My gf is going back east to visit family today for Christmas, so we traded gifts today, instead. This is what she got me:
Yes, that is a BigTrak. The kind that was my all-time favorite toy when I was, like, eight, and which I have never seen in the flesh since then. Until today.
You’ll notice this one is not quite the same as the gray model you might be more familiar with. That’s because this one came from the UK, where it was a slightly different color, for added nostalgic authenticity.
I never owned a BigTrak, but a neighbourhood kid did and he was the most popular kid around because everyone wanted to play with it.
Those nostalgia gifts are great, aren’t they? I got my fiancee a Coleco tabletop Ms. Pacman (the little blue one) for her last birthday (well, that and some jewelry) and she cried. I knew that she’d had one as a little girl, and that it had been given away by her mother against her will. She literally cried tears of joy upon receipt.
Oh wow, I haven’t seen one of those in like, forever.
What it does, if I remember right, is you could program it with the buttons on top to run around the house and do stuff.
ie, go into the kitchen and spin around three times, then go into the living room and fire it’s little “laser” ( a blinking LED actually)
What you really need though, is ROM the spaceknight.
The keypad on the back allows you to enter instructions in a basic LOGO-style programming language. Move forward 30, turn 90 degrees, back 20, fire laser, pause, turn 180 degrees, forward 50, etc.
Once you’ve got it down, you can program it to patrol routes around your house and freak out family pets. If you have the optional trailer you can even deliver things to people around the house. Basically, it rules.
Never heard of Big Traks before, but that thing looks seriously cool. Awesome gift. When were they popular, btw?
The one retro gift I’d love would be that big three-story Death Star with the bi gun on top along with the garbage compactor and the styrofoam garbage. Never had one, but my cousin and two of my best friends did. It’s the one big Star Wars toy that I missed out on. Damn parents. I got stuck with the crappy cardboard sandcrawler that year.
Yes, it would be used for devastating effect against the pets in my household. That thing looks awesome.
I would also consider having it run into the bathroom while my wife is in the shower and just have it stare at the shower, making beeping sounds. I don’t know why that amuses me so much just now, it just does.
I used to have a big trak, they were awesome as long as you had the patience to program the thing. I used to set it up to chug along into the living room and fire “lasers” at my dad while he snoozed in front of the TV.
There was also some kind of Super Merlin, which was the one I had. It apparently had more complex games than the regular Merlin, but since I’ve never even seen a regular Merlin in person, I wouldn’t know the difference aside from one being red and the other being blue.
I am so fucking jealous of Gary right now. Please tell me you don’t have any Shogun Warriors or the tube-transport Micronauts playset, because if you do I will hunt you down like a dog for taking all of the childhood toys I wanted but never had.