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Interview with Eric7100 - 2016
Interview of Eric7100 by Rev
What part of the country did you grow up in?
I grew up in the Great Northeast (or more specifically, Pennsylvania). Believe it or not, I have never left. I am in the exact same house, in the exact same neighborhood, where I spent my childhood.
Very Interesting! Do you still have alot of childhood toys and games and general items?
I do. But they are all stashed away. Every summer, I make it a personal project of mine to "revisit" those items, but, for some reason, I never get around to it.
Do you frequent any local thrift or video game stores? What are some of your best scores?
Not anymore. I used to frequent Electronic Boutique and Game Stop back in the day. That's where I bought all of my Nintendo games. We don't really have many video game stores around here now, except for Just Press Play, which isn't very good. I don't think I've ever been to a thrift store. As for scores, I've never been much of a score person. I really like playing games that I can complete, such as adventure games and RPGs. When I play stuff like Pac-Man and Tetris, I rarely pay attention to the score. I do like to collect stars and other items (to their maximum) in other games, such as Angry Birds.
How old were you when you played your first video game? And what was it?
I remember playing arcade games like Pac-Man, Centipede, and Pole Position when I was 4-5 years old. The first home video game that I ever played was Frogger for the Atari 2600 with my "across-the-street" neighbor friend at the age of five. She had the Atari 2600 gaming console, not me.
Any of the old neighborhood kids (now grown) still come around?
Sadly, I'm the only "neighborhood kid" still around. The last I heard of my Atari 2600 friend, Lori, she was a lesbian, living somewhere in Wisconsin, and fighting for equal rights for animals. Her mom, who was notorious for serving us finger jello back in the day, still lives in the same house across the street, with a new husband, but we never talk, other than to shout "hi" from across the street or wave to each other.
Did your parents play many games with you?
Nope. I can honestly say that my parents are the most boring people on Earth. They never played anything with me, except for maybe a few board games, such as Candy Land, Casper, and Catfish Bend.
At least they didn't make you play Twister with them....
Mercifully, I don't think I've ever played a game of Twister in my life.
Maybe if you had played Twister with your Atari friend, she wouldn't of turned into a lesbian?
What systems did you grow up playing and which ones were your favorite?
My parents preferred computers over gaming consoles. So most of my childhood was spent playing games on my Tandy 1000, which they bought me for Christmas one year. I also played Atari 2600 games with my "across-the-street" neighbor friend. At school, it was "The Oregon Trail" on the Apple IIe.
Did you get to go to many arcades? Any good memories or stories?
Every year, my extended family from Canada would convene for one week at the beach in Wildwood, New Jersey. Wildwood's boardwalk is magical. In addition to the great food and great rides, there are hundreds of arcades. My favorite one, called Gateway 26, is still there. Year after year, I spent so much of my parents' money (and later, my own money) at the arcades. In addition to actual video games, I played pinball, skee-ball, slot machines, and the big crane. During that week each year, hour after hour (into the wee hours of the night) was spent at those arcades. I enjoyed accumulating tickets to redeem one big prize at the end. In 1991, I had my friend Jeremy along for the week, and he and I spent $300 to earn enough tickets to buy a giant, stuffed, blue mouse. I still have it in my basement. I also got my mom an owl made out of seashells. It is still on top of our refrigerator.
What year did you get your first intellivision? Did your friends have one?
Believe it or not, I never had an Intellivision as a kid. My cousin Patrick from Canada did. I only played the Intellivision while I was there (usually one week every summer). We played in his dad's basement, which was as big as a bomb shelter. One year, my grandmother was having surgery, and my mom was in Canada with her for an entire month. I was also there, and I played AD&D Cloudy Mountain on the Intellivision endlessly at my uncle's house for the entire month. That became my favorite game of all time, and it is what got me hooked on the Intellivision. The memory of playing that game is what ultimately inspired me to buy my first Intellivision in 2011.
Did you have other systems and which ones? Favorites on them?
As I mentioned before, my only childhood "system" was the Tandy 1000 personal computer. My favorite game was The Black Cauldron. It was my first time playing an adventure/RPG, and most of the time, I had no idea what to do on each screen. Man, that game was hard! I also enjoyed a game called "Pipes" for the Tandy 1000, and the built-in games that were part of the "Fundamentals" software program.
When did you get back into retro gaming?
In 2011, when the memories of playing AD&D Cloudy Mountain as a kid inspired me to look up first the game, and then its console. From there, I got hooked on the Intellivision and many of its other games.
Do you collect for other systems?
Not anymore. But I collected for the NES, the Super NES, and the original Game Boy when they were all fairly new. I was a teenager by then. I still have all of those games, and I even replaced them (using flea markets) when many got stolen from my car while in college.
Any good stories from college?
Not really. For the most part, I hated college. I attended for 7 years, and I didn't even stick with my chosen career path. Later, I chose a totally different career path, and I went back to (a different) college for another degree.
Do you play modern games, if so, which ones?
Does Angry Birds count? Otherwise, no.
How did you like the Collectorvision release of Flapee Bird?
It's my favorite game from them.
So, you skipped out on the Wii craze?
Yes, the last Nintendo system that I collected for was the Super NES, and that was when it was new. As I grew older, I found myself having less and less time to explore new games and new systems.
How many games in your collection?
Including all of my Tandy 1000 and Nintendo games, it's impossible to say. But for the Intellivision, I have all 125 of the original games (although some are loose). I am still working on obtaining a CIB collection of all 125 games. I also have just about every Intellivision homebrew that has ever come out.
What are you missing?
From the original 125, I have the following 27 loose carts that I am looking to upgrade to CIB at reasonable prices: DK Junior, Turbo, Zaxxon, River Raid, Shark Shark, Popeye, Star Wars, Chess, Pinball, Checkers, Reversi, Motocross, Super Pro Football, Dig Dug, Super Pro Decathlon, Triple Challenge, Defender, Pac-Man (AtariSoft), Pac-Man (INTV), Hover Force, Body Slam, Thunder Castle, Tower of Doom, Mountain Madness, Thin Ice, Congo Bongo, and Diner.
What are your other passions in life besides video games?
My pets (two dogs and two cats). And my job, which I have been away from for 28 months, but I hope to return to soon.
Favorite musical groups?
I listen to (newer) hard rock and heavy metal. The heavier, the better. My favorites include Disturbed, Godsmack, and Sevendust.
What is causing you to be off work so long, if I may ask?
What are your favorite Intellivision games?
AD&D Cloudy Mountain is my favorite game of all time. I also love Venture.
What is your favorite 3rd party Intellivision publisher? And why?
Overall, I would have to say Imagic, because both the games (most of them being "mystic" in nature) and the silver boxes/packaging are incredible.
What's your favorite Imagic title?
It's hard to choose, but I would have to say "Swords and Serpents" because I really like those types of adventure games. It sucks that the game doesn't have a proper ending, though.
What are your favorite Intellivision homebrew games?
From my avatar, you can probably tell that Ms. Pac-Man is my favorite Intellivision homebrew game.
Did you enjoy Ms Night Stalker as well?
Yes, but not as much as Ms. Pac-Man. There seems to be hundreds of Pac-Man clones. But Pac-Man, the first game of its kind, is still the best.
Who is your favorite Intellivision homebrew publisher, now that their is several more that have entered the scene?
My favorite has always been the original, IntelligentVision. My favorite homebrew games have, by far, come from them.
What is your opinion of the modern intellivision homebrew scene?
I love it, but I liked it better during the early-mid 2000's when LESS games were being released. It was cool, because you didn't have to pick and choose from a financial standpoint. Nowadays, I believe too many games are being released too quickly, and too often. It was better when fewer parties were involved in developing and releasing the games. I've always believed that less is more.
You do not think more selection is a good thing?
I'd rather see less selection of higher-quality games, which would continue to make it possible to own every one.
Do you see yourself as a completionist, at least in collecting for the Intellivision?
Yes, I'm that "I have to have every game" type of guy. Although I usually only care about unique game titles, not variants (with a few exceptions). I also have never cared about the Sears titles, for whatever reason.
So, no French Canadian, Bandai, or CBS variations, etc for you?
No. The only variants I have/want, for whatever reason, are the ones for the various Intellivision baseball games, Pac-Man, and 4-Tris. Also, I have a few box variants, such as Space Battle and Space Armada. There may be a few more that I am forgetting from my personal collection.
Where do you see the Intellivision scene going in 10 years?
Honestly, I think that too many people are going to be involved in developing and releasing new Intellivision homebrews. These new releases will oversaturate the market, and prevent many of us, from a financial standpoint, from having complete collections like we used to. I think this will increase stress, anxiety, and depression in some people, and possibly turn them away from future Intellivision collecting altogether. Personally, as an adult, I prefer collecting for finite systems, in which having every game is very real and very possible. That used to be the case for the Intellivision, but now, not so much.
Are you planning on getting either of the upcoming Intellivision multicarts?
Yes, I have already ordered the LTO Flash, and I also plan to get the deluxe edition of the Hive when it is available.
Do you ever use emulation as a way to play retro games?
I've tried it, but no. I prefer playing on the original consoles.
What is your preferred amount of Intellivision releases per year?
I would say between 4-6 games. One for every season of the year, but no more than bi-monthly games throughout the year.
How did you find out about the Atari Age forums?
I stumbled across them in 2011, while researching my favorite Intellivision game, AD&D Cloudy Mountain. If this game had never existed, none of you would ever know me!
What made you stay on the forums?
Once I started collecting for the Intellivision, with a goal of owning all 125 original games and all of the new homebrews, where else would I go to find leads and stay current on anything Intellivision related?
Do you think you are often misunderstood there?
Every single day.
Who are you most favorite users there?
You (Rev) have been the most kind and offered me the best deals. As has BBWW and The Hatman. But I also really like Age-of-Atarius, Dave, Intellivotion, Jason, M-crew, Wolfy, and MJarnold. It was MJarnold who sold me Spiker, Learning Fun 1, Learning Fun 2, and Super Series Big League Baseball.
Just how big of a douchebag is Cmart? LOL
There are no words. Just the biggest ever, I guess. Especially for his hoarding tendencies. He needs professional help.
Have you been to any gaming conventions before?
No. Unfortunately, I'm not much of a traveler, so I probably will never attend one, unless it's really local.
Any parting comments?
Yes, I would like to thank you for this interview. When I posted that I wanted an interview, I was really only joking. I never thought you would actually give me one.
I would also like to say that I realize I am probably the most "controversial" AtariAge member, and I know I have a lot of haters, and people who ignore/misunderstand me. But that's all good (on my end, at least). Life is too short to hold grudges and hate others. Everyone is entitled to their opinions. Thank you, AtariAge, for allowing me to express mine.