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The Retrogaming Times 22 Review

Published 8 September 2019

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We believe that a living retrogaming genre should have plenty of conversation. The Retrogaming Times writes about the retrogaming culture as it happens by writers who a genuinely interesting in what's happening. Here, we have not written The Retrogaming Times, but rather reviewing this newspaper edition and contributing to the discussion. We give you a direct link to The Retrogaming Times issue 22 so you can review the publication for yourself. You may also want to download and play our Retrogaming word search game.

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The Retrogaming Times
Issue 22, September 2019, Publication Details

The Retrogaming Times Issue 22 cover

List of Articles

The Retrogaming Times Issue 22 download

Why are we reading The Retrogaming Times, issue 22

The Retrogaming Times is a quality web-only publication that describes itself as the longest running free retrogaming newsletter of all time. We can not verify this claim ourselves but there is certainly a regular stream of issues being published. In this article we are giving our The Retrogaming Times issue 22 review.

There was one gaming event that we were particularly interested in; And that is Retropalooza. Many thanks to The Retrogaming Times for pointing our browser in this direction. We had not heard of Retropalooza before. The Retropalooza website has full details of this interesting retro event held in October 2019. The goal of Retropalooza is to bring nerds from all walks of life together. There is very little information on the website regarding the format or what to expect at the event. However, the characters sound interesting and there appears to be good marketing support from commercial vendors. I guess that we will have to wait for the updates on Twitter to know more.

Our Discussion on Retrogaming Systems

Commodore C64

Very few retrogaming magazines can make it through a whole edition without mentioning the Commodore C64. To our minds, the Commodore C64 is the ultimate retrogaming machine. Be it in original form, FPGA reproduction, or emulated in VICE, there are many ways to enjoy the Commodore C64 8-bit experience. We dive deep into enjoying this machine without Commodore C64 journal.

It doesn't take long and the first article is on the quirky French games developer, Jawx. Developer stories make for an interesting read. The first reason is that there can be wonderful anecdotes on how and why games were developed. Let's be honest here, you are not likely to find a hidden gem of an 8-bit retrogame in this list, but the games represent the state of the 80's genre. The second reason is that the developers either had an interesting backstory, like one of the original programmers wrote games on the Tangerine Computer Systems, Oric microcomputer. Don't worry, we didn't know what that machine was either until we looked it up on Wikipedia. We were kind of hoping that the programmer was a developer for Orac, a fictional computer from the science fiction television series Blake's 7. The third reason is that developers lived on after the collapse of the 8-bit games market to do bigger and better things.

We particularly like the discussion on François Lionet. François has a storied history. If you happened to be part of the Amiga scene then you probably would have tried AMOS, the games orientated programming language, or in more recent years, GameMaker. François is one of the names behind them all. There is also the announcement that AMOS2 is in development. WOW, does this get interesting. AMOS2 is being crowdfunded on Patreon. Programming used to be such a fun activity, much like a logic brain twister. Maybe remaking these programming languages will bring that same feeling of fun back.

PacMan on Mattel Intellivision

Wikipedia quote the figure of 3 million Mattel Intellivision units sold during its production run. Surely for a retrogaming fan base, this is enough to get a decent range of PacMan clone games. Apparently not. The author of the article quotes a total PacMan game count of uno; The official PacMan game from AtariSoft. AtariSoft has an unusual back story as well. By the estimate on the Wikipedia page, AtariSoft released 21 different games and had 25 unrelease games. That is an awful lot of vaporware. Could it be that everything was canned around the time Jack Tramiel bought Atari. Jack obviously had his eyes on releasing the 16 bit Atari ST. Watch Jack Tramiel spruik the then new Atari ST at PCW'85.

Surprisingly, there is a big homebrew community for the Mattel Intellivision system. So for the past few decades, eager beavers have been hacking away at more clones. The article author says that there are now two new additional titles from the Pac-Man game family; Ms. Pac-Man and Jr. Pac-Man. We have to say that the screenshots look good. There was, however, a hole in the reviewer's heart of the PacMan series. Super PacMan still needs to be ported to the Intellivision retrogaming platform.

PacMan

As you would expect, there is a lot of research on the Internet around PacMan and its clones. The first place that we want to point you to is The Pac-Man Dossier. The Pac-Man Dossier goes into depth about the game play and more importantly the AI engine. It is fascinating what programmers can fit into small code.

But what if you are like the rest of us and you just want to get into some good retrogame play. There is a good PacMan close available to play on the webpage at hg10101.com jsPacMan. This is based off the javascript PacMan clone engine available at GitHub, jspacman-canvas. Or if you want to go the really passive route then we can recommend looking at the PacMan doodle celebrating the 30th birthday of PacMan, taken from Google's homepage on 22 May 2010. The source code is also available on GitHub on the google-pacman page. We bet that you weren't expecting these repositories.

Free Retrogaming Word Search Game

We have created a new word search game to celebrate all things retrogaming. This game is an A4 sheet where you search for key words in a jumble of letters. This PDF sheet is free to download and print for your own entertainment or share with your friends.

We dare you to search through the arcade looking for Atari and Commodore retrogames using nothing but emulation and your controllers. The extreme game won't be found at Retropalooza but may qualify you for playing fun games with good graphics from Mattel and Intellivision. Forget PacMan. The best sound and graphics come from Jawx.

philreichert.org retrogaming word seach game downloadable
[free PDF download]

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