What Is Retro?

Discuss and discover all the great games of yesteryear!

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RonnieT
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Post by RonnieT » Wed Dec 14, 2005 6:30 am

Seeking a definition of Retro Gaming, be it pre ’85, pre PS1 or pre 32 Bit is, to me, the sort of petty detailing that relates more to collectors than players. The magazine is Retro Gamer. Not Retro Collector. So the focus should be (and quite rightly is) on great games.

Retro should be defined more as a style of play that’s perhaps less common on the mainstream current generation consoles. And I think more people are seeking to play retro style games as perhaps a reaction to the current trend of evolution from most publishers.

A huge amount of current gaming releases are not even true sequels – more updates of the original. Gran Turisimo was a great game, which I loved on PS1. But I’ll never consider it a retro game, or go back to play it again when I have Gran Turisimo 4 on PS2. And as games evolve like this, the only way to expand the gameplay is often to expand the complexity, and investment of time. Many other current successes place huge demands on the player; I really enjoyed Knights of the Old Republic on Xbox, but that was around 40 hours of gameplay. There was no way you’d put it on for a “quick blastâ€
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Post by Randall Flagg » Wed Dec 14, 2005 7:42 am

Wow. Amazing discussion. This is one of my favourite topics as there is no answer but it great to hear everyones views.

IMHO I still agree with the "Any platfrom previous to the current generation consoles" including the PS1, N64 and DC.

After all the playstation has been around for over 10 years and despite being 32bit some of the 3D looks really dated now.
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Rev
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Re:

Post by Rev » Wed Dec 14, 2005 9:39 am

RonnieT wrote: Retro gaming is about appreciating and enjoying great games. Retro gamers know that – they’re not seduced by flashier graphics or better sounds. Sure, sometimes they’re nostalgic for games they enjoyed in the past, but it’s still about enjoyment.
You see, this is the point I made ramblingly on the last page - a game that comes out next week can still appeal to my retro side because it is more to do with gameplay than age in my head.

An example I forgot on the last page - Zombie Zone. One of those odd 505 Gamestreet published titles. Bought it the other week and it already feels like it's part of my retro collection - even though it's on the PS2 I just bought, was released this year - PAL at least - and I only purchased it seven days ago.

It feels very much like a retro game to me though - an odd novelty that I was pleased to find and very much enjoyed playing. No nostalgia but I never throw games away - so I never get nostalgia when I buy a "new" (old) retro game.

RonnieT wrote: I really enjoyed Knights of the Old Republic on Xbox, but that was around 40 hours of gameplay. There was no way you’d put it on for a “quick blastâ€

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HalcyonDaze00
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Re: What Is Retro?

Post by HalcyonDaze00 » Sun Dec 18, 2011 4:29 pm

im not sure

IronMaidenRule
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Re: What Is Retro?

Post by IronMaidenRule » Sun Dec 18, 2011 4:37 pm

What Is Retro? A Hairy Vagina!

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SJ_Sathanas
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Re: What Is Retro?

Post by SJ_Sathanas » Sun Dec 18, 2011 4:42 pm

For me it's all about Nostalgia, wether it's Ghostbusters on CPC or Gran Turismo on Playstation ("1").

GREENHORN
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Re: What Is Retro?

Post by GREENHORN » Sun Dec 18, 2011 5:09 pm

Retro is down to the individuals own personal nostalgia of their gaming past, mine began with the ZX81

kiwimike
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Re:

Post by kiwimike » Sun Dec 18, 2011 11:42 pm

Darran@Retro Gamer wrote:It's a good post mate, and one that will no doubt cause some interesting debate.

If you go strictly by the dictionary definition, then by rights, many machines should never be covered in the mag...

On the other hand though, when people actually refer to the term retro, they normally associate it with many different things. As for myself, I'll be taking the same approach with Retro Gamer that I did with the retro section of gamesTM.

I'm happy to include all consoles, up to and including the Dreamcast. The Playstation will also be covered, now before the backlash begins, allow me to explain why.

Many people that I've spoken to liken retro gaming to stuff they played in their youth. So at the moment, there are many late teens and early 20 somethings that consider the Playstation and N64 to be old.

Of course, we're certainyl not going to fill the mag with the more recent machines. As I've stated in the past, it's all about trying to maintain a balance that will try and please as many people as possible (you'll certainyl never please everyone...)

I have no problem with the N64/PS1 era included...IMO it should be a generation gap between what is current and what is retro :)

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Re:

Post by kiwimike » Sun Dec 18, 2011 11:48 pm

Rev wrote:Hmm. I'm going to throw out another viewpoint.

I don't think retro has a close-off point. I think you could make a fair arguement for games that were released last week being included.

I think of Retro games as something timeless - something that gives pleasure when it is released and continues to give pleasure into the future. Take a look at something like Shadow of the Colossus. It's a game that you can see is going to be fun for years to come - something that people will look back on. The same with Rez and Ico. They aren't going to go away, they're just going to get older.

Hop back a generation and it was the same - to pluck a couple at random - Abe's Oddysee and Virtual On. From the first time you played them you knew they were going to be memorable games that you would enjoy in a months time, a years time, ten years time. You can keep hopping backwards too - Elite, Duck Hunt, Pac Man. They're all games that you could instantly tell were going to be memorable in the years to follow.

Asking what should be written about in the magazine though is a different matter. I think that if the editor does his job well, plotting a frequency graph of the years covered in articles should give a steady curve with a peak around the late eighties - meaning that the mid eighties and mid nineties both get covered roughly equally.

There shouldn't be a rule against featuring anything from the last year - but they should make up a very, very small percentage of the articles.

I agree in principle that retro is timeless...as time goes on of course what counts as current now will be retro. Those PS2 and Xbox games we 'wowed' at not so long ago look dated compared to the latest. Yet, several year down the track the current PS3 stuff is going to look old.
I have always maintained, as mentioned in my last post, Retro is anything from the generation before the last. 2 generations back. So PS1 is retro, Ps3 is current, and PS2 is 'kinda current.' :lol:

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DreamcastRIP
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Re: Re:

Post by DreamcastRIP » Mon Dec 19, 2011 4:31 am

kiwimike wrote:... Retro is anything from the generation before the last. 2 generations back. So PS1 is retro, Ps3 is current, and PS2 is 'kinda current.' :lol:
So PS2 is currently in purgatory? I quite like the sound of that! :lol:

If PS2 is neither one thing (retro) or the other (truly current) then does that make it retrosexual? :mrgreen:
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Re: Re:

Post by kiwimike » Mon Dec 19, 2011 11:14 pm

DreamcastRIP wrote:
kiwimike wrote:... Retro is anything from the generation before the last. 2 generations back. So PS1 is retro, Ps3 is current, and PS2 is 'kinda current.' :lol:
So PS2 is currently in purgatory? I quite like the sound of that! :lol:

If PS2 is neither one thing (retro) or the other (truly current) then does that make it retrosexual? :mrgreen:
Well, yeah, it goes both ways :lol:

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DreamcastRIP
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Re: Re:

Post by DreamcastRIP » Tue Dec 20, 2011 6:42 am

kiwimike wrote:
DreamcastRIP wrote:
kiwimike wrote:... Retro is anything from the generation before the last. 2 generations back. So PS1 is retro, Ps3 is current, and PS2 is 'kinda current.' :lol:
So PS2 is currently in purgatory? I quite like the sound of that! :lol:

If PS2 is neither one thing (retro) or the other (truly current) then does that make it retrosexual? :mrgreen:
Well, yeah, it goes both ways :lol:
That's settled then! PS2 = The David Beckham of games consoles!
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pforson
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Re: What Is Retro?

Post by pforson » Tue Dec 20, 2011 7:11 am

This Thread.
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kiwimike
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Re: What Is Retro?

Post by kiwimike » Tue Dec 20, 2011 11:10 pm

pforson wrote:This Thread.
Grinch! :wink:

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Re: What Is Retro?

Post by witchfinder » Fri Dec 23, 2011 5:25 am

He's right though - look at the date this thread was created - December 2005! :o
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