August 11th, 2016 by Benj Edwards
Tags: Retro Scan, NES, Nintendo, Hi Tech Expressions, Funhouse, Barbie, Chessmaster, The Muppets, Tom and Jerry, The Hunt for Red October, Days of Thunder, Sesame Street, kids games, Big Bird Hide and Speak, flier, 1991
High Times with Hi Tech Expressions
This fold-out flier celebrating NES games published by Hi Tech Expressions came packed with a NES game, likely Sesame Street A-B-C and 1-2-3. (Although the "DMG" in the flier name gives me pause, because that was Nintendo's in-house abbreviation for the Game Boy.)
The games shown here aren't particularly well noted for being classics, but I am very fond of Big Bird's Hide & Speak, a fun game for small children which features impressive sampled voice work by Caroll Spinney. I was older than the target audience when it first came out, but I have played it with my youngest daughter a number of times over the years, and she loved it.
[ From Hi-Tech Expressions Flier HIT-DMG-US-1, circa 1991 ]
Discussion Topic: Have you ever played any educational games on the NES?
June 1st, 2015 by Benj Edwards
Tags: Retro Scan, Sega, comic books, interactive comics, Batman, prototype, electronic toys, Tom Hanks, Big, iPad, Whats New, Popular Science, 1995
WHAM! POW! ZAP!
I've been intrigued by this Sega Electronic Comics System prototype since I first saw it in Popular Science's What's New section back in April 1995. Here is an excerpt from that very magazine.
As far as I know, this device never made it into production — in fact, the only mention I can find of it on the Internet as of this writing is this post on the Collectors Society forums.
Apparently, the Sega Electronic Comics device worked in conjunction with a tailor-made paper comic book that one would place onto the device. A series of pressure-sensitive buttons beneath the comic book could be pressed to somehow direct the narrative of the book. (Perhaps like Choose Your Own Adventure — i.e. if you do this, turn to page 3.)
This reminds me of the comic book device Tom Hanks' character outlines in the film Big (1988), albeit without any type of electronic screen. The crazy thing is that 15 years after this Sega Prototype, you could buy an iPad that could store and display thousands of entirely digital comics in a much thinner form factor.
[ From Popular Science, April 1995, p.11]
Discussion Topic of the Week: Do you use an electronic device to read comic books? Tell us about it.