Dig Dug (Arcade) is the Retro Game of the Day for 2 July, 2016

Another Retro Game of the Day, another arcade game.

“Why don’t you have more console games?  How about 8 bit computer games?  Seriously?  Mostly arcade games?”  No one has ever asked me that, of course, because I live in a bubble where almost no one even looks at this blog and I don’t really encourage feedback.  But the evil voice in my head does ask me that, and he’s… what?  Hey, shut up, I’m trying to write a Retro Game of the Day entry!  I don’t care about that right now!  Go think about giant chickens or something!  Cluck!

Oops, sorry, did I type “cluck” out?  Stupid evil voice in my head.

Apparently I’m in a weird mood today.

But yes, I love arcade games.  I mean, let’s face it, home consoles and even computers to some extent were always subject to compromises with games.  In arcades, you were allowed to be as fast and complex and bright and noisy and technologically advanced as you want, with only very loose budget constraints.  You were selling expensive dedicated machines to someone that basically collects quarters as a fee for playing your game, which allowed pretty good budgets and generous development allowances for your games.  So generally, arcade games were going to be pretty damn good back then, versus developing on even the most advanced home gaming systems and to some extent, even computers of the day.

So guess where the best games were going to be?  That’s right, the arcade.  Imagine that, a game that has to be good because it fights for a very small amount of disposable income with other games in the same space.  Today, we just put games out in their own little bubble blindly, fooling people into paying tons of money for poorly done games because people will buy anything, apparently.

So yeah, Dig Dig.  It’s so good.  It’s unique.  It’s challenging.  It requires planning and thought and all the other things that make a game good.  And it has simple and solid controls, and the gameplay is completely and totally fair.  Where are these games now?  Lost in time to an era where game developers cared about quality and wanted to deliver a game people actually played.  What a concept.

Bring back real games, and bring back the arcades.  We absolutely need a gaming renaissance to occur, because this is definitely the dark ages.  Hopefully one day, we will look back on “games” like Call of Duty and laugh at how dumb we were to think something like that could seriously be called a real videogame.

I’m certainly not laughing now.