The early years

I’m a 40 year old virgin…

I wish!  Then I wouldn’t have this mortgage, car payment, nagging wife, and two little mouths to feed. I would have unlimited free time and money, like when I was single. I’m kidding (mostly). I love my wife and kids but I mourn my golden age of gaming too.

I’ve been gaming since the days of the Atari 2600 but back then they didn’t call it that. I distinctly remember not caring if I was late for dinner to get the high score on Asteroids, which is a big deal for a fatty like me. I also remember how lame PacMan was on that system.

I graduated to a Commodore 64 with alot of games I never had to buy. People were always having gatherings where alot of game swapping was going on. I remember the dawn of copy protection, but there were programs like Fast Hackem and Diskbusters that copied the missing “parameters” as they were called, to the copied disks. The games I remember most were Temple of Aphsai and Ultima IV.

Then I moved up to a Commodore Colt! A real IBM-XT clone with twin 5 1/4″ disk drives. What a machine! I picked this up while in the Air Force from the base exchange at Patrick AFB in Cocoa Beach, Florida. Instead of having fun in the sun I was cutting my teeth on the grand-daddy of CRPGs – the Gold Box games from SSI starting with Pools of Radiance all the way to the final battle in Pools of Darkness. I also played the hell out of Wasteland which I still feel is the greatest CRPG of all time. I might be a little biased though. I used to work 2nd shift radar maintenance and they had a fancy computer in the office with some new-fangled gizmo called a Winchester disk (one of the first hard drives). I think it was a whopping 10MB, but it was enough for me. I used to play Wasteland until it was almost time for the 1st shift to come in and then copy my savegames and head to the mess hall to get a three egg omlette and go to sleep until the early afternoon. No wonder I got dangerously close to the 5 pound club before I got out.

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