Sunday, April 1, 2007

PS3 vs. Xbox360 vs. Sega Genesis

I've been an enthusiastic casual video gamer for the majority of my life. I find them fun, the stories are fun, the action is exciting and I like to relax by doing something mentally stimulating but NOT TOO mentally stimulating....

As I've been working on Classic Game Room recently I recorded the commentary track on the film where I give my opinions on classic video games vs. modern video games.

So this got me thinking... I've seen some pretty cool games available for Xbox360 and the PS3... my friend has the 360 and I've played it and marvelled at the HD graphics and cool games...

I tallied up the price for getting each game system, purchasing one or two games, any accessories I might need.

I had to find answers for the following questions: Is there an online package? Which system do I want? Do I want to get involved in the hideous Blu-Ray vs. HD-DVD format war (Nooo!!!) and how much time do I really have to even play a brand new video game system?

The total cost of EACH new system came to somewhere between $500-$800 a piece, and I decided that I don't have time to play it that much and.... well, so screw it!

I went to ebay, dropped $100 and bought a huge stack of Sega Genesis and PS1 games and hooked my Genesis up to our HDTV.

Sega Genesis and Thunder Force III

I recalled that one of my all time favorite game genres that I've neglected recently is the "single spaceship fighting against impossible odds" genre. As I learned just recently this has been nicknamed the SHMUP video game genre, short for "shoot 'em up". I guess I've been out of it for a while. We reviewed of a few of these back in the days we were making Game Room but I just haven't kept up!

Shmup video games for Sega and Playstation!

Here's some of the great games I purchased for about $5 and $2 respectively, Thunder Force V for PS1 and Lightning Force for the Genesis (also known as Thunder Force IV). Anyway, I did some research online one night when trying to figure out how to hook up component video cables to my Sega and came across two great websites: dedicated to all things Sega Genesis, Sega CD and 32x which has a nice section dedicated to Shmup games.

I ended up not getting component cables regrettably. There is an article on Sega-16 on how to do it, but I am temporarily using the composite video cable plug. I found it online for $8. Composite doesn't look great, but it sure beats the RF adapter.

I will eventually have my Genesis modified with an S-Video connection from these guys at Old School Gamer. I'll let everyone know how that looks when its done.

Composite cable from Sega Genesis

There's the composite cable coming out of the back of my Sega Genesis (v1) and I'm using the stereo plug in the front to run into my pre-amp for stereo sound.

Classic Video Gaming at its finest

You can barely make it out in my jumble of wires, its a yellow RCA, it goes into there and gets fed to the TV. My Atari 7800 ProSystem is also running into there via the VCR.

The moral of the story is this: When big companies want you to get involved in a format war where the consumer is the loser, go buy used stuff and continue to use the equipment you've already paid for.

PS2, Atari 7800 and Sega Genesis

And as I said before, I don't have the time to get into a game that takes 80 hours to win or days to master. But I do have the time to play a couple rounds of Thunder Force III, Gradius V and Shinobi. You can pick up those games, play for 20-30 minutes, get a nice game fix and get on with your life.

Now I'm a happy gamer once again and it only cost me about $110 once all is said and done. I probably could have just downloaded emulators for free but I really enjoy playing on the real game systems in the comfort of my home theater.


As I mentioned in the previous post, my newest film has been completed. Classic Game Room - The Rise and Fall of the Internet's Greatest Video Game Review Show.

The trailer can be seen HERE! It can also be seen on YouTube.

I'm moving full time into my next film on George Westinghouse vs. Thomas Edison. An exciting documentary about the Battle of the Currents, world's fairs, Elektro and all kinds of Westinghouse related stories.

I finished writing the script recently and am now starting to cut the film together with archival 16mm film from old Westinghouse promotional movies. I'm working with full color 16mm film from the 1964 World's Fair in New York and also a massive collection of photographs from. Additionally some modern HD footage that we shot. More on that soon. In the meantime this weekend...

Thunder Force III

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