Amstrad PC1512 (1986/7) - The first game I played was either on this or an Acorn Electron. It's in a picture from when I was 2 years old, so I know it was around in 1987. The games I would have played on it were things like Beast, Pango, Pak(not Pac)Man, Xonix etc. I also remember using Gem Paint. I don't have the original system from back then but have another one like it I bought recently:




Acorn Electron (198?-199?) - My dad bought it before I was born so it was always around but, as mentioned, I have no idea which computer I actually sat down in front of first. It was in use until some time in the early 90s when the PSU wire broke. I've since fixed the wire so it is now working again.


286 (1988? - 1991) - It had big round buttons and a really nice LED numeric display. The games I played around that time would have been stuff like The Monuments of Mars, Sopwith, Rogue, Alleycat, 3-Demon, Digger (and the stuff that I might or might not have played on the Amstrad). The only picture I have of this computer is one where it's partially obscured in the background:




386 (1991-99?, 2014-) - Most of the old-school PC gaming that I can remember clearly was on this. Commander Keen, Crystal Caves, Galactix, Kilo Blaster, Lemmings, Major Stryker, Lotus, the Dizzy games etc. It was still in use after it was replaced by a newer computer until around 1999. Many years later (2014) I found out that the battery had leaked all over the motherboard corroding several of the traces. So I had to fix it. As you can see here, I eventually got it working and set it up with the original monitor, which was also stored in the loft. I also bought the same mouse we used to own. I recently swapped the monitor though as, even after adjusting the focus & brightness as much as possible, it's still a bit blurry and felt it would be best not to wear it out completely. Here's a picture of it in action now:




Game Gear (1994-Present) - For years I'd been asking my parents for a Master System or Mega Drive without success. I eventually had to settle for a Game Gear. It was cool at the time though but I only got a few games for it so it didn't have a massive impact on my gaming history. I still have it, caps replaced and in pretty nice condition with the original box:




Pentium 166 MMX (1996-2001) - This was a significant upgrade at the time, having completely skipped over the 486 era. It meant the internet and online gaming - I first tried this with Hellbender and Quake 2 around 1998 I guess. I played a lot of Quake 2 online, initially with a 28k modem. I'd also get up at 5 in the morning before school to play Destruction Derby. Carmageedon was the PC game I spent the most time playing at this time.


N64 (1998-Present) - I was late to the party with this, but not too late. My friends all had N64's before I did (which is why I got one). It was a big deal for me as it was my first proper console and it was actually mine, unlike the computers which my dad bought.. I saved money from birthdays & xmas for it - £99.99 from Curry's (I think). The limited edition gold controller version. It was a very different experience than the PC gaming I'd done previously. Mostly due to the multiplayer. I'd played 2 player games with my sister before but this was so much different. Some of my best gaming memories come from those days playing multiplayer Goldeneye, DKR, Mario Party, Perfect Dark. It was also an interesting experience to be playing what was current for a change. Buying magazines, reading about all the new games that were coming out and then actually buying them. We were always there or thereabouts with the PC, but never right at the cutting edge. I still have my original N64, box and everything, but I use RGB modded NTSC consoles now.




Various PC's (2001-2010) - There was no real "era" when it came to PC's at this point. I built several over the years, starting with a Duron 700 based system in 2001. I played a lot of Unreal Tournament online. Games like Morrowind, Knights of the Old Republic, Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines, Deus Ex are my standout games from this time-period. I even really liked the first Mass Effect and Dragon Age games, but it was around this time (2010) that I fell out with modern gaming - partially due to the sequels of those very games.


Various Consoles/Computers (2010-Present) - In 2010, I decided to catch up on all the games I'd missed out on over the years. At this point I'd had enough with modern games, so without that distraction (and the money saved not upgrading often), I put this plan into action. I bought a nice CRT TV (21" Trinitron), got my N64 out....and so it began. Almost all of the systems in this picture were purchased from October 2010 onwards (this is from 2014 - I've since got rid of some of these but have a lot more PC's now):





Other:


Mega Drive/Saturn (2001) - I did actually buy both a Mega Drive and Saturn from Cash Converters in 2001 but didn't really use them at that time. It would be several years before I modded them for 60hz and made them playable.
Dreamcast (2005) - It had the reset problem (since fixed), but couldn't get much use out of it for a while.
Gamecube (mid-2000's) - My sister bought a Gamecube in 2003 which I played a few games on. I got one a couple of years later but again but didn't play much on it at the time.




Index