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Magazine #19 3/04


A few months ago NWCGE got an email from Charlesetta Taylor (Director of Clearances at Seattle's KCTS) asking for help with an upcoming videogame special called

PBS - The Video Game Revolution

Producer Greg Palmer needed some help with classic video games and NWCGE came to the rescue! The PBS crew (Greg himself, camera man David Ko and assistant Winnie Lo) spent quite a few hours with Lee and me. They taped everything from classic game footage and box art to hardware and game sounds. Greg was very committed to this show which unexpectedly fell into his lap after the previous producer left and the final production was quite impressive.

Setting up the game consoles

Lights, camera, action!

Winnie playing the Jaguar kiosk

David taping a Pong unit with box

Odyssey 2

Lee about to sign the release form

Bally Astrocade

Lee and the PBS crew: David, Winnie and Greg

Atari wins!!!

A lot of our footage ended up in the final program! The final production was 2h long and ran during the fall fundraising drive on PBS stations nationwide. The official press release of the Seattle PBS-affiliate KCTS is here. Overall the show was quite good, containing interviews from Nolan Bushnell (Atari) to Seamus Blackley (Xbox) and many video game industry alumni. One point of critique: too much time was spent with Pamela Eakes (found of the group Mothers Against Violence In America) who went on and on about the evils of video gaming - lighten up!

The DVD contains rare footage that most people have never seen before: the original early Pong game on an oscilloscope, early stuff from Ralph Baer (the inventor of the modern video game) and many other cool things - definitely a must see!

Ralph Baer and his invention - the video game

Early video game on a scope

Pac-Man figures

Main menu of the PBS DVD with extra video game footage not shown on TV

In case you missed the show check PBS for reruns or buy the DVD (and support PBS) at the KCTS shop. If that link doesn't work anymore try here and search the site for "Video Game Revolution".

In combination with the TV program PBS created a nice website containing an interactive timeline, background information, downloads and tons more. They have classic video game trivia, additional interview and story segments (unfortunately only in shitty Real format), Behind The Scenes feature and a nice collection of classic Flash-based games.

Bits 'n Pieces

HALO 2 is coming out November 9th!!! Yeah! Guess I'll have to take a few days off at work, that cold came from nowhere... cough, cough, cough, sorry boss! :)  The multiplayer-Beta was fantastic and I can't wait to play the campaign on Legendary. Here is to the best game of 2004! (well, we'll see once Half Life 2 is out, we may have to split the title). In general this is shaping up to be a stellar holiday season for the Xbox. There are *so* many awesome titles coming out!


Pictures and texts © 2004 by CyberRoach™ Publishing except where indicated otherwise. No content may be duplicated without the written consent of the author!