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Passion for Pixels Retro Gaming Podcast

Danny and Stian share stories from a lifetime of playing videogames, with an emphasis on retro games and retro gaming. We talk Nintendo, Sega, PC, and more, and how gaming has changed through the years.
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Passion for Pixels Retro Gaming Podcast
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Now displaying: 2014
Nov 5, 2014

What really counts as a violent game? Do we really need to worry about the children? What's really at stake? On this episode we tackle the nebulous issue of violence in video games and do our best to provide our answers to these questions and more!

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Oct 14, 2014

Did you know that the first computer game to have boss fights was a dungeon crawler called DnD, that ran on a computer called Illiac, owned by The University of Illinois? Boss fights have been a staple of video games ever since, so we decided to dedicate a whole episode to our favourite (and least favourite) boss fights. Which are the cliches we can do without? What are the criteria that makes a boss fight a fulfilling challenge? Who tops our list of most memorable boss fights? Download or stream the latest episode to find out!

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Sep 30, 2014

From the ludicrous Jaguar pad to the sublime DualShock for the Sony Playstation, on this episode we dissect the evolution of controllers. Find out our thoughts on the best overall pad for retro gaming with a modern setup along with our feelings on the best and worst ergonomics. Also, did you know the Sega Genesis/Megadrive pad works out of the box with the Atari 2600?

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Sep 2, 2014

Passion For Pixels is back from summer holidays! In this episode we catch up on what we’ve been playing the last couple of months, before we delve into our main topic: classic racing games.

The legacy of racing games goes back all the way to the early days of computer games, and we talk about how the genre has evolved from 1972’s Speed Race. We also devote some time to our classic racing game favorites, like OutRun, RC Pro-Am, F-Zero, Micro Machines, Super Mario Kart and more!

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Jul 8, 2014

As the gaming industry took off in the mid 1990's, so did gaming trade shows. From E3 to Blizzcon, this episode covers the good, the bad, and the ugly of gaming trade shows. Are they really all they are cracked up to be or is it just useless hype?

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Jun 24, 2014

Few companies have dominated the gaming scene as Blizzard Entertainment has for over 20 years, and their logo has become synonymous with top-notch innovative games that are unquestionably worth your money.

Blizzard, known as Silicon & Synapse in the early 1990's, are today known for franchises like WarCraft, StarCraft and Diablo, but we also take a look at their older classics, like Lost Vikings, Rock n' Roll Racing and Blackthorne.

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Jun 10, 2014

Point and click adventure games like Monkey Island and Broken Sword had their heyday in the mid '90's. After having been more or less dead for the last 15 years the genre is now seeing a small resurgence, with among others, Tim Schafer getting back to making adventure games. In celebration of the return of the adventure game genre we get into our favorites of the golden age of adventure gaming, and it turns out that Stian and Danny don't have the same games at the top of their lists.

In an attempt to see the genre without nostalgia tinted glasses, Stian gets some hands on time with an old classic he never had the chance to play back in the day: The Dig. How it holds up and whether this genre can hold the interest of 30 year olds and not just kids with a ton of time on their hands, are among the topics of the tenth episode of retro gaming podcast Passion for Pixels.

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May 27, 2014

For this episode of Passion for Pixels we finally turn to PC gaming and talk about late 80's and early 90's shareware gaming.

The shareware gaming era started with bedroom programmers making their own games and shipping them out to their customers. It grew from there into a profitable business, and one of the main innovators of the time was John Carmack. Carmack was one of the founders of id Software, the company behind shareware titles such as Commander Keen and Doom.

As opposed to game developers like Shigeru Miyamoto and Hideo Kojima, John Carmack was actually a programmer, and we talk about how that might influence someone's perspective when creating games.

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May 13, 2014

This episode starts off with us talking about Japanese game director, producer, writer and designer Hideo Kojima. We talk about the games that inspired Kojima to become a game developer, his earliest work (ever heard of Penguin Adventure?) and how his most well known series of games, Metal Gear Solid, came about. Once again it's a story of how the limitations of the console's hardware forced the developers to think outside of the box.

We also talk about the pros and cons of Kojima's style, which draws heavily on his fascination for films. Does his games feel too static at times, when the cut scenes drag on for too long?

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Apr 29, 2014

This episode we're talking classic console launches, starting with the launch of the NES in the US in 1985. We talk about figures and facts from launches spanning the NES to the Dreamcast, reminisce about our memories of the different launches and talk about how the advertising impacted us in different ways.

The videogame crash had put the industry in shambles, and Nintendo was trying to bring their console to an almost dead market when they released the NES in 1985. Did you know that it took more than a year from the NES was launched in New York until it was available nationwide - more than three years after the Japanese release of the Famicom? Console launches back then were not surrounded by the same amount of hype and propaganda as they are today.

We talk about the launch of the Sega Master System and the Sega Genesis. Stian tells about his memories of the Super Nintendo launch as a kid in Norway, and how this put videogames on norwegian TV for the first time.

We also talk about the launch of the Phillips CD-i and conclude that the console was actually way ahead of it's time, but very poorly marketed (and had terrible games).

We talk about the launch of the Panasonic 3DO, the Sony Playstation, the Sega Saturn, the Nintendo 64 and the Sega Dreamcast as well.

Did you know that the Sega Saturn was released in the US the same day that it was first shown to the American public at E3? Someone at Segas advertising department would probably get fired over that decision if it happened today.

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Apr 15, 2014

A full episode dedicated to talking about one of the most well known games of all time - Final Fantasy VII. Stian and Danny discuss the impact this seminal title has had on the gaming industry, dissect the story and consider modern remakes.

We talk about the game was originally meant to be set in New York. This and other early ideas for the game ended up in other Square RPGs.

How character designer Tetsuya Nomura's style differs from earlier Final Fantasy artist Akira Toriyama is another topic we get into in this episode.

Remember the materia system? We talk about how this fully customizable character system gave players full control of how they wanted to develop their characters, and how it is related to Final Fantasy V's job system.

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Apr 1, 2014

On this episode Stian and Danny talk about the godfather of gaming Shigeru Miyamoto and his indelible impact on the industry. Did you know that Nintendo's programmers meant Miyamoto's ideas for the original Donkey Kong were impossible to recreate with the hardware they had available? We talk about this and much more regarding Shigeru Miyamoto's early career.

Also, we cover video game journalists and spitball on the conspiracy theory that they're all corporate shills. Stian claims that the term journalist does not describe the job most people who write about videogames do - they are merely reviewers and not the watch dogs of the gaming community.

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Mar 18, 2014

What is the difference between an evolution of a videogame series and a reboot? Danny and Stian look at differences between the Mario and Sonic series in this regard, and talk about how much the gameplay has to change to be considered a reboot.

While a reboot in other media, like movies and comic books, is a reboot of the storytelling, this is not necessarily true of videogames, where the game mechanics is what gets changed. While games like Punch-Out and Street Fighter have not been rebooted, classic gaming series like Metroid and Mega Man have, with variying degrees of success.

We also look at the Zelda series, and whether A Link Between Worlds is a reboot of A Link to the Past, how Spirit Tracks and Phantom Hourglass for the Nintendo DS differ from the rest of the series and how Zelda made the transition from 2D to 3D with Ocarina of Time.

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Mar 4, 2014

Stian and Danny talk about the appeal of retro graphics and try to define what old school graphics are. Most people think of pixels and sprites, but how about those clunky old polygons? The guys also talk about why retro games has such catchy and memorable songs and melodies, and why the SNES destroyed the Genesis in sound quality. Lastly Stian and Danny reminisce about Street Fighter, and talk about their memories of playing what was the most popular game of it's time.

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Feb 18, 2014

Talking old school graphics, emulators, Square-Enix (or Squaresoft as it used to be known back when Final Fantasy was all pixelated or polygony) and more! Want to weigh in with your own opinion or have a topic you would like us to cover? Leave us a comment below!

ALL OUR EPISODES ARE AVAILABLE IN ITUNES!

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Have an opinion? Tweet us @passion_pixels or send us an e-mail at passionforpixels@thesofaiswaiting.com.

 

Feb 4, 2014

The inaugural Passion for Pixels Podcast is finally here! Stian and Danny talk about what it means to be 'retro', some of our early gaming memories, and Mario as the mascot for all gaming. It's early going and a bit rough around the edges, so leave a comment to let us know where we can improve.

ALL OUR EPISODES ARE AVAILABLE IN ITUNES!

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Have an opinion? Tweet us @passion_pixels or send us an e-mail at passionforpixels@thesofaiswaiting.com.

 

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