Wednesday, March 16, 2011

"Tread carefully now..."

Hello S&Pers!

Oh don't get up. The box isn't heavy, I'm alright.

Whew! Okay.

So how has everyone been?

I know I don't get in here too often lately -- things just pile up -- but I always come by late at night after all that pile up gets a little less, uh... piled. What?

Anyway, tonight I bring a little bit of monstery, Hallowe'eny goodness in the form of a video game.

Not quite as "old school" as Odyssey, Pong, or Atari, no. But in these days of that is so five minutes ago tech, anything from the early '90s is damn near ancient.

From Electronic Arts comes one of my Top 5 favorite games, video or otherwise:

Escape From Monster Manor!
Man! I love this old game!

I think it'll hook up to the Predicta TV atop the bar, so we can all see it as we play.

Alright -- hook up should be simple -- there!

The game was made by Electronic Arts in 1993, for the Panasonic 3DO Interactive Multiplayer console, a grand, noble but ultimately failed gaming system that cost too much initially ($700 US in 1993?!), and had too many golf and soccer games and not enough interesting games by the time the console was affordable.

I certainly was never going to buy that system -- I made a good living then but no way was I dropping that kind of money when I've never been much of a video game kinda guy -- but when I saw the box for this game in the $7 bargain bin at my local big box store in 1995, I figured it looked so cool and had to do with monster, ghosts and haunted houses that there was no point in not buying it for seven bucks. I also figured at some point soon, the game system would be obsolete, cheap and plentiful, and when that happened, I'd be killing myself for not buying this when it was available.

Well, within a year I'd met someone who pointed to the game on one of my shelves and asked if I had the 3DO.

"Nope. Just bought the game really cheap, waiting for the system to drop into my lap."

He laughed. "I'll sell you mine for $100."

In my house we call the game 'Shootin' Ghosts', and I've been doing it off and on ever since that fateful meeting.

I especially love to play it at night, during the long winter 'off season'. Something seems very right about it -- put on some tunes, make some hot chocolate, shoot ghosts. Simple heaven.

How can you not love it? Such imagery:

And when you took one too many hits, you got this, bubbling up from behind your attacker, laughing at your foolish mortal attempt to defeat its eeeeeeeeviiiiilll:

I cannot tell you how happy I am to have found it (I knew it was in the house, but it took a month of casual searching to find the whole system!), and to bring it here. I know we're not about video games in this ol' pub, but I also knew you would all enjoy the heck out of seeing it at least this once.

Escape From Monster Manor, the Skull & Pumpkin salutes you. With a ray gun and a bunch of keys and pieces of a magic talisman...

... and no fear about what's around that corner...

More Hallowe'eny games to come soon. For now, more work calls.

Catch you on St. Patty's Day-

O' ZOM-beeee!

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