Angry Video Game Nerd: Atari Sports

December 28, 2012 at 7:18 pm | Posted in Videos | 2 Comments
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I’ve noted previously that some of my first video game memories are playing Super Challenge Baseball and Super Challenge Football on the Atari 2600 at my grandparent’s house.  The Atari 2600 was littered with sports games, with results ranging from horrible to “decent”.  I’m a fan of James Rolfe’s work as the Angry Video Game Nerd after first stumbling upon his videos in the spring of 2011 (Yes, late to the party).  This is his first look at sports games and what better place to start than early Atari games?  His satire is always funny and the underlying message he talks about at the end absolutely rings true.  I do have to point out that you can take control of other fielders in Super Challenge Baseball.  I need to bust that one out and remember how!

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When Capcom Made Sports Games

December 15, 2012 at 9:13 am | Posted in Features | Leave a comment
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Capcom’s legacy in the video game industry will forever be linked to popular series like Mega Man, Street Fighter and Resident Evil.  The publishing giant was a top third-party contributor going back to the 8-bit era and their titles have graced almost every video game console.  Capcom has tackled multiple genres along the way, demonstrating a mastery in platformers, fighting games and role-playing games.  Booming after a successful run on the NES, Capcom turned its eyes to sports games on home consoles for the first time in 1992.  How did things turn out?  Here are the stories of the five sports games Capcom released over three years in the 1990s.

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Kirby’s Dream Sport

November 25, 2012 at 8:32 am | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment
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Nintendo recently celebrated 20 years of Kirby adventures with a Wii compilation that features his main conquests through Dream Land.  Kirby’s gaming catalog extends far past his canonical platformers and these ancillary games could fill their own compilation disc.  He’s been the headliner in multiple puzzle games, a pinball title and a Breakout-style block-busting game.  Kirby has had a racing spin-off and has dueled with his Nintendo peers in the Super Smash Bros. series.  Even though Kirby has clearly been able to handle yielding a sword or spear in his own games, he has never been invited to one of Mario’s golf or tennis outings.  Despite his multi-genre flexibility, the pink puffball has only had one appearance in a sports-themed game.  When King Dedede stole all the stars in Dream Land, Kirby shook off his non-sporty stereotype to do mini-golf battle in Kirby’s Dream Course for the Super Nintendo.

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TIME Magazine’s All-Time 100 Greatest Video Games

November 18, 2012 at 3:43 pm | Posted in News | 1 Comment
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All-time lists are always subjective but at times can be purposefully confrontational or downright lacking in thoroughness.  The TIME tech staff that put together their list did an amazing job and I absolutely recommend reading their work.  You can never please everyone with these type of lists but there is a terrific blend of appealing to both casual and hardcore gamers with their selections.  How did the sports genre fare?

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WWE ’13 and the Attitude Era: ThatSportsGamer Show Episode 35

November 15, 2012 at 11:36 pm | Posted in Podcasts | Leave a comment
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I’m really enjoying WWE ’13, especially the ability to replay storylines from the Attitude Era.  If you liked wrestling from 1997 to 2000, this feature is what you’ve been waiting for since WWF No Mercy on the Nintendo 64.  Keep your eye out for great sales this holiday season to pick the game up at a discount (we’re playing on PS3).  Then you can use that saved money to purchase the Fan Axxess pass for all the game’s DLC plus much more.

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Behind the Scenes with Tecmo Super Bowl 2013

September 21, 2012 at 9:06 pm | Posted in Features | 6 Comments
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Tecmo Super Bowl.  I would like to channel John Facenda’s stoic voiceover of “The Autumn Wind” while I wax nostalgic about one of the greatest sports games ever.  There was the joy at finding a copy at the video store to rent with a buddy for the weekend, followed by hours of play, eyes bleeding from a lack of sleep when my parents would pick me up for church the next day.  There were the stories a friend would tell over lunch after staying home sick from school the day prior to play through another season.  The game had every NFL team with real players and a complete regular season mode.  These were dreams coming true for sports gamers in 1991.  And if you didn’t witness Bo Jackson with your own NES controller, you’ve probably seen him in YouTube videos racing around defenders or on someone’s list of the greatest video game characters of all-time.  How do you recapture this video game magic of decades past?  With hard work, passion, and a dedicated community, the team from Tecmobowl.org keeps Tecmo Super Bowl alive with an updated game each year.  Here is the story of Tecmo Super Bowl 2013.
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EA’s NHL Hockey Series Through the Years – Infographic

September 13, 2012 at 11:15 am | Posted in News | 2 Comments
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With NHL 13 now released, EA’s NHL Hockey series has amassed 22 titles since debuting in 1991 (23 when you include EA Hockey).  Justin Bourne at http://www.thescore.com blogged an awesome infographic highlighting different pieces of trivia about the series.  The tidbit about NHL Hockey debuting on the Mega Drive is technically incorrect (was released on the Genesis in North America only but would work on the Mega Drive) but that’s just nit-picking.  Seeing all the covers next to each other brings back a lot of memories.  Did you know that NHL 95 had 24 players with a rating of 100?  And if you were ever curious about the geographical background of all the cover athletes, well, this infographic is for you.
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A Brief History of Sports Games – Polygon Mash-up

September 12, 2012 at 8:01 pm | Posted in Videos | 2 Comments
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I thought the work here by Reverse Enginears (Yes, “ears” – get it?) was great.  Loved seeing some of the old 2600 games I played growing up and how about the brief inclusion of 2 on 2 Open Ice Challenge?  Totally random.  For the record, I do not classify Excitebike or R.C. Pro-Am as sports games.

Here’s the full link to see the video at Polygon also:

http://www.theverge.com/gaming/2012/9/10/3307577/a-brief-history-of-sport-games

The Collector’s Guide to Tecmo Bowl

September 5, 2012 at 9:33 pm | Posted in Features | 10 Comments
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Tecmo’s football franchise is a true flagship in the world of retro sports gaming.  Fueled by 8-bit success on the NES with the still very popular Tecmo Bowl and Tecmo Super Bowl, Tecmo expanded to the 16-bit era before one last hurrah on the PlayStation in 1996.  Spanning just seven years, the series that mastered two-button football gaming retired as sports gaming moved to 3D.  As with many vintage video games, there have been attempted reboots of Tecmo Bowl to stoke the nostalgic fire of gamers.  All told, if you are a fan of the series or looking to experience it for the first time, the Tecmo Bowl library is very manageable from a collecting standpoint. The big question as always is, what are these retro titles worth?  The Collector’s Guide to Tecmo Bowl sets out to cover the entire Tecmo Bowl cannon, from the late 1980s through the re-releases of late.
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Team USA Basketball: Olympic-sized Letdown

August 8, 2012 at 10:20 am | Posted in Reviews | 1 Comment
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The mission statement for Retro Sports Gamer World has always been to educate on the best and worst of sports gaming.  In judging and labeling a certain title, I strive to have an open mind and either eliminate or be very transparent about any bias coming into a piece.  I’ve had my mind changed from a previous perception – for better and worse – in a number of articles.  This brings me to our participation in 1 More Castle’s Review a Bad Game Day” with Team USA Basketball for the Sega Genesis.  Despite this edict of reviewing something “bad”, my approach to Team USA Basketball was no different from previous games.  I nominated the game because of a previous negative play-through (I talked about it here) and being topical and all with the current Olympics in London.  And there was even a 15-minute stretch where I found myself enjoying the game and thought I would have a different angle for this piece.  Alas, Team USA Basketball had a great premise but at the end of the day, just could not deliver an experience worth replaying or recommending.
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