HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!
Our next Trading Card Spotlight features Mark Robichek who is displayed on card number 40, from the Superstars of 2011 Collection. Mark is another original Twin Galaxies alumnus from 1982. He can be seen alongside the greats in the Time Life Magazine photograph taken on November 7, 1982. Mark early on set the bar for world records on such arcade games as Frogger, Tutankham and Berzerk. Today Mark can be seen playing Pengo on MAME or smart phone games such as Words with Friends and What’s That Phrase. Currently Mark is a Casino Party Dealer and resides in Sunnyvale, California.
If you can design your own game, what would it be about and who would be the main character?
I would create a puzzle game in which the main character, none other than Walter Day, tries to figure out a way to save the video arcade industry!
HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!
Our next Trading Card Spotlight features Steve Sanders who currently is displayed on card number 308, from the Superstars of 2012 Collection. He is also featured on cards 88, 127 (with Lonnie McDonald) and 328 (With his Son Isaiah). Steve is one of the original members of the Twin Galaxies community back in 1982. He can be seen on the famous Time Life Magazine photograph taken outside the original Twin Galaxies arcade opened by Walter Day. Steve has many world records in arcade history, including games like Donkey Kong, Joust and Super Pac-Man. He can be seen in the documentary, The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters, which is currently out on DVD. Steve wrote the book “The Video Master’s Guide to Donkey Kong” as a teenager back in the early 80’s and also competed on the “That’s Incredible” Arcade Championship as a top contender. Steve currently works as a trial attorney in Kansas City, Missouri.
Do you remember your first video game / arcade you played and what do you remember about it?
My first memory of video games is playing Atari’s Pong on a home console my parents bought for me in the early to mid-1970s. I was still in elementary school, so it would have been 1972-1974 time frame.
Our next Trading Card Spotlight features Josh Houslander who is displayed on card number 139, from the Twin Galaxies Superstars Collection of 2011. Josh was one of the creators of a podcast for Twin Galaxies website that discussed all things Twin Galaxies as well as world records established by the community. The new podcast which Josh is involved in can be heard primarily on themajors.net. Josh also was involved in an exclusive interview with Walter Day that can be purchased on DVD. Josh has also personally interviewed top talent in the video game industry through the years and was a key part of the Video Game Hall of Fame in Ottumwa, IA in 2010. Some of Josh’s Video Game Records include Bubble Bobble Plus on the Wii and Super Mario Bros. 3 for the NES.
Did I ever think when I was younger that I would be on a video game trading card.....? Hmm, yes I probably did. My dream as a kid was to become an absolute video game master. I wanted to test my skills against all comers, I wanted to work in the video game field as a game tester, write up reports on the latest and greatest new games, and be the ultimate video game champion. At a young age I thought up ways to have potential tournaments, championships, and competitions to find out who the true "King of Nintendo" was (that is what I would have called it as a child). The only problem is, that if one were to go back in time and tell eleven year old Josh that one day he would be on a video game trading card; but that he would be remembered much more for covering events, podcasting, and his journalistic contributions to the subculture rather than his own world records or prowess as a master of all video games. That may just be one heartbroken little dork.
Our next Trading Card Spotlight features Ιlias Florakis who is displayed on card number 70, from the Superstars of 2011 Collection. Ilias lives in Athens, Greece and is an avid game player on multiple game consoles. Ilias is the record holder on many games such as Ghostbusters and Decathlon on the Commodore 64 as well as Point Blank on the Sony PlayStation. He is also an author of two books with strange stories, many theatrical plays and scripts. In 2005 Ilias wrote for a Greek Computer Magazine called “RAM” and supplied game reviews for the magazine. Ilias is also good with his hands as he used to work and repair arcade games in his hometown.
What are your opinions about today’s generation of video games? How do you compare them to older, classic games?
A lot of effects and amazing graphics but usually very low gameplay. Most games are a one way path that you just have to move on straight. And there is more violence. Of course there are exceptions, such as my favorite Riven - The sequel of Myst, which is covered with great music. The technology helped the video games to become more impressive and more realistic. Most often without substance though.
Our next Trading Card Spotlight features Dan Loosen who is displayed on card number 160, from the Superstars of 2011 Collection. Dan is one of the co-founders and organizers of the Midwest Gaming Classic, a gaming trade show in Milwaukee, WI. The MGC showcases retro and modern home video game consoles, pinball machines, arcade video games, computers, table top gaming, crane games, collectible card games and much more.
When did you first meet Walter Day and where was it at?
I first met Walter at the 2004 Midwest Gaming Classic. He had emailed me and told me that he would be coming to our show with a few players and was it okay if a team that was shooting a documentary was there too. We said sure, and a few weeks later at the show I met him. I didn’t have too long to talk to him, but he was definitely a great person to have around, and his love of the culture around gaming and preserving that culture was outstanding.