Why is it that with almost 170 games in my Steam library I am unable to find a game to play? It’s like an age-old problem if you really think about it. I remember it plaguing me when I was young, probably 5 years old playing my first Nintendo. I had maybe 20-30 games because my brother had his own system he would bring over on the weekends to play as well, but it would always be the same problem. I never could find something I wanted to play. Sure I had Super Mario Bros 3, and that was always my old go to, but even sometimes that wouldn’t be enough. I had games like Zelda, Mega Man, Rad Racer and several other popular titles of the time, but it was always the same problem, I never could find anything that called to me.


Later years provided other systems, more games, more options, but still, I would look at them and find no interest in what their was before me. This put a damper on my gaming for a long time, because the last official system I asked for and wanted during its release time was a Playstation. After the original Playstation I didn’t buy anymore gaming systems, it’s really almost like I didn’t want to play at all anymore. Music had found its way into my life and I was learning how to build computers and everything about them inside and out, surfing the internet in the late 90s early 2000s, building my music library.

It really wasn’t until I played Counter Strike 1.6 for the first time that I actually got back into social gaming. I bought a computer specifically so that I could play Counter Strike with my friends and talk shit to opposing players. Throughout my last 10 almost 11 years on Steam, I put easily 1000 hours into just that game. To some that’s really nothing, but having a job and kids and finding that time isn’t easy.


It was really at this point that I shied away from actual game systems all together. Other than staying true to my love of the retro, I ONLY bought computer based games at this point on in my life. Once I was introduced to Diablo 2, my life changed, along with my sleep pattern. I remember times having 5 people set up with computers in my living room all playing Diablo. Now this is where I want to mention in the whole perplexity of this my next problem. Game kicks. Times when I just focus on one game and that game only playing it to the point of oblivion. Counter Strike, my first addiction because of the sheer amount of time I put into the game alone. Diablo 2 being the second, and I am all but sure every gamer reading this can say the same.

Now this is where my gap begins. Maybe 3 years where I didn’t do much gaming at all other than on my retro systems. This was mainly to my involvement of a shop ran at a local flea market that dealt mainly in early gaming. I still owned a computer and played CS from time to time, but I was recording a lot of music, and World of Warcraft somehow didn’t really interest me like it had captivated so many others. I jumped back on Steam around 2010 and started building a small library of games. At this time Steam was evolving into the mega company it is today, and I admittedly liked the way it was going.

Lets just jump to today. Wednesday January 21st 2015. I’ve bought over 150 games on Steam to date and am still buying more. But always still have this same problem. I just can’t find a game to play. I didn’t even want to mention Dota2 as it’s a virus, plague, epidemic that will eventually spread across the world… Anyway, I have all these games, but never feel the urge to just play one. I recently started a campaign in Super Mario RPG with a friend, and played for over 10 hours into the game, having a great time. But just sitting here, by myself with a cup of coffee, I just can’t find the ambition to play. I know I’m not the only one, and wont be the last.


I wish Steam had a game randomizer or something like that where I didn’t have to choose the game but Steam chose it for me. Either way, I guess what I’m trying to get at is I just can’t make up my mind with all of the games I have before me. Sometimes I wish it was as easy as being 5 years old with only 20 games to choose from. Now, with literally almost EVERYTHING at my fingertips, it makes it almost virtually impossible to choose.

Atari: Game Over

Genre: Video Game, Documentary
Publisher: Microsoft X-Box
Release Date: November 20th 2014

Starting off with an epic feel, visions of mountains and canyons, its clear that Atari: Game Over is gearing up to tell this legendary “urban legend.” The movie quickly transitions into its main concept of finding the rumored legions of Atari 2600 E.T. games buried deep in the Alamogordo Landfill in New Mexico. Not to mention speculating between whether or not the event even happened in the first place. The crew spends the beginning of the film going after where exactly the games may have been dumped, and why they were buried there to begin with.

The team spent over 3 years researching as to where the games were dumped, if they even were. One of the largest concerns of the crew was the possibility of the games being at the very bottom, and had been covered in concrete, requiring large equipment to unearth them. They had to cut through a lot of thick red tape to get permission to do the dig. Originally the crew was met with hostility, but eventually the city found it to be a good idea and allowed them to do the dig.

Atari was the original system that everyone loved. It was a staple in millions of homes across america and was the gateway to the computer revolution. Most people forget that Atari not only made home gaming consoles but also home computer systems as well. So when I think of Atari to me its a computer company, because when it comes down to it, even game consoles are computers. They focus a fair amount on Atari as a company and how it began. From its original launch item, Pong, to the birth of the 2600 (1977) debuting with only 9 carts. An instant hit across the board, this was the first time people were able to bring the arcade into their living rooms and the 2600 grew widely in popularity. The movie eventually leads up to the point where Atari acquires the licensing for E.T. at 22 million dollars. Atari took some time to do this, so when they eventually were able to get permission to make the game, they only had 5 weeks to program it, in order to make it in time for the holiday season. Typical games at this time took 5 to 6 months to create, and with only 5 weeks before the holiday dead line they needed their best programmer, Howard Warshaw.


Howard Warshaw was the developer and programmer for the E.T. game. He also was responsible for several of Atari’s first big hits like Yars Revenge and Indiana Jones, each selling millions of copies. So its not like he was the worst programmer at Atari, to the contrary he was their best. E.T. for the 2600 itself was a really hard game. Hard to understand, and very unforgiving, most people didn’t give it the chance that it deserved. Even today, most people speak badly about a game that they truly never have played.

The movie eventually tells the story of how Atari saw a 500,000,000 dollar loss the same fiscal year as E.T.’s release for the 2600 in 1983. This caused over 8000 jobs to be dissolved and essentially the end of Atari. The E.T. game is largely credited for its demise… But remember what I said earlier about how when I think of Atari I think of computers? At the time, Atari had flooded the market with a line of home computers that had failed terribly. Yes of course a 22 million dollar investment in a game that sold horribly doesn’t help any, but when you take into account everything else Atari was dealing in, this as well effected the overall success of the company.

“You never go to a dump unless you’re throwing something away, we’re here looking for buried treasure.” – Dig Attendant

Atari: Game Over also documents several peoples “pilgrimage” to the dig site in Alamogordo, New Mexico. These people have not only an overall devotion to gaming but to the urban legend itself. When watching the movie I was surprised to see the large turnout at the dig, several thousand people surrounded the site waiting for the first glimpse at what may or may not be there. Most notable was the wind during the dig, kicking up the loose white sands of the desert, apparently record setting. The first thing found was an Atari 2600 joystick top by one of the many onlookers. Eventually they find a boxed copy of E.T. and then subsequently several copies after that. When it really comes down to it though, E.T. only made up 10% of the games found, most were popular games of the time like Adventure, Pac-Man and Asteroid.

In the end, it comes down to a “myth” that was actually already documented in the some cases. I guess since it was 30 years ago its hard to tell if its true or not is up for question. Because of its severity, dumping 100’s of thousands of video game merchandise seems drastic so therefore how could it be true? The movie even ends in some ominous way leaving you wondering what was to happen with all these games that were found. Were they to be boxed up in some hangar in the desert for another 30 years? No, nothing that epic, shady or conspiracy theory like. Other than the ones given out and donated to various different people involved with the dig and video game history, they were later sold by the town of Alamogordo via EBay for $1500 a pop.


Watch Atari: Game Over

Deep Dungeons of Doom

Genre: Adventure, RPG, Hack & Slash, Casual
Developer: Bossa Studios
Publisher: Bossa Studios
Release Date: October 14th 2014

First off, this game met one of my prerequisites immediately: Looking like it was made in 1991 for MS-DOS or the Commadore 64, and this game fits it better than a condom. This Android port originally made for tablets, despite what some may say in forums, is a great port to PC and although simple, is still incredibly fun. Initially the graphics reminded me a lot of a recent release called “Ultionus” but the gameplay however is incredibly unique. Deep Dungeons of Doom takes a bunch of elements and blends them all together to create a playing experience like no other. I love everything from the painstakingly perfect pixel graphics,  intense and spectacular soundtrack, all the way down to the deep, rich and in-depth story straight out of the times of King Arthur.

Deep Dungeons of Doom is what I would call a “Timing Based” dungeon crawler. Meaning you can’t move your character on the screen and you only have 3 actions, attack, block, and use item. Simple and straight forward controls, my only complaint would be the lack of controller support, but I can only hope that will come in the future. Starting out is pretty basic, but it takes a short period of play to get the timing down for blocking and attacking enemies. You face your opponent in a turn based style, but battle is very much real-time. Seemingly simple at first, Deep Dungeons of Doom ends up turning into an involved and intricate game that continues to keep your mind at work and make good use of your keyboard skills. You can cause extra damage if you attack an enemy while they are attacking, but be aware; it works both ways, so watch out. The fighting isn’t as cut and dry as it seems. During boss battles, like the first dungeons boss Pitch Black, you need to learn his secret before being able to inflict any damage. Each enemy has a unique attack and block pattern, so stay on those toes and attack when they aren’t blocking, and block while the enemy is attacking.

You will meet monsters and you will need skill and tactics to defeat them. You will find weird and wonderful treasures along the way. Most will help you, but some might not. You may choose to play as a Crusader, a Witch or a Mercenary – in fact each one might well be required if you are to successfully complete your quest – but knowing when to use each one is something you are going to have to figure out for yourself. – Deep Dungeons of Doom

The whole point of the game is to clear dungeons and build the characters stats with special items and skills. After completing the first dungeon you are given missions to complete with the Crusader. Once the first dungeon is cleared you are then able to view the map, this is where you can visit the shops and are able to purchase potions and upgrade your skills. The first skill upgrade for the Crusader is “Holier Than Thou” which gives you +5% Miracle Heal & +1HP. In the dungeons you find Altars, these Altars are where you exchange gold for enhancements. Usable items make up a large part of gameplay and are essential to success… most of the time. Some items like “Contract of The Vampire” that gives you +1HP & deals +2 normal damage to your opponent have nothing but positive effects, but others like “Devils Contract” where on use you pay 8HP but receive +60% resistance to all, +6 attack & +6 agility for 3 floors have some negative effects as well. There are also equipable items found in random chests after you defeat an enemy in a dungeon, or in shops when on the map. Items such as “Sturdy Sword” gives +1 attack while equipped, or even better “Ring of Magic Cure” which requires 2 magic but gives +2HP per floor. With continued gameplay you unlock 2 other playable characters, also upgradable. This gives the game a bit more “depth”, using magic with the Witch and swift moves with the Mercenary, combining items with the heroes passive skills makes for an even better chance of victory.

The soundtrack stays true to the 8 bit era, composed with astonishing perfection. Songs don’t get overly boring or repetitive they actually keep you interested and are pretty catchy fitting the game perfectly. Graphically Deep Dungeons of Doom is brilliant with incredible pixel art capturing the essence of the original games we call retro that paved the path before it. The cut scenes are awesome with beautiful 8 bit graphics to tell its incredible and strong story line. The death animations are on point, imaginative and gorey as hell. I don’t usually promote games made for the tablet and ported to the PC, but in this case, its was done perfectly. I’ll be honest, I had no clue this was originally Android based that’s how good the gameplay in Deep Dungeons of Doom is. This is an incredibly fun game, and for the price completely worth it. Not only does it have several hours of gameplay, but the “replay factor” on this game is huge, because remember those dungeons do get deep.

Graphics: 8/10
Playability: 7/10
Story: 9/10
Challenge: 7/10
Replay Value: 7/10