Did you catch that part in the NIntendo Power post a couple of weeks ago about Nintendo Fan Club News? I had never heard of NFCN before then, or if I had, I had forgotten it. I only remember Nintendo Power today. But I guess NFCN was out there. Here’s a video from somebody who knows more about it than I do.
I’ve posted histories of Nintendo before, but this one is way cool. This guy did this as a history class project. How awesome is that? He even has a thesis: Nintendo has become the greatest video game company ever by pricing and innovation. I don’t know about the pricing part. That was always Mom’s area. But I agree with the innovation part.
Could this be the evening news story I mentioned in Arcadian, the story that introduced me to Space Invaders and video games in general? I have no way of knowing for sure, but it was a story like this. BTW, I’ve been by the Atari Sunnyvale location they mention, as you can see in my Tour of Atari video!
Arcade games came in two types of cabinets: the upright cabinet and the cocktail cabinet.
The cocktail cabinet was perhaps the first I ever played. The Space Invaders knock-off game my dentist had in his office was a cocktail cabinet, and my experiences with it could very well have been my first arcade experience. These cabinets looked like tables. You sat down at them to play like you sat down at a table. You could even use them as tables if you wanted to. The screen was in the table top and you had to look down at it.
The upright cabinet was the more popular and familiar. The screen was held horizontally, and you played it standing up. For games that only took one hand, like Pac-Man and Ms. Pac-Man, you could put your free hand on the cabinet side, or, if you were really cool, hang in from the cabinet top.
I certainly prefer the upright version. There is just something about playing while standing that I prefer. I wouldn’t completely dismiss the cocktail version, though. Heck, I wouldn’t even completely dismiss the bar top versions that I never saw or played, even though they are much too small for my taste. An arcade game is an arcade game, after all, no matter what kind of cabinet it comes in.
I think you have to already know the history of the Nintendo company to get this one, but it is still cool. There are lots of interesting old images, including the original Duck Hunt game.
ANESthetized is a memoir of the NES, not a history. I couldn’t write a history. Not without doing a whole lot of research and coming out with something a lot less personally meaningful, anyway. But I am very interested in the history of the NES. If you are as well, you’ll love this little video. It throws out a bunch of things I never heard of before. We almost had the AES (Atari Entertainment System)? We owe everything to Teddy Ruxpin? All that and more in this short history of the NES.