Saturday, 3 April 2010

Arcade Attack: SilverBall Heroes vs Video Invaders

Arcade Attack: SilverBall Heroes vs Video Invaders

This 25 minute documentary directed by Mike Wallington is a bizarre snapshot of pinball and arcade gaming from 1982. The focus of the film is on Geoff Harvey, a pinball fanatic, and Stephen Highfield, a master of Williams's classic arcade game Defender. Both guys forward their arguments as to why their gaming loves are preferable to the other.

As a childhood fan of Williams old-skool games such as Defender and Robotron 2084, as well as equally intense arcade shoot 'em ups like Tempest, this short film filled me with a deep sense of nostalgia. The soundtrack of noises from these games is a powerful reminder of those days entering an amusement arcade in the early 80s. For example, in the case of Defender, the whole cabinet would shake from the moment the game was launched, a noise that gaming legend Jeff Minter once described as a 'megagalatic burp'. Stephen Highfield's skills are certainly admirable for a game that's notoriously tough and uncompromising, not least due to it's controls of a joystick (limited to up and down movement) and five buttons for further motion and attack.

The final icing on the cake from this film is its strange departure during the last 6-7 minutes from documentary to animation. The pinball 'heroes' take on some space invaders in a fight for gaming supremacy over London. All completely bizarre and wonderful at the same time.

You can view the film for yourself HERE

Big thanks to @JAPJAC for sharing this gem with me

No comments:

Post a Comment