taito games (mainly for the later games in the Bubble Bobble franchise).

Occaisonally I dabbled with C64 emulation but, generally I was more interested in emulating the machines I never owned.

What brought this to an end was the demise of my main hard drive at the time (remember the Hitachi Deathstar any one -  I still have the drive and it works
periodically but, never long enough to copy content onto another device.

Recently I have had my interest reignited and I am enjoying a bit of a retro revival courtessy of PC Engine / TG 16 emulators plus a bit of SNES emulation.

Next step to get reaquainted with MAME and find out what's been going on.

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Back On Duty

For what ever reason I decided to play COD again.
I got a little bored of Call of Duty Black OPs so ditched it for MAG,  which is a truely awesome game.

I like to vary things a bit, so after whoring MAG for a while I moved onto Crysis 2 (courtessy of Love Film)  and after a brief sojourn on Resistance 3  I am back in the COD franchise and to the game I feel is the best (so far) namely Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2.

Initially I left Black Ops  because I got a bit frustrated (bad day and crap games) plus I had been wanting to try out MAG.  The rest of the LMS (Last Men Standing) had not been overly struck with MAG whilst playing the beta but, in typical style I ignored their advise and started playing it.  Historically the games I prefer are usually the ones the clan don't (Warhawk ,Resistance 2,Battlefield Bad Company 2 par example). MAG is an awesome game,  hard to get into but once you do its rewarding and the teamwork, leadership and class based approach are refreshing after playing COD for a while.

Crysis 2 single played got me hooked and the multiplayer with the suit perks were a break but, as a rental disc and impending Resistance 3 I had to send it back.

Resistance 3 whilst superb and a great end to the franchise,  I felt some of the aspects of Resistance 2 that I liked had been sacrificed in order to appease some more of the estranged Resistance Fall of Man players.  Still awesome and fun to play but something called me back to Modern Warfare 2.  The thing that struck me on my return was the speed,  its noticeably quicker than Resistance 3 and 'lo I am hooked again.

Still Battlefield 3 is coming soon not too mention a copy of Killzone 3 I have lying around unopened so I sense another sojourn approaching.

Friday, 9 September 2011

Blogger iPhone App

Wow finally an iPhone app for Blogger!
I mean seriously, how long did that take?