Throwbacks- Video Game Style

by tessa8m on May 5, 2011

in Awesome Bloggers,Fitness,Uncategorized

Before I start my post I wanted to mention a few awesome bloggers! Jenny at Fitness, Health, and Food is having a giveaway with some of her favorite products! Go check it out and look around the blog while you are there- it’s chalk full of incredible recipes, kick-butt workouts and she’s simply great :) Also, Clare from Fitting It All In, is giveaway Love Grown Granola, yum! Leave a comment on her site to enter, plus she’s a fun lady too!

Throwbacks, or sudden reminders of the past, can pop up anytime of the day. Anything can prompt these memories and usually they are positive, causing you to reflect with a smile and laugh.

Past memories were triggered at quite a random time today, during my spin class this morning! I am still trying to figure out how to deal with my dead legs, so for now I am taking a few more days off of running and will cross-train on the elliptical and bike. Hence why spinning was part of the schedule for today.

I was in the class and a particular song came on that I had not heard in quite some time and immediately brought me to think of this:

Yes, I used to play DDR religiously. It is also safe to say I was one of those people you used to see at random arcades furiously stomping away on a plastic mat while arrows quickly ascended on the screen. The song that came on during spinning was a particular favorite of mine and I imagined myself “playing” the game, aka dancing, to this techno, heavy beat song.

In case you do not know what DDR is- the game is played on a dance pad with four arrow panels: left, down, up, and right. These panels are pressed using the player’s feet, in response to arrows that appear on the screen in front of the player. The arrows are synchronized to the general rhythm or beat of a chosen song, and success is dependent on the player’s ability to time and position his or her steps accordingly.

Playing DDR on YouTube

It was created in Japan and quickly became popular in the United States, showing up everywhere in arcades and eventually gaining enough popularity to be formatted into a game you could play at home. Playstation was the first gaming base that DDR could work on and you better believe I bought the game and two mats as soon as it was available for the private home. I was completely terrible at first, initially believing it was easy- just step on the appropriate arrows when they hit the display across the top of the screen, done and done! HA, how silly of me.

Like anything really, this game required practice for you to improve. I realized that very quickly when I failed the first song I ever played in about 6 seconds. However, I quickly became obsessed with playing (what me, obsessive?!) and dedicated hours everyday to improve. I would sometimes leave my room a sweaty, tired mess because this game is hard. You could also find me at a random arcade with a DDR machine set up, using countless quarters while trying to improve my game :) I really is a legitimate workout, which is one of the reasons it gained so much popularity.

Adults were starting to play Dance Dance Revolution as a way to lose weight, and it definitely worked for some people! Although DDR has lost much of its fame, other products have come out with similar idea- get you movin! The WII is an example and there are tons of other similar video games for PlayStation, XBox, and other gaming systems. Of course it was not my intention to workout as a kid, I played the game because it was supa fun and challenged me each time I played. I have recorded videos of myself playing when I was probably 12, I am going to try resurfacing those and posting them for your enjoyment :)

Video and computer games have always been a very important part of my family, starting with the old-school version of Super Nintendo, followed by Sega, Nintendo 64 (remember Mario Kart?!) PlayStation 1, 2 and 3 and XBox.

Sonic the Hedgehog…good times :)

I can hear Mario’s voice now (in Italian accent), “Welcome to Mario Kart, Select your player!” I always chose Bowser!

Although my brothers and I did not spend our childhoods sitting in front of a tv screen, the times we were able to play were glorious! Having two older brothers certainly influenced me to become interested in video games and I can remember watching them for hours, completely entertained and awed. I would also play and enjoyed not only the games they liked, but tons of others as well!

You had better believe I played Barbie video games!

Phew and let’s not forget about computer games!

Ultimate favorite:

OH wait, I still play this game every time I go home! I have now upgraded to the Sims 3 (love) but my laptop cannot handle the intense graphics so I wait to play on our desktop computer at my house…aka I am flippen exited to play as soon as I am home from school!

This game also hold particular memories:

I don’t know if you can see it, but in the bottom left-hand corn it says “Windows 95.” Umm yeah, it’s that old. However, when I first bought this, our computer was so ancient that it could not even handle this game, and I was unable to install it. I was around 9 at the time and cried for far too long about the Barbie game I so longed to play. We did eventually purchase a new computer (no, not so I could play this haha) and I installed it the next day, and Barbie rode on her horse “Duchess” all day long :)

And we can’t forget about this wondrous game!

Roller Coaster Tycoon actually takes a lot of skill :D First you have to make sure you budget your money, hire enough people to run the park, build paths and roads that are easy to follow and so guests don’t get lost, and of course, create rides that your park guests love! This can be harder than you think though and I often made my roller coasters way too intense for those little characters. They would often get sick after the ride and throw up (this occurred quite regularly in the game).

Hmm so it might be safe to say that I was and honestly still am, a video game nerd. I love to watch people play, I obviously love playing myself, I like figuring out strategies to improve my performance and so on! Although my gaming has declined a bit these last few years, I can honestly say I still find myself booting up the old PlayStation when I’m in the mood, and of course I ALWAYS play the Sims!

Is anyone else a huge video game geek like I am, or should I be pretty dang embarrassed right now?! :D

What childhood memories bring a smile to your face?

Any Dance Dance Revolution Fans out there!?

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{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Ruski May 5, 2011 at 5:45 pm

Oh, some RCT sounds pretty sweet. As long as you build water park rides that explode, drown your guests, and remove all the benches so they puke. Good times.


2 tessa8m May 5, 2011 at 7:52 pm

Hehehe the best kinds! And don’t forget the roller coasters you could crash, like the one loop one and you could set the acceleration too fast and they go soaring off the end…. whoops :)


3 Sara May 5, 2011 at 6:05 pm

AHH! Another way we are alike! I love video games….I still play them a lot! A few of my favorites are Pokemon (embarrassing), Kingdom Hearts (LOVE LOVE LOVE those games!), The Sims (of course!), Cooking Mama, and all of the Mario games, of course! I also have fond memories of Animal Crossing and all of the Barbie computer games (the mystery games were awesome!). So cool that you know of Kingdom Hearts…not many people I know do!

And I also played DDR, but I was TERRIBLE. I have no rhythm.


4 tessa8m May 5, 2011 at 7:50 pm

Sara, I honestly think we need to meet! haha
Pokemon is certainly NOT embarrassing! I still have a big binder full of those cards, the holographic ones are of course the first few pages. The day I got a holographic Charizard…oh man, let’s just say it was a good day :)
I have never heard of Cooking Mama, what is that?
Kingdom Hearts= a serious favorite! I didn’t like the second one as much though…I didn’t think it was as difficult and the videos (which I usually enjoy) were way too long! I felt like I was watching a movie at some points. Oh and the worlds weren’t too fun either! You couldn’t explore like in the first one, although changing into a lion when you go to Pride Rock made up for it a bit :D
The first one though….the best! Now get ready, nerd alert coming your way- I beat the game literally 100%. Like I got the Ultima Key by trading with the Moogles, beat every level in the Coliseum, beat every available boss, got up to level 100….
Wow I just admitted a lot lol, I just freakin love that game!


5 Sara May 5, 2011 at 10:02 pm

I sold all my cards!! And I even had a (LOL) holographic Charizard! Sigh.

Cooking Mama is on Nintendo DS and the Wii…basically it’s a bunch of mini games that revolve around cooking dishes – a lot of them are Japanese, but that’s what fun about it! You chop, slice, peel, boil, decorate slews of food items! It’s much more fun than I’m making it sound :)

I felt the same way about KH2! It felt so rehashed, although I liked Pride Rock as well! The first one was SO epic – none of that automatic combo nonsense like in the second one. That’s so cool that you beat the entire game though…I beat the game, but didn’t do any of the extras aside from finding all of the dalmatian puppies :D I remember getting, like, sickly nervous when I had to fight Ansem (those drawn out final boss battles are KILLER!). The story lines for those games are awesome as well. I’ve heard a third one is in development – I’m excited for it, as long as they come up with a way to freshen it up! :D

6 emma green May 5, 2011 at 7:31 pm

Aw man!!! Memories! I loved Mario! Still have a soft spot for him :-)


7 tessa8m May 5, 2011 at 7:51 pm

Of course! The kids I babysit for have a GameCube and we play Mario Kart on it, but it’s just not the same as on the Mario 64 system!


8 Kristi May 5, 2011 at 7:55 pm

I miss my old school Nintendo… I wish I had kept it.


9 tessa8m May 5, 2011 at 9:23 pm

Ughh Same! My brother sold it, but now we realize they are worth quite a lot of money! Plus, they’re obviously great :)


10 Holly May 5, 2011 at 8:16 pm

LOVED barbie riding club! We used to still have it but I don’t know where it is now and I really wish I did haha. And Sims is probably the best game to kill hours playing. I remember sitting down to play and then 3 hours would fly by haha.
Other than those I’m not big in to video games something about hand-eye coordination that I lack. But I do like playing mario cart on the Wii


11 tessa8m May 5, 2011 at 9:22 pm

I’m going to admit something right now…. I played Barbie Riding Club last time I was home! I randomly found it under my bed and pretty much charged downstairs and began playing…oh the fond memories came flooding back :)


12 Christina @ The Athletarian May 5, 2011 at 10:48 pm

Hahaha what a great post! I totally had the original Nintendo and loved Super Mario and Duck Hunt. They were my ultimate fave. And regarding the coconut oil, I found an article where you can read about the benefits and not worry about the fat!


13 tessa8m May 6, 2011 at 8:40 am

Thank you for the article! I am purchasing it next time I’m at the store :)


14 Rach May 6, 2011 at 8:18 am

Haha! This whole post makes me smile! My favorite game was always Mario Bros on Nintendo 64… ah, the good ol’ days. ;) Another favorite (don’t laugh)… Oregon Trail on the computer, haha!

I never did try DDR, but I had friends in college who LOVED it! They would play all the time and get so sweaty from doing it. Such a work out. Good stuff :)
Rach recently posted..Fair Trade led to a Whole Foods Trip


15 tessa8m May 6, 2011 at 6:32 pm

I actually never played Oregon Trail! For some reason I couldn’t get into it and whenever I tried playing, my family would die-off so quickly :( Good times still


16 Amy @ Conquering Self May 6, 2011 at 12:07 pm

Love this post! haha…I was definitely an original Nintendo girl and I can remember the day I beat the game like it was yesterday! We have a Wii now, but rarely play it…I’m thinking I’m going to talk the hubs into a mario kart show down tonight after my baby girl goes to sleep! haha
have a great weekend!
Amy @ Conquering Self recently posted..Spoiled Sweet


17 tessa8m May 6, 2011 at 6:32 pm

Let me know how the showdown goes! I’m crossing my fingers for you to conquer!


18 faith @ lovelyascharged May 6, 2011 at 4:25 pm

This was awesome! Most of my throwbacks are musical, but I totally LOVED the sims and roller coaster tycoon!!!


19 tessa8m May 6, 2011 at 6:31 pm

Did you ever play the other versions of RCT? The second one and third are OKAY but the original was the best :)


20 tessa8m May 7, 2011 at 6:59 pm

You sold the holographic charizard?! How could you, it could be worth something someday ;-) That’s what I was always told… and another reason I kept the TY tags on my Beanie Babies, because of course they were worthless without them!
That games sounds exactly like something I would love!
Another KH?! When is it supposed to be released? The only problem with this is it will be released on PS3 which sadly I do not own :( My brother does though, and he lives about an hour away… a distance I would certainly travel to play this glorious game! But only if it is better than the second of course


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