This past weekend, I went on a short trip with my wife Mary, my childhood best friend Ross, and Ross’s wife, Tina, to Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. My wife and I were celebrating our anniversary and thought it would be fun to go with another couple so we invited Ross and Tina. We picked Pigeon Forge because it’s a relatively short drive, we can stay in a cabin, and there are lots of things to do.
Ross and I had been friends since 8th grade (around 1990) but had never done a couples trip before. When we were in high school, we did everything together. One of our favorite pastimes was playing video games. We preferred sports games over anything else. Back then, our choices were the Nintendo or Sega Genesis. We played both but I had a Sega Genesis during most of my teenage years.
On the second night of the trip, we went into a small video game store, Control Freak Video Games, while waiting for a table at a nearby restaurant for dinner. I try to stop by this store when I’m in town because they have all the old video games from when I was a kid and other pop culture-related stuff. I enjoy the nostalgia.
As we were looking around, I found my all-time favorite video game, Tecmo Super Bowl for the Sega Genesis, on the shelf and the nostalgia started flowing. A light bulb went off. I could buy the game and a Sega Genesis system and take it back to our cabin for Ross and me to play and relive some old memories. It had been nearly 30 years since we had played this game as kids.
Anyway, I knew that the old systems needed special adaptors to hook up to today’s high-definition TVs so I ended up buying a Mega Retron HD system. It came with everything needed to play and I bought an extra controller. In addition to Tecmo Super Bowl, I picked out some classics including NBA Jam and NBA Live 95. We also got Family Feud to play with the wives. I went back the next day to grab some games I thought my kids would like.
When we got back to the cabin later in the evening, we hooked up the system to a TV without any issues at all. I was actually amazed at how nice everything looked. The first game we put in was Super Tecmo Bowl where Ross picked his favorite team, the Denver Broncos, and I chose the Houston Oilers (more about this in a future post). It ended up being a defensive battle with me coming out on top 14-7. As we played, we reminisced about a much simpler time when we had no real responsibilities and life was much simpler.
Afterwards, we played Family Feud with the wives. Mary and I ended up winning at the very end. It was kind of fun playing a game based on the world back in 1993 prior to the Internet, cell phones, and modern conveniences.
While we didn’t stay up all night playing, it was well worth the brief trip down memory lane.
When I got home, I hooked up the system and started playing a season on Super Tecmo Bowl. I’ve played a handful of games with my oldest son who also loves football. My other son and a cousin played Monopoly too and liked it. I always enjoy sharing things from my childhood with my kids, especially when it’s video gaming-related.
Ross and I are planning a video game night soon. In the meantime, I’ll sneak away occasionally to play a game and take a quick trip back to my childhood.