Saturday, March 21, 2015

Blog Update #5 - One-Year Anniversary

At the age of 36, I'm no longer at a point where I can even feign amazement at how swiftly time flows--how the years drop off one after another like Kardashians at a spelling bee--but, man, it doesn't really seem like all that long ago when this place was just a large text logo set against a plain orange backdrop. Those were the days. 

To tell you the truth, I used to spend a lot of time (mostly the hour-plus run-ups to the instant when my restless mind would finally allow for a brief incursion of sleep) dreaming of putting together some type of website where I could share all of those weird gaming memories from my youth (you know--profoundly moving moments like when I'd have my character grapple up to a ceiling so he could simulate pissing on the windowed visage of a mountain range), but I just never felt that I had the will or the gumption to pull it off. All it took in the end was a spontaneous whim influenced by a newfound passion for the video-game medium, and here I am after having spent 365 days pouring out three decades worth of memories.

It's been my only hope that I've succeeded in conjuring up similar images--our shared experiences providing comfort in a world that no longer matches our recollection of it--for those of you who have been kind enough to give this site a look. At the least, I hope it's compelled you to check out a lot of these older games I've been going on and on about, like those on the Commodore 64, which I sense a lot of you missed growing up. Of course, the site's evolved to be much more than what I originally planned, expanded to include impressions and running commentary on unearthed and rediscovered classics, so it's become necessary to amend the mission statement--to take my own advice and seek out these old games with the intent of shining a spotlight on them and working to create new memories for all of us to share.

"So how 'bout some actual updates there, Mr. Perfunctory?"

I'm gettin' there! Sheesh.

Starting on a cosmetic note, I had to reconfigure the menu bar, since its categorical listing was no longer sufficient in light of recent changes. "Memory Bank Posts" and "Video Game Ramblings" have gone unchanged (except for a slight revisal to the latter's description text), but "Random Musings" has been replaced with "The Treasure Trove," which is clearly defined as being a space dedicated to my appraisal of discovered/rediscovered games. As a result, the listing for site updates has been moved to the newly added category "The Playroom," which is reserved for quick thoughts and eventually future pieces where I'll be providing pictures of my game collection, old residences, friends' houses, and anything else related to my gaming history. I also want to note that I accidentally deleted the "Credits & Links" page and had to resend it, which I hope doesn't upset the four people who thumbs-upped it (which I didn't know you could do). Sorry about that.

I mentioned previously that I went back and updated some of the older "Memory Bank" posts to match them to the established standard, but that was mostly in terms of number of images. This wasn't nearly enough, I feel. See--when I started writing these pieces, they were supposed to be decent-length summaries of my experiences with the games, but instead, as is usually the case with anything I do, they grew to become monstrous. This bothers me because it doesn't feel right that I have more to say about Mega Man: Dr. Wily's Revenge than I do games like Super Mario Bros., Mega Man 2, Metroid and The Legend of Zelda, which were far more impactful; I'm going to remedy this in time by bringing the first 10 or so pieces up to par, fleshing them out to include thoughts and memories that should never have been omitted. I've already done this with Rygar, which might be worth a second read.

I've been bogged down with the flu for the past week, unable to focus due to fatigue, so I haven't had enough creative energy to write up any game-related posts. I'm well enough now that something should appear no later than Monday. On the subject: Might I ask that people stop bringing the plague to every social gathering I happen to be at? Could you do that? Thanks!

And while I'm at it, I'd also like to put in a request for ideas. That is, I'd like to continue putting together more of the sprite collages you see on the sidebar, but I can't do so unless I keep to the theme of heroes versus villains. The problem is that I've run out of ideas for villain sprites; I don't want to over-represent series or resort to adding too many boring minor enemies, and a lot of the famous end bosses are too enormous to include in 256x215 images, so I'm kind of stuck. If you have any solid suggestions for 8-bit (or "8-bit-looking") enemies from arcade, console or computer games, I'd appreciate it if you could notify me of them. It'd be best if they were around the same height as those seen in the current images.

I've got about a little over a year's-worth of "Memory Bank" pieces left before the site's focus shifts more toward newly discovered games, reviews, and "bite-sized" remembrances, and I hope you'll be sticking around for the long haul. This is one train that has no final destination.

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