The Return Of A legend
remember, I've seen a lot of things within this scene so a little history lesson is in order here before I get to my point of the article. When you think of Nintendo recently, you think of Copyright claims on YouTube videos, half arse production of retrogaming goodness and outstanding first party games. But back in the early 1980's they only had arcades machines and playing cards in Japan and really wanted to expand but after a few setbacks in the 60's trying to make toys. But with the advent of Liquid Crystal Displays (LCD) being used in digital watches and calculators and Gunpei Yokai, who watched someone playing with a calculator on a train because he was bored. In effect he created mobile gaming with this series of games called the game and watch series. The first one being Ball, which was released April 20 1980 ( I was 4 at the time when this came out). It was quite successful and over a period of 10 years they released 47 in total spread out to 1 every 6 months. While some sold more than a million creating the wave of the future there were some that sold less than 10,000. There were some absolute gems here. Some of the designs of the dual screen Game and Watch series inspired the design of the Nintendo DS but they were not the only one that were going it Tomytronics, Mattel, Vtech and grandstand even radio shack (Tandy in the UK) had LCD pocket games. These were considered expensive at the time compared to today when it considered pocket money. I have had a game and watch system (Donkey Kong JR) and Tomytronics Tron and PacMan. I loved being 8 years old at this point. These were before I got a Sega Master System. Gaming has always been part of my DNA so these little trips down memory lane are a real treat.
Right fast forward to 2004 I have my first real computer which I built myself (thanks from a load I got off of a gameshop owner I had at the time). One of the sites I usually frequented at was Retrogames.com, A site I'm sorry to say hasn't been updated in about a year because everybody changed (hell even me because back in 2011 I started writing for the facebook page which at the time rgm2000 and I started but now its the official page. Slowly it became the Hyperspin report which most Hyperspinners will remember before I moved on the the 3rd level.net (which was both a blessing and a curse because I realised how hard it was to maintain a site this well and regularly)) back to the story, I noticed MADrigals name on the link page above the .TZX vault page. I thought nothing of it at the time until 2007 I was finally curious to see what the link was about. What I found was a cave of wonders. I had never in my wildest dream would expect to see these emulated. While possibly in the S3 phase these were detailed and very playable back then in windows XP but you could see the world you never thought existed other than arcade and console ROMS. Someone had taken the time and care to restore classic old tech like the black and white LCD displays of old into a computer like a desktop app. I saw all my favorites with the exception with the widescreen LCD Donkey Kong junior. But from what was there, it was impressive.
(sorry for the sound differential I'm still learning and I also ramble because this is off the cuff, I should really write what I am going to say)
Fast forward to recently I noticed MADrigal had surfaced on the Hyperspin forums in the 3rd party app section. and what he put there made my jaw drop. MADrigal has started to make his LCD simulators with backgrounds, making them cabinet friendly, even stream friendly. He made a reasonable config file so you can edit the fullscreen and windowed mode (windowed mode is the same as S3 and 4 which is just an app on you background. They run on windows 10 very well (they worked on my netbook/tablet combination). He has put the latest Betas on the Hyperspin forums. He has released 17 so far and that has only been the beginning and only got 42 more to go. But what we got so far with the betas are outstanding.
This man is a Legend because he has made these on his own, flying solo here up until recently when MAME finally added these to their every growing collection. But MADrigal sir, you are a legend and you truly have my respect with these classics and hurry up with TRON dude (JOKE!)
If you want to have a look at these look HERE!
well this is Jackhammersalm signing off