Two Decades of Gaming – A Tribute to All the Consoles

First generation – Not yet born

An old-timer while showing me an antique device he called – the Odyssey 100, said that it all began with this… well whatever that was…

Second generation – The Beginning

I was just two years old, when my dad gifted me the Atari 2600 and introduced me to the world of gaming. The heavy black console, joystick with just one shiny red button, almost gave me the feeling that I controlled the TV.

My first games were Mario Bros, Space Invaders, Combat and Pac-Man. My favorite was Mario Bros, would always choose Luigi over Mario as I liked his green attire.

Third generation- NES Family Computer

Grew up a bit and NES Family Computer was in the limelight. Soon came my eighth birthday and my gift was the 8 bit console.  My favorite games were – Super Mario Bros 1-3, Duck Hunt (required a gun), Double Dragon, RoboCop and Contra.

Handheld Electronic Games – Along with the Family Computer, handheld electronic games such as ‘Tetris’ or ‘Brick Game’ became popular. Kids would brag the number of games their device had –   576 games in 1 or 9999 games in 1, which were in fact different versions of the same game (racing brick cars, brick arkanoid, Tetris etc) with minor changes. Then there were other handheld games like Tennis, Volleyball, Shooting etc

Game Boy The above games were kept aside when Nintendo launched the Game Boy in 1990. The handheld console was a major success for the brand. Was quite impressed by this little fat device, yet did not get a chance to own one. I would borrow my friend’s Game Boy and was able to play only two games – ‘WWF King of the Ring’ and ‘Bart and the Beanstalk’.

Fourth generation – Sega Mega Drive/Genesis

While I was still playing the 8 bit Family Computer, everyone had either a Sega Mega Drive or Super Nintendo. The 16 bit console now dominated the gaming world. Focused on my studies a bit, got good grades and finally convinced my folks to buy me a Sega.  We picked up a Sega Genesis from the Amsterdam airport. It was the prettiest console I had ever seen.  Along with the console I got the cartridge of Toy Story. I would play Streets of Rage 2, Mortal Kombat 2 & 3 non-stop for hours.

Fifth generation – the Generation Missed

Game cartridges and wrestling tapes replaced the books in my bag, having a huge impact on my grades. My Sega Genesis was kept in the closet and I only got permission to play during weekends. Soon it was the fifth generation era or the 32 bit era where CDs replaced cartridges and graphics were more superior. The prominent names of this era were Sega Saturn, Sony PlayStation and Nintendo 64. Well, due to my C’s & D’s (grades) did not get to own any of the fifth generation consoles.

Sixth Generation – Return to the Gaming World

Sony PlayStation2 – Jumped straight from 16 bit to 128 bit era and got this awesome console at the age of 17. CD’s were replaced by DVDs and saw both flash and hard drive storage for game data. GTA Games like San Andreas (89% completed), Liberty City (72%), and Vice City (55%) kept me busy for months. God of War 1 & 2, Prince of Persia (Warrior Within), Mortal Kombat & the Shaolin Monks, Blade II, X-Men: The Official Game, Call of Duty etc are some of my favorite action games. When in the mood to race, I played Grand Turismo 3, NFS Series and Moto GP.

Seventh generation – Aliens secret gift to Sony

Big Daddy’ of them all – Sony PlayStation 3 (60GB Piano Black with chrome trim) was the first console that I bought myself. Big names of this generation as we all know are – Sony PlayStation 3, Microsoft’s Xbox 360 and Nintendo Wii. Technology got better and DVD’s had to give way to Blu-ray Disc, making the games expensive. So far, just own 4 big titles – Grand Theft Auto IV, Uncharted 2: Among Thieves, NFS Shift and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. The console also offers online gaming service in the PlayStation Network, which I haven’t used as yet.

The only problem now is that I hardly have time, I got a job, there’s work load, girl problems, social networks, socializing with colleagues/friends and the daily errands.

Wow! I wrote all that on my consoles…awesome!!! I cannot imagine growing up without these machines. Thank my folks for buying me these consoles. I look forward to all the upcoming video games and have a great retirement plan.