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The most retro thing I’ve done this week…


Article by PressPlayOnTape
Why playing Resogun on PS4 is the most retro thing I’ve done this week…

This week I’m slightly ashamed to admit that I have strayed off the retro path and bought myself a PlayStation 4. Maybe it was the excitement of owning some powerful new gaming tech, or, more likely it was the thrill of taking home a brand new console. No matter how old I get, the kid in me still gets excited about taking a new console home, reading all the nonsense on the side of the box (This one’s for the gamers!), making a space for it under the TV and then ever so carefully unboxing it, setting it up and powering it up for the first time. It’s a ceremony that only comes around maybe once or twice a decade and it’s something I’ve been doing since I was 9. Even though my heart is retro, owning the latest tech is also something I can’t resist. I guess gaming is in my DNA.

However, let me wind this tale backwards and explain why I’m writing an article about the latest gaming tech for the most retro gaming website on the net…

xcopyxmas92gerYou see, I also had a little ceremony 25 years ago. I was 13 years old, I owned an Amiga 500 (also lovingly unboxed after receiving it for my 12th Birthday) and every night, after tea, I would pop round to my mate Paul’s house for a few hours of gaming. Paul also owned an Amiga 500 and we would spend every available moment in each others houses playing every game we could get our hands on. We became experts at Speedball 2, Kick Off, Project X, Super Cars, Lotus Esprit, Worms and practically every other multiplayer game that was out. Some of our games were bought from hard earned pocket money, but I’ll be honest, the majority of them were copies. To say we became adept at using X-Copy to “backup” our games is a bit of an understatement. We must’ve had hundreds of games in our collections. Personally, being the geeky nerd that I am, I would buy alphabet transfer packs and sit there carefully scratching off each letter of the games name onto my copied disk. Scrawling the name on the disk with a biro just wasn’t good enough for my copies, they were there to be loved, cherished, kept safe in their lockable plastic disk boxes and, of course, kept in alphabetical order. Our gaming sessions continued for a few years, friends would pop round and join in and we would kick their asses on any game of their choice. Of course, while gaming on the Amiga in the late 80’s was awesome, the tech wasn’t quite as good as we believed it to be, but we were so invested in the games we were playing that we would do whatever we could to heighten the experience. This culminated one day, when we attempted to create our own virtual reality whilst playing the flight sim F29 Retaliator. We decided that simply playing the game wasn’t enough and so attempted to enhance the experience. I cant quite imagine what my folks thought we were up to when they walked into my room and saw us sat single file in chairs in front of the TV, me, as the main pilot, up front with my Quickshot Pro joystick suckered to a small table, my co-pilot Paul behind me with Amiga on his lap, and, to create the illusion of sky, a blue bed sheet sellotaped to the frame of the TV and draped over our heads. Honestly, it seemed like a good idea at the time.

Sadly, time moves ever forwards, and soon, our gaming nights that had seemed so important to us would be replaced by drinking beer and meeting girls. Eventually we went off to universities in different cities and our lives took separate paths. We kept in touch from time to time but eventually, as many childhood friendships do, we lost contact and it seemed, that that was that. A couple of years ago however, thanks to Facebook, I reconnected with my old gaming partner. It was great to catch up with my friend, hear about his life, his kids, his family, and to find that he was still a keen gamer and even still an Amiga fan too. We laughed about the old days and discussed the great times we’d had in the past. We also exchanged PlayStation account names and talked about buying PlayStation 4’s and meeting up online for a spot of gaming.

Well, fast forward to last week and it finally happened. Two friends who haven’t played games together for over 25 years met up online to play Resogun, which is essentially a remake of the Williams arcade classic Defender, but with glorious next-gen graphics. We chatted over our headsets while we whiled away the hours, blasting our way through level after level, and, as we took down one of the more difficult bosses, I suddenly realised… we were back. Like time had rewound itself and every moment in between had been swept away, here we were, two friends taking on the bad guys and bringing down the end of level boss “you go for the weak spot, I’ll cover you..” just like the good old days. It was magic and it brought about that oh so special emotion that I had previously thought was solely reserved for retro discoveries – the super kick of warm fuzzy nostalgia you get when you revisit an experience and are pulled right back to the first time you ever played that certain game, beat that boss, or got that lovely new computer or console. It just shows that sometimes you can have an old school experience even on the very latest tech.


And in a roundabout way that brings me to the reason I’ve written this article. It was an article which I had originally intended to be a review of Resogun, but as I started to write it, it dawned on me that it doesn’t really matter how good Resogun is. In fact it doesn’t matter how good the PS4 is either, because when all is said and done what this wonderful pastime of ours is really about is enjoying new experiences, appreciating old experiences, and reconnecting to those moments in our lives that are special to us in some way. And while I certainly won’t be abandoning my retro gaming habits in favour of modern gaming, I’ve got to admit that I am loving playing Resogun on my new PS4. I’m also really happy to be gaming again with my old friend – but, having kicked some butt on my next-gen tech, I think it’s time to take the nostalgia to the next level:

It’s time to dust off the old Amiga, dig out the blue bed sheet and invite him round for some F29 Retaliator.

7 thoughts on “The most retro thing I’ve done this week…

  1. mrsid says:

    A really great article Steve. I remember running home from school at lunch, firing up xcopy and quickly copying a game before lessons started again. Never seen the festive version though, very cool!

    Resogun certainly owes a lot to the retro side shooter. Amazing how playing a modern game can trigger nostalgia like this. Great stuff mate.

    • pressplayontape says:

      Thans Sam!

      It is indeed strange what games can trigger nostalgia! X-Copy was probably my most used disk – in fact, ironically I backed it up several times just in case the original got damaged!

  2. den.aris says:

    Quality article. You certainly took gaming to a whole new dimension with the bed sheet etc. Can imagine it, the setup and the way you lot probably thought you were in that plane to some degree!

    Resogun looks tidy. Right up my street.

  3. den.aris says:

    Also Resogun could be considered pretty retro seeing as it’s by Housemarque who I believe were Bloodhouse back in the Amiga days.

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