The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time was released to huge critical acclaim in 1998. Where you lived in the world exactly would dictate when, with Japan and North America releasing in November and Europe and other PAL regions having to wait a further month until December.

So here’s where you find me, on December 11th 1998 at 07:30 a.m. queuing outside of Woolworths in the pouring rain. I’d read copies were limited and I didn’t want to miss out so I got there as early as possible. I needn’t have worries, I was the only person there.

I’m going…

A trip down memory lane with the Spectrum and its extensive library of games

I can’t remember when my brother and I received our first Spectrum, but I remember the bundle of wires, unmarked cassettes, and dirty rubber-keyed computer. Its keyboard had letters rubbed off and one joystick was broken. It was a 48k Spectrum, and it had seen better days.

The Sinclair Spectrum made its debut in 1982 and was one of the first home computers in the UK. This hardware would play a key role in the development of video games and personal computers. To load up games, you needed to insert cassettes.

I asked my parents where this 48k Spectrum came…

The Wii U was Nintendo’s worst-selling game system, and yet it remains a truly magical experience

Let’s first address the elephant in the room: the Wii U was a commercial failure. It sold a measley 14 million units. To put that in context, the Wii (its predecessor) sold 101 million units and, as at the end of 2020, the Nintendo Switch (its successor) has sold over 70 million units (in under 3 years). The Wii U — released in November 2012 in two variants (a basic white 8GB system and a black 32GB pro model) — was Nintendo’s first foray into HD gaming.

Even the Wii U reveal event was a confusing mess. Was it a…

Nostalgia and tackling the challenges of our youth

Do you have a game you’ve never completed? Let me be more specific. I don’t mean a backlog; every gamer has a backlog. Last year alone I bought three physical and a bunch of digital Switch games, all of them either barely attempted or never played at all.

No, I’m talking about a game that you have (or have had) in your collection that you always wanted to complete. A game you like, maybe even love, but for some reason or other never got around to completing?

Over the years I’ve revisited most of the games of my youth that…

At the beginning of 2021 I hadn’t even heard of Medium.

I think I’ve always had a little creativity in me and over the past couple of years I’ve tried to find an outlet for it. I’ve tried streaming video games on Twitch, turned my hand to photography and also written one or two blogs for a couple of video gaming websites but Medium, never heard of it?

In January of this year (the 24th to be exact) on a cold Sunday morning I was up early getting ready to start work at 7am. It was a particularly frosty winter…

Remembering the forgotten game consoles of the 1990s

The decade between 1990 and the turn of the millennium was an amazing time to be a gamer. This virgin form of entertainment was nothing like the juggernaut of an industry we have today. It was a time of experimentation, where not all systems looked the same, and every console had its own unique joypad design. We started out the decade with Nintendo’s NES ruling the industry and Sega not too far behind. It ended with Sega throwing its last roll of the dice, Nintendo hanging onto practices of the past, and a young upstart from Sony wearing the king’s…

Sorry Mario, it’s not you, it’s me

The Nintendo GameCube sits awkwardly in my gaming history. Sitting between the much-loved N64 and Wii, I purchased my purple edition on launch day 2002 with copies of Luigi’s Mansion and International Superstar Soccer 2.

Looking back it had a tough act to follow for two reasons. Firstly, I bought my N64 in late 1997 with copies of Super Mario 64 and Superstar Soccer 64, two games I loved immensely and that set me on the path to being the Nintendo fan I am today. Luigi’s Mansion (as good a game as it is) is no Mario 64, and Superstar…

Which games from the iconic franchise could get the anniversary treatment?

2020 was the 35th birthday of Super Mario Bros. after its 1985 NES release and, although it can be argued that COVID-19 probably hindered the development and release of video games in 2020, we were still treated to some delicious birthday treats from Nintendo.

Super Mario 35 is a Switch downloadable multiplayer take on the original Super Mario Bros. Super Mario 3D Allstars is a fantastic Switch collection of 3 previously released 3D Mario titles. And Mario 3D World is a Wii U title being given the Switch makeover treatment which will be released in early 2021. …

The 32-bit system was great, but a victim of Sega’s mistakes

I was a Sega kid growing up. My younger brother and I begged our parents for a Master System for Christmas 1990. In 1993 armed with my first paycheque the first thing I did was to upgrade that to a Mega Drive.

These two systems provided me with so much pleasure growing up. I enjoyed games of every genre on them, especially the MegaDrive, as I had time on my hands and money in my pocket to indulge myself in my new hobby. I’ll not make this post into a games list but highlights included, Sensible Soccer and the early

Rediscover the under-appreciated series entry from the Game Boy Advance era

The Legend of Zelda series is one of the most loved series in all of video gaming. Since its initial release on NES in 1986, there have been scores of games released across every Nintendo console, and handheld (with the exception of the Virtual Boy) in its 35-year history. Every game has been released to universal acclaim but I’m guessing if you had to put them in order that The Minish Cap, as good as it is, wouldn’t rank among the best.

Andy Carrick

A veteran of many console wars. Rescuer of princesses, Slayer of demons, Drinker of tea.

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