It's that time of year again where we step away from our beloved computer screens in preparation for a weekend of pixelated carnage. Once again you can expect to see the RetroCollect Squad at this year’s Play Expo, hosting a plethora of competitions and retro gaming action. Will you be joining in the action?
Play Expo? Should for whatever reason this event be new to you, check out our previous update on the event and take a look at the Play Expo website for more details. In a nutshell though - a retro gaming filled weekend with yours truly.
If you missed out on the action last year we’re very much hoping you’ll be able to make the event this time round. Last November saw the very first RetroCollect World Championships being played out, a Robotnik Wreckage Challenge which only the finest Sonic the Hedgehog players completed, a table full of free retro gaming gear, and even exclusive Golden Joypads given out on stage to our competition winners. In short it was a retro gaming weekend to remember.
This time round, at an all new venue in Manchester this October, RetroCollect returns to the rebranded Play Expo hoping to set the retro gaming section alight. We’ve got plenty planned for the weekend, which is all about to be revealed...
Competition: RetroCollect World Championships 2012
As we gear up our second outing of this annual competition, let us remind you of what challenges were set out last time round. Using a reproduction cartridge of the iconic Nintendo World Championship cartridge, we put players to the test with a 5 minute burst of Super Mario Bros, Rad Racer and Tetris. A challenge easier said than done.
This time round, we not only decided to up our game, but also up our bit count. Moving on from the 8-bit NES to the 16-bit SNES, we will proudly be using a reproduction cartridge of the Super Nintendo Campus Challenge 1992 - to find the mightiest retro gamer in Manchester during the weekend.
Super Nintendo Campus Challenge 1992 Gameplay Video
This competition cartridge follows a very similar pattern to that of the Nintendo World Championship, allocating a set amount of time to accumulate as many points as possible. The challenge starts out on Super Mario World with the aim of collecting 50 coins as soon as possible. Use whatever hidden pipes and routes you can find as you’re going to need every second you can spare for the remaining two challenges. Next up will be a two lap race of Mute City I on the timeless F-Zero. While seeming like a fairly straightforward feat, be sure not to underestimate what the other racers might do. And with what little time left you have left, you’ll be given free reign on several levels of Pilotwings to make the most of the dying seconds.
Exactly how much time do you have to do this in then? Just over six minutes! With this in mind you might want to get practicing... hook up your Super Nintendo and get going.
Competition: Robotnik’s Revenge Challenge
Last year saw Dr Robotnik take a real beating. Using a special ROM hack of Sonic The Hedgehog we put retro gamers to the test - could they beat every single boss battle from the first game one after another without a single ring? Surprisingly enough, several gamers managed this feat in record time, leaving Dr Robotnik rather unhappy about the whole ordeal.
Dr Robotnik’s spherical mass has bounced back though and is ready to reclaim his reign over Play Expo, thanks to the incredibly impressive Sonic The Hedgehog ROM hack known as Robotnik’s Revenge (by ColinC10). This time round, retro gamers will be up against all 17 bosses found in both Sonic 1 and 2, with a mere three lives (Survival Mode) to demolish everything Dr Robotnik puts forward.
Robotnik’s Revenge Gameplay Video
This is no easy challenge and we’re expecting nothing but the best! In the meantime we suggest you get hold of this ROM hack and start dedicating your free evenings to mastering this one.
Competition: 10 Player Saturn Bomberman Bomb-a-thon
The main downside to being a retro gamer today has to be the lack of available player twos nearby. If you’re anything like us, the majority of your gaming friends have moved on to pastures new and are enjoying the fruits of online gaming. Where does that leave the retro gamers though? Play Expo of course.
With the addition of two multitaps attached to our trusty Sega Saturn, we’ll be pushing the multiplayer mayhem to the maximum with a 10 player helping of Saturn Bomberman. Often dubbed as the most manic Bomberman title around, this multiplayer helping of Hudson action will no doubt be one hell of a memorable challenge.
Once again, get practicing. Only one lucky explosion-dodging, bomb-blasting contestant will be able to escape - claiming the all important Bomberman crown.
What else to expect from RetroCollect at Play Expo 2012
As we know not all of you are attending for the just competitions, we’ve got plenty more planned to accommodate every type of gamer.
This year will see the return of the RetroCollect Freebie Table. For those not familiar with this or for those who turned up a little too late, we had a table filled with orphaned retro game boxes and manuals, various games and other goodies - all up for grabs, completely free. While we will be putting our fair share of goodies on the table, anything you feel from your own box of spares could do with a new home is more than welcome to be donated to the table too. See it as a yearly retro gaming recycling.
And last but not least, you can expect plenty more additions to our pixel powered stand to be announced shortly. Until then we expect you all to be devoting your free time to mastering the various challenges due to take place this October.
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