How did we ever play these "classic" games?

It’s true, sometimes you can’t go back.

Carmageddon - I was feeling nostalgic so I downloaded and played this again this morning. I play a lot of older games, so it’s not a case of me not enjoying blocky, ugly games and actually enjoying them. (Although 3D games from the 90’s just don’t hold up as well as their 2D counterparts.)

However did we play this game back in the day? The handling of the cars is broken and the physics are so far off base it’s infuriating. The cars are uncontrollable.

I used to love this game, but wow, what was I thinking when I thought it was one of the greatest driving games ever made.

Has anyone else had opne of these headscratcher moments lately?

Yea, there are some games I try to stay away from to keep my memories intact. I will say, though, last weekend I had a great experience with Super Mario 64. The camera is a bit broken compared to today’s games (although setting it to the far mode for Lakitu makes it decent), but everything else is still really awesome. It’s still one of the best games ever.

I’m afraid of replaying Max Payne 2 to find that it isn’t as good as I remember it. I’d rather like to think of it as having the same level of visuals as Left 4 Dead. The art direction’s pretty similar, at least.

Gauntlet on XBLA. The “press Y to insert quarter” mechanism reveals starkly what a blatant quarter-suck the game always was.

What is that, like 2 years old? We’re talking about classic games here.

I try some of the older games I loved as a kid, like 2600 games, and they are awful. I’m stunned that people used to spend decent money on such games. Most of them seem good for about 10 minutes of fun, and that’s it. It has nothing to do with graphics. There just isn’t much there.

Ultimate games on the ZX Spectrum used some amazingly daring control layouts. One of their most “popular” (i.e., which they used in the most games) was

Q - left
W - right
E - up
R - down
T - fire

I remember Cookie being quite challenging with this layout.

Carmageddon 2 has aged much better, to be honest.

I miss the days when I was so easily impressed by games. When I was little, my aunt and uncle would take me and my brother to Toys R Us every year for our birthdays, where we would each pick out a NES game, basing our decision completely on the box art. We ended up with some terrible games, but played the hell out of every one of them.

I can’t believe they could get away with charging $50-$60 for some of those turds.

I reinstalled Arcanum a couple months ago without being able to find the instruction booklet. It was almost prohibitive to play.

WHY CAN"T I HEAL! WHY CANT I THROW ANYTHING! Argh! I don’t know how do I equip this?!

Something to that extent. Took me a long time to figure key gameplay quirks.

Fallout 1 was nearly as bad. Took me forever to remember that the red button toggles different battle modes/attacks. It looked like it was just a part of the UI screen.

Yeah, Gauntlet instantly becomes a grind when credits don’t cost anything. I don’t think this is because the game itself is terrible, I think it’s because when money is free, hit points are free, so why bother playing carefully when you can just barrel through everything, soaking up damage left and right? The money is an integral part of the game balance.

But the controls were part of what made that game so great! If you played it as a racing game, it was awful. But as a destruction derby game, it was fantastic. More games need a button that let your back tires slip out, too.

Old 1st person perspective games are far less replayable, I find, than isometric or scrollers. I have no problem playing Fallout (1997) or Ultima VII (1992) or hell, Donkey Kong (1983)…but shooters from the 1990s or even early 2000s (let alone the 1st person perspective RPGs of that era) are painfully blurry and the barren environments are just a joke.

But most shooters from the 90s were awful then too.

I think about this every time I see someone playing Mario.

Yeah, you’re probably comparing Carmageddon to your memories of its vastly improved sequel.

Yeah, I don’t seem to have as much an issue with this as other people, although I haven’t gone back to play old first person shooters recently. It’s mostly RPGs or 8-bit console games.

Really? I find that the old Mario games are still today some of the finest platformers available. Why do you think they haven’t aged well?

Nah, MP2 stands up pretty well - zipped through it a couple of weeks back. Great game, I even found the end a little moving but I’m a sucker for cheap noir bullshit.

AVP 2, now - not so much.

I tried to play Major Stryker again some years back…I totally sucked.
I used to be really good at it.
I personally chalk it up to dulled skills due to todays games over pumperaging.

I can still, somewhat, play Tyrian to a good degree, but nothing as stellar as past performance.

My Contra gameplay is still above average, but not as awesome.

Time to face it: we’ve grown too old for this shit.
Reflexes aint what they used to be.

Arcanum and Fallout were exactly what I was thinking of when I saw this thread title.

I can’t believe that I ever played the original Diablo, to be honest. I remember it being so pretty and so awesome back in the day.