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(The New Yorker)   Save Game? Yes   (newyorker.com) divider line
    More: Interesting, Video game, video games, game producer, Video game industry, Frank Cifaldi, video-game history, Video game developer, shelves of games  
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1229 clicks; posted to Fandom » on 07 Sep 2022 at 8:20 PM (12 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook



15 Comments     (+0 »)
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest
 
2022-09-07 8:31:30 PM  
It's going to get harder and harder to have a proper historical archive of video gaming as more and more are digital-only.  Not to mention the issue of games-as-a-service titles that change immensely from one year to the next.

And don't forget the fact that the second-hand market for vintage games is in a massive bubble at the moment, making acquiring some by collectors or archivists more difficult than usual.
 
2022-09-07 9:19:28 PM  
I'm not sure modern digital games are proper games. They seem more like online only stores/casinos with a minor game component painted over the walls.
 
2022-09-07 9:54:13 PM  

Nimbull: I'm not sure modern digital games are proper games. They seem more like online only stores/casinos with a minor game component painted over the walls.


Indie games are still proper games. Of course, those are the most likely to be digital-only and therefore harder to archive. Although something like Limited Run Games at least helps a bit in that case.
 
2022-09-07 10:03:57 PM  
Yay, another article about Frank Cifaldi.
 
2022-09-07 10:11:32 PM  
c.tenor.comView Full Size
 
2022-09-07 10:51:57 PM  
Full disclosure, I had a bunch of material from the NES era where companies printed actual newsletters which I donated to this group.  Some of it was new to their archive.  And I am subby.  This was my 69th green.
 
2022-09-07 11:27:54 PM  

Myk-House of El: Full disclosure, I had a bunch of material from the NES era where companies printed actual newsletters which I donated to this group.  Some of it was new to their archive.  And I am subby.  This was my 69th green.


Nice
 
2022-09-07 11:30:07 PM  
I have a game on an older iPad that isn't available anymore. It's called The Act. It was hand drawn animation and meant as a bar game you could finish in, say, 20 minutes.

Here's a walkthrough.

The Act Walkthrough
Youtube 3qoxwHeZbAs
 
2022-09-08 12:16:38 AM  

Myk-House of El: Full disclosure, I had a bunch of material from the NES era where companies printed actual newsletters which I donated to this group.  Some of it was new to their archive.  And I am subby.  This was my 69th green.


Nice.

/No, really
 
2022-09-08 12:37:04 AM  

Dwedit: Yay, another article about Frank Cifaldi.


The most dangerous place in the world is between TheRedEye and anyone who will give him press.

The article fails to mention that Frank distributed unreleased games without anyone's permission, something he still does to this day. It's no secret and it's part of the reason why he doesn't get any choice funding. Legal counsel for any company worth a damn will find that out and pull the plug right then and there. He and his partner literally facilitated the release of NES Simcity - I don't think Nintendo will ever open their doors to you after that.

He took the title "preservationist" to look legitimate and trick people into giving him money so he could make a job out of what he had previously done for free. Preservationist, aka software pirate. The delusion is strong.

The sad part is all of this "preservation" is bunk. All the games people care about are preserved a million times over. The games he digs up are usually "lost" for a reason. "But the history", yeah, ok. Show me a publisher that gives two farks about what they did last year, let alone 10, 20 or 30. The lay person couldn't care either unless it means they can play something for free that they didn't have before and that'll be fleeting at best. Harping on preservation shows a severe disconnection between what people like about games and what people like to say they like about games.

I knew Frank years ago. Last time I saw him, we were in a bar in Vegas (where I now live and he doesn't anymore! Wild.) and we were salivating over the Acclaim bankruptcy auction. I don't know what the fark happened to him. He needs to get off Twitter. The Wata shiat was not nearly as bad as his defense on Twitter which was appalling. Here Frank, have some pillows for your eye sockets so you don't have to read this post. If a ROM falls into a legal void, is it really preserved?

/it's not, but Frank still gets paid
 
2022-09-08 1:07:04 AM  

Thosw: The Act


arcade-museum.comView Full Size

It was originally released as a coin-op. (Underlying hardware was a Celeron-class PC)

"The Act was never meant to be an iPad game. If things had gone as planned, arcades would be a profitable market and The Act would be that market's most popular game. As fate had it, arcades fell apart and so did The Act.

The "emotion" game was conceived and canceled before anyone knew what an iPad was. And yet here it is, available on the iTunes App Store. Today. Right now. [er, well, the article is 10 years old]

You're probably wondering what an "emotion" game is. The Act, far as I know, is the only one. You control the emotions, obviously, of an on-screen character, navigating them through a series of dramatic scenes, ultimately completing a story. In this case, the character is a lovestruck window washer, and the story is his slapstick pursuit of a sexy nurse.

Emotion games are like playable movies. You would probably mistake The Act for a feature cartoon from the early 1990s, if it weren't for the "game over" screen that appears when someone doesn't properly man the controls.

The Act feels simultaneously familiar and foreign, like you've seen it before, but plays nothing like it. Which is weird, though not as weird as how it got here. On our iPads. This is the story of two very different men: the former, who acted on a 25-year-old vision of the future of entertainment, and the latter, who transformed it into an affordable mid-day distraction for your tablet computer."

https://www.polygon.com/2012/10/23/3544106/the-acts-twenty-year-journey-to-create-an-emotion-genre

Animators wer ex-Disney, and their style was akin to Don Bluth of Dragon's Lair fame.

The game mechanics were completely unlike Dragon's Lair and the early laserdisc games. The input was an analog spinner and I speculate that one of the reasons it didn't quite make it as a bar game was because the finesse required was unlike what you'd expect from conventional games. Apart from a chase scene that made part of the endgame, you weren't so much flinging the spinner to the left or right, as tweaking it a few degrees of rotation to the left or right to see what sort of reaction it would engender in the other characters in the game with whom you were interacting.

It was a fantastically fun game mechanic -- for everyone who wished they could have Dirk the Daring go a few inches to the left and just walk around the obstacle rather than getting eaten by the monster to the right or falling through the pit directly in front of him -- and for that reason, very hard for a player accustomed to "arcade games" to figure out WTF was going on if you didn't have the audio cues (again, difficult in a loud bar) to guide you through the game.

I'm glad it got released to a broader audience than the eight actual cabinets (awesome design) and the 25 prototype kits that made it out when the coin-op project went down.

It's a fun game and worth playing. It is utterly unlike any cartoon-based game ever produced.
 
2022-09-08 9:30:42 AM  

portnoyd: The sad part is all of this "preservation" is bunk. All the games people care about are preserved a million times over. The games he digs up are usually "lost" for a reason. "But the history", yeah, ok. Show me a publisher that gives two farks about what they did last year, let alone 10, 20 or 30.


As per TFA, this has nothing to do with what any publisher "gives two farks about" and everything to do with preserving an aspect of our shared cultural history.

For what it's worth, they mention (and dismiss) the perspective of programmers who share your somewhat myopic view of games as simply "a job" they did 30 years ago rather than an important touchstone to our past.
 
2022-09-08 11:45:03 AM  

Barricaded Gunman: portnoyd: The sad part is all of this "preservation" is bunk. All the games people care about are preserved a million times over. The games he digs up are usually "lost" for a reason. "But the history", yeah, ok. Show me a publisher that gives two farks about what they did last year, let alone 10, 20 or 30.

As per TFA, this has nothing to do with what any publisher "gives two farks about" and everything to do with preserving an aspect of our shared cultural history.

For what it's worth, they mention (and dismiss) the perspective of programmers who share your somewhat myopic view of games as simply "a job" they did 30 years ago rather than an important touchstone to our past.


I like how you cut off what I said about every day people because it already replies to your post. The casual person does not care at all "our shared cultural history". If you really believe that... Frank has a job for you at his operation, but you won't be paid for your time because he can't afford it. Again, there is a disconnect between what people say about preserving games and what they actually do because again, if they really cared, Frank would be flush with cash from the public too.

A caveat to my last post.

When I said publishers don't care, that's also the reason why Frank has dick in the way of funding. If they did care, he'd have multiple corporate grants. If you look at his team, it's a who's who of people people who have been bumming around the classic community for 20 years. Steve Lin is only there so he can suck up the protos once Frank dumps them. "A legend in the game collecting community", aka he cut the biggest checks to get the most stuff.
 
2022-09-08 1:01:09 PM  

portnoyd: I like how you cut off what I said about every day people because it already replies to your post. The casual person does not care at all "our shared cultural history". If you really believe that... Frank has a job for you at his operation, but you won't be paid for your time because he can't afford it. Again, there is a disconnect between what people say about preserving games and what they actually do because again, if they really cared, Frank would be flush with cash from the public too.

A caveat to my last post.

When I said publishers don't care, that's also the reason why Frank has dick in the way of funding. If they did care, he'd have multiple corporate grants. If you look at his team, it's a who's who of people people who have been bumming around the classic community for 20 years. Steve Lin is only there so he can suck up the protos once Frank dumps them. "A legend in the game collecting community", aka he cut the biggest checks to get the most stuff.


You're not wrong about the average person not caring.  That's the point.  It's why so many old audio recordings and early movies are lost.  Studios didn't care about their films, record companies didn't care much either, but their media has better shelf life than film.  There should be no expectation any corporate entity cares about out of date product.

There is a relatively small number of people who would prefer this stuff not get lost, but we remain aware of Sturgeon's Law.  But at that point you get subjective in terms of what 90% is crap.  My take is you grab everything.

For the most part, preservation is a labor of love, for anything.  Museums aren't exactly profit centers.  A couple of professors at the University of Arizona set up the Learning Games Initiative Research Archive which does appear to be more academic in its approach if you don't like the Video Game History Foundation.  I support both efforts.
 
2022-09-08 9:33:51 PM  

Myk-House of El: For the most part, preservation is a labor of love, for anything.  Museums aren't exactly profit centers.  A couple of professors at the University of Arizona set up the Learning Games Initiative Research Archive which does appear to be more academic in its approach if you don't like the Video Game History Foundation.  I support both efforts.


The real op to support is ICHEG in Rochester, attached to the Strong Museum of Play, which is federally funded. Frank needs to come to terms that the "preservation" initiative he is trying to do is better served working with and supporting ICHEG behind the scenes, than trying to brute force his shop into existence.

I know he regularly works with them and the financial realities of his shop need to come to a head. He can still do what he loves without being the top banana in what is in reality a business that would have folded years ago. His previous actions undermined any chance of getting the money he needs to succeed. All the likes, favorites and subscribes boil down to empty thoughts and prayers. It's time to face reality. He was so desperate for money that he dealt with the literal game collecting devil in Wata. He needs to take the pillows out of his ears and listen to reason.
 
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