Draw Me A Line – A Story About My Life In Gaming

Draw Me A Line – By Neil Dee

Fuck adding pictures, I’m going old-school so google them or send me your fax number for me to ignore. Besides, I haven’t learnt to make one of those monotonous 25 page galleries with 18 words on each. So sue me.

Draw me a line - a story about my life in gaming

It’s a GIF…. Twat

I would love to say this was a retro-gaming post but in reality, it’s more of a post about gaming. When you have been in the gaming sector for over 30 years, it’s easy to blur the entire thing into one. In this modern age of consoles and PC with ultra-modern graphics compared to (or replicating) the 8-Bit/16-bit era, it’s more a case of keep buying what you buy.

Now make no mistake, I too, go backwards with my console purchases. I never owned a Dragon Amiga Spectrum 64K (now that would make a great PC). Far from it, I owned a second-hand Atari.

When I think of that, I ask myself whether I was truly a gamer at all. I mean, realistically, all I ever wanted was a console I could both enjoy and fit in with… with all the other guys who were having conversations about them in school. Did that make me a gamer? Well the answer really lies in the era, nobody was REALLY a gamer as it was the start of the cycle that led to today. If you broke this down into ‘did you have an Atari’ Yes ‘did you have a NES or SNES’ Yes and it fails past the N64 and totally fails on the PC side, as I never owned a Spectrum, Amstrad or Commodore 64, the best I ever had in PC gaming was a Vic 20 which was obviously useless, looking back. To put that Vic 20 into today’s perspective, I owned a 3D printed plastic version of the C64. In my opinion, if you bought one now, you would be a retro-fool.

Now, back when I was a wee laddie, full of spunk and vinegar like most young men, I met the ultimate console… a girl. I say ultimate because you could fool around way more than with the consoles of my generation, so I got rid of the lot and went into that sector, and it is a sector and rather a small part of your life in reflection. Girls (like consoles or boys, if you are a girl or homesexual) tend to get boring when you are younger. Next thing you know, she’s pregnant, you need money and your entire outlook changes (and I’m not talking email addresses).

I followed this exact route. Not a pot to piss in for years, until one day, those kids weren’t kids anymore. The financial strain had eased and suddenly I had money to spend.

When time suddenly becomes favourable again (and trust me, I was a DJ at this point so had less time than most 9-5’ers) you find yourself soul-searching what to do next. It’s an alien in your world and you have no idea what to do. At that point the hobbyist in you, digs down and remembers where you left off and creates a gamer, artist, film buff or whatever. It’s pretty simple I guess, unlike getting all those consoles back, that you owned once.

Welcome to the retro-gaming phenomena. Now lucky for some young-lings, they now have social media to learn about it and get into retro-gaming quite quickly. Even without money, any basic laptop on it’s last legs will allow an emulator to run 8 or 16 bit. Plus you have YouTube and other such area’s to envelop or watch, which can grow your passion. Now here lieth the difference.

Can you imagine with no eBaY or similar, no YouTube, no Amazon… no Facebook, Twitter, Reddit… where the fuck we would get… maybe a pad if ours broke? The only answer available to us in that era would be either a second-hand shop or a friend or his/hers, maybe a new buy extra from the original supplier at extra cost. It was tragic let me tell you that.

These days, the world is not only your oyster, but so is the market to buy, import, repair, restore or modify ANY console or PC of your choosing. Now how lucky do you feel compared to the kid with the broken Atari controller? Unfortunately, it grew with that kid that had the broken controller too.

I now lie in a demographic that re-bought all of those consoles and PC’s whether I owned them or not. Then there’s everything N64 forward and the Kickstarter or INDIGOGO campaigns. I have more money and a better job so I ask you where do I stop buying? It gives an addictive buzz too. One that you younger generation cannot fully understand. I can sit on Twitter and have most of the consoles or PC’s or both EVER MADE (mainstream). Maybe next I buy myself a slice of a different Pi unlike the pie that created my family back when twiddling with knob’s was a job she knew better than me. Where does it end?

One thing is for sure, this is a demographic you sorely want to be part of and maybe one day you will be. The question is, did you start it with pie or with Pi?

I figure at my current rate of video’s, it would take me until 326 years of age to produce a video for every game, console, accessory or Dev-kit to get it’s own video.

Fuck that shit, I’m up for a beer and some pie.

Owner of GaminGuys.com I collect retro games, consoles and accessories and play all era's of games from old to latest. Found on eBaY as 'MCRTrading'

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