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Remember When Video Games Came In Big Boxes?

I most certainly do as I'm collecting them. For sharing my games with other (retro) gaming heads, I decided to turn my collection of over 775 boxes* into shiny 3D

The tech behind the 3D boxes is simple: first up the game boxes sides are scanned. Then, those textures are attached to a 3D mesh based upon the boxes' actual dimensions. All boxes can be zoomed and rotated and some can even be looked at from top and bottom angles. Also, double click/tap a box with a gatefold cover to pop it up.

The site is a one-man show and done in my spare time. I do try to keep it as up-to-date as possible but sometimes, well, life happens and the time from picking up a new box until it's available in 3D with all bells and whistles does vary quite a bit. I'm trying to keep you all posted via the blog though.

Anyway, I better stop babbeling and let you jump right in. Use the search in the top right corner or start with one of the games listed below.

Enjoy,
Benjamin

* Well, lots of boxes and some not so boxy ones

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Latest Blog posts

2024-02-16 Big Box Pixels With pixeling for the C64 being my new love and of course still loving my big boxes too, it only was a matter of days before those two worlds crashed into each other and formed something exiting! Below, a work-in-progress screenshot of my BigBoxPixel. It's a HiRes picture (with expanded borders) showing the first 21 games turned from 2k textures into tiny 8x40 spines using only a hint of color due to the C64's restrictions. But still, I'm sure most of the boxes are recognizable, so enjoy figuring out what's on this 8-bit shelf
2024-02-14 Pixel Pushing Pixel Pushing OK, I've got somewhat carried away this week by joining the C64GFX.Com CharSet Logo Compo 2024 and working on my first CharSet pix. There wasn't really any concept to follow but I stumbled along while learning the graphic modes as well as the editors (Petmate and PETSCII Editor) I used. For the PETSCII pic, I've fooled around with tiles, as in ceramic tiles and one thing lead to another an a 3DBBG (short for my social media handle @3DBigBoxGames) thingy appeared waiting to be tweaked over and over again: Next, I tried my luck with HiRes mode, which means, pixels and color are separated and thus easier to handle. Well, it got all out of hand and I've ended up with the whole screen filled and (almost) all the available colors used in a bright fever dream color splash. One of the problems that arised is, that there's no logo there and reworking the charset to have once again 3DBBG or something there felt too tedious. I've somewhat fixed it by making this the core and just turned it into "Oh, no! What logo?" and called it quits The competition runs from Feb 7th to April 30th, so there's still time to join in. Voting will be May 1st to May 14th. Make sure to check out all the submitted entries: C64GFX.com (incl. non-demo-scener submissions like mine) CSDb.dk
2024-02-08 RetroGamer Magazine: Legay of System Shock With Nightdive Studios working on their System Shock remaster, RetroGamer magazine sat down with them and Jon Chey, the lead programmer of Shock 2, for discussing the series' beginnings, how it could be updated and what's up with Shock 3. It's a lenghy 8-page article well worth the read. This article appeared in Load 249.
2024-02-08 Retro Reading The other day, a I received a mail from RetroGamer Magazine telling me, that I can now access the complete backlog of the mag thanks to my ongoing subscription. Your new benefits * You've unlocked 253 digital back issues, worth a massive €1,087 * Free unlimited access - all back issues are available now * Read all the new (and old) issues on-the-go Don't forget, you can access your digital subscription via the App Store on iOS devices, or via Pocketmags if you want to read on Android or desktop. Full of excitement, I've opened my PocketMag app and, well, there's now 90+ issues to read through, but that's far from the whole archive. Re-reading the mail again, I've found the following footnote: PocketMags library may not have access to the full archive of digital back issues. Bummer. I don't own any Apple devices. Anyway, I've been a reader since day one of the relaunch back in 2005 and had a subscription till 2013 (which I re-newed in 2022), which means, I do have a huge pile of printed issues that are now — more or less — old enough to be considered retro themselves. That said, I've started digging through them and I'm gonna link all the relevant articles in short blog posts and add them to the related 3D boxes. But first, here's the first ever issue that I've gotten my hands on. I do remember the day very well; I was in Wels at the train station waiting to return to Vienna and had some time to kill and usually that meant hitting the Kiosk, browsing through computer magazines and there it was: Rubber Love. A high-quality, oversized magazine looking for my attention and I couldn't believe at first what I was seeing. A whole magazine dedicated to old computers? Ignoring the price tag, it was mine and the 2h journey went by in the blink of an eye with me reading through the mag. The articles were fantastic and to top it off, there were pixelated screenshots spread out over two whole pages. It was magical! From then on, I've not only grabbed the latest issue at the train station each month but also tracked down the first 18 issues via eBay to complete my collection and sometime later — after almost missing one issue — I've gifted myself a subscription and was happy for the following years.
2024-02-05 Things you have to do when playing IK I really do like to revisit International Karate (and its sequel) a lot; it's a perfect game. The music is fantastic and the sound effects crunchy — yeah, yeah, Exploding Fist fans, I hear you disagreeing — and the controls, again, perfect. Throwing punches and kicks is simply magical but there's more. The game's timing is pure bliss too. After sending your opponent to the ground, there's a couple of seconds that you can hold your pose for extra awesomeness and just get back to your stance right when the points are announced. Yes, show that you're 100% in control over every single muscle in your body. Show the audience that this punch or kick was not luck button mashing but the exact strike that you've envisioned and then executed flawlessly. Ahh,... the satisfaction. Another thing I'm always aiming for is a perfect first round. Sommersault + flykick, sommersault + flykick, sommersault + flykick. Jep, three times with one half-point and two full points. All that with 27 seconds left.
2024-02-02 Latest Pickups: Indy Jones and more A couple of games arrived today, all small boxes but definitely pretty ones. Drakensang (Gold Edition) The Witcher 2 Indiana Jones and the Emperor's Tomb Darksiders (Hellbook Edition) Will hopefully be scanned and uploaded soon.
2024-02-01 Look at all these variants Gameroom Ramblings shared a post where he wondered why some games have different box art and well, that's a good question. My latest purchase [...] made me wonder once again why publishers in different regions decided that different box art was needed. Me, I have of course also come across variants too. We're not talking about small layout shifts here, those are often necessary due to translated names and tag lines as well as to make space for huge USK labels, but completely different art. Here's a couple of examples from my shelf: For some, I do like the European variant a bit more (e.g. MDK), while others, I definitely prefer the US take (e.g. Last Ninja 2) but all in all, they all have their own reasons to exist. Looking at my sample, one major reason might just come down to having different publishers with a different line-up of games to cater and — like in the case of Epxy — their own style to follow and also marketing trying to match whatever's cool with the kids right now in their part of the world. As a collector, I am, like GR, happy knowing that there's more than just the one box art out there, waiting to be stumbled upon and put onto my shelf.
2024-02-01 Retrogamer Magazine: Making of Diablo II The latest issue — load 255 that is — of Retrogamer mag just dropped and guess what, there's a six page Making of article in it about Diablo II.
2024-01-31 Hi-res Hell Blizzard added the original Diablo to battle.net the other day and with this, why not take a quick look at how to run the game. Sure, it's been on gog.com for quite a while now, and sure, this version does support higher resolutions that the game would be rendered in, but how about making good use of those additional pixels? In comes DevilutionX, a open source port of the game, that "strives to make it simple to run the game while providing engine improvements, bugfixes, and some optional quality of life features". Well, yes please!
2024-01-29 All the colors I was surprised how dark my Turbo OutRun screenshots turned out to be. Settings on my micro64 were tweaked to mimic how I remember what C64 games looked like on our ol' portable color TV back in the day but never really checked the overall parameters and thus went to far. So I've sat down and tweaked it some more to get a little bit more pop out of it without overdoing it. All in all, it's a now brighter and a bit more saturated. I've also remembered an old website where the "original" palette was calculated and a quick google brought up Calculating the color palette of the VIC II , where Pepto did all the math and low and behold, my tweaked micro64 with all the PAL emulation bells and whistles comes pretty close to those colors now too.
2024-01-25 Cruisin' in the Arcade After yesterday's short session with Turbo OutRun, I've sat down and played the Arcade version today. It's astonishing how many of the effects as well as the overall mood of the game could be ported over to the humble C64. The colorful changes of scenery has also been ported flawlessly with the blazing red sun of Indianapolis IMHO even better looking in 8big Here's some screenshots
2024-01-24 Crusin' Ever since I've played the original OutRun on C64, I've been a fan. Sure, it's not the best version out there to play OutRun, but it was all we had. Then, Turbo OutRun came along with fancier music, fancier graphics and fancier tech overall and it was a blast. While the controls aren't as tight as in the origial, it had so much more to offer that we didn't really care. With a copy of the game now proudly sitting on my shelf, I booted up the game once again and I have to say, it's still a lot of fun. Here's some screenshots: Yay, sampled music \o/ First stage with gfx putting the original to shame Minimal changes, maximal effect. Love it! Time for tuning our car Loosing the girl while the band jams. Well, didn't get that far, did I?
2024-01-19 Digging... My copy of Fast Tracks had the "Bobby Rahal Challenge" disk included. I did a quick online reseach and haven't really found anything about it, which means, this expansion is not available yet on the net. That said, I've asked over at Twitter if someone knew anything about it. I've also tagged Frank Gasking from Games that Weren't who does know a lot about preserving old disks, hoping, he could point me to somebody able to help me get the disk online. His quick reseach brought up a post by Quapil, a fellow Austrian game collector, who shared his Fast Track boxes over at retrocollector.org. Looks like his copy has all the original paper work, so while there's of course no "Bobby Rahal Challenge" disk, there is the order form needed to grab a copy of it, which would us provide with some more details about the disk. I've mailed Quapil and asked, if he would be so kind scanning the mail oder form for us and about an hour later, I had a readable version of the form. The disk could be ordered for USD 4.95 but only from the US or Canada; also the offer ended on December 31, 1986. With the disk having not yet found its way onto the net, my take is that there weren't really that many gamers willing to spend a couple of bucks which is understandable, especially as creating your own courses was the main selling point of Fast Tracks. Anyway, my copy of the disk will soon be shipped to Frank for creating a .d64 file and finally preserving those tracks. To be continued...
2024-01-15 What the Puck? I've grabbed two big boxes from Retro365's shelf. One is the first game by Bethsoft that I've ever played, long before their Terminator or Elder Scrolls games found their way onto my 750MB HDD and my Daggerfall obsession began.I only had a budget jewel case CD version of Wayne Gretzky Hockey 2 that I can't find a trace off on the net but I'm pretty sure it was a German release. Anyway, I'm happy to have it now on my shelf. The second box that I've grabbed is a copy of Hockey League Simulator (missed the PC version, but a version for Amiga was available), a sim that's what it looks like is building upon the sports game.
2024-01-11 Latest Pickups: RoboCop & Magic Bytes A small packaged showed up today with the following two boxes in it: RoboCop (C64) Kind of Magic 2 (C64, Compilation) Just couldn't say no RoboCop and the same is true for the second of the three Kind of Magic collections by Magic Bytes; always loved the companies magical logo. I think I've only played their "Mini Golf" game and Second World though.

Statistics

There's 775 games available in 3D on this site that have been viewed 157,934 times since the site's new version went live on Nov 24, 2023. That's 67 games per hour. Piling those 775 games all up would result in a stack 27.47m high and with a volume of 1.21m³. When adding up all sides there's 85.59m² of boxart, not counting the 60 gatefolds available to explore on this site. Further, there's a total of 725 photos showing the games' contents.

I'm not done yet getting all the data in regard of media included, but with 641 boxes indexed, there's a total of 1,253 media. Here's a breakdown

515 × CD-ROM
370 × Floppy (3.5")
199 × Floppy (5.25")
83 × Tape
56 × DVD
15 × Audio CD
6 × Cartridge
4 × Flash Drive
3 × Download
1 × Vinyl
1 × VHS

In regard of fidelity, 391 out of the 775 boxes have all six sides scanned. I'm working on adding more but this comes down to finding the time needed for scanning and editing. There's also 60 boxes with a gatefold cover that can be flipped open by double-clicking the box. Also, 75 boxes do have specific textures for their reflectiveness. It's a subtl effect but IMHO worth all the work, just look at Morrowind or Beneath a Steel Sky.

Space Harrier

(Sealed)

Developed by AM R&D Dept. #2US box published in 1986 by SEGA Enterprises Ltd. on C64
Scroll for more details

About the box

167 × 228 × 28 mm

Data

Added 2017-10-03Viewed 45 times

Links

Get more details at
Mobygames or Wikipedia

Sorry, I don't have a photo of the content to share

Latest Pickups: Accolade, Sega and more

posted 2017-10-20 21:50:20

Right after finally getting my hands on IK+ for C64 I've stumbled upon a sealed(!) copy of the US version dubbed Chop 'n Drop. Further, the seller offered a couple of other classics for C64, including Grand Prix Circuit, another game that I've been after for ages. Best thing: although four out of the six games are still sealed(!) I didn't really spent a fortune.

Anyway, here's what I've got:

  • TKO
  • Fast Break
  • Grand Prix Circuit (sealed)
  • Space Harrier (sealed)
  • Chop 'n Drop (sealed)
  • Circus Games (sealed)

Big Box Pixels

posted 2024-02-16 22:33:00

With pixeling for the C64 being my new love and of course still loving my big boxes too, it only was a matter of days before those two worlds crashed into each other and formed something exiting! Below, a work-in-progress screenshot of my BigBoxPixel.

It's a HiRes picture (with expanded borders) showing the first 21 games turned from 2k textures into tiny 8x40 spines using only a hint of color due to the C64's restrictions. But still, I'm sure most of the boxes are recognizable, so enjoy figuring out what's on this 8-bit shelf

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Pixel Pushing

posted 2024-02-14 21:29:00
Pixel Pushing

OK, I've got somewhat carried away this week by joining the C64GFX.Com CharSet Logo Compo 2024 and working on my first CharSet pix. There wasn't really any concept to follow but I stumbled along while learning the graphic modes as well as the editors (Petmate and PETSCII Editor) I used.

For the PETSCII pic, I've fooled around with tiles, as in ceramic tiles and one thing lead to another an a 3DBBG (short for my social media handle @3DBigBoxGames) thingy appeared waiting to be tweaked over and over again:

Next, I tried my luck with HiRes mode, which means, pixels and color are separated and thus easier to handle. Well, it got all out of hand and I've ended up with the whole screen filled and (almost) all the available colors used in a bright fever dream color splash. One of the problems that arised is, that there's no logo there and reworking the charset to have once again 3DBBG or something there felt too tedious. I've somewhat fixed it by making this the core and just turned it into "Oh, no! What logo?" and called it quits

The competition runs from Feb 7th to April 30th, so there's still time to join in. Voting will be May 1st to May 14th.

Make sure to check out all the submitted entries:

RetroGamer Magazine: Legay of System Shock

posted 2024-02-08 21:56:01

With Nightdive Studios working on their System Shock remaster, RetroGamer magazine sat down with them and Jon Chey, the lead programmer of Shock 2, for discussing the series' beginnings, how it could be updated and what's up with Shock 3. It's a lenghy 8-page article well worth the read.

This article appeared in Load 249.

Retro Reading

posted 2024-02-08 21:24:00

The other day, a I received a mail from RetroGamer Magazine telling me, that I can now access the complete backlog of the mag thanks to my ongoing subscription.

Your new benefits

* You've unlocked 253 digital back issues, worth a massive €1,087
* Free unlimited access - all back issues are available now
* Read all the new (and old) issues on-the-go

Don't forget, you can access your digital subscription via the App Store on iOS devices, or via Pocketmags if you want to read on Android or desktop.

Full of excitement, I've opened my PocketMag app and, well, there's now 90+ issues to read through, but that's far from the whole archive. Re-reading the mail again, I've found the following footnote:

PocketMags library may not have access to the full archive of digital back issues.

Bummer. I don't own any Apple devices.

Anyway, I've been a reader since day one of the relaunch back in 2005 and had a subscription till 2013 (which I re-newed in 2022), which means, I do have a huge pile of printed issues that are now — more or less — old enough to be considered retro themselves. That said, I've started digging through them and I'm gonna link all the relevant articles in short blog posts and add them to the related 3D boxes.

But first, here's the first ever issue that I've gotten my hands on. I do remember the day very well; I was in Wels at the train station waiting to return to Vienna and had some time to kill and usually that meant hitting the Kiosk, browsing through computer magazines and there it was: Rubber Love. A high-quality, oversized magazine looking for my attention and I couldn't believe at first what I was seeing. A whole magazine dedicated to old computers? Ignoring the price tag, it was mine and the 2h journey went by in the blink of an eye with me reading through the mag. The articles were fantastic and to top it off, there were pixelated screenshots spread out over two whole pages. It was magical!

From then on, I've not only grabbed the latest issue at the train station each month but also tracked down the first 18 issues via eBay to complete my collection and sometime later — after almost missing one issue — I've gifted myself a subscription and was happy for the following years.

Things you have to do when playing IK

posted 2024-02-05 22:22:22

I really do like to revisit International Karate (and its sequel) a lot; it's a perfect game. The music is fantastic and the sound effects crunchy — yeah, yeah, Exploding Fist fans, I hear you disagreeing — and the controls, again, perfect.

Throwing punches and kicks is simply magical but there's more.


The game's timing is pure bliss too. After sending your opponent to the ground, there's a couple of seconds that you can hold your pose for extra awesomeness and just get back to your stance right when the points are announced. Yes, show that you're 100% in control over every single muscle in your body. Show the audience that this punch or kick was not luck button mashing but the exact strike that you've envisioned and then executed flawlessly. Ahh,... the satisfaction.


Another thing I'm always aiming for is a perfect first round. Sommersault + flykick, sommersault + flykick, sommersault + flykick. Jep, three times with one half-point and two full points. All that with 27 seconds left.

Latest Pickups: Indy Jones and more

posted 2024-02-02 16:36:00

A couple of games arrived today, all small boxes but definitely pretty ones.

  • Drakensang (Gold Edition)
  • The Witcher 2
  • Indiana Jones and the Emperor's Tomb
  • Darksiders (Hellbook Edition)

Will hopefully be scanned and uploaded soon.

Look at all these variants

posted 2024-02-01 21:37:00

Gameroom Ramblings shared a post where he wondered why some games have different box art and well, that's a good question.

My latest purchase [...] made me wonder once again why publishers in different regions decided that different box art was needed.


Me, I have of course also come across variants too. We're not talking about small layout shifts here, those are often necessary due to translated names and tag lines as well as to make space for huge USK labels, but completely different art. Here's a couple of examples from my shelf:


For some, I do like the European variant a bit more (e.g. MDK), while others, I definitely prefer the US take (e.g. Last Ninja 2) but all in all, they all have their own reasons to exist. Looking at my sample, one major reason might just come down to having different publishers with a different line-up of games to cater and — like in the case of Epxy — their own style to follow and also marketing trying to match whatever's cool with the kids right now in their part of the world.

As a collector, I am, like GR, happy knowing that there's more than just the one box art out there, waiting to be stumbled upon and put onto my shelf.

Retrogamer Magazine: Making of Diablo II

posted 2024-02-01 20:06:00

The latest issue — load 255 that is — of Retrogamer mag just dropped and guess what, there's a six page Making of article in it about Diablo II.

Hi-res Hell

posted 2024-01-31 21:01:00

Blizzard added the original Diablo to battle.net the other day and with this, why not take a quick look at how to run the game.

Sure, it's been on gog.com for quite a while now, and sure, this version does support higher resolutions that the game would be rendered in, but how about making good use of those additional pixels?

In comes DevilutionX, a open source port of the game, that "strives to make it simple to run the game while providing engine improvements, bugfixes, and some optional quality of life features". Well, yes please!

All the colors

posted 2024-01-29 21:07:00

I was surprised how dark my Turbo OutRun screenshots turned out to be. Settings on my micro64 were tweaked to mimic how I remember what C64 games looked like on our ol' portable color TV back in the day but never really checked the overall parameters and thus went to far. So I've sat down and tweaked it some more to get a little bit more pop out of it without overdoing it.

All in all, it's a now brighter and a bit more saturated.

I've also remembered an old website where the "original" palette was calculated and a quick google brought up Calculating the color palette of the VIC II , where Pepto did all the math and low and behold, my tweaked micro64 with all the PAL emulation bells and whistles comes pretty close to those colors now too.

Cruisin' in the Arcade

posted 2024-01-25 00:00:00

After yesterday's short session with Turbo OutRun, I've sat down and played the Arcade version today. It's astonishing how many of the effects as well as the overall mood of the game could be ported over to the humble C64.

The colorful changes of scenery has also been ported flawlessly with the blazing red sun of Indianapolis IMHO even better looking in 8big

Here's some screenshots

Crusin'

posted 2024-01-24 00:00:00

Ever since I've played the original OutRun on C64, I've been a fan. Sure, it's not the best version out there to play OutRun, but it was all we had. Then, Turbo OutRun came along with fancier music, fancier graphics and fancier tech overall and it was a blast. While the controls aren't as tight as in the origial, it had so much more to offer that we didn't really care.

With a copy of the game now proudly sitting on my shelf, I booted up the game once again and I have to say, it's still a lot of fun.

Here's some screenshots:

Yay, sampled music \o/

First stage with gfx putting the original to shame

Minimal changes, maximal effect. Love it!

Time for tuning our car

Loosing the girl while the band jams.

Well, didn't get that far, did I?

Digging...

posted 2024-01-19 23:18:00

My copy of Fast Tracks had the "Bobby Rahal Challenge" disk included. I did a quick online reseach and haven't really found anything about it, which means, this expansion is not available yet on the net. That said, I've asked over at Twitter if someone knew anything about it. I've also tagged Frank Gasking from Games that Weren't who does know a lot about preserving old disks, hoping, he could point me to somebody able to help me get the disk online.

His quick reseach brought up a post by Quapil, a fellow Austrian game collector, who shared his Fast Track boxes over at retrocollector.org. Looks like his copy has all the original paper work, so while there's of course no "Bobby Rahal Challenge" disk, there is the order form needed to grab a copy of it, which would us provide with some more details about the disk. I've mailed Quapil and asked, if he would be so kind scanning the mail oder form for us and about an hour later, I had a readable version of the form. The disk could be ordered for USD 4.95 but only from the US or Canada; also the offer ended on December 31, 1986. With the disk having not yet found its way onto the net, my take is that there weren't really that many gamers willing to spend a couple of bucks which is understandable, especially as creating your own courses was the main selling point of Fast Tracks.

Anyway, my copy of the disk will soon be shipped to Frank for creating a .d64 file and finally preserving those tracks.

To be continued...

What the Puck?

posted 2024-01-15 22:08:00

I've grabbed two big boxes from Retro365's shelf. One is the first game by Bethsoft that I've ever played, long before their Terminator or Elder Scrolls games found their way onto my 750MB HDD and my Daggerfall obsession began.

I only had a budget jewel case CD version of Wayne Gretzky Hockey 2 that I can't find a trace off on the net but I'm pretty sure it was a German release. Anyway, I'm happy to have it now on my shelf.

The second box that I've grabbed is a copy of Hockey League Simulator (missed the PC version, but a version for Amiga was available), a sim that's what it looks like is building upon the sports game.

Latest Pickups: RoboCop & Magic Bytes

posted 2024-01-11 20:55:00

A small packaged showed up today with the following two boxes in it:

  • RoboCop (C64)
  • Kind of Magic 2 (C64, Compilation)

Just couldn't say no RoboCop and the same is true for the second of the three Kind of Magic collections by Magic Bytes; always loved the companies magical logo. I think I've only played their "Mini Golf" game and Second World though.

Latest Pickups: Deus Ex, Alan Wake and more

posted 2024-01-08 16:50:00

The other two of the three packages that arrived today include a mix of old and not so old games. Let's take a peek

The bigger package was filled with small boxes:

  • Deus Ex: Human Revolution (Limited Edition)
  • Alan Wake (Collector's Edition)
  • Black Mirror II: Reigning Evil
  • Black Mirror III: Final Fear

The smaller box had the following two games inside:

  • Loopz (Amiga, still sealed)
  • Pictionary (C64)

Latest Pickups: SIGIL II

posted 2024-01-08 16:45:00

Three packages arrived today, and looking at the boxes, we all know what's gonna be in the bottom one: John Romero's SIGIL II (get it at romero.com

SIGIL II was released back in December 10,2023 on Doom's 30ths anniversary in digital form with physical boxes soon to follow. The MegaWAD is also available via all the DOOM (and DOOM II) versions sold by id Software for computers and consoles via their "Add-On" feature for free.

What's in the other two boxes? Find out here

Klack, Klack, Klack,...

posted 2024-01-06 17:18:00

Some more Klax

Latest Pickups: Turbo Out Run, Chase HQ and S.T.U.N. Runner

posted 2024-01-06 11:54:00

Another box of Commodore 64 games arrived today:

  • Turbo Out Run
  • Chase HQ
  • S.T.U.N. Runner

I got them via eBay from Bratislava. Chatted with the seller who turned out to be a fellow collector selling some — too few, according to his wife :-) — of his games. He also surprised me by adding a bonus tape, Mastertronic's Quatro Sports, which collects four games that we not only had as single cassetts back in the day but also played over and over again (Grand Prix Simulator being one of them).

It is the Nineties...

posted 2024-01-04 22:07:00

Oh, KLAX. I love this game and you know what's even better than that? My wife loves it even more!

Me, I've played KLAX since it was ported to the C64 but I've only introduced my wife to it in the early 2000s after downloading a copy of MAME for the first time. I'm pretty sure KLAX was — after Star Wars and R-Type of course — one of the first ROMs that I've downloaded from the net and it was glorious. The C64 port is fun let's be honest, it can't keep up with the arcade version in regard of controls.

In 2023, I've spent a couple of bucks on a boxed copy of the C64 port AND I've spend some more bucks on two Arcade1UP mashines: a Star Wars cab (for me) and a Midway Legacy Mortal Kombat 30th Anniversary mashine for the both of us, and yes, you've guessed it, KLAX is one of the 14 games on it.

Anyway, I've just sat down giving both versions another go and yeah, both still fun and while the port is impressive, I guess I'll stick to the Arcade one for now.

Hi, Benjamin here

I'm a nerd living in Vienna, Austria and host of this site. You can get in touch with me via wimmer.benjamin@gmail.com and over at Twitter @3DBigBoxGames.

It all started back in 1988 on the humble C64 before moving on to DOS/Win with GameBoy, SNES, and N64 on the side, so to speak. I'm not only a gameer but also a collector, although I didn't set out to be one; I just kept all the games that I've bought over the years. Well, until 2005ish at least. That's when big box games got replaced with first smaller boxes and then later DVD cases until Steam and gog.com came around and we all went digital on PC.

However, back in 2012, I stumbled upon a new release for Commodore 64 called C64anabalt, and guess what?

It's a physical release! In a box! A (very) small one, but a box!

With finding C64anabalt, my love for boxed games was reigneted, and I began to track down all the games I had only owned as budget release, as well as all the classics that I had always wanted to play but never had the chance to. Classifieds and eBay offered almost everything for a few bucks, and soon enough, I had more games than I could keep track of.

To share my growing collection online with other retro gamers, I started taking photos of my games. Although it worked, managing multiple photo albums and a private spreadsheet with all the data became quite cumbersome and far from ideal. I realized that combining both elements was the way to go — building upon my spreadsheet and creating a website that would showcase a virtual copy of my NerdWall™.

In 2015, I launched BigBoxCollection.com. Here, I host 3D models textured with high-resolution scans of my boxes, allowing visitors to click through and explore. The site has changed over the years staring with a more dark and gritty look before restarting with a clean one in May 2016. In 2023, I thought I'd add a dark theme but instead of just tweaking the CSS files, I've reimplemented the whole site, reworked mouse & touch controls and added features that I've always wanted to have but never found the time for like panning the 3D boxes as well as visualizing gatefolds.

Sry, no such game found :-(
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