Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Next Generation, Issue Number 27, March 1997

The March 1997 issue of Next Generation magazine:

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Tuesday, December 4, 2012

‘Vectrex Regeneration’ Review - iOS Gains a New…Old…Platform

Interest in the retro gaming scene has really expanded in the last few years, thanks in no small part to the proliferation of capable mobile devices such as the iPhone and iPad and the App Store behind them. As such, retro-minded iOS gamers have a wide range of games to choose from, such as retro-inspired new releases, retro remakes, as well as the actual games of olde brough forth through faithful emulation. It is in the last arena that, early this year, Rantmedia Games decided to toss its hat, sharing word of their upcoming Vectrex Regeneration, a one-stop-shop for fans of the much vaunted, early ’80s Vectrex console.

We have been following Rantmedia’s progress closely since then, and are pleased to have finally had an opportunity to put their Vectrex emulation / game library through its paces. Vectrex Regeneration [Free], a universal app for the iPad (2 and up) and iPhone (4 and up), is now live in the App Store, and here’s the low-down.

First, some needed history. Released in late 1982 by General Consumer Electric (GCE), the Vectrex is a highly unique game system. Unlike every other console of the time, the Vectrex features an integrated CRT display — but not of the standard, horizontal-scan variety. The Vectrex utilizes a vector monitor, which is similar to an oscilloscope and draws its graphics on the screen in a fashion similar to the display process of a laser light show. It’s the only console from gaming’s past defined by a complete lack of jaggies.

The Vectrex features a wired controller with an analog stick (one of the first ever brought to market) and accepts games on ROM cartridges, though a single, Asteroids-like game called MineStorm is built into the system. Each game title came with a pack-in plastic screen overlay to add cabinet bling and simulate color on the built-in monochrome display. There was even a light pen and an optional 3D imaging peripheral available for the system, the first ever offered for a console.

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Sony Sold 525,000 PS3s Last Week

The week of Thanksgiving marks one of the most important retail milestones for sellers of things. We’ve got a ballpark figure for how many people brought the new Wii U. (Around 400,000.) And Microsoft bragged about all the Xbox 360 units they shifted into people homes, too. (750,000 for those guys.) So, what about Sony? They’re right in the middle.

The consumer electronics giant divulged that they sold more than half a million units of their home console, owed largely to the attractively priced bundles on offer.

As for the Vita, the gaming handheld sold 160,000 units. That’s a lot less than the 275,000 DS units Nintendo said that consumers bought last week. When another company’s least-shiny, most outdated portable outdoes your shiny new one, you might have a problem on your hands, Sony.

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