It’s Monday, and that means more video reviews to kick-start your week with a smile, gasp and probably a scoff. Today’s Stuff to Watch features videos from two fine members of the YouTube community – Ashens and Lazy Game Reviews.
With his calm and collected British wit; Ashens is a highly successful YouTuber enjoying more than 150,000 subscribers to his channel. Representing the other side of the pond is Lazy Game Reviews, and whilst the subscriber count isn’t in the same league the videos certainly are.
What’s more, both producers release a new video every week. Prepare to learn and laugh in equal doses!
Macintosh 128k Computer (LazyGameReviews)
With the passing of Steve Jobs a few weeks ago, it seems fitting to kick off this article with an Apple review. Steve himself worked on this model, and it was in fact his decision to ship the machine without a fan to ensure quieter operation as well as better marketability (though unfortunately there were overheating problems down the line).
In this short but informative review, LGR leads us through the pros and cons of the system and demonstrates the ease of use, revolutionary GUI and mouse input. The machine sold fairly well initially, though a lack of raw processing power saw those numbers take a sharp drop not long after release.
The Vectrex (Ashens)
The year is 1982 and the obscure console is the Vectrex, a 1.5MHz games console with an in-built vector screen capable of displaying beautiful, smooth wireframe graphics. The only problem with this is that the Vectrex was rumoured to cause permanent retina damage even at medium brightness – a minor flaw, I think you’ll agree.
As many arcade games of the time shared vector technology, the Vectrex enjoyed a number of arcade ports, though the in-built Asteroids rip-off MineStorm is impossible to beat as the game crashes on level 13. Oh well, at least you can enjoy it from afar without affecting your vision!
IBM PCjr (LazyGameReviews)
When IBM decided to finally take their first strides into the home computer market (note that previous IBM computers were considered too expensive for the everyman) they royally messed up with the PCjr.
If you’re looking for a reason why – here’s 3 of them: the IBM PCjr was not 100% compatible with IBM’s own PC standard at the time and thus couldn’t run all that much software, it shipped with a rubber chiclet keyboard which was smaller than the standard IBM PC offering and was not suited to long bouts of typing and it cost way too much (twice as much as a Commodore 64 at the time).
Game.com Handheld (Ashens)
Back in 1997 Tiger Electronics decided that “Game.com” was a great name for a new handheld, though the product was pronounced “Gamecom” in marketing material. The “.com” aspect tied in to the unit’s internet capabilities, which required an external modem and the Internet cartridge (as well as manually configuring an ISP, with misprinted instructions on how to do so in the manual).
There’s probably a good reason you’ve never heard of this (and if you have you probably know what’s coming) and that’s because it was a bloody awful Game Boy competitor in a market full of other bloody awful Game Boy competitors. Early touchscreen technology and broken online features made this one to miss, check out the Ashens review for the evidence.
Top 17 Worst PC Games Ever (LazyGameReviews)
A highly entertaining and brief look at LGR’s own worst games list. Unlike the usual lists of terrible games that feature the likes of Daikatana and the recently released Duke Nukem Forever, this list is populated with little-known older PC gems.
This means you might not have encountered many of these horrors, and trust me it’s worth seeing through to the end.
Game King (Ashens)
One of Stuart Ashen’s main passions (judging by the many, many videos in his YouTube channel) is terrible cheap tat. This includes rip-off PSPs and DS handhelds, but also this particular video reviewing the Hong Kong original Game King.
Ok, so this isn’t strictly retro (2003) but it’s certainly obscure and many of the games produced are indeed rip-offs of retro classics (complete with stolen music, huzzah). Those of you intrigued by the Game King will enjoy the additional video Ashens produced showcasing some of the games that somehow saw release (below).
If you’ve enjoyed these videos then you will probably benefit from subscribing to both Ashens and Lazy Game Reviews on YouTube for regular fixes of geeky humor. If you’ve enjoyed some of the horrors in this article don’t forget to check out our video game vaporware article. We’ve also got some very funny Star Wars reviews and a short round-up of awful films!
Did you enjoy these videos? Have you seen the uploaders’ efforts before? Any other funny reviews we all must see? Share and comment below!