Trading Card Spotlight - Steve Wiebe

Our next Trading Card Spotlight features Steve Wiebe, who is displayed on card number 7, from the Superstars of 2011 Collection.  Steve is also featured on cards 469, 472, 491, 547, 559, 565, 578592 and 2239.  As one of the stars of the popular documentary “King of Kong”, Steve is one of the greatest Donkey Kong players in the world.  At one time he held the world record on the arcade game during the classic battles with Billy Mitchell.   Since then many have taken the spot and currently Steve is 11th with a verified score of 1,064,500.  Steve has appeared on multiple shows on the G4 TV channel and has also been seen in movies such as “Four Christmases” and “Horrible Bosses”.   Since 2006 Steve has made appearances to try and beat the Donkey Kong score at such events as the Northwest Pinball & Arcade Show, Denver Comic-Con and 1Up Arcade/Bar in Colorado.   Steve has also entered multiple Kong Off tournaments each year held by Ritchie Knucklez.  Steve was inducted into the International Video Game Hall of Fame in Ottumwa, Iowa in 2010.   He also has the 4th highest score on Donkey Kong Jr. with 1,190,400.  

Do you remember your first video game / arcade you played and what do you remember about it?

I remember playing Space Invaders at a local burger joint called Charlie’s.  Most of the games were found in pizza parlors and 7-11 food chains in the beginning.  The owner of Charlie’s would give a free milkshake to anyone that scored over a certain number of points on Space Invaders.  I never excelled at Space Invaders back in the day, so I’d give a quarter to one of my friends that was really good and hope he could win me a shake.

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Trading Card Spotlight - Jeff Waldron

Our next Trading Card Spotlight features Jeff Waldron, who is displayed on card number 2499, from the Superstars of 2016 Collection.  Jeff is a long time collector and restorer of classic arcade games.   Some of Jeff’s collection includes Donkey Kong, Pac-Man and Tron.  Jeff believes that all arcade games should be restored and brought back to today’s generation of gamers.  Jeff is also a member of the group H.A.C.K.S. (Hoosier Arcade Coin-Op Kollectors Society) which brings together local Indiana collectors for a fun conference and trade show.   You can visit Jeff and his personal website www.jeffsgames.com.

Are arcades aimed mainly at children, adolescents or adults?

Modern arcades mainly aim for children.  I think with redemption gaming it really is a kids’ casino, playing on the same impulses that a real casino plays on for an adult.  I like the trend of classic “barcades” that have been doing well, and hope that continues to develop into a sustainable market.

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Trading Card Spotlight - Elizabeth Hunter

Our next Trading Card Spotlight features Elizabeth Hunter, who is displayed on card number 333, from the Superstars of 2012 Collection.  Elizabeth is also on cards 51 and 345.   Elizabeth is most well-known by her title of “Kitty McScratch”.   Her claim to fame is the many records she holds on various “Just Dance” and "Dance Central" games on the Nintendo Wii, XBOX 360 and other platforms which resulted in her being featured and named "Most Prolific Dancing Game High Scorer" in the 2013 Guinness Book of World Records and the 2013 Gamer's Edition.  Liz has also been part of such organizations as the Grassroots Gaming Expo and the International Video Game Hall of Fame, both held in Ottumwa, Iowa.  

What games today do you play and what are your favorite genres of games?

I play all kinds of stuff from adventure, platforms, RPG, first person shooters, strategy, puzzle, you name it. I tend to play more of puzzle and RPG but it varies based on my mood at the time. I’ve been playing a lot of Fallout 4, Job Simulator, Pokémon Go, and a few other virtual reality games. I also picked up Day of the Tentacle on Steam which was a game I loved as a kid and am hoping to beat it again.

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Science Fiction Trading Card Spotlight - Robert Sawyer

Our next Science Fiction Trading Card Spotlight features Robert J. Sawyer, who is displayed on card number 51 from the Science Fiction Collection.  Rob has won the Hugo, Nebula, John W. Campbell Memorial Awards, and Aurora Awards for best novel of the year, and, according to the Locus Index to Science Fiction Awards, has won more awards as an SF/F novelist than anyone else in history. The ABC TV series FlashForward was based on his novel of the same name. In 2014, he was one of the initial nine inductees into the Canadian Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame, and in 2016 he was made a member of the Order of Canada, the highest civilian honor bestowed by the Canadian government. His 23rd novel, Quantum Night, is just out from Ace.

Who is your favorite celebrity and what makes that person special?

Chase Masterson, who played Leeta the Dabo Girl on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. She’s parlayed her celebrity into being an international leader in the fight against bullying online and off, and she’s done amazing work with young people transitioning out of gang life in Los Angeles.  She’s my hero.

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Trading Card Spotlight - Phil Day

Our next Trading Card Spotlight features Phil Day who is displayed on card number 124, from the Superstars of 2011 Collection.  Phil is one of the best Galaga players in the world.  From the land down under, Phil resides from Australia and is an avid gamer, author and documentarian.   In 2009, Phil captured the Galaga world title in the “5-Man only” Tournament settings.   Phil is in the process of creating a documentary called “Bonus Life: Extended Play” which is still in production.  Phil has also written a graphic novel called “The Short lived life of a Galaga Pilot” which has not yet been released to the public.  Phil is currently has the 2nd highest recorded score in Galaga with 3,275,720.

Do you learn anything from playing video games?

Some people learn how to play the game better. While others discover something about themselves. After getting the Galaga WR I had no desire to try for another WR. I feel it is best to do these things once. Whereas many other classic arcade champs have a want to regain their WRs – I think this is a mistake. Rarely is anything as much fun the second time.

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