First off, I need to make a couple of corrections regarding my last "Remember When..." Both are regarding the arcade game Sinistar; the first one being the fact that I called it Sinistron. This happened mostly because Ferrari Man kept thinking I was talking about the TG-16 title of that name, and correcting me, so that when I wrote my article... well... oops, my puzzle.
The other correction is that I said Sinistar was the first to use voice. This isn't quite true. From what I can tell, however, it seems to be the first game to use a fully digitized voice. I read this in a conference with one of the creators of the game. I have not been able to completely verify this, but as soon as I can I will bring it to your attention.
Thanks to John Loch who wrote in and pointed out my error, and also reminded me of the games Stratovox, Berzerk, and Crazy Climber, which all used voice earlier. I'd like to add to that the games Dung Beetles and Space Fury which also came out around the same time as Sinistar. Sorry again for the confusion. I'll try in a future column to bring you more detailed information on this subject (I'll also be writing my article more than four hours before press time in the future).
O.K. Now onto other business. Remember when the people behind TV shows didn't have a clue about the reality of computers, hackers, or even role playing games? Well, they still haven't got to much of a clue, but fortunately we haven't been graced with anything like "WizKids" again. Remember this show? It ran for a season or two about ten years back. This show was a must watch for any kid into computers. If nothing else but for the fun of sitting around a yelling "Good grief! Those guys aren't real hackers! All that hardware and they're using it for that?!? ARGHHHH!" Besides personally I couldn't wait to see what new use they would come up with for the worlds first flexible computer... the TI-Sinclair. Now, don't get me wrong, this computer was a neat toy, but I don't know anyone who ever considered the thing a real computer (no offense to Sinclair owners).
The best "realistic" use of computers in a TV show recently would have to be Max Headroom. While true, they stretched things a bit since it was a sci-fi show, they always tried to be jargon as well as technically correct. Besides,they were one of the first programs to make use of Amiga 1000s throughout the series. This alone makes the show worth checking out (of course that's just my own personal opinion!) If you have never seen this show it would be well worth your effort to seek it out and watch it.
Ahh well... until next! Chow.
Originally appeared Vol 1, Iss 4 (10-11/92)