Charity shop gaming

Charity shops and flea markets should be every gamer’s best friend. Rummaging around for games in musty shops feels almost like a game to me. I love the mystery of not knowing what will be there, and it feels great those times when you find valuable/rare/unusual/cool games on sale for a pittance. Bombastic was a recent charity shop find, an excellent one at that, and even more recently I got an inside tip from (of all people) my mother, on a bunch of games for sale at a charity shop she volunteers in. Without knowing specific titles or even the total number of games, I asked if she could buy them for me. She bought all the PS1 games, but turned down Goldeneye on N64 out of hand because she figured I must already own it…bless you Mum, you know me so well 😥

Now the haul is in and we’re looking at 8 PS1 titles here of varying quality and interest, including one duplicate of a game I already own – not a surprising duplicate, since Rayman, the 2D platformer of choice for dedicated masochists, was an early PS1 release and the best ever selling PS1 game in the UK. With that knowledge, all those Rayman ports and re-releases churned out over the years with no accompanying fanfare suddenly make a good deal of sense as exact equivalents of the well known flatulent concept, the Ninja Fart, aka silent but deadly.

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With that pleasant concept lodged firmly in our minds here’s a brisk rundown of the other games.

Golf game X 2 – meh. Still, check out PGA Tour 97’s impressive manual.

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That’s a lot of golfing instructions! Or more accurately I should say, golfing languages. It turns out golf can be played in multiple European languages. The manual with its many languages is the most exciting part of the game…

LOLlipop golfer

…with the sole exception of the box art, which is unquestionably the best thing about this game. Main character want a lollipop, ooh, yes he does! (Couldn’t they have gotten a more enthusiastic pose? Or even, dare I say it, a more sprightly pose/poser? Do we even know for sure that’s a golf club in his left hand, given that it looks suspiciously like a walking cane?)

Spec Ops – OK? Take it or leave it, but it’s worth a go I guess.

Medal of Honor – Bad memories from a Gamecube version I played years back. Remember when MoH was more popular than Call of Duty, and CoD was just a come-late copycat?

Civilisation II – Looking forward to playing this one. Funny anachronism from the Gamespot review: “If the graphics were better, it would be a must-buy, but as it is, Civilization II is a solid, if not spectacular, game”. IF THE GRAPHICS WERE BETTER THE GAME WOULD’VE SENT GAMERS CRAZY, SELLING OUT COMPLETELY AND CAUSING THE NEXT CABBAGE PATCH RIOTS. MORE IMPORTANTLY, IF THE GRAPHICS WERE BETTER I WOULD STILL BE ALIVE!!!

Discworld, 1 and 2 – These steal the show and complete the line-up for me. These point-and-click adventures are based on Terry Pratchett novels (which I’ve never read) and feature voice acting from Eric Idle of Monty Python fame and Rob Brydon of “Man in a Small Box” voice fame. The first game is reportedly quite obtuse and arcane and includes the ability to die, so I’ll have a walkthrough by my side for that one, while the second one is supposedly much more accessible. Both of these games support something called the Playstation Mouse, an essential accessory every gamer will want balanced precariously on the arm of their sofa. The sad fact is that if the graphics were better, I’m positive the Playstation Mouse could’ve been an absolute must-buy.

playstation 1 mouse

The Playstation Mouse was only one degree away from setting the world on fire with its stylish concrete-look exterior and a groundbreakingly reductive two buttons.

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