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Which classic systems are worth collecting for today?


Which classic systems are worth collecting for today?  

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  1. 1. Which classic systems are worth collecting for today?



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To answer the question: whatever games and systems YOU feel are worth collecting for and enjoy playing. You don't want to confuse the enjoyment one gets from the hunt of collecting to actually enjoy playing your collections though. The two roads don't always cross. ;)

Okay, on to my opinions and feelings... Most games on the original Playstation haven't aged well at all IMO, especially when hooked to a modern display. Gotta go CRT or bust really, but even still - most of the 3D games just look like a jumble of pixelated crap today.

And this isn't going to be a popular opinion, but the ColecoVision no longer fares well with me either. Someone in another thread said they really liked the differences between the arcade conversions on the CV, but to me and since many are "that" close to the arcade, may as well just stick to playing your MAME box or the emulated arcade collections for all the modern systems. Not a huge fan of the controller either but helps if you perform the ball mod and ditch the thumb stick.

When it comes to arcade translations that *really* have a different feel or spin of uniqueness, I prefer Atari game systems. Especially the 2600/7800 for its single button control and the Jaguar, for what they did with MC3D, Tempest 2K, Defender 2K, etc.

And often with the 2600, you get a totally different playing experience that has you appreciating what they were able to accomplish out of such a system. Games like Tutankham and Defender are both great for what they are in this regard. Then there's Space Invaders, Dig Dug, Vanguard, Moon Patrol, Jungle Hunt, Joust, Centipede, Ms. Pac-Man, Phoenix, heck... most of the arcade conversions are excellent all_things_considered and continue to hold both their charm and playability to this day. :love:

Can't say the same for most of the arcade conversions on the Intellivision. Slower gameplay + the Intv controller often does not make such a great combination for certain games. Of course, I still feel the Intellivision is worth collecting for. Not just for some of the better arcade conversions, but because of all the original and great first party releases. Quite a bit of unique 3rd party games too. Make no mistake about it, there's lots to love about the Intellivision!

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I mean so much is personal preference...or in how you parse things...I'll cop out to a degree and say what save2600 said first is right....only YOU know what X is worth to you.

 

But in being smart about how you collect...is the Atari 7800 worth collecting for? For the unafflicted non-atari guy, I'd say (sorry guys), no, not really. But since ti can play most 2600 titles too....why NOT get a 7800 system and play both? And if you do that...is it REALLY worth having a 5200 as well? I'd say no, it's not, for most people, too much library overlap. (I mean, yeah, I have them all, but for people who HAVE to pick).

 

I also agree very much with save2600s opinion on those early 3D games--but I also own a 64 to play all of 5 games. 3 wrestling, 2 Mario Party. To me they make it "worth it". But I wouldn't bother with an N64 (otherwise), a Playstation (same kind of thing there as the 2600/7800, get a PS2 and just get the good PS1 games you MUST have) or a Saturn. At all. JMO.

 

So far as DC, GC, Xbox, etc, I know you can "Collect" anything....but amassing software for these hardly seems like collecting at all to me, largely because they are so new. Stupid logic that makes little to no sense, I know. I just think...why?

 

The Turbo is a GREAT system, even more so if you can do PC Engine games....but it is not cheap to collect for and seems to get worse every few months. Your "worth" there may be determined by how you value your dollars, because it ain't like collecting NES.

 

I have very little SEGA love PERIOD, be it for Genesis or (slightly more) SMS. This is the lone system I got an everdrive for....both libraries on one cart and I don't ever have to spend another dime on it to play what i want. But I likely would not have spent much, ever...

 

Jaguar? Is "no comment" a comment?

 

To me, everyone into video game collecting should start with "the high points", the important stuff...get an Atari of some sort. Get a NES. Pick your 16 bit love, get one of those (they're all good in their own ways). But those generations are my wheelhouse...someone could feel entirely the opposite and want to collect only 32 bit and forward, and that would be right for them.

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There's a lot of retro consoles out there, but which should collectors really invest their time in? In your opinion, which systems have libraries of games that are still fun to play, consoles that are durable and well-designed, and that have just aged well overall?

 

Hmm. Well, which systems have libraries that are fun to play is pretty much an individual thing. But sticking with the biggest console from each era would be the safe choice (and each console's original popularity will likely be reflected in the poll results).

 

Which should collectors invest their time in? Whatever makes you happy. But given where we are with emulation, it's probably best to just stick to the consoles and games you have an emotional connection to.

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I guess it would depend on a number of factors, including what you mean by "collect." If I was going to recommend the top consoles for someone in their late 30s to get into I would go with:

NES - Yeah, there's tons of garbage, but plenty of great classics.

SNES and/or Genesis - Get an Everdrive, call it a day.

PC-Engine or Turbo-Duo - Get an Everdrive, buy reasonably priced CD games. Great underrated system with the Japanese games, far better library than the TG-16 got in the US. Bonus points for shmup fans.

JP Saturn or US Saturn w/AR - Another system with a great JP library. Bonus points for shmup fans.

PS2

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The systems that are worth collecting for today in my honest opinion are.

 

Atari 2600: The systems and many of the games are dirt cheap. Plus they made several variations of the 2600 systemwise. You can find a lot of the commons from 50 cents to a couple bucks. Systems with games can go for well under $20 at a yard sale or flea market. Lots of great arcade games for your home to experience. The Harmony Cart is a great accessory to have. Just download all the roms plus homebrews. Lots of great games but lots of poor quality ones. Still a great system to relive for. Lastly the homebrew market has been amazing and lots of excellent titles coming out at the store.

 

NES: This one has been a popular one to collect for recently. Many great classics and series like Mario, Mega Man, Castlevania, Ninja Gaiden, etc. A great selection of third party games. Best to go for the Everdrive as games are getting higher in value and cost these days. Systems are getting higher in cost as well.

 

Intellivision: A fantastic regular library of 125 games and the homebrew market has burst onto the scene as of recent. Most of the games are relatively cheap and easy to collect for. Great sports titles, multi player, and strategy games. Systems are affordable and as long as you are comfortable with the controller you will enjoy it. A note that the second revisions controllers are detachable.

 

Colecovision: A great system to own if you want the real arcade experience at home. A tremendous library both in terms graphically and in playability. Also like the Intellivision it has a numeric gamepad. There is a multicart as well. And the expansion module first rendition to play 2600 games. I strongly advise you that these are some of the most unreliable systems as they are notorious for power switch, ac adapter and DRAM rom chip problems. Colecovisions were made from cheap off the shelf parts. One of my favorite systems.

 

Atari 5200: The 5200 is a fantastic system. Small library of about 70 games. Relatively cheap to collect for as well and a multicart. They made 2 versions. A 2 port and 4 port. The 4 port has a proprietary switchbox that uses the AC adapter and RF cable to plug in then goes to your TV. The 2 port is standard with a coax plug. Be wary that the controllers are temperamental and will go bad due to the carbon residue rubbing against the flex circuits and cell membranes. Refurbished gold plated ones are the way to go. Like the Colecovision it has a very good selection of arcade conversions and has smoother and fluid animation than the Colecovision.

 

Atari 7800: I personally enjoy the 7800. A very good original library with some excellent arcade portsvand great original titles. And an amazing variety of homebrew titles from our own Bob DeCrescenzo (PacManPlus). The benefit is it is backwards compatible to play the 2600 library. A few Activision games are not compatible due to which morherboard revision you have. Sadly there is no harmony cart or multi cart right now. They had a cuttle cart released a while back, but in small quantities.

 

Genesis: The Genesis is my favorite 4th gen system and is an excellent choice to start out with and collect for. The games for the most part are cheap to collect for and some are going up in price. Some of the best sports games, later era arcade games, beat em ups, platformers, and shooters. Excellent sound and stereo! A Megadrive is available for it. Also a couple peripherals are included to play CD games and 32X carts. The library is meager for them. Also a converter allows you to play Master System games if you have a model 1 unit. If you have a model 3 you can play Japanese Mega Drive games.

 

Master System: The Master System is an underrated system and got overshadowed by the NES. The graphics are colorful and a lot of the games have memorable soundtracks. Many of the games are affordable. A few games are played that are shaped like hu cards. It was some of the earlier made ones from 1986-1987. Model 2 units disabled that feature. They lack third party games due to the monopolized NES.

 

Turbo Grafx 16: I love the TG-16 and it is the poor man's Neo Geo. But these days many games go for a lotvof money and you will need to break the piggy bank to get some of the best games. The platformers and shootem ups are fantastic.

 

SNES: I truly enjoy the SNES despite ppreferring the Genesis over it. The system made a bunch of great games for it. But nowadays the prices have shot through the roof on many games. Lot of the known classics are at least $30. The Everdrive is the way to go. You can play Super Famicom games if you remove the plastic tabs inside of the system that lies near the cart slot.

 

Saturn: Many great fighters, shoot em ups, and RPG's. Plus get the Action Replay 4M cart and you can play games that are imported from Japan. Sadly didn't have good third party titles as Sony dominated in that category and blew them out of the water.

 

Playstation: A great system to collect for and a great variety of games. Fighters, RPG's, 3D platformers, driving, and even 2D platformers. Games are not too bad in price and may start spiking down the road. One of my favorite controllers along with the Dual Shock 2 from the PS2. Some good arcade compilation discs.

 

N64: An overrated system in my honest opinion. Lot of odd games but some great ones like Goldeneye. I do not like the controller for it as it is awkward to use. The library is not as big as the Playstation but the cost of games are pretty high.

 

Dreamcast: I was blown away seeing the games on the Dreamcast. Lots of stellar arcade hits and games. Great fighters, racing games, even the sports titles are awesome! The VMU is really nifty and creative but the controller is a little awkward but not like the N64. Systems are still on the cheap and games aren't bad in price. Too bad the PS2 ended it's life not long after it launched.

 

Playstation 2: The PS2 has one of the best libraries and many of the games are fantastic. Systems and games are cheap! Due to the fact as it is the highest selling system. Even games are thrown into the bargain bin. Some of the best compilation and anthology discs came out for the system and are fantastic.

 

Xbox: The game library is similar to the PS2. But the best thing to own it for is modding it and installing emulators! Nuff said!

 

Game Cube: Like the N64, a disappointing library and uninspiring titles. The controller is decent but nothing like the Playstation 1 and 2. Best thing about it is attatching the Game Boy Player to play Game Boy, Color, and Advance games on your tv.

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I tend to think about this not just in terms of fun factor (an entirely subjective things, really), but in terms of historic value as well. I'm sure there are many young'ns today who would find the open-ended design of the original Legend of Zelda confusing & bothersome- but there is no denying the MASSIVE impact that game had on the whole gaming 'thing'.

 

Taking the Big Important titles into consideration, a good system lineup is: Atari 2600, NES, Genesis, Playstation 2**. That'll give you the means to play the bare minimum in terms of 'games that defined gaming'*. Now, if you want to flesh that out for a better picture of what gaming's really been over the years*, add in:

 

Intellivision: A great system to showcase the transition from the squares and lines of the Atari era to the sprites of the NES- especially good to show younger players, who don't always seem to realize NES graphics didn't materialize out of the ether, games were really just moving to that level anyway. The crazy controller and voice synthesizer help show the push for additional complexity as well. Plus, there's some good stuff on it!

 

SNES: While it failed to make as big a splash as its predecessor in changing up the market *dodges a brick*, the perceived rivalry of Sega vs. Nintendo was the height of friendly rivalry in gaming. Having both is basically nessecary to really explore that aspect of gaming history.

 

Dreamcast: Sega's swan song for consoles is home to some of the strangest games that have ever come out. It's a fascinating look at what a console can be when the people making it realize they probably aren't making it through the console cycle and quit trying to cater to the mainstream.

 

As for the rest of the list, there's definitely a lot of fun to be had up there, but in terms of overall relevance to gaming history? Not much to offer.

 

* obviously I mean 'console gaming history'. Arcades and PC are a whole 'nother kettle of fish.

** PS2 because it runs PS1, and therefore can fill in for both systems in representing Playstation's contribution.

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These:

  1. Atari 2600
  2. Intellivision
  3. Colecovision
  4. NES
  5. Sega Master System
  6. TurboGrafx-16
  7. Sega Genesis
  8. Neo Geo
  9. SNES
  10. Sega Saturn
  11. Playstation
  12. Dreamcast

 

I'm not familiar with the 5200 and 7800 though.

 

Every library has games worth experiencing, but these are the ones that mean much more to me than the rest. These consoles have unique aesthetics and feeling. They each have an overall experience which make good and bad games fun to try. After DC, things got kinda neutral and consoles lost their unique charm.

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This is such a difficult question to answer because it's a really subjective sort of thing. The best systems to collect for are usually going to be the one that the person doing the collecting has a personal attachment to and, thus, is going to enjoy playing the most. Whatever systems you grew up with or wished you had but never got as a kid are generally going to be the ones that will bring you the most enjoyment.

 

That said, there are some systems that just have outstandingly large and diverse game libraries that can be enjoyed by pretty much anyone who likes video games; and are fairly inexpensive to collect for to boot. From my perspective those are the PlayStation 2 and the (unlisted in the poll) Nintendo DS Lite. Both have phenomenally large and diverse libraries of quality games to collect and play on the cheap, especially due to their backwards compatibility with very well supported previous generation systems. :)

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Jin makes a good point- where's the love for the portables? Judging from the repiles over on the 'systems that defined your childhood' thread, people really have a lot of love for their handhelds. They were also home to some incredibly well-made, and extremely important titles (like Tetris... or, y'know, POKE-BLOODY-MON!) Then you add in the incredible ease of finding devices that run the overwhelming popular Nintendo handheld games- I personally own 7 devices that play original Game Boy games. Not one of them is an original Game Boy (in any of its forms.) It makes the portables a fun, easy to collect way to have your retro goodness.

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Jin makes a good point- where's the love for the portables? Judging from the repiles over on the 'systems that defined your childhood' thread, people really have a lot of love for their handhelds. They were also home to some incredibly well-made, and extremely important titles (like Tetris... or, y'know, POKE-BLOODY-MON!) Then you add in the incredible ease of finding devices that run the overwhelming popular Nintendo handheld games- I personally own 7 devices that play original Game Boy games. Not one of them is an original Game Boy (in any of its forms.) It makes the portables a fun, easy to collect way to have your retro goodness.

A good point indeed! The Game Boy line of systems all have huge libraries of great games, and most of them are dirt cheap to collect these days. While classic Nintendo home consoles have all gotten fairly pricey to collect for, the Game Boy/Color/Advance lineup are still very affordable and feature a very large selection of excellent titles in all kinds of genres. The DS Lite was my top pick for handheld collecting as it plays DS and GBA games, but a Game Boy Advance SP (preferably an AGS-101 backlit model) would be a wonderful choice too since it will play almost all original Game Boy, Game Boy Color, and Game Boy Advance games. The GameCube's Game Boy Player add-on is another great option that offers the same functionality if you'd rather plunk down in front of a TV to play games than play them on a handheld.

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Uhh... ALL of them? :lol:

 

Around here, basically anything that's "old" goes for a ton, so if I see something for a reasonable price, I buy it if I don't have it yet. And when I mean a ton, people think their 4-switch woodgrain 2600's with a handful of the most common games is worth $150 or more.

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Uhh... ALL of them? :lol:

 

Around here, basically anything that's "old" goes for a ton, so if I see something for a reasonable price, I buy it if I don't have it yet. And when I mean a ton, people think their 4-switch woodgrain 2600's with a handful of the most common games is worth $150 or more.

He didn't ask about how much they are worth.

 

He asked if they are any good to own from a gaming standpoint, fun to play, and reliable/durable.

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He didn't ask about how much they are worth.

 

He asked if they are any good to own from a gaming standpoint, fun to play, and reliable/durable.

Well, my answer still stands. :P

 

Like many of you, I have all of the systems on that list with the exception of the Neo Geo. There are games out there for each one of them that I like. I do like some of them better than others, though. The Jaguar and Intellivision are probably my least favorites, but I love them all. And like I said, when I see games for them on the cheap that I don't have yet, I buy them.

 

From a collector's standpoint, the NES stands out as THE system right now. It's the hottest system on the collector's market, and there are tons of great games for it. If cost is not an option, start here. They get a bad rep sometimes because many of the consoles in the wild aren't working properly, but fixing them is cheap and easy. Sometimes, disabling the 10NES lockout chip and cleaning the connector and games is all that's needed, and that's basically free.

 

A lot of the cartridge based consoles are bomb-proof. The first 2600 I got was a 4-switch model I got in college that was sitting in a random box at a flea market for who knows how long, and it still works great. Some of the controllers do break down over the years (like the 5200 ones) but that's about it.

 

I also agree on the Everdrive and multicart comments if you are looking to play the games on their respective systems without taking out a second mortgage. If you are just starting out, the 2600, NES, Genesis, and PS2 are great places to start. I find more for those consoles than anything else in the wild.

 

And yes, handhelds should be considered! The Game Boy, GBA, and the DS are all over the place and dirt cheap to collect for. The Game Gear is another option, but most need to be re-capped at this point.

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