Tuesday, June 2
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Tag: Atari

The Art of Activision Atari Covers

The Art of Activision Atari Covers

Games & Toys
I can't even begin to calculate the hours I spent playing Activision games for my Atari 2600. I think they probably had the most fun games on average out of any gaming company back then. One of the crucial parts of Activision's appeal was their artwork. I'm referring specifically to the great use of simple drawings with those bold, rainbow motion patterns. There was a real sense of thematic unity behind a lot of Activision's games, which really helped them so stand out from the pack. Not all of their titles shared that unity, but many did. So in tribute to the great (and not-so-great) Activision games with the brilliant packaging, here is my Atari 2600 Activision cover slideshow gallery. Here's what we have here -- Boxing, Enduro, Fishing Derby, Freeway, Grand Prix, Ice Hockey, Kaboo...
The art of gaming

The art of gaming

Ephemera, Games & Toys
Gamers today pretty much take it for granted that any new release they get their hands on will be a veritable orgy of graphics and sounds.  When you look at promotional materials for a game like Call of Duty: Black Ops or Rock Band 3, you know that what you see in a commercial, a trailer, or a poster will pretty be much be what you get when you play the game. This was not always so.  See, there was a time when the surest way to draw the attention of a gamer was not by showing real game play (although that was part of any ad campaign), but through attractive packaging.  And up until, say the mid-'80s, there was usually a fairly substantial disconnect between what you saw on the box and what you saw on the TV or PC.  People more cynical than I have called this bait and switch of a kind, b
Retrotisement: Atari ’82

Retrotisement: Atari ’82

Advertising, Retrotisements
The failures and successes of Atari in the '70s and '80s are well-documented, but if you were of gaming age back then there was no doubt that for a brief time, they were the kings of gaming.  Oh sure, we all knew kids who had Intellivision or ColecoVision - and truth be told they were superior systems - but they were desperately out of step and knew it. Atari, like many of its contemporaries, was hit hard when the North American video game market imploded in 1983.  They were never able to build on the success of the Atari 2600 console, as the subsequent 5200 console was discontinued after just 18 months on the market and the 7800 was halted for a few years.  But none of that really mattered, as within a few years the Nintendo Entertainment System would begin its ascent into gaming l
Are you addicted to the Internet?

Are you addicted to the Internet?

Funny Stuff, Listcruft
There is no shortage of press and academic research covering the topic of so-called Internet Addiction. Of course, the first reaction of any true addict is "not me!" This denial is usually followed by surprise, realization, and then descent into an all-too familiar shame spiral. In the interest of science and self-improvement I've spent the last few weeks keeping a meticulous log of my daily activities, in order to better understand just how the Internet fits into my life. The results, needless to say, confirm that I totally have this thing under control. Just take a look at last Thursday's log (time spent is total throughout the day, not consecutive): 45 minutes spent updating my Wikipedia watchlist to make sure some snot-nosed high school punk hasn't vandalized one of my favor...