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Gaming Memories
#1
Ben put up an article a few days ago about his top 10 gaming memories. I've been thinking about it since then but I'm not going to be able to rattle off ten that rank above the others or bring to mind every one in any reasonable amount of time, so I figured I'd just list the ones I can think of right now. I've ignored Ben's suggestion that the games have to be at least a few years old to count because for now I'm just listing every significant moment I can recall, and those are ones that feel like they're going to stick or will prove influential going forward.

The top one is the only real spoiler (which Ben already mentioned in his article), but I think it qualifies as an Empire Strikes Back kind of spoiler, something everybody should be aware of by now unless they really don't care about it. I've included links to YouTube clips where possible, which obviously are big fat spoilers for those parts.

Final Fantasy VII
(PS1) - Aeris' death (watch here).
I could point out FFVII as a whole, being my first JRPG and exposing me to a different style of game, but that moment completely took me by surprise. You catch up with Aeris, finding her waiting, and suddenly it seems like you have to make Cloud kill her, only to have him stopped at the last minute. Then Sephiroth swoops down and stabs her anyway. Cloud rages and Sephiroth can't even comprehend how Cloud could feel anything, knowing who he is. A boss fight follows, then Cloud places her carefully into the water, where she sinks down to the bottom...

Bioshock
(360) - The Twist. I won't elaborate on what it is but it was a great moment for me, forcing me to re-evaluate a lot of what came before (especially during a second playthrough), as well as fixing a few gaps in the logic that had left me wondering.

World of Warcraft
(PC) - Defeating Ragnaros (watch here, with the volume muted).
While I believe raiding is a fairly crappy endgame for WoW, with horrible amounts of time commitments, organisation, management of loot that requires out-of-game databases, and a system that necessitates prioritising regular players over friends, it still was quite an experience to be part of.
Ragnaros is the final encounter of the Molten Core, a raid dungeon that originally required forty people to spend months working through to master. Defeating him, getting forty people to both blitz through the whole dungeon as quickly as possible and then work in tandem to tank, do damage to while watching aggro, heal the group, control and defeat his summons and so on was a great experience.

Fallout 2
(PC) - The ending (watch here).
The game itself gives you a set goal, which by the end of the game has changed somewhat but is still pretty clear, and as games go I thought I could predict the ending fairly accurately. But then the ending sequence plays out and details what effect you had on every town and faction you interacted with throughout the game in the years following the game. How you affected relationships between the factions, which towns flourish or fail and whether that helps or hinders the region. It seemed wholly personal and was really great for it.
I felt then that this was how all games like this (ie. non-linear, multiple-pathed games) should end. It does seem to be one of the things that Fallout 3 will be getting right, which is nice.

Portal (PC) - The final level.
You spend the previous levels in a pure puzzle environment, with short challenges in small areas. They're tricky, fun and challenging, but very confined and with goals that could clearly only work in a puzzle-based lab environment. The final level though suddenly opens everything up and gives you a glimpse into how the portal gun could function in a full-fledged Half-Life game and radically changes the experience. Combined with the end of that level and the credits sequence it was just excellent.

Half-Life
(PC) - The opening sequence (watch here, in a speed run vid).
This was coming from a time when most FPS games had the story contained in an opening text dump, or even just contained in a readme file installed with the game. Half-Life's opening was incredibly cinematic for the time, settling Gordon into a regular (if unusual) day at work, only to have it all go to crap in a spectacular manner. Just taken on its own it was great, but combined with its effect on FPS games since it really was incredibly significant.

Goldeneye
(N64) - The game itself.
My first experience using an analogue stick for an FPS, so the first time a console FPS wasn't so obviously gimped compared to a mouse. Not only that, it was a decent movie tie-in (many years later, of course) and a decent stealth game for the most part. With four-player splitscreen deathmatch to boot it really was an excellent game.

Setting up a LAN for the first time
(PC)
As soon as the family had their first PC it was clear how much it was going to dominate most of our time, so we quickly ended up with one per family member. They were all isolated experiences until we got a LAN cable and two adapters, linking the two gaming PCs together. Suddenly we were able to play games like Quake 2 together co-op, but on separate machines.
It was clear to me then that this was the future, though I figured it was going to be friends teaming up to work through story modes and AI encounters, rather than mostly strangers fragging one another.

Kingpin
(PC) - First online community
The game itself was okay, but this was released around the time my friends and I were all starting to go online and the Wireplay gaming service moved from a paid service to a free one. We formed a clan named after the nWo wrestling faction (another interest of ours at the time) each taking wrestler names (which is how I ended up as Macho Man in most of my online identities), and actually made an impact on the community because we were pretty much playing the role of the nWo: The outsiders, the rebels challenging the status quo. It was lots of fun just being part of that kind of community.

Lemmings
(Mega Drive) - Introducing it to my Mum.
She was never much of a gamer but she loves puzzles and the Lemmings game on the Mega Drive really clicked with her. While we were all at school she'd fire up the console and methodically work through every single level. It was my first glimpse of games not being just for us teenagers, although for my mum personally it didn't extend much beyond cutesy puzzles games like Lemmings, Troddlers and Pushover.

The Playstation
(PS1) - Realising gaming had changed.
I'd always been a gamer myself since my dad introduced me to the Commodore 64 and Spectrum 128k, and most of my friends had a SNES or Mega Drive during that generation, but we were the non-sporty nerdy group. Once the Playstation released that all changed, Sony did all they could to make it cool, and people listened. 3D helped, of course, because it was no longer a hobby populated with cartoony 2D visuals, but it only became mainstream among the teens because Sony did all they could to make it so.
Much like the Wii has demonstrated that you don't need to be a gamer to like games, the Playstation showed that you didn't need to be a nerd, which was a great achievement at the time.

Flashback
(Mega Drive) - The cinematics (intro here).
For the time it was nothing I'd seen before (even if it wasn't the first to do them), cutscenes that did a good job of emulating animated movie styles (not graphically, but in style) for telling a story, and the story it told wasn't the kind of thing I regularly experienced in games. It really impressed me back then, and I enjoyed the game too.

So that's twelve for now: 6 PC, 2 Mega Drive, 2 PS1, 1 N64 and 1 360, though some of them were/are on other platforms. It probably skews a little more recently than I'd like but my memory is awful so I'll have to think more about the Amiga, C64 and Spectrum days. Anybody else feel like sharing?
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#2
For me there are a few but only one I have time to mention now.

Discovering Space Crusade on the Amiga. I spent so many hours playing that game you would not believe it. Just a really fun game and the first Warhammer 40,000 game I can remember.
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#3
Golden Eye - This was the first game that I ever played a lot of multiplayer on. It introduced me to a whole new world.

Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time: Years after it was purchased for me as a christmas gift I really played it for the first time. It was my first real foray into the RPG genre. I have loved them ever since.
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#4
I'd have to say for me, in no particular order...



Atari 2600
Was my first gaming console, had it when I was like 2yrs old, and been playing games ever since... Just about 27 years now. The Atari started it all for me.


Final Fantasy XI
The day I joined my first endgame linkshell. Some guys who I had met while I was still a mid level noob, and I had alot respect for randomly invited me to exp party with them, and then invited me into their endgame shell, Wolves of Mibu. The group disbanded while I was in the process of helping my now ex move from Tacoma, Washington across country to Connecticut. Ever since, I've stayed solo using the self given title, "Lone Wolf of Mibu" I saw some f'ing cool stuff while I was with them though. Of course, any and all stupidly rare equipment I got, including 1 piece of endgame... You'd think I won a real $100,000,000 with my reactions. For being just a game, it seemed like a pretty big deal. I remember each one pretty vividly. BTW, my now ex who I helped move across the US, I met on FFXI, a day I remember way too well... Wish I could forget!


Dark Reign 2 (BETA)
I add this because it was kind of my first real social gaming experience. I had played Diablo and whatnot online, but it was completely different. Had alot of good times, and we played with the staff of Pandemic alot before it went public beta for stress testing. Think two of my greatest achivements here was being considered one the absolute best players (often a toss up between me and 2 other guys), and the day I played on an 8 player map vs 7 AIs all set to stupidly f'in hard (Brainsick) and proved it was possible to win. Sadly, the beta AI was still toned down for the final/retail release.


Killer Instinct
I add this game because of the impact it on my life one day which is one my happier high school memories. I played it alot, but for whatever reason, I had written "KILLER INSTINCT" on my backpack. Wasn't till long after one of the most annoying kids in my 10th grade math class got moved next to me for talking to everyone (except me, who was the quiet good kid who sat up front). First thing I hear out of his mouth was "Hey! You play Killer Instinct?!?" ... Who knew the annoying kid would end up my best friend, and a twin in terms of thought process. Sadly, he died a few years ago, leaving me with alot to carry.


D and Resident Evil 3
Heh, doubt few people remember D, it was pretty obscure as I recall. I rented it one night, and popped it in. There's a scene where you walk into a room and a wall with spikes launches at you... I think I woke the dead screaming. This coming from me who is never jumps in a scary movie. This happened again playing Resident Evil 3. For those who played it, remember in the early parts in the police station on the second floor... You walk down the stairs and suddenly out of nowhere Nemesis busts through the window screaming "STARS!" ... My controller found itself on the otherside of the room as I screamed. Heh, that bit of RE3 sealed my interest in Resident Evil games as it was my first RE game.


CrashBandicoot/TombRaider
At the end of 1997 I moved to Montana for a year to be with my gf who moved there. We didn't have a Playstation, but we rented one often and played Crash Bandicoot and Tomb Raider games together alot. Tag teamed them so to speak. Wasn't anything about the games really, but we agreed on those often. Good times ya know. 10 years later, she remains my tag team mate!


Need for Speed High Stakes (PC)
As previously noted, NFS High Stakes was one of favorite racing games nearly a decade ago. Well, the game was never very challenging for me who obsessed over using the BMW Z3, green, and tuned to just my liking. Well, High Stakes like NFS3 had a "pursuit" mode in which police cars chase you down for speeding. Pursuit was fun, and was my favorite feature of the game. Well, to beef up the police and really make the stakes high, I learned how to mess with the game files, and swapped the standard car they used against my BMW with... well... the mother of them all... The Pursuit McLaren F1 GTR... Seeing as how I was finally playing "High Stakes!" this time, I had a challenge and a 1/2. After a few attempts I actually won. Pretty proud of myself when I did so! Was sort of my racing game victory of victories! (pwning everyone to hell in Wipeout HD shall take that spot away from NFSHS this weekend though! :lolSmile


My 'first' XBOX
Bought a used XBOX from EBGames at the mall, go home... Set it all up... Go to turn it on... NOTHING! :eek: :mad:
Return to EBGames very much angry. Obviously they'll replace it though. Well, they didn't have anymore used XBOXs. :confused: Which was great! Because they had no more used ones to exchange it with, they had to exchange it for a brand new one! Brand new xbox for the price of a used one. GOOD DEAL! GOOD DAY! GOOD MEMORY!


Monopoly (SNES)
Why add Monopoly you ask? I dunno, but it came to mind when I started thinking back just now. Well, back in middle school, me and a couple of friends used to play Monopoly about as much as kids usually play video games. Well, we got the SNES version since there was always questions over the banker and all. Can't cheat on the SNES! Haha, well, like our board game matches, these games went on for days at a time. Sometimes with no winner. We'd leave the SNES on over night to continue it for another several hours the next day or two. I think we played that SNES game more than any other SNES game aside from Mortal Kombat II. Plus sometimes we'd go against all the computer players we could on the hardest settings just to prove our skills! :W:


My SEGA Dreamcast
I add this in here because of it's historical importance! A memory of which I can't forget as it marked the end of SEGA as we knew it! After SEGA failed to deliver with the Saturn, and Sony took all the love, my feelings for SEGA were sour, and by then I had already sworn Nintendo off forever (seems like I made two good choices 10 years ago!). Well, I had little interest in the Dreamcast, but not much. I had sworn to never buy a SEGA system again... Then SEGA did something I didn't entirely expect, although I thought it was well deserved... SEGA declared itself defeated and backed away from making gaming consoles! In the process, if anyone remembers, they dropped the price of the thing down to $90. To thank SEGA for admitting they sucked and the lowered price... I immediately bought a Dreamcast. That being on the day they announced the news!
9/2/2010 - Leaving PSXE. The site imo has become a breeding ground for fanboys and extemists. I can get my PS3 news anywhere, and PSXE does not breed a community that is exactly welcoming.

Some of you shall be missed though! I think you few know who you are Smile
A few of you are actually on my PSN list at that! Cool
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#5
For me it was all the Tomb Raiders and Resident Evil 3 I loved those games
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#6
I will add to this again in the future as no doubt we all will but I started off with the Commodore Vic20 5k memory, you could expand it up to 8 k with the size of something like a small radio cassette lol.

Then I moved onto the Commodore 64 oh god so many happy memories playing stuff like Bubble Bobble, Rainbow Islands, Outrun, Ikari Warriors, Mr Angry, Kokotoni Wilf and one of my long term fave's Pitfall 2.
My other fave though was International Soccer on a cartridge pluged into the back of the C64 and it was in instantly.
I never had an Atari or a Nintendo so this was great or a Sega Megadrive but played on the plenty at friends houses.

Commodore Amiga 500, then a 1200 first computer with a harddrive I found games loading in a lot quicker. (Wings was class on the Amiga as was Lemmings and Wings Of Fury)

Then I moved onto the PC as I wanted to play Championship Manager 2 (now Football Manager 2009, out this Friday) Champo and Footy Manager as some of you are probably aware split the developers Sports Interactive split from Sega I think it was.

Playstation 1, then the PS2, then the 360 as the PS3 was delayed in the UK so I got my 360 with my PS3 money as I was right cheesed off hahaha. (least I looked at it as at long last finally being able to play Halo 1 and 2 before 3).

Then finally my trusted beloved PS3, all shiny and black and matches my telly too haha.

Looking back now though I had so much fun with the 64, going to make a drink while some games loaded in, doing homework while a game was loading.

I thought I was obsessed with my games collection (which I still have now 547 games for the C64) Yes I was that sad I wrote them down in a book as I got each one and the loading times they took to load in haha. did anyone else do this or anything similar ?

Happy memories Smile

Who knows what the future will hold for us. I do sometimes wonder if I will ever stop playing games and the answer is no as long as I can hold a controller in my hands I'll probably still be playing.
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#7
for me it was spending 2 days copying Basic code from a faded magazine in to a Spectrum 16k voice box... just so it would say "hello" ... ahhh memories.

same thing when you spent a day copying code just to make a circle flash blue. :lol:


The games that made memories for me was a game called Renegade and Target Renegade. why these have never been remade is beyond me.

also a game called Exelon with Cybernoid 1 and 2 to follow, Hewson was awesome back in the day.
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#8
The Benny (Macho) Wrote:
Bioshock
(360) - The Twist. I won't elaborate on what it is but it was a great moment for me, forcing me to re-evaluate a lot of what came before (especially during a second playthrough), as well as fixing a few gaps in the logic that had left me wondering.
I finally got Bioshock for PC a few weeks ago since I got my new major upgrade and have been playing here and there, and just recently got to the submarine mishap, probably not too far but enjoying myself as such, are you saying that there are things to come that will blow my mind? I can't wait.

Zapix Wrote:My SEGA Dreamcast
I add this in here because of it's historical importance! A memory of which I can't forget as it marked the end of SEGA as we knew it! After SEGA failed to deliver with the Saturn, and Sony took all the love, my feelings for SEGA were sour, and by then I had already sworn Nintendo off forever (seems like I made two good choices 10 years ago!). Well, I had little interest in the Dreamcast, but not much. I had sworn to never buy a SEGA system again... Then SEGA did something I didn't entirely expect, although I thought it was well deserved... SEGA declared itself defeated and backed away from making gaming consoles! In the process, if anyone remembers, they dropped the price of the thing down to $90. To thank SEGA for admitting they sucked and the lowered price... I immediately bought a Dreamcast. That being on the day they announced the news!

haha I just bought a used Dreamcast the other day really cheap (for..... less than legitimate reasons..) but I've been having a little bit of fun with it for the time I missed the new experience on the cheap. I know it's a bit late in the game but I've always wanted to pick one up, and it's been worth the very low low price I got it for so far.


As for other memories I'll have to hold off till it's not late, although technically its not too late but I work early mornings.
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#9
Driving all over creation to find an unsold copy of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, calling every store and pleading with them to check stock again and again. Then after xmas day wore down, my drunk aunt wandering into my room, watching me play for half a minute and going "Is that real?" -priceless.
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#10
Important Gaming memories for me:

My first game was Zork II on the Mac. I was only 5 years old, but I sat down in front of it and had one awesome time. about 30 minutes into it I had to go grab a dictionary so I could understand all the words, but that game changed my life.

Contra for the NES. The first time I actually broke a controller on purpose. Than game got me soooo mad I went and took my dad's hammer and smashed every controller in the house. I almost smashed my NES, but my mom stopped me in time.

Super Smash/GoldenEye N64: First games I really did multiplayer on with friends. It really helped me come into my own with the trash talk. As long as my boy danny wasn't there.

Halo for Xbox: First time I played that game I was like "OMG this is what a video game should be" It was also the game that would actually get me and my friends to work out. Every month or so we'd all grab our 32" CRT TVs and consoles and go to someone's house for some 16 player multiplayer. Altho it kinda sucked for those of us who all had to share the bathroom to play in...

Silent Hill 2 PS2: The first time I said "I just peed a little" and actually meant it. That game was seriously scary.

NFL Blitz 2K Pro PS2/Xbox: my first job as a game tester. While I went on to test other games for midway for a little while, I will always remember this POS Mother Farker for almost stealing my want to play games anymore.

Microsoft Xbox Controller S: The first game controller that I absolutely adored. While a little small for my hands, it wasn't as bad as the mountain original controller, and it was the first one that I could play with for 4 hours straight and not get the claw.

Call of Duty 2 360: The day I got hope for next gen games. Brilliant graphics.

PDZ 360: The next day, I lost hope for next gen games. What a piece of crap.

RFOM: When I first thought I should trade in my xbox while it's still popular. If there could have been just a couple more games as good as this that first year, Sony could have eaten M$'s lunch by now, year head start and everything.

Rainbow Six Vegas: My Gold standard for shooters. Good FPS view and controls. Easy cover system and smooth 3rd person transition, and an AI smarter than your average bear (or seemingly).
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