In yet another third party contribution, Shane Monroe, owner of Insert Coin, has written an
article for EmuViews. In this article, he takes a look at what some people
think Emulation does to the market, and what he just realized really happens.
From his point of View, he tells us
how Emulators do not really take the place of Arcade Games...
or do they? Read on!
|Is It Really A Choice? - June 15, '98 by Shane Monroe
Indeed and truly we live in interesting times. Who could have guessed fifteen years ago that we would have near a thousand classic arcade games emulated and at our disposal to play right here at home any time we feel like it? No bullies stealing your quarters and cutting in front of you or stale cigarette smoke required. But, even though we have such perfect emulation, arcade style controls (bought or home built), I just now figured something out.
Having just gotten my third arcade game (more out of opportune than by want), it finally dawned on me why all these 'ROM bashers' like IDSA and Ninbimbo piss me off so much. There is no substitute for a real arcade game. If there was, there wouldn't be rec.games.video.collecting or rec.games.video.marketplace still around - everyone would chuck these INCREDIBLY heavy and space-hogging machines and have a nice fast PC stocked with all the best arcade style controllers. Yet every day, TRON machines, Dragon's Lair cabinets, controllers for Marble Madness, and dirty old copies of a Spy Hunter operator's manual are still being bought, sold, and traded on the internet and through periodicals.
Doesn't everyone reading this have a dream machine? A 'someday I will own ...' machine? Everyone I know does. My wife wants a Pac-Man, my best friend wants a Galaga, and I still have a Space Ace machine to acquire. Why is that, do you think? Simple. My wife never got high enough on Pac-Man to feel vindicated. My best friend put so much money into Galaga in his lifetime that he could have bought a machine a dozen times over already. I loved Space Ace so much I actually still dream about finding a machine sitting somewhere that I can play (normally my dreams turn into nightmares when the game is completely different that the original and I shovel hundreds of dollars into it trying to beat the damn thing). If you fall into this category, you may want to start looking now. Some games are still easy to get. Others are serious collector items and the more scarce they get, the more you will end up paying; if you can even find one – working or not.
It is similar to owning an actual Atari 2600, Colecovision, C64, or other classic console or computer. Sure, emulators are about perfect for these classic devices. But there is something about hitting that now-loose reset switch on the 2600, or playing the pseudo Donkey Kong with the clunky-ass disc controller on the Coleco, or accidently typing LOAD @*@,8,1 on your C64 because the keyboard is laid out so different than your PC. Reliving the past isn't just PLAYING the games, but EXPERIENCING the game as it was originally intended. And no matter how fast a PC gets or how authentic of a controller you purchase, no emulator will ever be able to give you that same old feeling of yesterday.
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