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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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Now displaying: 2016
Nov 15, 2016

On this episode of retro gaming podcast Passion for Pixels, we have the pleasure of talking to Mo Gallagher, author of the Final Fantasy VII novels A New Threat, The Man in the Black Cloack and the upcoming The Cetran Legacy.

Mo is working on a series of five novels which will span the entire storyline of Squaresoft's classic RPG. This is not your every day fanfiction author, Mo has over 30 000 followers in social media, and is considered one of the greatest video game fanfiction authors of our day!

We talk to him about his love of Final Fantasy, what made him decide to undertake such a massive story, the challenges of adapting a video game into a book and how he has managed to garner a huge following of fans online.

Mo Gallagher's Final Fantasy VII novels are available for free from Patreon.

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Oct 31, 2016

For the 50th episode of retro gaming podcast Passion for Pixels, we delve into one of gaming's most classic topics: Nintendo vs Sega.

Before Sony and Microsoft entered the gaming market, Nintendo and Sega dominated the console wars of the 1980s and 90s. With the Master System, Sega tried to take down Nintendo's leading market position that they had gained with the NES in the 1980s. The two Japanese companies kept going head to head with the GameBoy and the GameGear, ramped up the bit wars with the Super Nintendo and the Genesis/Mega Drive (remember the "Sega does what Nintendon't" campaign?), the Nintendo 64 and the Saturn and finally the Dreamcast and the Gamecube.

We discuss who came out ahead in each console generation. As we look at the reasons why Nintendo always sold more consoles than Sega did, we argue that Sega's failure to properly support their own products and the lackluster use of their mascot Sonic were big parts of the reason for Segas downfall.

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Oct 11, 2016

Youtuber, speedrunner, video game expert, retro gaming afficionado and world record holder Cornshaq aka Mark Davis is this weeks guest on retro gaming podcast Passion for Pixels!

Mark talks to Danny and Stian about how he has managed to transition from working as a paramedic to making a living from playing video games and how doing video game Youtube reviews pays the bills, how he achieved the world record in Zelda: The Wand of Gamelon, why his favorite NES game is the relatively unknown 8 Eyes and how he beat Super Mario Bros. at 2 years old and Castlevania: Simon's Quest at 5!

Make sure to check out Cornshaq's Youtube-channel and his Twitch for all his awesome speedruns and reviews!

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Sep 27, 2016

*While we work on new episodes of Passion for Pixels, we bring you a rerun of our popular episode about JRPGs*

Japanese Role Playing Games (Japanese RPGs or JRPGs for short) used to be one of our favourite genres, but playing a JRPG today is like meeting that friend from 20 years ago who still lives at home with his parents.

We try to figure out what made JRPGs especially appealing to us as teenagers, talk about what sets them apart from other RPGs, how crude graphics was a benefit for Tetsuya Nomura's Final Fantasy designs and how we still enjoy the beautiful soundtracks by Nobuo Uematsu and Yasunori Mitsuda for games like Final Fantasy, Chrono Trigger and Xenogears.

We also look at how stuff gets lost in translation, both because of limitations in the ROM file, like the case was with Ted Woolsey's infamous Secret of Mana translation, but also in a more cultural way. Like what the hell is going on at the Honeybee Inn?

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Sep 13, 2016

We continue our countdown of TIME Magazine's Best Games of All Time list, working our way from number 25 all the way to number one. We complain about too many First Person Shooters (FPS), are surprised at finding two Final Fantasy games on the list, complain some more about the lack of Street Fighter and then we complain a little bit about the Nintendo 64 as well, before we applaud TIME's choice of greatest game of all time.

See the complete list at TIME's website.

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Aug 30, 2016

'Best Game of All Time' lists are far from a new phenomenon (we've even had a few on this podcast!) - debating the games that didn't make the cut and the ordering of those that did has become an internet past time. Many gaming sites have feasted on the popularity of these lists by issuing perennial revisions to keep the discussion flowing. Most of these lists probably wouldn't warrant an episode (let alone two), but when the venerable Time Magazine weighs in, Stian and Danny just can't help themselves.

On this episode we discuss the bottom half of TIME's top 50 list, going from King's Quest III at number 50 to Star Craft II at number 26. We'll be back in two weeks with our opinions on the top half of the list!

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Aug 16, 2016

Back in episode 42 of retro gaming podcast Passion for Pixels, we criticized The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time for the Nintendo 64 for being overrated. We didn't feel that it was a bad game, but that the game was receiving more praise than it was worthy of. Some of our listeners agreed, but a lot of them did not.

So we decided to find out if maybe we were too hard on this old adventure classic, and played it again all the way through for the first time since it was released in 1998.

And to make things a little more interesting, we played the whole game with someone who has hardly ever played video games before, a complete newbie, to ensure that our new verdict is not seen through the veil of fandom and almost 20 years of praise.

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Jul 26, 2016

Which retro console has the most impressive library of games? We look at the most classic consoles and games from both Sega, Nintendo and Sony, when we decide which gaming system we would want to bring to a deserted island, on this episode of retro gaming podcast Passion for Pixels!

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Jul 12, 2016

Does the Power Glove get unfairly dumped on? It didn't work well and was the centre piece of Nintendo's early 90's marketing strategy featuring prominently in The Wizard - a movie that only deserves ironic praise. That said, it was a proof of concept for the motion controls that ultimately propelled the Wii into a cultural powerhouse.

Stian and Danny consider some of the oddball peripherals that hit the market (plus a few that didn't) and weigh whether they ought to be banished to obscurity as gimmicks or if they really are the product of genius. The Sega Activator, the Atari Mindlink, the NES Zapper, the Game Gear TV tuner and something that lets you play the Wii in your car are among the gadgets we get into on this episode of retro gaming podcast Passion for Pixels!

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Jun 28, 2016

While we work on bringing you a new episode, we hope you'll enjoy this rebroadcast of our episode dedicated to Final Fantasy VII. Originally released in April 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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Jun 14, 2016

Retro gamers seem to love collecting old games and consoles, so for this episode of retro gaming podcast Passion for Pixels, we decided to sit down with Simon Pophale to talk about how he went about collecting 40 different video game systems, and nearly complete sets of several console's gaming libraries.

We go from Simon's first experience with video games on the ZX Spectrum, to almost completing a set of Sega Megadrive games and, talk about his latest endeavour, a complete Sega Saturn set, and lots more.

Simon gives his best advice on how to build your retro gaming collection and other retro gaming advice, like using old wine boxes to stack your systems.

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May 31, 2016

We've made a lot of people very mad. On the previous Passion for Pixels episode, we talked about how Zelda: Ocarina of Time, Goldeneye and Warcraft 3 were overrated. Now the people have spoken. And they say we're a bunch of clueless jerks. Or as one of our listeners puts it: "Overrated my ass". For this short update, we go through some of our listener feedback from our episode on overrated video games.

This is not a regular episode of Passion for Pixels, but we'll be back to our normal schedule of one hour (ish) episodes in two weeks!

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May 17, 2016

On this episode of Retro Gaming Podcast Passion for Pixels, we talk about games that history have treated too kindly. Even though we love Nintendo, they have released games that have been unduly praised, and we take a look at why titles like Goldeneye 007, Zelda: Ocarina of Time and Donkey Kong 64 need to be knocked down a few pegs. We also get into overrated PC games like Baldur's Gate, and we discuss whether Warcraft 3 is as innovative of an RTS as people seem to think.

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May 3, 2016

The 8-bit era of videogames spawned many of gaming's greatest icons, like Mario, Link and Sonic. On this episode of Retro Gaming Podcast Passion for Pixels, we talk about why the simplicity of 8-bit graphics is still so dear to gamers, and why many think it has aged better than the more advanced pixel count of 16-bit graphics.

We also get into how the graphical limitations of the time forced game developers to think in creative ways that has since become obsolete, due to hardware improvements.

We discuss what we consider the best looking games of the era that was dominated by the Nintendo NES, the Atari 7800 and the Sega Master System, and get into smoothly animated ninjas, adventurous ducks, talking frogs and more!

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Apr 19, 2016

Rune Fjeld Olsen is a Norwegian journalist with over a decade of experience reporting on video games. Recently, he's transitioned from his steady gig at VG (a major newspaper in Norway) to self-directed content on his YouTube channel. In this candid interview, Rune delves into his career in print, the trials of running a video game YouTube channel for a living, the state of game development in Norway, his thoughts on the future of the industry, and all manner of other topics!

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Apr 5, 2016

Real Time Strategy (RTS) was one of the major gaming genres in the 1990s, with amazing titles like Command & Conquer, Warcraft, Dungeon Keeper, Age of Empires and Starcraft. What happened?

On this episode of retro gaming podcast Passion for Pixels, we look into what defines an RTS, why they suddenly owned the PC gaming market in the 1990s, how well they play on consoles and what happened to Westwood, one of the most renowned RTS developers.

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Mar 23, 2016

What happens when Batman and Superman, two of the most iconic superheroes, square off? We'll finally see how the action unfolds on the silver screen but no need to wait to find out how the respective video games of Superman and Batman stack up, because that is what we will get into on this brand new episode of retro gaming podcast Passion for Pixels. But how can this possibly be a fair fight when we struggle to even name three good Superman games?

Comparing the best overall, worst overall, and most interesting use of the characters - Stian and Danny tally the blows covering everything from 80's arcade games to Superman 64 to the Arkham series and beyond.

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Mar 8, 2016

Have you ever wanted to squeeze more life out of your favourite game? Have you ever felt the compulsion to gather every last collectible strewn about the game world? Or maybe you've just wanted to a find a way to compete at a single-player game?

From completionists to speed runners, on this episode Stian and Danny dissect the unique ways to play games.

We also scratch the surface of modding and the fine line between enhancing an experience and breaking it entirely. Finally, why the hell did it take Nintendo so long to release Mario maker and who actually wants to play a level that plays itself?

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Feb 23, 2016

The Atari Jaguar, the 3DO, the Philips CDi - the list of failed video game consoles goes on and on. On this episode of retro gaming podcast Passion for Pixels, we look at why some consoles fail, and why others suceed.

Does the Sega Dreamcast qualify as a failure? It sold almost 10 million units, which sounds like a lot, but when Sony sold 150 million units of the PlayStation 2, it wasn't enough to keep Sega in business as a console manufacturer.

We also talk about the obscure Halcyon system by RDI, makers of Dragon's Lair. The system sported voice activation, a Laserdisc player, a planned price tag of 2500 dollars in 1985, and was based on a famous and murderous movie AI. Does it sound like a good idea for a gaming console? Listen to the full story and judge for yourself.

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Feb 9, 2016

Remember dodging those laser beams on the Quickman level of Mega Man 2, working up a sweat trying to beat the underwater level of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, running around in your underwear in Ghosts 'n Goblins, playing Battletoads in two player mode or pretty much any level of Ninja Gaiden?

Classic games often have a high difficulty level because they were built to mimic arcade games, which needed players to lose lives frequently enough to make them keep shovelling quarters into the machine. This caused many a Nintendo NES and Sega Master System controller to go flying across the living room back in the day.

We talk about our memories of incredibly difficult retro gaming moments, and how gaming has become a lot more accesible and less frustrating in modern times, but that part of the challenge has been lost in the process.

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Jan 26, 2016

We list our top three favourite games of all time. The only game to end up on two lists is Tetris - listen to find out which other classics made the cut! Also, Tyma is back (but he forgets to introduce himself).

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Jan 12, 2016

We talk about our favourite classic retro multiplayer games, from great hockey games like Blades of Steel, Ice Hockey and NHL 95 to Street Fighter II, Goldeneye for Nintendo 64 and of course the Nintendo NES Four Score four player favourites RC Pro Am II and Nintendo World Cup, plus lots more!

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