Ottumwa - Video Game Capital Of The World - Icon 2016

Need A Vacation? Why Not Head Out To Icon: 2016 – Ottumwa’s Video Game Festival?

Beginning on August 5 and ending on the 7th, Ottumwa, Iowa – the Video Game Capital Of The World will be hosting a weekend of absolutely amazing video game events. For those that are lucky enough to attend this year you can participate in competitions, shop at the various video game vendors, and also get some autographs from gaming celebrities. Take time to enjoy the trading card awards ceremonies and make sure you are present for The International Video Game Hall Of Fame when it inducts the late Josh Jones who was widely considered the Ambassador of Video Games , Tim McVey (First Nibbler Player to reach 1 Billion Points), Eugene Jarvis (Co-Creator of Defender), Eric Ginner (, Gary Stern, Kat Gunn, David Bishop Thor Ackerlund, Tim Balderramos, and Steve Harris to their honored ranks as well as giving a special place in the Hall of Fame to 1981’s groundbreaking Defender!

Icon 2016 - Ottumawa Video Game Festival

Planned to make appearances during the event are Billy Mitchell, Walter Day, Joel West, Cary Chaney, Rene Salinas, James White, Steve Sanders, Richie Knucklez, Lonnie McDonald, Terry Minnich, Derek Sorrells and even more.


Also of note is the screening of Man vs. Snake which is a brand new arcade game documentary about Tim McVey and Italian kickboxing champion Enrico Zanetti trying to obtain the highest world score on 1982’s Nibbler – and it looks absolutely fantastic!

For more information on Icon: 2016 why not visit their Facebook Page and their site!

Justin M. Salvato - Vintage Computing and Retro Video Games

Justin M. Salvato’s Vintage Computing & Retro Video Games Ep. 1

Hey, friends! The one and only Justin M. Salvato – whose work you might recognize from his excellent series of Video Podcasts of various Retroist podcasts sent me the link to the first episode of his new YouTube series entitled Vintage Computing and Retro Video Games. After talking for a bit he was kind enough to agree to share the videos here on the site. I’ll let Justin take it from here. – Vic)

I’m not big on having my voice recorded or my face on camera, unless it’s for boxing, but I decided it was time to discuss my love of vintage computing and classic game consoles. So I am starting a series of videos (hopefully a start) discussing the subject. If you are a fan of Atari, Coleco, SEGA, Nintendo, vintage computing, then I hope you give my video a watch. While you’re at it, check out my other videos on my YouTube page.

Jack TV

Allison Doesn’t Know Jack

Actually, she does. Because she does stuff like this! :-)

Ever since my first gameplay video, for the Nintendo Entertainment System game American Gladiators, I’ve been wanting to do another gameplay video. I wanted it to be as perfect as the first one, because yeah, it was pretty freakin’ perfect. And awesome. Did I mention perfect? Did I mention awesome? It was perfectly awesome.

Yes, that is an expression.

Jack TV

One of my favorite “party” games (and by “party,” I mean “party of one,” because no one would play against me, because mad television-watching skills) was You Don’t Know Jack Television, and one of the sibling games, You Don’t Know Jack Movies. Both were gifted to me by a high school boyfriend back in the early 2000s (it was actually in 2000). The relationship may not have lasted, but I played the games for years until I lost track of the CD-ROMs about a decade ago when my family moved. I’d tried to find an online version, and eventually, I lost track of attempts to locate the game. On chance, I had started looking for the game again earlier this year, and was fine if I had to pay for a download or even CD-ROM version. I knew that may not be feasible, having a Windows 8 laptop (that keeps trying to prompt me to set myself up with Windows 10), but I was determined. And when I found it on both Steam AND Amazon as downloads, it was destiny.

Nice to know what constitutes as “destiny” in my world and thinking.

I found both the Television and Movie games as downloads for $2.99 each on Amazon, and I knew they were supposed to be mine forever.

To come back into playing these games after many years away from them was the equivalent of greeting an old friend. I hadn’t lost my edge with the Television game, and was slightly rusty with the Movie game, but I got over that quickly. Turns out I’m none-too-shabby with games from 1997, with questions about movies and television stuff?that was older, and I hadn’t played the game in ten years. I’m impressive, wouldn’t you say?

So, without further ado (ok, fine, a little ado…or is it “much ado about nothing”?), my second gameplay video for Retroist, as I play the 1997 game You Don’t Know Jack Television. I’ll let you know right off the bat that I refrained from talking during the video, due to the potential to miss some cheesy jokes. This really is a fun game, and I hope you enjoy watching it as much as I enjoyed playing it.

First, some technical specs…

Screenshot (113)

The game was recorded with Open Broadcaster Software (OBS), and compressed into a smaller, easier to upload file using Freemake Video Converter. I also used Freemake to cut out a short section where I hit pause.

Oh, and that one insanely high score you’ll see at the end. I’m just that good.


Allison is a lover of video games from her childhood and teenage years, especially when she can still master them in her 30s the way she did in her teens. She loves trivia games, and as you can clearly see, You Don’t Know Jack is a beloved game. If you’d like to see more of what she does best, come on over to her blog, Allison’s Written Words, and follow her blog on Facebook, just so you’ll never be out of touch with the not-so-relevant stuff she writes about. She can also be found on Twitter @AllisonGeeksOut.

She doesn’t mind being insulted by the host on these games.


Menasor - Machinima

Machinima’s New Transformers: Combiner Wars Cartoon Looks Awesome!

The war that was waged on the planet Earth has been over now for forty years. Both Autobots and Decepticons have put aside their differences…mostly…to return to Cybertron and live in peace under the leadership of Rodimus Prime, the Mistress of Flame (From the IDW comic book series), and Starscream. But what will happen when ancient Cybertronian technology is uncovered that allows groups of Transformers to merge into powerful Combiners?
Rodimus Prime - Mistress of Flame - Starscream - Combiner Wars
Well…judging by that image of Menasor from the new trailer that just went live on Machinima’s YouTube channel, rampant amounts of destruction and mayhem will be caused and lead to all out war with the Combiners!
Menasor - Combiner Wars

It certainly looks like that the council of three will have to send out the call to Optimus Prime, who has either been banished or has walked away from the burden of leadership since the end of the War.
Optimus Prime - Combiner Wars
Judging by that trailer though it also looks like perhaps Optimus Prime and Megatron will have to put aside old grievances in the hopes of saving Cybertron from the Combiner Wars!
Megatron - Combiner Wars
The new series, which is eight episodes will debut on August 2nd exclusively on go90.

NES Classic Mini

Prepare Yourself For The NES Classic Mini Commercial!

About a week ago the news broke about Nintendo releasing the NES Classic Mini to we fans of nostalgic and classic gaming later this year. While thanks to that announcement we learned what 30 games were going to be built-in with the console’s release – and just follow that link up top to see what an amazing roster of titles has been chosen…we didn’t know the price of the NES Classic Mini nor it’s release date.
NES Classic Mini - 30 Game Roster
That has been rectified with this delightfully charming commercial from Nintendo itself…the NES Classic Mini is going to be affordable at $59.99 and will be available on November 11th.

[Via] Nintendo

I am looking forward to this product very, very much. I’m even saving a can of Hi-C’s Ecto-Cooler to enjoy when I get to visit some old video game friends this Fall!

Billy Mitchell - Great Big Story

Billy Mitchell On Achieving First Perfect Game On Pac-Man

The other day on Facebook I was sent a link by the Retroist’s own Gary Burton to this short but interesting interview with Billy Mitchell from Great Big Story. Mitchell not only discusses what it felt like to be the first Player to obtain a perfect game (achieving 3,333,360 points) but also goes into a little detail of the difficulty of achieving such a feat and the acclaim that went with it.

Images courtesy of Great Big Story.

Images courtesy of Great Big Story.

The interview looks to me to have been filmed in one of the King of Kong arcades but I’m not sure about that nor why there is so much video of Mitchell playing Ms. Pac-Man while talking about the original Pac-Man game – however the champion certainly shows some means skills which only stands to reason and a pretty sweet trick during the interview.

[Via] Great Big Story



Those awesomely awesome folks over at Vinegar Syndrome are at it again; this time bringing us an outrageously entertaining double release featuring THE CANDY TANGERINE MAN and LADY COCOA!


WRITTEN BY: Mikel Angel
DIRECTED BY: Matt Cimber
STARRING: John Daniels, Eli Haines, Tom Hankason

THE CANDY TANGERINE MAN concerns the adventures of The Baron; a laid-back pimp with a cool @$$ ride. As the flick begins we see two racist cops trying to trap The Baron with an undercover officer dressed as a woman that is about as convincing as Uncle Milty in drag. Much wah-wah sax ensues.

After that non-sequitur we see The Baron rescue on of his “girls” from an abusive relationship before meeting up with the ultimate pimp caricature named Dusty Compton. The two then engage in a rousing game of billiards for ownership of a new working girl – yeah; it was a different time folks; a cartoony, over-the-top, awesome as all get-out time. Dusty of course loses and blames the white cue ball. I love this film.

Well ol’ Dusty doesn’t take losing lightly and uses his mob connections to try and take out The Baron – who of course escapes by blasting his way to freedom courtesy of the machine guns hidden in the headlights of his tricked out Rolls Royce. He then hands the woman he won a sack of cash and sends her on her way. I really love this film.

We then learn The Baron is only in the pimpin’ game part time; the rest of the day he’s a married family man (they think he’s a traveling insurance salesman ‘natch) in the suburbs living a Norman Rockwell style existence.

Before long The Baron is up to his rakish fedora in violence as he takes on the mob, the cops, and even the owner of the massage parlor he runs his business out of (although that inexplicably turns into a slapstick comedy).

I can’t sing the praises of THE CANDY TANGERINE MAN enough. If you love the outrageous, comic book antics of DOLEMITE over the more sedate action of SHAFT then this is the film for you; it’s colorful, absurd, and completely of its time – in other words; it’s Grade-A, rad-@$$ awesomeness of the highest caliber!


While THE CANDY TANGERINE MAN makes this 110% worth owning, you do get a second feature in this release (also by director Cimber); namely:


WRITTEN BY: Mikel Angel
DIRECTED BY: Matt Cimber
STARRING: Lola Falana, Gene Washington, Alex Dreier

In snowy Nevada, Lady Cocoa finds herself holed up in a luxury hotel/casino; a virtual prisoner (as opposed to the actual one she is as the film opens) of an aging Police Lieutenant and a beat cop charged with keeping her alive long enough to testify against her racketeering criminal boyfriend.

After much whining from L.C.; she is allowed to gamble, shop, and have dinner with a couple of groovy newlyweds. Seems prosaic enough right? Well wouldn’t you know it, Cocoa’s boyfriend is none too pleased with the thought of her spilling the beans so he sends out a couple of hitmen (one of them a silent Mean Joe Greene) to make sure her tongue stops wagging permanently.

Less over-the-top than THE CANDY TANGERINE MAN; LADY COCOA is nevertheless immensely entertaining as well. The emphasis here is more on character interaction and dynamics rather than near cartoon-like characters and violence; but there are outrageous elements at play as well such as a car chase featuring said vehicle driving through the casino and into a pool and a bathroom shootout. A few other items make this a stand-out in the Blaxploitation genre as well; namely the location and the score.

Utilizing the snowy locales of Lake Tahoe; LADY COCOA has a visual sense unlike any other film in the genre (whose locales were more often than not large urban areas). It gives to proceedings an odd; almost surreal quality.

As for the score; it boasts a rousing re-working of Pop Goes the Weasel (the film??s original title) performed by Falana herself; but the soundtrack contains an instrumental version of the song that plays a few times too many.

Unlike THE CANDY TANGERINE MAN (whose sole extra in an introduction by Director Cimber); LADY COCOA features a full commentary track by the same. Informative, lively, and packed with anecdotes; this track was one of the more enjoyable I have ever heard (and the conversation turns to include discussion of THE CANDY TANGERINE MAN as well.


If you dig on flicks like DOLEMITE or SUPERFLY, or are curious as to just why the drive-ins of the 1970’s were so damn cool, then this is the release for you (you can grab a copy right here!); colorful characters, outrageous situations and preposterous fashion choices make for a great night’s viewing indeed!