A few days ago Marco was tweeting about what people remembered about their first game and stuff, and I realised that I didn’t really know what my literal ‘first’ gaming experience was. As I hinted at in ‘Perspective’, gaming’s only ever really been a hobby for me up until very recently. Oh by the way, apologies… when searching for videos to help illustrate something, I kind of got carried away so there’s a bit of a trailergasm at the end.
I vaguely remember us having a SNES and I think a Commodore 64, or at least some kind of machine that used tapes. I know this at least because I tried putting one of my audio story-tapes in once, just to see what would happen – nothing did. The only games I remember on that were this weird Santa game where I had to fight my way through the level, and some kind of text-RPG based on The Hobbit. On the SNES, we had some Super Mario games, a Zelda game that I remember… but it’s all a little fuzzy. Again, I didn’t really have an emotional connection with that machine.
No… the first game I really remember was Warcraft II: Tide of Darkness… and I’m not entirely sure why. I think it was the first game I saw in the shop and asked for, and possibly the first videogame my Dad ever bought me. I wish I could remember, as it was one of the main games I played growing up. Starcraft as well, but I can’t for the life of me remember when I picked that up. Diablo I had also picked up at some point, and I got Diablo II almost as soon as it game out. (I also picked up Shogun: Total War sometime after it went into the classic collection). But it was mainly Warcraft II, Diablo and Starcraft that I remember keeping me company during the early 90’s, and then when the Nintendo 64 came out in 96′, I became part of the Goldeneye generation and then was more of a true gamer from then on.
Actually, now that I think about it, there were games like Dark Forces, and a few other Star Wars games as well that I played… and of course we can’t forget the legends that were Tie-fighter and X-wing (And later X-wing vs. Tie-Fighter, but I didn’t play that as much). But we’ll leave it there as I’m in danger of coming off on a tangent now.
What I really remember most of Warcraft II was of course the opening cinematic. I don’t know what it was about Blizzard back in the day, but they did some really good opening scenes for their games. Nowadays, even though they’ve got better tech and graphics, they still lack a certain panache those early trailers had. Here’s Warcraft II‘s:
( I did eventually pick up the first Warcraft and play that, but I didn’t enjoy it as much.)
And then of course there was Diablo II‘s, which I think is one of my favourite trailers to date. Not sure why, it’s just so damn… atmospheric – Diablo II Intro.
Incidentally, the guy who voices the old man in that trailer also voices the narrator in the original Warcraft III Trailer. I liked Warcraft III, don’t get me wrong, but I guess I’d grown up on the whole Orcs v Humans thing… wasn’t really as interested in The Burning Legion as I probably should have been. So for me personally, that Trailer was more exciting than the game itself. Multiplayer was good mind…
Starcraft II’s Opening Cinematic is alright, although it’s just a re-hash of the announcement trailer with some additional voice-over work. There’s actually this one piece of music on the soundtrack called ‘Wings of Liberty’ that’s quite immense though. The thing that gets me about this trailer is the bit at the end:
“Make no mistake. War is coming, with all its glory… and all its horror. Mr. Findlay… your ‘freedom’, awaits.”
As you’ll also find out soon enough, I have a thing for quotes and quotable lines too. I’ll probably leave that for another post though.
Until next time.