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Everything posted by Strider

  1. Better late than never! My wife would like that desktop. Pugs are her favorite dog and she is a LOTR fan. One of the many reasons I married her, she's just cool like that. lol Funny, now that I need more "real" desktop space for all my toys, she's got a huge desk and bigger displays that I do. I am falling behind.
  2. I had SO many of these growing up, they were by far some of my favorite "toys" of the late 70's and 80's. It was so long ago now that I really can't remember all of them. Though I did have the 160-in-1 Science Fair Kit posted by SlithyMatt, hard to forget that one, it was such a well built kit. When I was growing up, a friend of my family owned and operated the local Radio Shack, so I was in there all the time, and got to try a lot of the kits as they hit the shelves. In fact, most all the kits I owned came from there, or Sears. Like I said, I had so many, some multi-kits, and others were single devices (mainly radios), but they are what lead to my love of electronics, and what I learned from those kits allowed me to fix a lot of old hardware that would have otherwise ended up in the waste bin. For a while there I was making a lot of my own devices for different things, sometimes just for fun. I'm not sure if you can still get them but you used to be able to buy PCB etching kits. Basically, you would "draw" your circuit on a copper coated board, submerge it in an acid solution, and the areas not covered my the ink would be eaten away, leaving your circuit paths. Drill the holes, solder your parts, done. I used to find that so fun. Of course, now with PCB kits so readily available, and companies like PCB Way, there is really no need for etching. Sadly, none of my kids really got into any of this. They just come to me when something stops working. lol I do miss it sometimes.
  3. I think I am going to need a bigger desk ... and a newer one, this one is getting up there in years, but it's served me well. I just can't seem to fit all the things I want to play with and work on. :P I have a lot of stuff sitting on top of my second computer (my "server" on the floor between the wall and desk), just to get more space. I keep having to move things around for every "project", or setup a small tray next to my desk to work on. It works, but it's messy. Anyone else have this problem? haha
  4. I think I managed to get most everything I was interested in. A new soldering iron and magnified clip-on soldering lamp, a couple 8BitDo SN30Pro wired controllers and a Mayflash F101 arcade stick for my "retro" gaming and RetroPie (Raspberry Pi 3B+). My wife also got me a smart watch with health monitoring, been wanting one of those for a while. Along with some other more "normal" things. I also got a C64 Mini, been having a lot of fun playing with that too. We can't forget the beer and beef jerky gift basket, somewhat of a tradition gift (along with one of those 3 flavor popcorn tins) that my wife gets me. :)
  5. I took a peek at it, doesn't look bad, and it looks like it's been running since 2003? Very nice! I love the long running MMOs. Of course, I don't have the time to invest in such a game, but it still looks cool, and like something I probably would have enjoyed. :P
  6. Those early TRS-80 models were so cool, while I never owned one, we had them in school. I can recall my first time sitting down at one, my math teacher used one in his class and he let me mess with it one day after he learned I was somewhat of a budding computer geek. I just really love the look of them, the same reason I loved the TI-99/4A so much. What they lacked in "power" they made up with in looks in my humble opinion. The same with Apple Computers for me, I never owned one, I much preferred Commodore and DOS/PC's once we got that far. We had Apple 2's in our Tech School, so I used them quite a bit. Oregon Trail, the very first game I ever played on an Apple 2, I remember it frustrating me and loving it at the same time. Funny thing, I am also a big Doctor Who fan, and one of my favorite images I found floating around the web is this one. lol
  7. These days, I do vast majority of my "gaming" via Steam, like most people. Also like so many others, I love their sales, especially the big yearly events like the Autumn Sale that's currently active. So are you looking at picking up anything while it's on sale this year? For yourself or others? For me, at least right now, it looks like there are 3 from my wish-list I am definitely purchasing, all of them discounted to around the $2 to $3 range, so can't pass up these classics at that price! Indiana Jones and the Emperors Tomb The curse of Monkey Island The Secret of Monkey Island: Special Edition I will also browse for some "retro" titles. I'm looking at Bloodstained Curse of the Moon 2, I enjoy the original. Anything in the Metroid-Vania genre. For more "modern" games, while there are more on my list, I am really only considering two of them... Halo: The Master Chief Collection Serious Sam 4 (to play Coop with my family) I really do like these sales!
  8. Nice! I often prefer "function over form", I always have. So your workspace looks perfectly normal to me. I have seen other C64's in the past with dust covers like that one. I never had one personally, but I did used to put this fabric cover I had over it when I was not using it for any long period of time. It was made to fit the C64 to it just slipped right over it nice and snug. Lastly, space is also my problem. I have a small desk and workspace, and it's already taken up by my main PC, 2 displays, a server PC, and various other random hardware and parts, as well as my tool sets. Still, where there's a will, there's a way. lol Very cool! I used to run BONIC a lot, but it's been several years. I was a big fan of Seti@Home. I like seeing people running Raspberry Pi systems. I have the original B+ and a 3B+, had both since they were released. The old Model 1 B+ used to run Retropie for 16-bit and earlier console emulation, but the newer versions of Retropie run so slowly on it that I moved all my emulation to the much more capable 3B+, and I am able to easily push into the PS1/N64 era as well as much better arcade emulation. The 3B+ is also a very capable Steam Link device, also via Retropie. That's what I have installed in that Retroflag MegaPi case you see on my desk in the photo above. Not to mention, Wi-Fi makes SFTP so much more convenient. I have been looking at the Pi 400, but to be honest, the more I look at it, the more I think I would enjoy a Model 4B 4GB or 8GB instead. Same basic hardware configuration anyway, but with the 4B I save space, and as you can see on my desk photo, I really don't have room for a 400. I also already have all the other necessary peripherals, plus I get to put it in my own choice of case since it's the standard Pi 4 form factor. lol
  9. Yeah, Curse of the Moon is the one I own and like, I haven't tried Ritual of the Night as of yet. I have it wish-listed (I think), I am always looking for those lovely Steam sales. Their "Black Friday" one should start next week. I also agree, I would love to see some Metroid-Vania style games on the X16. What initially peaked my interest in Bloodstained and Odallus The Dark Call were the fact they were of that style and genre. I am a huge fan of the original (NES/SNES) Castelvania and Metroid games. Heck, even a Megaman style platformer would be cool.
  10. There are a lot of horror based games I like, including Dead Space, that was a great game. My all time favorites being the Resident Evil series, follow by just about anything with zombies. The most modern being the Dead Island Remasters and Dying Light. I have not heard of that one. The last MMORPG I played was Maplestory 2 with my family (before it shutdown). But we have played others and may go back to a few, mainly Elder Scrolls Online. My wife really likes them. I used to love the Might and Magic series, but have not played anything recent. We're talking 80's and 90's, (DOS, Sega, TG-16, etc.). I sort of moved away from modern "turn based" games in general. While I enjoy city builders and sim style games, I have never played anything in the Civ series. Again, a style of game I have moved away from in recent years, mainly due to time constraints. The pay-to-play/win micro-transaction model used by so many MMO's these days always bothers me. It always has to some degree, but over the past several years it has pushed me much further out of the genre. If it was not for my gaming and love of Direct X, I would have moved to Linux long ago. I simply have no desire to give up my game library and dev/driver support. It's enough of an issues on Windows a lot of times, let alone an OS most mainstream devs seem to not take seriously, and I wish they would. Leaving Windows behind would make me a happy man, I have run dual boot (Win & Ubuntu) many times, though right now I am not doing so. Hah, I own it, wanted it so bad, but have NEVER actually sat down and played it. I really wish there were more hours in the day.... lol Many people say their favorite RPG games of old were titles like Zelda or Final Fantasy, it was Dragon Warrior for me. Yes, I loved the Zelda and the FF games, but DW/DQ are what I really enjoyed, and still do. I have now tried DQ Builders, via their demo on Steam, and it looks like something my wife and I might be able to enjoy, maybe ... it's all about how much time we have. The building is a bit weird, you can tell it was made for console style controls (and I only play on PC these days), but I like the stories. So I am still on the fence about it, especially at the $60 price tag, or even $30/$40 on sale. Maybe one day we will take the plunge. I have seen Retro Achievements before, but yet again, not enough time to really peruse things like that. The story of my life, never enough time. lol I used to enjoy games like that as well, exploration and puzzles, I loved "Mist" back when it came out. The most recent game in that genre I played was "Lifeless Planet". A very cool game with a cool story in my opinion. Just wish it was a bit longer or more difficult, I completed it in just over 4 hours. https://store.steampowered.com/app/261530/Lifeless_Planet_Premier_Edition/ I know I am sounding like a broken record, but I have far too many games to play (or at least try), then I have time available to me. So most of the "new" games I am trying or playing are those in franchises I already know and enjoy, ones I play with my family, and indie-retro style games like 198x, Odallus The Dark Call, Oniken, SanctuaryRPG, Bloodstained, and River City Ransom Underground (just to name a few). You see a theme there? haha :)
  11. Now that's cool! I love seeing different versions of popular devices, consoles, and computers from around the world. No matter if they are legal clones or not, especially "retro" tech, it's neat to see. Thanks for sharing! Never even knew these existed.
  12. We never had the Odyssey 2, only the original, but I do remember having to share the family TV with everything until the early 80's when I managed to get my own TV in my room. lol Spending countless hours in BASIC on the TI, good times. I always wanted an Atari ST, but never got one, Commodore had won me over by then. I did end up with an old Atari 400 and 800 though. I remember being reluctant to move off my TI when the C64 came out, I really did like it and had so many accessories (like the PEB, Floppy Drive, and Speech Synthesizer), but after playing with one at a friends, and seeing how much more powerful it was and what it could do, I was sold! Though I got mine used. After the C64, the Amiga 500 was the next system that really hooked it's teeth into me, and put my C64 in the closet. Friends had the C128, and I really liked it, but buying "yet another" computer at the time was just not gonna happen. By the time the C128 dropped, I had managed to get myself a used CoCo 2, had a VIC20, and I even found a Plus/4! I was also eyeing a Tandy 1000 that I ended up getting used at a huge local flea market. So our first "new" purchase was the A500 if I recall correctly. Everything back then is a blur to me these days, as I got many of my machines used, and even more long after they were obsolete.
  13. As the title says, what was, or is, your favorite "classic" home computer? Hard to pick, I know. lol For some of the younger folks, it does not have to be an 8/16 bit machine, just whatever you have the most fond memories of. While I was a huge Commodore fan, what started my love of computers in general was the TI-99/4A, as it was the first "real" home computer I ever really got to play with. I had played with Atari, Intelevision, and Odyssey, but never a "home computer". As I said in another thread, not the best machine of the time, but my first and it looked SO cool! My uncle had one, he worked for McDonnell Douglas at the time, and we had a family reunion one weekend at his place. I spend both days that weekend glued to that TI machine, by the end of the weekend It had made it through several BASIC programs and played just about every game cart he had for it. A couple weeks after that, he bought me one, how cool was that! I often credit him for sparking my interest in computing, from that point on, there was no going back. I was amazed by these machines and still am to this day. Although to lesser extent these days than I was back then. So what's your story?
  14. Have it installed. Just have to give it a try. I overlooked that option when I was on the page earlier. lol
  15. I seem to be the only one in my family that truly enjoys platformer style games, my wife and kids have little to no interest in them. The closest I have been able to get my wife is a game called Maplestory, it's an MMORPG game, but it's an "old school" style side scrolling platformer. She's play it some, but she really cant get into it. So I must platform alone. :P All of our kids are grown and moved out, save for one, so I don't get to play many games with them at all anymore. Our youngest, who's still at home, rarely ever wants to play games with us. She plays mostly with her friends. :) I did the same with Skyrim, and my list of "intend to finish" games is also getting well beyond what I will ever have time to actually do. Sadly, as you said, there is just not enough time in the day. We don't own a PS4, as we do 99% of our gaming on PC. This is the one I have been looking at: https://store.steampowered.com/app/1072420/DRAGON_QUEST_BUILDERS_2/ At $60, sometimes $40 on sale, it's a big leap in the "hopes" we both like it. Kinda tough to justify. :P Though, my wife and I truly do enjoy Minecraft!
  16. Skyrim was such an amazing game. Funny thing, I have never played it through to the finish. Will do that one of these days. hah My wife plays a lot of point and click games, she has more than I can count. I live the old school point and click type adventure games like Indiana Jones, Tex Murphy, Deja Vu, and Shadowgate. I have been looking at Monster Hunter World a lot on Steam, but have yet to pull the trigger on it. Looks like a fun game, if it was coop, would like to play through it with my wife one day. It just looks like something we would enjoy. My wife and I have played a lot of different MMORPG games together over the years, the most current were ESO Online and the now discontinued Maplestory 2. Also, Black Mesa, EXCELLENT Half Life "remake". Love it! PCMR! I have been wonder if my wife and I would enjoy an MMOFPS together. I used to love them, but I am much more of a Battlefield type FPS player. The Final Fantasy games are some of my favorites, but I have not completed any of them past the classic FF7. I have played that one through several times over the years. lol We also technically own a PS3, it's never touched, currently buried under a pile of stuffed animals in my daughters room. lol Fallout 4, currently playing through it. All the previous Fallout games, I have beat several times, love those games! Really wish they had native coop modes. Lastly, been looking at DQ Builders on Steam as something my wife and I could play together, the only thing that's stopped me is price. Hate paying that much for something I am not sure we will like. I am a fan of the Dragon Warrior/Quest games in general, all the way back to the NES originals.
  17. So what modern games, if any, do you like to currently play? Or what style of game? Remakes and remasters count! Except for my little RetroPie, I only game on PC these days, no room for many consoles. Though my daughter has a Nintendo Switch, neat little console. Most of what I play is easily visible on my Steam page, since I use it for 99% of my modern gaming. https://steamcommunity.com/id/trstrider/ My most liked games as of late have been ... Ark: Survival Evolved, Doom, No Mans Sky, Serious Sam, Borderlands, and Farm Together. Every so often I play Battlefield 4, when I want a challenge. Of course, there is a spattering of retro remakes and remasters that I love like Command & Conquer Remastered Collection, Crystal Caves HD, and Shadowgate. I like to play a lot of cooperative titles with family. Loads of fun!
  18. Honestly, I wish I had a non working one, that would make a great "sleeper" PC. Plenty of room for a full ITX system in there.
  19. This made me instantly think of Texas Instruments solution to that problem, the very large (and expensive) PEB. While I honestly loved the TI and it's PEB back in the 80's (even though it wasn't the most powerful of computers), it was so awkward and I recall ours having to be setup on a folding table. Especially with its sideways daisy-chain style of expansion. But it did look so cool and futuristic!
  20. I'm seriously wondering if you could not just modify/paint the case to match whatever theme you want. You can have custom keycaps made in various styles. I wish I knew if the keyboard was a single sheet of material or individual keys. I don't even have one and already thinking how I can mod it. :P
  21. The main reason I went with the Sega version was the top door storage, and no cartridge storage for me to lose. I got the "GeeekPi" kit with carrying bag, heatsinks, and a fan. I really do like it a lot. That Commodore 64 render looked so cool, as did the ZX Spectrum, I have always really liked the rainbow style logos used on so much tech back in the 80's. It's one reason I really like the X16's logo.
  22. It gets the job done for me. I use a much older version than my wife, but I love it. Hey, whatever works! If we're sharing our actual desk area, then here ya go. It's a bit of an older pic than of my Windows desktop above. My desk is basically all function, no form. What you can't see if the server sitting on the floor to the left, but that's why there's a 2nd mouse sitting on my desk. I remote into it 90% of the time, but sometimes I need direct access. Also, I like case badges/stickers/magnets, if you can't tell. lol
  23. It's a Toni Bratincevic image, called "16 Bit Memories". One of my favorites. :) https://www.artstation.com/intercepto Nice! I like "hardware" style wallpapers like that. I use Commodore ones a lot.
  24. A "just for fun" thread where you take a screenshot of your primary desktop and share it! Personally, I use a dual 1080P display setup, but my secondary is mainly used for system and server monitoring. Here is mine (scaled down):
  25. I had no idea this was even in the works. THIS is the kind of thing that excites me when it comes to computing! I was literally just looking at getting a Pi 4 to setup as a retro style computer, and then I see this. As a late birthday gift to myself, I put my Pi 3 B+ into this MegaPi Case and have it running RetroPie, and I absolutely love it. So it has me in a "retro" mood. Looks like the Pi 400 just made my x-mas list! Also, love those retro inspired case renders in the video, those were amazing. Maybe someone will produce them at some point, or something similar. So cool! Thanks for sharing! Edit: Oh, and excellent video as always!
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