Geek life

1 January 2016tech

Since I was very young, I liked computers and tecky stuff; this hobby started at the age of 7, when I visited my cousins from Barcelona. I was really amazed by the things the Amiga 500 could do and more than anything, I was very jealous of the nearly 1000 videogames that my cousin was able to download from BBS and other underground channels…

Amiga 500, Monkey Island and Atari 2600

During those times, a Commodore 64 and an Atari 2600 arrived to my home with a cartridge containing 32 games (if I remember well). What a wonderful time… I was constantly visiting neighbours to play Super Sprint in Spectrum, or the Monkey Island (in black & white) in the PC 286 of the guy in the 5th floor, or playing Ghost’n’Goblins in the Amstrad 664 with  3” floppys! of my school mate. At that time, we were really patient with the loading times. We just wanted to play games like Double Dragon in a green screen, even if we had to wait 15 minutes listening to psychophonies from the Amstrad 464 while loading the game from the cassette.

I believe that the beginning of my geek life started exactly the day of my first communion (in March 1989), when my wise grandmother decided to buy the amstrad 464 with 400 cassette games of my cousin to give it to me. During those years, I was also playing with the famous Amstrad PC 1512 from my family in Almería. A really good computer that used 5 1/4” disks. A few years later, my father bought an Amstrad PCW 8256 with printer and green screen. I wasn’t very convinced because there were very few games available for that computer.

Amstrad CPC 464, Amstrad PCW 8256 and Computer discs

I remember with special love the “Focus” game saloon in Playa San Juan (Alicante), where the 100 pesetas and 25 pesetas coins were wisely changed in favour of the trick with the electric lighter. We used them to generate a spark inside the coins gap to obtain free credits in the arcade machines. I remember authentic classics like the Wonder BoySide ArmsGun SmokeLegendary Wings, the famous Street FighterHard DrivingHammerin’ HarryVigilanteKung-Fu MasterRoad FighterSpy Hunter (Track and Field, Green BeretContraCombat SchoolLethal EnforcersMortal KombatGaunletEnduro Racer y Super Hang-on (Tetris, Out RunAltered BeastGolden AxeHeavy Weight ChampPassing shotAfter BurnerFatal FuryMetal SlugSuper SidekicksWindjammersBubble BobbleOperation WolfRastan (Wardner, Chase HQCabalSnow Bros, … really good times of videogame obsession.

Bubble Bobble, Outrun and Hang-on

The SEGA megadrive with Sonic: the HedgeHog turned me into a proper adict. I recall it cost me around 27.000 pesetas and due to my low income, I wasn’t able to buy a Super Nintendo. That’s the reason I never played Zelda and other great Nintendo games when I was a kid :-(

However, even if I was very into games, I never stopped studying, although Dragon BallBig Red Racing and the Playstation were constant distractions…

Things I’ve felt passionate about at some point in my life

Matrix, Pcmania, Super Juegos, PC Actual, Pentium, The Day of the Tentacle, Lego, C++, Dragon Ball, Japón, Fast Tracker 2, Amiga 500, Radiohead, Gatitos, Amstrad CPC 464, Linux, Star Wars, Mozart, AI, Google, Sim City, Playmobil. Demoscene, Joao Gilberto, Tokyo, Bonsai, piano, PcFútbol, Yamaha, Nissan, Croquets, Pascal, Death Note, Firefox, Windows 95, french fries, DirectX, Foo fighters, TaekWonDoGurbaksh Chahal, Shibuya, CouchSurfing, MecanoWayne Dyer, LOTR, Blade Runner, mapex (drumming), Blogs, PhpMyAdmin, Rails, Nihongo, Asia, Paella, Photography, HDR, Breaking Bad, The Wire, acustic guitar, Mega Drive, Karate, Wwoofing, Muse, Mario Kart, Bokeh, Akira Kurosawa, TED, Hasekura Tsunesaga, Coldplay, Time lapse, onsen, Canon D550, Sakamoto Ryuichi…

Favourite games

Half-Life 1 and 2, Far Cry, ISS Pro Evolution/Winning Eleven, The Dig, Monkey Island, Day of the Tentacle, Indiana Jones in the fate of Atlantis, Full Throtle, Halo, GP500, Need for Speed Underground, Counter Strike, Medal of Honor, NBA Jam, Fifa 2006, Resident Evil, Lemmings, Sonic, Mario 64, Another World, Flashback, Forza 4.

Did you know that…

  • The first RAM module I bought (slot SIMM) was just  for 4 MB and cost me 20.000 pesetas! I got it in the summer of 1994 via CentroMAIL (from PCMANIA) and used it to play Bioforge in my 486 SX 33Mhz with CDROM!
  • The pirate in my neighbourhood (sorry, as a kid I didn’t have enough money to buy games) was arrested by the police, or at least that’s what her wife was saying…). From that dirty place full of kids adicted to videogames I got great copies of DOOMRise of the RobotsBioforge or the wonderful The Dig (one of my favourite graphic adventures ever).

The DIG, Shinobi and Captain Comando

  • Near my  home there was a bar (just crossing the street) and as far as I remember, there was always an arcade machine. I could tell many stories about that place. In fact, it was so popular that the fights were constant. Some of the videogames from that place were: Captain CommandoFinal FightThree WondersShinobi and Pang.
  • During my childhood, I only saw once someone finishing Ghost’n’Goblins in the arcade. It’s very very difficult!
  • In the bar near my elementary school, they had the arcade with the chicken… I was rubish on that game.

Thanks for reading all this! :-)