Published on March 23rd, 2010 | by Bryant Kazmerzak, Contributor
Remember back in the day when the Nintendo 64 and Playstation came out? I do. Back when I was a kid, all I had to play with was my Gameboy. However, my father, sister and I rented out a couple of rooms in a big house outside Chicago at the time, and my old friend Jon, the son of the family that owned the house, had a Super Nintendo with all the amenities. We’re talking Star Fox, Super Mario World, and Turtles In Time! Games that, today, are being remade because they are still awesome. Of course, after trashing Jon’s room when he was away on Spring Break one year, I wasn’t allowed in his room “Forever times-infinity”, but I still managed to get a chance every now and then to play me some Donkey Kong Country.
On Christmas morning of I think it was 1996 Jon unwrapped a Nintendo 64. I think I cried, because it was on my Christmas list, and not his. But, Jon being the cool kid he was, would let me play Mario 64 and WWF Warzone with him. To this day, some of the fondest memories I have of any console are of me and my buddy Jon sitting down and playing games like Mission: Impossible, San Francisco Rush, Goldeneye, WCW Vs. NWO, and WWF Warzone, in that picture perfect suburban neighborhood in Rolling Meadows, Illinois. At the time, it was perfection, pure and simple. Drinking a cold 711 Slurpee, eating Gobstoppers and chips, and gaming until our little thumbs gave out, only stopping for lunch and dinner. That was how we spent our summers, and God Damn do I miss it. Protip for all you parents out there: When they’re old enough, allow your children the opportunity to indulge in such behavior; They will thank you later.
By the way: Thank you, Dad, for letting me be the geeky kid, instead of trying to push sports or Boy Scouts on me. Not that there’s anything wrong with Scouts, I joined when I moved to Washington with my Mom, but still.
However, no matter how awesome it was to have an N64 in the house, I still felt that nagging, ever-present green envy monster when he brought home a new rental from the Jackpot Video next to the Dominic’s. I wanted my own! He never got games that interested me, always getting hockey and football games, which I always found boring. I still played them, but for the love of God, holy shit.
And then, as if by some divine miracle, my Mom, whom I hadn’t seen in 2 years, sent some presents for my birthday and Christmas in 1997 or 1998 (I cant remember which). In it there were Legos, action figures, Barbies for my sister, a Playstation game, clothes, and… WAIT. A Playstation game???! I noticed, at the bottom of the gigantic packing-peanut filled box, one more present, still untouched. I remember to this day the feeling of longing for that present. Even though it was merely a foot away from my clammy, eager hands, it still felt like it was on the surface of the moon. As I grasped the red and green paper-wrapped gift in hand, I could feel the heft of it all, smell the aroma of brand new electronics, and imagine the fun times to be had later. Unwrapping it, I took my dear, sweet, unholy time. Looking back, you’d think it was a bomb, and I was Bruce Willis. While most kids upon receiving such an epic present would tear the paper, the box, and the time-space continuum asunder in a state of pure unadulterated excitement, I kept my cool; I wanted to savor the moment, the sweet rapture that made my loins quiver (Yay puberty!) with anticipation.
It was a Playstation. It was beautiful. Moreover, it was mine.
From that point on, I’d wake up an hour before getting ready for school, stay up later (Which was verboten), and veg out on the weekends, just so I could squeeze out a few more minutes of game time. It might be important to note that the only game I got for the Playstation when I received it on Christmas was a gem known as JetMoto 3, which, when I got it, I thought it was stupid (I later reconsidered that notion). However, remember back in the day when consoles came packaged with a demo disk? Oh my God, I payed that disk over and over until I couldn’t stand it anymore. Between Spyro the Dragon, Gex, Blasto!, Gran Turismo, Metal Gear Solid, and several other demos, I was a happy camper. In fact, for the longest time, I lived off demos. I’d buy issues of Official U.S. Playstation magazine (Now simply OPM), and play the demo disks for days. I fell in love with Legend of Legaia this way, and to this day, it is still my favorite RPG, barring even Final Fantasy VII. The first game I ever purchased with money that I saved up from chores, Christmas/Birthday money, and loose change I’d find on the ground, was Mega Man Legends. I was a huge Mega Man nut.
Moving on from then, when I moved to Washington with my mom, I had to leave my PS behind, which was alright with me because my mom and step-dad had their own. But to this day, I still miss my Playstation, my Playstation, the one I unwrapped one cold December day in 1997 (Or 1998!). To this day, I still don’t know what happened to it. I wish I knew; I wish I could have it back. The sentimental value a child of 8 or 9 places upon his first favorite game console is akin to that of a boy and his dog, or a man and his wife. Of course, I cant play fetch with it, or have sex with it, but… Well, you get the picture.
Since then, many consoles have come and gone. The Playstation 2, the Gamecube, the Xbox, the 360, the Wii, the PS3, PSP, PSPGo, nGage (LAWL), and various builds of PC’s… But I still miss my Playstation more than anything. Even more than my Gameboy, which I mentioned earlier… Which, sadly, had to be tossed away, when my DEAR, BELOVED LITTLE GREMLIN OF A SISTER left it out in a lovely Spring shower when I was in 3rd grade.
So, this TRUTHrant is dedicated to all the people, from kids to adults, who have ever loved a console the way I have. Whether it be a 360, a Gamecube, a Playstation 1, a Super Nintendo, a Sega Master System, a Gameboy/Gamegear, or even a god damn Atari, this one’s for you.
Shaddz, after wiping the last tear from his eye, thought it would be cool to have readers send in pictures of themselves with their favorite consoles (If they still have them) to be posted on the site at a later date, in a later rant. You can send them to Shaddz [AT] GAMINGtruth [DOT] com. Follow Shaddz on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/shaddz, or simply @Shaddz.