Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Flashback 01 - Tiger handhelds

Last weekend I was up in my parents attic looking for some of the old Legos that I had when I was a kid. While I was up in the crawlspace I was fortunate enough to come across a box or two full of some of my old toys. I won't give away everything that was in them, but I wanted to share one thing I found. I found this 1990 flyer for Tiger Electronics handheld gaming systems. And it brought back a flood of memories, click on these pictures for a big view and just have a look through some of these games...

Man oh man, I LOVED these games. When I was a kid I never had a Gameboy, never had a Game Gear... did have an Atari Lynx (I know, seriously...) But before all of that happened, I had a couple of these truly awesome marvels of LCD technology. If you don't know, these games were based on the old crappy liquid crystal technology of the 80s. They weren't game systems in the sense of a Gameboy, or a comparable handheld, these gaming systems only played the one game that was in them, and the "game" technology was so lacking that screen would literally have some of the background designs decal-ed directly onto the plastic viewing pane. Behind this pane was the LCD screen which had maybe 10 pre-defined possible positions of your character, objects, walls, and enemies.

The games were usually based on much better 8 bit games from the likes of Sega, and Nintendo and were pitifully bad in so many ways. But I, and a lot of other kids really loved that they were easy to play, and totally portable. I'm pretty sure I owned Double Dragon, Paperboy, Mega Man 2, and Altered Beast - all of which rocked hard. I think I might've owned Batman too, but maybe I just remember playing a friends. And I know I played some Ninja Gaiden and really wanted it for myself but never actually got it. I literally played these games for hours and hours until I could finish them without fail (and I think people forget how hard games used to be overall). I remember that playing Double Dragon was literally the very first time I got the dreaded 'gamers thumb'. Looking at this flyer now, I'd really like to try out Snakes Revenge, Gauntlet, and Shinobi. Alas these games are quite hard to come by now. This site has a good list with pics of most of the Tiger games, and I see on eBay you can pick up a few for... around $10. but most of the good ones don't seem to really be there :( Ah well, I suspect the memories are better than playing them would be now.

Did anyone else out there get a chance to play these games? I'm really interested in the watch games. I don't think I've ever seen them before. We're they as awesome as I imagine???

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