I have finaly bought a Vectrex!!!

28 01 2008

Those who know me, know that I collect video game systems – especially vintage video game systems. Well, this weekend I found the systemVectrex-angle-slot-small that for me is the Holy Grail of video game systems: The Vectrex.

“What the heck is a Vectrex?” is the kind of response that I get from most people when I mention this system. For a more detailed look at the Vectrex, go to the Vectrex Wikipedia entry. I’ll give you a brief description. Vectrex was a home video game system released late 1982 by General Consumer Electric (GCE), in time for the Christmas buying season. The Vectrex stood apart from other game systems in many ways, none the least of which was the fact that it sported it’s own monitor!

Looking a little like an original (or classic) Apple Macintosh if it had been specifically designed for Darth Vader, this amazing machine had a black and white vector monitor housed in a monolith-like black vertical case. The Vectrex used a vector monitor, because it displayed vector graphics: line based graphics. If you ever seen the classic arcade games Asteroids, Battlezone, Star Wars or Tempest then you know what I mean. At the time, this was the best way to get sharp, detailed graphics on a screen. Vector graphics cannot properly be displayed on a standard television screen. Another benefit of the built in screen is not needing to hog the television: back in 1982, a lot more housVectrex-straight-oneholds only had one television! It also had a more sophisticated sound processor allowing it to reproduce better sound effects and music. Heck, the game Spike even had voice! This is something that was so very rare at the time (1982 was a long time ago), that most systems simply couldn’t do it. The Mattel Intellivision needed a separate expansion device to reproduce sound – Vectrex did it from the start.

So, to make a long story just a little less long, I got the Vectrex and three games for about $150 Canadian (at the moment about $149.80 U.S.). I probably could have paid less online somewhere, but shipping would have been stupidly high… So I am very happy!

Below is a little video of my Vectrex!

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Well, I’m on a Video Game Related Roll Now

25 01 2008

More video Game Videos!!!

A kinda’ freaky Intellivision® Animated Newscast Commercial. I could explain it, but it would be easier and way more effective if you watched it.

Intellivision commercial

Probably my favourite classic video game commercial: Burgertime from Mattel Electronics for Intellivision.

…and another: “Only Colecovision”

…and another

Commercial: Atari 5200 Versus Colecovision





…and While We’re on the Subject…

25 01 2008

 

Maganavox later released the Odyssey 2 as a competitor to the wildly successful Atari VCS (also as the 2600, and to others as simply the Atari). It was never nearly as popular as the Atari VCS, but it did sell enough units to keep it lingering on the market from 1978 to 1984. Despite not being a powerhouse and having a lot of cheezy games, it did have a certain charm and a few gems. If you find one, you HAVE to hunt down a copy of KC Munchkin: a maze game very similar to Pacman.  So similar in fact, that they were threatened with a law suit and had to make some serious changes to the game and re-release it.

K.C. Munchkin

Commercial voiced by Leonard Nimoy

Another commercial, this time featuring the Wizard showing off The Voice. This was an add-on that predictably added speach capabilities. Apparently it also offered enhanced music and sound effects.





Commercial for the World’s First Home Video Game System

25 01 2008

 

Back in 1972 Magnavox marketed the very first home video game system, The Odyssey. Developed by Ralph Baer in the mid 1960s, it wasn’t until 1972 that Magnavox marketed it. Mildly successful, it opened the door for all the home consoles that followed it.

Enjoy!





This is one of the funniest things I have watched… and I even learned something at the same time!

19 01 2008

Oh my God, did this ever make me laugh. And, at the same time, I learned a useful Photoshop technique (he showed two, and one I’m really good at, and the other I’ve used, but he showed me a cool second step that I never used before).

Watch it!





Tired…So Tired

18 01 2008

Oh man, have I been having trouble sleeping lately. Now, I normally sleep sleep    between 4.5 and 5.5 hours a night, which I find more than adequate, but for the last three nights I’ve averaged 2.5 or so hours. I’m not stressing or worrying about anything, so I really have no idea as to why I’m not sleeping… Maybe I need some time off? Maybe…

Aside from that, things have been really good. My back which always bugs me hasn’t been too sore lately, and my knee, which I injured shortly after Christmas has been a hell of a lot better too. Work has been great, and home life is excellent. I know that’s boring for you imaginary blog readers, but it’s good for me!

So, with that boring  post, I am going to get ready for work

Later folks!





Ok… I missed a day, but I do have an excuse!

16 01 2008

Hello Phantoms of my Imagination!491219678_2b7f054780

I know I said that I’d try to write every day, and I really meant it too… It’s just that I did a lot of work on my PC yesterday, and it was out of commission until 1:30 am this morning… and at that point I was not in any mood to blog anything.

What did I do to my PC? Well, I was originally just going to install a new   Sound card (a Soundblaster X-Fi), along with a 500 gig SATA drive I had recently purchased, but when I opened the case I realized that the only place I had open where I could install the soundcard was directly against my video card, which would disturb airflow and probably cause overheating of both cards. The reason I had little room is due to the fact that I also had an add-on IDE/Sata card installed because I had three IDE hard drives and an IDE DVD burner in my machine and not enough IDE channels, as my board (like many now) only has one IDE channel.

Frustrated, I yanked out the three IDE hard drives and the add-on card, installed the soundcard and proceded to reinstall Windows Vista. Once Windows was reinstalled, I then spent hours attaching the IDE drives to an external USB drive case and copying all the information and files that I wanted to salvage from said drives.

Now that it is all over, and my PC is running nicely, I have to say something else: Damn does iTunes take a loooooong time to reindex a music and video library. Sure, there’s almost 200 gigs of files in that library, but this is a FAST machine. It’s a screaming fast Quad Core Intel chip with four gigabytes of (very) fast ram on a fast motherboard with the files on a fast SATA hard drive. Still, iTunes has been indexing since this morning at approximately 2:00 PM – it’s 12:29 PM now. That’s almost 10 freakin’ hours, and it’s not showing any signs of stopping yet. CRAZY!

Well, that’s it for now, as I have to get to work.

Take care!!