Friends, the other day the Retroist Vault was all abuzz with the news of the Coleco evolved mini arcades Kickstarter. Gary Burton was kind enough to drop on by for a visit with the news in fact. The Coleco evolved mini arcades are a retro throwback to the classic early ’80s tabletop games. Although this time it isn’t the likes of Pac-Man and Frogger that we will be playing. This go around we are getting games for both Rainbow Brite and Robotech!
As far as I know, Mr. Arcade, the spokesman for the original Coleco tabletop won’t be returning. However at the very least the designs of the plastic shell are staying 100% the same. Well, the housing is the same. The Coleco evolved mini arcades will feature:
Full Color LCD Display
Powerful new gaming chip set
Revamped joystick and accurate action buttons
Rechargeable Lithium Ion battery pack
Highly-detailed, colorful Rainbow Brite and Robotech art wraps
First of all I did indeed say the units will feature these because with 26 days to go, they’ve already reached their goal. At the time I submit this post, Coleco has netted $56,674 on a $30,000 goal. There is of course a stretch goal, a whopping $180,000 one at that. It is however a mystery to everyone…I hope though it’s an new Smurfs game!
How about we take just a moment to talk about the games? Rainbow Brite: Journey to Rainbow Land is an RPG style offering. Judging by the video below, it has most certainly been inspired by the likes of The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past. In this game you will attempt to help Rainbow Brite and Starlite thwart the plans of Murky and Lurky.
With Robotech: The Macross Saga you will get to pilot a legendary Veritech fighter. Standing as the ultimate and probably last defense for the Earth from alien invaders. Besides looking like you can switch between pilots, your Veritech can transform into Guardian, Fighter, and Battloid modes.
If you want to support the Coleco evolved mini arcades, you can follow the link to their Kickstarter. Now then, how about checking out the pitch video and the games in action?
When Rainbow Brite hit the scene back in 1983 it took hold. Created by none other than Gary Glissmeyer, Cheryl Cozad, and Dan Drake of Hallmark Cards, Inc. Rainbow Brite had dolls and toys, produced by Mattel. In addition to the images of the more popular characters being found on clothing, bedding, and other media.
The sales of Rainbow Brite merchandise also led to an animated series in 1984. With Warner Bros. releasing the feature-length animated movie Rainbow Brite and the Star Stealer to theaters in 1985. An adventure that leads R.B. and the Color Kids to attempt to thwart a Winter on Earth. A supernatural and never-ending cold brought on by Stormy, the opposite of our heroine.
There is of course a lot of songs included in the film. Naturally.
With all of this popularity it only stands to reason that fast food giants of the time would jump in. Incredibly popular places like Taco Bell for example. Instead of focusing on offering R.B. dolls they wisely chose to sell Sprites. The hardworking and lovable companions to R.B. and the Color Kids.
Check out these great 8-bit images from artist Jude Buffum in 2009. “Care Bear Carnage” sees Teddy Ruxpin having his heart ripped out by Care Bear Tenderheart whilst “Rainbow Bloodbath” has Rainbow Brite ‘finishing’ Strawberry Shortcake!
Be sure to check out the artist website where you’ll find a wealth of other 8-bit art!
As it is Easter time, I thought I’d have a quick look around for some retro-inspired Easter Eggs. This was the first thing that caught my eye!
The 1984 Smurf Wrap-an-Egg package encourages you to decorate 12 eggs in ‘just seconds’! It’s easy to do, there’s no fuss and no messy paints or dyes! So that’s a win for everyone, right?
Looking at the instructions, I’m pretty sure the children needed to be supervised for this task as you were required to dip the wrapper-on-egg combo into boiling water for 3 seconds. Once you were done, you would be the proud owner of some hard-boiled eggs with Smurf Wrappers atop… actually, I’m starting to think this was a raw deal for those craving a sweet treat!
There were also Rainbow Brite and Peanuts versions too: