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Old 16 August 2002, 15:29   #1
Big-Byte
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Game On Exhibition @ Barbican (London UK)

Info about the exhibition can be found here:
http://www.gameonweb.co.uk


Thought Id write a mini review of this exhibition...

Entrance fee was 11 (16 euros approx) a ticket and you get a time limit of 2 and half hours to play as many games as possible.. but was it worth it? read on..

I went with my girlfriend (her treat) who hates computer games but she actually liked the exhibition. Got there at 10am and even though its the school holidays the only other visitors we saw arrived around 11am so we had the whole place to ourselves for an hour.

There wasnt that much there really. Place is divided into a number of areas:

Area 1: Retro arcae games...

All arcade machines were on freeplay and they had the classics you expect.. Space Invaders, Pacman, Defender, Donkey Kong and Tempest

They also had parts of the first machine that Spacewars was written on with a bit of history about it.

Moving into Area 2 they had retro consoles... There were some obvious omissions here.. No Game Gear or Lynx or any other handhelds apart from Gameboy. the earliest Commodore machine was a c64. The latest machine was a Playstation 2!! (retro already?)

They had a spectrum and a Commodore 64 not working and displayed in a glass box. Next to them they had a pc running a spectrum emulator (running Ant Attack) and another pc running a c64 emulator (running IK+ which cracked by 'Mersey Brothers'!!)

They had one Amiga 500 working but only game you could play was Kick Off. Small bit of info about the amiga was on a plaque but the last sentence 'Amiga died off cause it couldnt keep up with advancements on the PC' annoyed me.

They had some machines Id never seen before.. I got to play Street Fighter on the PC Engine which was great and Tempest on the Jaguar.

Majority of the show was taken up by next gen machines.. (read Xbox, Gamecube and PS2) and the games were ok. I liked Super Monkey Ball and Parappa 2 but they only had Halo on the Xbox and I cant use a controller to play fps games.

One area I was looking forward to the most was the Japan section but it was deeply disappointing... they had two Pachinko machines but no metal balls to play on them with. A dance game and 'Go Go Train' game which was boring. Worst of all they had some crap PD space invaders game that was completely racist. I dont know why it was there as it had nothing to do with Japan culture - and it took up the most space as it was projected onto a wall.

We got round the whole exhibition in two hours (including going back to play some of the arcade games again) I cant help thinking they could of done more to make it more interesting but it was quite good value for money (You could spend 11 in a 'normal' arcade well inside two hours..)

the gift shop was very expensive. Books ranged from 25 (Superarcade) to 50!! for some Jap ones..

Overall its worth going and girlfriend friendly - lots of cure Mario and Pacman games for them to play Just dont expect too much and make sure you get there when it opens (10am) to beat those pesky kids.
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Old 16 August 2002, 16:59   #2
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Thanks for that report Big-Byte.

Talking purely from a retro gaming standpoint:

The exhibition sounds ok, but I bet if a few EAB members clubbed together we could put on a better show minus the arcades. At least we'd have all the retro machines up and running!

Plus having PC's running emulators for the spectrum and C-64 is a bit of a cop out - you can't beat the real thing (Akira, 2001).

Going to an exhibition like that with little kids running around laughing at the graphics would make me feel old . And I'm only 26.
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Old 16 August 2002, 17:56   #3
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Yep we were lucky. As we were just leaving a coachload of kids appeared so we timed it just right.

Other this they had there which really got me excited was that they had a Sit Down Star Wars Cabinet but unfortunately the joystick thing was broke and you couldnt go up which ruined it.

Main thing that got me wondering me was the legality of some of the exhibits of the show. they had cracked games running on emulators (IK+ had a trainer too!), Arcade emulators , Chipped Playstations so you could play jap games, and Games which said 'You are breaking the law if played outside of Japan etc...
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Old 17 August 2002, 03:18   #4
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Went there a few months back. Its ok, it was nice to see a A1000 in the plastic. Space Invaders was conked out when i was there which kinda miffed me and Pacman was MsPacman...

I did kind of walk away preferring my own collection of retro machines to be honest!

I have to admit that a retro computer convention organised by genuine retro gamers with genuine retro machines running would be most amusing.
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Old 17 August 2002, 04:36   #5
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Quote:
Originally posted by Antiriad
I have to admit that a retro computer convention organised by genuine retro gamers with genuine retro machines running would be most amusing.
Of course! but it is nice to get the machines showed to the mainstream public, so they remember, or realize, that it all started WAY BEFORE PCs were conceived.

I found the PDP-1 setup to be MOST LOVELY! I wish I could have been there.

Did you know a lot of the games you could play were EMULATED??? There was IK+ on a C64 but it was emulation! They just put a C64 below it for the looks, the actual gameplay was lameulated
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Old 17 August 2002, 06:51   #6
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Maybe the guys behind the event didn't know how to use a C64 ...
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Old 19 August 2002, 02:46   #7
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Hehe, I did start to think something was up with the C64 supposedly running IK+ and the Amiga 500 supposedly running Kick Off when i noticed the power led's were somehow not on and there was a severe lack of leads protuding from either machine...

Made me wince frankly, i suspected most of the hardware there was emulation by (spit) PCs, course the dum little kids wouldnt know the friggin difference...*sigh* of which there were TOO many... (and folks, im only 23)

Equally, both the C64 and the Amiga 500 were in pretty manky condition to be honest, it didnt seem to me that the organisers gave much respect to the home computers. It was more geared to consoles and arcades frankly.
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Old 19 August 2002, 08:09   #8
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One reason they could have to leave it to the PCs instead of using the original computers would be because they didn't want the kids to break something...but it's a pretty weak argument.
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Old 19 August 2002, 08:44   #9
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I would have thought that when it came to the Spectrum and C64 they WOULD have had the real machines up and running, and it would have maybe been nice to see some of the older machnes like the ZX81 and the VIC 20

I LOVE retro gaming But I especially love the old Computers / Consoles, esp consoles like the Atari 2600, Intellivision & the Vectrex System


Ahhhhhh Happy days
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Old 19 August 2002, 12:28   #10
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They also had a Binatone TV Game there which played Pong and guess what - I picked up exactly the same thing yesterday at a boot fair (It came free with an Amiga A600 that I paid 4 for )
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Old 20 August 2002, 23:00   #11
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I had a great time at Gameon, it wasn't as good as I thought it would be, but that's only because I'm more interested in retro hardware than the games...

I spent most of my time taking pics with my Digicam, just thought I would share some with you guys.

Here's the PDP-1 System.
[IMG]( )[/IMG]

The console area, probably the most interesting for us retro comp. fans.
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Old 20 August 2002, 23:12   #12
MOS-6581
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Help!

Call me a dumbass, but how do you post multiple pictures? Can someone explain the procedure to me step by step? I just can't get to grips with this! and yes I have read the bit at >
http://eab.abime.net/misc.php?s=&action=bbcode#imgcode

thanks
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Old 20 August 2002, 23:34   #13
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I went the the game on exhibition....but i thought it was pants....Ther was some nice very early arcade machines and that very grubby a1000..but after thet it suddenly jumped to brand new games......

And what were they thinking when the dedicated rooms to:

The Sims
GTA
and Tomb Rader

The best part though was the framed sketches of monkey island...
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Old 21 August 2002, 05:53   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by MOS-6581
Help!
Call me a dumbass, but how do you post multiple pictures? Can someone explain the procedure to me step by step? I just can't get to grips with this! and yes I have read the bit at >
http://eab.abime.net/misc.php?s=&action=bbcode#imgcode
You need to post them in some webspace of your own. You cant attach two files at the same post.
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Old 21 August 2002, 08:21   #15
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You can also put lots of pictures in just one file and upload it, just like I did in this thread http://eab.abime.net/showthread.php?s=&threadid=5967
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Old 22 August 2002, 00:07   #16
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Thanks for the replies Akria and Shatterhand. I'll just put 4 photos together like shatterhand did with his post.
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Old 22 August 2002, 06:27   #17
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Just beware to not post pics too big. I usually try to not exceed 640x480.
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