I'm far past the age where I want to be among the die-hard gamers who must own every games console. I already did that a lifetime ago when the Genesis and Super Nintendo were battling it out, while NES enjoyed its final glory days. Oh, and I had an Atari Lynx around somewhere. Yikes.
This strain of thought has been popping up this week, because I'm getting the feeling that I may be heading down that path once again. I really need to get out of the house more often.
Right now, I have a pile of emulators on my PC's hard drive (which I've discovered may or may not work anymore), but I never use those except for writing reviews every now and then. I have a Sega Saturn, for which I've burned somewhere around 200 games. But I haven't really touched the thing in months, and when I did it was pretty much for World Series Baseball '98 and one of the Virtua Cop games.
My dilemma isn't that I want to own a dozen game systems. It's that I only want to play two or three games on each console - and these invariably wind up being the exclusives.
Here's how things stand right now. I'd like to score an old Atari 2600 just for Warlords. Four-player Warlords was the best thing to ever happen to Atari, and the emulators just couldn't work it properly. So that means pulling out a couple pairs of the paddle controllers, which strangely enough are still very entertaining and intuitive to use. My wonder at those little gadgets from 1980 still shines.
So I'm thinking of Atari 2600, for Warlords, and maybe Yars' Revenge...and Activision's Ice Hockey, for sure...and then if I could ever find Quick Step somewhere. But that's pretty much it. 99% of the library couldn't hold my interest for 60 seconds.
Then my brother gets used versions of the Dead or Alive games and Soul Calibur 2 for xBox. All this does is sparkle my fondness for the real greats - namely, Virtua Fighter and Soul Calibur. Then I start thinking seriously about getting a PS2, which I skipped entirely, just for VF4 Evolution. Oh, and I might as well score Katamari Damaci and Ico. But that's pretty much it.
Soul Calibur 2, of course, just makes me miss my old Sega Dreamcast all the more. That was the last console I ever really cared about, aside from some dabbling with the Nintendo DS. There are so many used Dreamcasts floating about these parts that it's almost impossible to resist. You can get one in pristine shape for $40 or less.
Dreamcast is the one real exception to my 99% Rule. I actually loved most of the games that were released. There were so many wonderful, endlessly fun games. That elegant little box was a fixture of weekend parties at the Dinkytown Pizza Hut. Pizza, breadsticks, beer, Dreamcast. What more can one ask for? So expect me to really pile on the games.
Mention Dreamcast, and the first two games to immediately pop out are Soul Calibur and NFL2K1. Need I say more? Then add in Virtua Tennis, Chu Chu Rocket, San Fran Rush 2049, SF3 Third Strike, Power Stone 1 & 2, Tony Hawk 1 & 2, Test Drive Le Mans, Crazy Taxi, PSO...and on and on. And now that the system has died, I'll want to collect and play around with far more games. It's funny how one becomes more open-minded and generous about these video game consoles after their time has passed.
Oh, by the way, you saw this coming, but I really need to get a DS again, just because the new Advance Wars is coming out. And there's Contra 4. And the new Zelda with the stylus control. And Animal Crossing. Augh! Not fair! This is where I throw on some vinyl and get lost in the headphones. Jimi Hendrix, help!