Cavern of the Evil Wizard

One of my favourite films as a kid was Big. The film starred a young Tom Hanks wishing that he were bigger so he could do the things that adults do i.e. Not go to school (although being a teacher myself that didn't exactly pan out the way I planned) and play with a giant floor piano in a toy shop.

There's a scene in the film where he is playing an adventure game on his computer, The Cavern of the Evil Wizard. The game was made up for the film and only constituted one screen but BoMToons has made the game playable in-browser here.

Relive the Big scene yourself and play it!

The Return of Teddy Ruxpin

The 80's were a heady time for toys and animation and one of the highlights of the decade for many was Teddy Ruxpin, a show that had 65 episode and one of the most iconic toys of the time. The Teddy Ruxpin talking toy came with a cassette deck, children would slot in a tape and the mouth of the toy would move and recount a story. Teddy Ruxpin was launched in 1985 and was a massive hit but various financial crises affected the company and it closed.

However there has been a resurrection of the toy and there is s new version coming up. The latest version of the toy will come with a 4GB hard drive which will be able to store 40 stories. Also the toy will be able to be paired with an iPad app so children can read along to the stories as the toy move its mouth and speaks. I have a daughter now and so may purchase the toy for her. I never had the toy as a kid but I do like the idea of it.

Lost Ethereal- A Short Yet Epic Feeling Game

The Low Res Jam is a game jam that challenges developers to make a low resolution game - 64 x 64. With these limitations it may seem like the games produced may not be of a high calibre but games like Lost Ethereal show that with a little creativity and effort you can make epic games. The creepy, unsettling game was created by Eric Howard and Christian Masse and even though it can be completed in under 5 minutes feels epic due to its evocative and stirring score. If you have a spare few minutes play the game, it is free to play in-browser and is well worth your time.

Ghost In the Shell Movie Teaser Trailers Released

The first wave of trailers promoting the Ghost in the Shell movie have been released. The movie, based on the manga comics by Masamune Shirow and the animation from the 90s, is a classic of hard sci-fi. I can't wait to see it and whilst disappointed about the main role not going to an Asian actress I was actually quite pleased with the casting of Scarlett Johansson as Major Kusanagi and especially Takeshi Kitano as the Chief of Section 9 Daisuke Aramaki is great. So now it's just a 6 month wait to see how the movie turns out. If it's good we may finally see the Akira and Battle Angel Alita movies we have been waiting so long for... and being optimistic, they may actually be good. Well, one can hope anyways!

So without further ado, let's see the trailers.

NES 3D Emulator

There are loads of great emulators out there but there is a new emulator that allowed people to play NES games in a 3D perspective. The games themselves haven't been re-coded or altered but rather the backgrounds altered on the z-axis to give it a diorama look. The results are so-so but on some games they really pop, check out the video below of Mega Man and be prepared to be impressed!

Super Mario Coming to iOS

Nintendo are the masters of video games and some of their characters are the most iconic in the industry. However over the last few years they have been struggling due to many reasons but most prominently the rise in mobile gaming on mobile devices. The company dipped its toes into the app world with Miitomo but Pokemon Go showed the true potential of Nintendo on mobile phones and tablets. Now at the iPhone 7 event today Shigeru Miyamoto, the creator of Mario, Zelda and Donkey Kong, surprised the world by unveiling Mario's first iOS Mario game, Super Mario Run. It is a runner game but it does look great. With the NX coming soon it seems like Nintendo's fortunes are changing.

Twin Peaks Soundtrack Vinyl Re-release

I have a huge thing for anything Twin Peaks. The image of Laura Palmer's cold dead face left an impact I'll never be able to forget and Bob hiding at the foot of her bed left an impact I'll never be able to escape. And scoring all this was Angelo Badalamenti's score which changed everything.

Death Waltz Recordings is re-releasing the seminal soundtrack in vinyl on 180gm "damn fine coffee" colour vinyl with bespoke die cut outer jacket and director approved artwork. The set looks stunning and I'll be looking to purchase it when it becomes available on 9th September 2016.

I have fond memories of the music as I remember discovering the series in the late 90's whilst at university. I got the soundtrack CD from my local library and played the music in Peacocks, where I had a weekend job as a sales assistant which was paying for my university costs. As the music played I remember the whole mood changing- people started giving the staff weird looks but one guy said, "Kudos for putting on something different from the usual shop muzak".

Whilst I am eagerly awaiting the new series, which will start airing in early 2017, I will reminisce on the old series with this vinyl... alongside a cup of damn fine coffee and cherry pie!

LINK- Buy Twin Peaks Vinyl OST Online

Playstation Experience: A Night Under No Man's Sky

There are a few games that I am particularly looking forward to this year and one of them is No Man's Sky, a procedurally generating space exploration sim, has me particularly excited.


PlayStation Experience attendees were treated to an exclusive No Man's Sky concert, featuring visuals from the upcoming PS4 space odyssey and music from indie band 65daysofstatic. I have a WiiU but haven't decided whether to get a PS4 or XBone yet, this may just sway me into the Sony camp! Have a look at the concert below and enjoy!

Power Up Retro Gaming at the Science Museum

With 5 more weeks of the holidays left are you thinking of what to do with the kids, who after just one week are driving you nuts? Well you could do a lot worse than visit the Science Museum in London, which from the 22nd July to 7th August is holding Power Up, a retro gaming exhibition. The whole thing is hands on and children get a chance to play the best of video gaming from the past 40 years including Mario, Pacman and Halo.
Tickets can be purchased at the link below but why not do yourself a favour and head over. I went to this same event a couple of years ago and loved it. 

PLAY Expo Margate was pretty cool

I went to the PLAY Expo in Margate a couple of days ago and I have to say that it was an excellent experience. There were loads of original arcade machines, 10 pinball machines and tonnes of original consoles with classic games. I finally fulfilled a gaming dream and played Tempest 2000 on the Atari Jaguar and got my mitts on M.U.S.H.A. on the Megadrive.

There were 10 pinball machines set to freeplay... I was in flipping heaven!

There were lots of LAN games set up and a myriad of retro systems hooeked up ready for play.

I made a video of the event and have placed it below for your viewing pleasure.

PLAY Expo Margate

PLAY Expo Margate is a celebration of video games that is packed with hundreds of games, consoles, arcades, traders and exhibitors. I have never been before but will be going tomorrow (Sunday 24th July). I purchased tickets a few weeks ago and have been waiting excitedly for this date. Tomorrow I'll be posting my thoughts on the Expo.

R-type Anime Short

Animator Paul Johnson has created an anime short film based around the video game R-Type, the hard as nails shoot 'em up. The 90's inspired art style and deliberately dreadful voice acting is spot on and reminds me of some truly awful anime and manga I watched in my youth. In his own words:

Sucked into one of the toughest video games around, one man has to fight for his life – and the high score!
This is an homage to arcade classic R-Type and 90’s anime - with each second of animation containing around 17 drawings. 17 DRAWINGS PER SECOND!

Check out the video below!

Björk Digital Exhibition

Somerset House are hosting Björk Digital, an exhibition showcasing some of the avant-garde musicians digital and video media, featuring her collaborations with some of the world’s finest visual artists and programmers. The exhibition, which runs from from 1st September - 23rd October, is a celebration of her incredible three-decade long career. The Bjork celebration will culminate with a special, one-off concert at the Royal Albert Hall on Wednesday 21st September.

The exhibition will feature virtual reality (VR) and an interactive educational area, where her innovative apps (such as Biophilia) and custom-made musical instruments will be on show. Most excitedly I am looking forward to viewing Black Lake, an immersive film featuring panoramic visuals and a bespoke, cutting edge surround-sound system. If it is anything like the other work Bjork has done I'm sure it will be exciting, intriguing and powerful. I'm hoping to see the exhibition over the Summer and will be purchasing tickets for the concert too, all of which will be shared here!

The Simpsons: Pokemon Now?

Pokemon Go has been taking over the world, setting the app store alight and stopping traffic in Central Park over the weekend. Now it's entering the world of the Simpsons in a quite funny skit... I know, modern Simpsons, funny, but it is!

Wonderboy: The Dragons Trap Remake

During my early teens I got a Sega Master System whilst my best friend had the NES. To be honest I was a bit jealous as Nintendo's machine was far superior with an unrivaled back catalogue. However there were a couple of titles that made me proud to be a Master System owner and chief among them was Wonderboy III: The Dragon's Trap. It is a Metroidvania style game with each of the transformations allowing access to previously unreachable areas to open the world up. I am extremely excited about the game and can't wait for its release!

In the words of DotEmu:

We are working on a modern version of cult classic Wonder Boy: The Dragon's Trap! A close collaboration between Lizardcube, DotEmu and legendary series creator Ryuichi Nishizawa, based on Westone Bit Entertainment's original masterpiece.
Cursed into a half-human, half-lizard monstrosity by the Meka-Dragon, a lonesome adventurer is facing the challenge of a lifetime! In search for a cure, our mutated anti-hero will explore the many traps of Monster Land... and defeat many stuff-throwing, curse-wielding dragons.
How many more transformations can one hopeful body survive as it turns into a Lizard, a Mouse, a Piranha, a Lion, and a Hawk... The six different forms of our shape-shifting hero make up the cast of this non-stop action-adventure platformer!

NES Classic Mini

Nintendo just dropped a bombshell and have announced that on 11th November, the NES Classic Mini Edition ill be released for $59.99. The NES in a mini version of the classic system we all grew up with and loved but smaller, thus the mini. The system comes with a NES controller which can be used on the Wii and WiiU. It will also come pre-installed with 30 of the 'best' NES games (or so they say, I'm not the biggest fan of Tecmo Bowl but the list is very impressive indeed) and will be able to be plugged into your current fancy TV set by using the HDMI cord. The machine will not be able to play original NES cartridges and there will not be an ability to download additional games after release but still, 30 NES games for about $2 a-piece is not bad at all. The full list of games included are :

Balloon Fight, Bubble Bobble, Castlevania, Castlevania II: Simon’s Quest, Donkey Kong, Donkey Kong Jr., Double Dragon II: The Revenge, Dr. Mario, Excitebike, Final Fantasy, Galaga, Ghosts ‘N Goblins, Gradius, Ice Climber, Kid Icarus, Kirby’s Adventure, Mario Bros., Mega Man 2, Metroid, Ninja Gaiden, Pac-Man, Punch-Out!! Featuring Mr. Dream, StarTropics, Super C, Super Mario Bros., Super Mario Bros. 2, Super Mario Bros. 3, Tecmo Bowl, The Legend of Zelda and Zelda II: The Adventure of Link.

Rod Serling on Kamikazes

Rod Serling is famous as the creator of the Twilight Zone, one of the most revered and thought-provoking television series of all-time. The series ran from 1959-64 and its influence can still be felt today with many film makers, authors and people in media as a whole citing it as an inspiration.

Serling was interviewed by Australian radios Binny Lum and the conversation between them is delightful and relaxed. The anecdotes and THAT voice keep you hooked and interested, seems Serling didn't just play up for the shows but his voice was that soothing and mysterious in real life! Check out the whole interview below.