Underdog Chamber 2008

Systems and games that were in the Underdog Chammber for the MGC 2008 show:

2008 – The slightly downsized, but just as great year!

The Underdog Chamber 2008 – systems that were on display during the 2008 show:

Apple Macintosh LAN running Quake – Back from the 2007 show, just because it was so popular, Quake returned again running on the Underdog of modern personal computers, the Macintosh (classic models in this case).

Atari 5200 – The Atari 5200 made its first appearance in the UC area in 2008! The focus was on games that are specific to the 5200 or made use of the special controllers for this system.

Gamecube – The definite underdog system of the last console wars, the Gamecube has been my personal favorite of those console systems. Nice and compact, with plenty of great games, the Gamecube is the system that could, even if it wasn’t popular at the stores.

Intellivision – The first true 16-bit game systems returned once again to the UC area for 2008! All games were present and accounted for.

Odyssey2 – My personal favorite of the underdog console systems of the late 70’s and early 80’s, the Odyssey2 was be on display once again.

Vectrex – That old underdog of a system that keeps chugging along, was back again in glorious black and white!

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As in prior years, the following is a summary of the Underdog Chamber for 2008, which ran at the Midwest Gaming Classic on March 29-30, 2008. Each system that ran in my area is summed up below, along with a ranking bar based on its popularity, along with my usual comments. As would be the case, the longer the green rating bar, the more popular a system was in the 2008 UC area. (I’ve done away with the casual ratings from prior years).

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Summary of system rankings for the UC ’08:

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Apple Macintosh LAN running Quake

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Atari 5200

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Gamecube

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Intellivision

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Odyssey2

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Vectrex

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Apple Macintosh LAN – Last year I ran Quake on the Classic OS 9 for Macintosh, using a combination of 6 computers, from the original iMac to the B&W G3 computers from Apple. As with 2007, Quake did very, very well in the 2008 show. It was in use for both days, and people just loved playing this classic 1st person shooter. I found it interesting to see familiar faces playing Quake, as we had a number of people back from last year’s show (which is a good thing). I know I promised myself that Quake would not return in 2009, but if I can get it to run on OS X, I may bring it back for a 3rd (and probably last time for a while).

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Atari 5200 – The Atari 5200 did reasonably well in 2008, even though I had some difficulty with the controllers. I managed to rig up what I had, and people did enjoy playing old games on this system. I just had to keep an eye on it, as folks were confused to a point by the joystick cables I had setup for the 5200. Probably the best kick I got out of the 5200 was a guy that showed up on Sunday asking for the game Kaboom (he didn’t know its by name, just the description). He had played it as a kid, and wanted to see it again, after so many years. I don’t recall someone being so excited to play a game from their childhood!

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Gamecube – This was the first year that I put a previous generation underdog system into the Underdog Chamber area. I did get a few comments (even one on TV) about why the Gamecube was in my area of the show. To all those that asked, the simple answer is that ‘it was an underdog!’ It was in third place, under the Xbox and PS2, which make it an underdog. As for having it in my area, even though it was all over other areas of the MGC show itself, it still did very well in the UC. I setup F-Zero GX on Saturday, and Burnout 2: Point of Impact on Sunday. Both did very well, in fact topping all my other older classic systems (except the Quake LAN). Go figure! 😉

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Intellivision – The world’s first 16-bit video game system returned to the 2008 UC area again, and as it has been for years now, it was a very popular part of the show. Armed with my trusty Cuttle Cart 3, people could play almost any game that was made for the Intellivision. I had many games running, but as with last year, Burgertime was the most popular game on this system.

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Odyssey2 – From my childhood years, the Odyssey2 will always be a part of the UC display area. While it was a real underdog in the early 80’s, this game system still has some rather good games that were released for it, and it does have a certain kind of unique charm. Of course, the European version (G7000) faired better back in history, with a few more games released overseas. The Odyssey2 didn’t do that well in 2008, being the least played system. I think it just didn’t get enough attention because of the lone display I had. Last year it did a lot better, alongside its European cousins. (For 2009, I may do a ‘year of the homebrews,’ as there has been a good amount of either homemade or prototypes games released in the last couple of years).

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Vectrex – The Vectrex returned to the UC display, after taking a break in 2007. I was delighted to see it get a decent amount of play during the 2008 MGC show, with a good amount of people asking questions and commenting on the system. The built-in Mine Storm was the most popular game I had running on this system, and a darn good game it is. (Next year I plan on this system returning, with the new programmable multi-cart I got earlier this year).

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