Local Arcade Culture

What was your local arcade like?  Tell us about it.  Were the machines new, with their own artwork?  Or were they generic cabinets, converted from other games? Was it a welcoming space or somewhere less than safe to hangout?  A full arcade, or just a few machines?  Do you have any ... Continue Reading »

Where did you play?

How does one identify local themes and scenes in digital games history?  Figuring out what is local will usually require knowledge of the non-local, won't it?  Well, in 1980s New Zealand there were some unique conditions which meant that games production developed at least partly along its own trajectory.  New ... Continue Reading »

Ocker adventures

This month, we are discussing local scenes and themes, on both sides of the Tasman.  To kick things off, I figured the New Zealanders might enjoy a laugh at some cringeworthy Australiana... Anyone for "Bunyip Adventure"?  What about the virtual Mick Dundee in "Aussie Games"? ... Continue Reading »

Run 5 Magazine – How SSG joined the Dragon, White Dwarf and the General

Do you remember “Dragon” magazine and “White Dwarf”? Maybe you were hardcore enough to have read Avalon Hill’s “The General”! Do you remember SSG’s magazine “Run5” In the 1980s when gamers wanted to get more out their games, to learn strategies to take their gaming to the next level or play new ... Continue Reading »

Australian Pioneers: Shocking Tape Loading Stories…

Remember the maddening process of waiting thirty-minutes for a tape to load? Behold the most amazing Australian Pavloada! Not a delicious meringue dessert but a tape fast loader dramatically reducing waiting times for your fave games. The Pavloada was created by for Beam Software by ... Continue Reading »

Australian Pioneers: John De Margheriti on Learning from the US

Micro Forté co-founder and CEO John De Margheriti reflects on how, when Micro Forté  was established in the mids 1980s, despite the US ‘crash’, they looked to America. They didn’t know of any other Australian games companies. They knew nothing of the UK games ... Continue Reading »

Australian Pioneers: Did Britain’s bad weather breed a culture of tinkerers and crackers?: Alfred Milgrom on the UK vs the US Market

Melbourne House and Beam Software Director Alfred Milgrom sees “Vast cultural, societal difference in what consumers wanted from electronic games” between the mass markets for games in American and UK in the early days. “American consumers were happy to ... Continue Reading »

Home Coders – Matthew Hall 15 Commodore 64 Games Rescued from Decaying Cassettes

Thanks to the wonders of Aldi stores' increasingly strange bargains, Matthew Hall of KlickTock has just saved a bundle of his early games for the Commodore 64 from impending demise. Popping into Aldi for some supplies there amongst the groceries was Aldi's latest oddity to compete with the occasional wetsuit or ... Continue Reading »

Australian Pioneers: SSG’s American Strategy

Sydney based games designers and publishers Strategic Studies Group (SSG) founded their Australian studio in 1982. Whilst the games of Melbourne House and Beam Software’s could be understood to belong to the evolution of games from arcade to home computing -- with the “Horace” ... Continue Reading »

Australian Pioneers – Melbourne House and the Tyranny of Distance

The ‘tyranny of distance’ was the famous phrase historian Geoffrey Blainey used in 1966 to describe his thesis on how Australia’s geographical remoteness shaped the nation’s history, with the country generally viewed as a British colonial outpost on the far side of the planet. Whilst such a legacy would seem ... Continue Reading »

Australian Pioneers

For the next few weeks the The Popular Memory Archive will focus on Australia’s Videogame Pioneers, looking at the stories of some of Australia’s earliest game designers. How they got started, how they went about inventing an industry and making the games they created. Please contribute your memories.

Welcome to the Popular Memory Archive blog!

Welcome to our blog.  A part of the Play It Again project, this is a space where we'll be hosting monthly blog discussions on themes related to 1980s games, game history in Australia and New Zealand, preservation, cultural heritage, intellectual property, and more besides.  Guests bloggers will be drawn from ... Continue Reading »

Videogames History Museum @Digital Nationz

Collector of New Zealand digital games, Michael Davidson, has been busy packing up his collection for the exhibition he is helping to mount at Digital Nationz this weekend in Auckland. Alongside the chance to play the next generation consoles from Sony and Microsoft, ... Continue Reading »

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