The Relic

  • joined Oct 24, 2012
  • last login Apr 16, 2014
  • posts 1
  • comments 1283

Resident old guy, loves him some old games!

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Yeah, I know I haven’t been on here much lately (last week the issue with our plumbing I mentioned a few weeks back is FINALLY resolved), but I found something that may be of interest.

Last night I was refiling some of my old newspaper collection when I stumbled on one that needed a new acid-free bag. It was the January 27, 1978 issue of the Columbus (OH) Citizen-Journal, with a cover story on the blizzard I had to deal with when I was a couple of months short of my 16th birthday (which is why I have it).

I look on the last page of the paper and there’s an ad for the local Radio Shack, with a half-off sale for the above Pong clone. Yes, in early ’78 you TOO could own your very own home Pong-clone (heck, who needs that fancy Atari 2600, having just been released a few months prior?)! Not 2, not 3 but FOUR controllers so ALL of you can get in on the fun.

And gun games, WE GOT gun games! Target shooting! Skeet shooting where the targets actually MOVE! And you can also turn your pistol into a RIFLE! WOO-HOO!

And now you can OWN it for NOT $79.99, but a low, LOW $39.99! Don’t want to spend a fortune on 6 “C” batteries? Buy the optional AC Adapter for just $4.95 more!

All the FUN a body can STAND!

Oh, did I mention at my former job years ago, I also wrote ad copy?

I also found a rare Chuck Jones comic strip he did between January and May of that year, called “Crawford and Morgan”. Looked like it would be really good, but according to the book Chuck Jones: The Dream That Never Was, it was the culmination of an attempt by Jones to get the character published, either in cartoon or print format, over a period of 2 decades, and unfortunately it never really took off.

Now let’s see if that picture will actually show up….


Callin’ it right now….all they’re gonna find is a few empty liquor bottles and Al Capone’s syphilis medicine scrip.

2 replies

Is Flaming Fists of Fury taken? If not (and if it doesn’t sound too much like just martial arts fighting), go with that.

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I always thought it was too bad that arcades went with the various “crazes” (like DDR, redemption games and such) and started getting rid of the great pins and video games. The last one I went to was with a nephew who had played some of my arcade games on consoles (his favorite being Galaga).

The place I went to was a former Gameworks at Easton to the city’s north. Had very few actual arcade games outside of the various shooters like LA Machineguns and HotD 3, and a few fighters. Most were redemption games, DDRs and some Outrun 2 games with the cars you could sit in (which wasn’t too bad). Hilariously we did find a Galaga…a cocktail-style table with Ms. Pac-Man in the dining area.

But then, I can remember when we lived in Ashville OH during the early-mid 80s; a group refurbbed a building near the business area of Ashville and made it a really nice arcade with all the latest games and pins, with a place to eat and all the bells and whistles. With the town elders (local government) fighting them every step of the way.

Almost as soon as they opened the elders complained that kids were skipping school to go play games, and it was “drawing the wrong type” of people (read; stereotypical thugs). Even after the arcade owners agreed to keep it shuttered during school hours the elders still harassed them until the place was shut down less than six months after it opened. This would have been around 1983 I believe.

But if you knew what this one small grocer had in the smaller building next to the place, he had about 10 or so older arcade machines crammed in his little building, along with several pins. If you asked him, he’d unlock the door and let you in to play games as long as you had quarters to pop in.

The old farts who ran that town didn’t get to shut that place down.

There’s a new place that just opened up about a block from that bus station I mentioned called The 16 Bit. It’s a barcade with a number of the classic arcade cabs from back in the 80s and early 90s, and I recall, some pins. I don’t drink, but if you order something to eat (and they have pop too) they’ll let you play the machines.

Next couple of weeks I’m making it a point to go and see how it is, and I’m going to bring a nephew who goes to a college near the place there with me. He should enjoy it.

1 reply Recommended (1)

I would say that it’s possible. After all, how many 360 owners got Crackdown for access to the Halo 3 test, or in the case of the PS2, Zone of the Enders for the MGS2 demo?

Even though both are good games, there’s a lot of both at used game stores at dirt-cheap prices.

Me, I’ll wait. I don’t have the new-gen machines and I can wait to get them for my PC.

1 reply Recommended (2)


I can remember the old pinball machines; I played them avidly during the early-late 70s, before there were any video games in Groveport (the first one I recall was Pac-Man, in a pizza joint near the bank, around 1981). I did know of the laws in places like New York which forbade pins as “gambling devices”, but there were no such laws when I was growing up in the 60s-70s, at least in Grovport.

Later, around 1978 I started noticing the little notices on the pin at Little Italy forbidding using the pinball machine as a gambling device but I took little notice of it, simply because the only “organized” crime going on in Groveport was whatever the police had going on :).

Hell, the first arcade video game I ever played was Pong, in a bus depot here in Columbus in 1975. You go to that same bus depot now (I was there a couple of weeks ago) and there’s a Namco machine with Ms. Pac-Man/Galaga; I played it and while there I had a guy offer to sell me pot (nooooo, thank you).

But even though I am literally surrounded by my video games while I type this, I’ll always play a good pin whenever I encounter them. In the blood, I guess.

The picture (if it actually shows) has a remake of an early bagatelle-type pin, a 1940-era toy bagatelle (not a remake) and a Coleco Telstar Alpha Pong clone from around 1976; that does still work, but the right knob is a bit twitchy.

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