The cartridge art was always so kickass. You just had to use your imagination quite a bit...
from to on 29 Aug 2023 01:39


threaded - newest on 29 Aug 2023 01:46 next collapse

No way would that kid be frowning. If this was legitimately in the late 70s or early 80s that kid would be ecstatic with the graphics. on 29 Aug 2023 11:23 collapse

There, I fixed it!

<img alt="" src=""> on 29 Aug 2023 11:28 collapse

perfect on 29 Aug 2023 01:58 next collapse

<img alt="" src=""> on 29 Aug 2023 02:42 next collapse

Always loved that they play a Master System. on 29 Aug 2023 03:08 collapse

Not sure, aye. Cartridge slot is on the other side and it’s connected to the TV via RCA with stereo audio. hmm, I can’t think of another console that meets those prerequisites though. on 29 Aug 2023 05:41 collapse on 29 Aug 2023 03:50 collapse

<img alt="I present Rigby, named after the finest fucking raccoon ever." src="">

I present Rigby, named after the finest dumbest fucking raccoon ever. on 29 Aug 2023 02:14 next collapse

I remember playing Doom for the first time and I remember thinking that graphics would never get any better than that. Like the arm even moves when he walks!

How horribly naïve I was. on 29 Aug 2023 02:20 next collapse

5 year old me thought it looked photorealistic. on 29 Aug 2023 02:48 next collapse

That was Mortal Kombat when I was 15 on 29 Aug 2023 02:56 next collapse

But mortal Kombat WAS photorealistic (in my head) on 29 Aug 2023 04:32 next collapse

It still is in my head… Didn’t they use real photos/video for the animation? on 29 Aug 2023 05:18 collapse

I think it was the first use of motion capture in a video game.

It made Street Fighter look so cartoony and childish by comparison. on 29 Aug 2023 05:19 next collapse

They did have people dress as the fighters and do poses and then took photos of them and turned these photos into sprites.

So the game was photorealistic (that is within the technological boundaries of the platforms the game ran on).

I’d love to see a 2D Mortal Kombat with the original photos taken from what we may consider the OG Mortal Kombat cosplayers. on 26 Sep 2023 13:48 collapse

I remember Altered Beast having amazing graphics, but it was just memory goggles. I was very disappointed when I got around to firing it up in an emulator. on 26 Sep 2023 14:04 collapse

Same, basically every game I played as a kid has awful graphics compared to modern stuff on 29 Aug 2023 08:42 collapse

Primal Rage too for me. “Stop motion animation? In a game? This is the height of technology!” on 29 Aug 2023 04:25 collapse

Heh I thought the same with Max Payne. (the first one) on 29 Aug 2023 02:38 next collapse

My peak game i think it was F.E.A.R., my pc couldn’t run it at full but I remember thinking it couldn’t possibly get any better than that on 29 Aug 2023 05:26 collapse

In some ways it didn’t. on 01 Sep 2023 15:10 collapse

No microtransaccions, no battle pass, just a nice story to tell through a videogame, awesome soundtrack also on 29 Aug 2023 03:10 next collapse

I remember getting deep into that game, trying to make my own levels with megs of RAM and having things crash. Changing all the sprites on some of the mobs, recording my own sounds and replacing various noises in the game. I learned how to strafe using 100& keyboard (couldn’t look up or down in that game), and dominating the evil. Good time to be a teenager. I still think some of the secret rooms in that game were some of the best. on 29 Aug 2023 04:31 next collapse

Same. It was too realistic. on 29 Aug 2023 06:02 next collapse

@lobut I thought Donkey Kong Country on the SNES was photorealistic and rivaled movies like Terminator 2, which used the same technology behind the scenes. I thought every game would look the same as Donkey Kong Country in future. on 29 Aug 2023 06:52 next collapse

I had those moments multiple times. I remember thinking the same about International Karate on the Amiga. Then my mind was blown with Street Fighter II, Max Payne was one for sure as mentioned elsewhere and let’s not forget Carmageddon, which got a little bit too realistic. Graphics technology developed so fast, you can’t compare it to today’s upgrades. As I’m older now 10 year old games still feel “new” to me. on 29 Aug 2023 08:04 next collapse

As I’m older now 10 year old games still feel “new” to me.

It’s not just you getting older, it’s also diminishing returns.

It takes more and more effort, both in manpower as in graphical processing power, to make graphical leaps, and the visible returns are getting less.

You can compare it to video formats:

  • VHS => DVD: huge quality upgrade
  • DVD => 1080p HD: yeah that definitely looks better
  • 1080p => 4k: I guess it’s a little sharper?
  • 4k => 8k: Well it’s … more. Also: why is everything running so hot? on 29 Aug 2023 11:08 next collapse

I actually liked 3D movies and I even bought the Nvidia 3D kit to play my PC games in 3D, it was amazing (to me)!

But it was an imperfect 3D technology that gave many people headaches, so I can understand why it eventually got scrapped.

I do have a VR headset too, but besides Half-Life Alyx, there haven’t really been any VR games I am so hyped for that I keep going back to play in VR. on 29 Aug 2023 11:25 collapse

Well, 8k is in allmost all home-usecases useless, 4k a better choice. Except maybe for video walls. Eye resolution is limited by angular resolution (visual acuity). on 29 Aug 2023 12:45 collapse

Agreed. I used to be blown away by a game from a technical standpoint 2-3 times per console generation and at a similar clip on the PC side. Now we are getting GTA V and Skyrim re-released for the 10th time. Neither of those games were groundbreaking at the time (IMO) as they both were good but predictable progressions from their previous entries.

Playing DKC and seeing the detailed sprites, Mario 64 (and several others) ushering in 3D, the FMVs in FF VII, and the enemy AI in FEAR, these things felt like monumental leaps forward. Nowadays, the closest thing I can think of is something like Elden Ring or TotK which to me is just taking an existing good game (Dark Souls/BotW) and slapping a mechanic onto it (Open world/crafting). They are both excellent games, but neither compare to the leap forward of FF VII or Mario 64.

Maybe I’m just jaded by adulthood and have my rose tinted glasses on. on 29 Aug 2023 08:40 next collapse

I remember feeling the same way with Myst. “It even has video!” on 29 Aug 2023 11:54 collapse

grew up with c64, spectrum+3, master system, genesis, nes, snes. So when I bought a ps1 with my paper round money and started up the intro to Soul Blade, that would become Soul Calibur, the graphics jump shook me to my core and brought tears to my eyes. I was like "THIS is the peak of graphics. Nothing can beat this.

Here’s the video: on 29 Aug 2023 11:54 next collapse

Here is an alternative Piped link(s):

Piped is a privacy-respecting open-source alternative frontend to YouTube.

I’m open-source, check me out at GitHub. on 29 Aug 2023 19:25 collapse

I mean that looks legit. I’ve got no nostalgia at play here, having never seen that intro before. on 29 Aug 2023 03:07 next collapse

And later we were further deceived with cut-scenes that were so much better than the gameplay. on 29 Aug 2023 10:23 next collapse

….which itself gave birth to everyone’s favourite small print .

*not actual gameplay on 29 Aug 2023 12:22 collapse

I never liked those FMVs. They age so badly too, those FMVs looked like a blurry mess when I was playing PS1 games on my PC using an emulator on 29 Aug 2023 12:56 collapse

Ff8’s seamless cinematic to cut-scene swaps were amazing. Ages very poorly, tho. on 29 Aug 2023 03:26 next collapse

almost amazing that video games even took off lol

[deleted] on 29 Aug 2023 03:41 next collapse

. on 29 Aug 2023 04:31 next collapse

Totally agree. A flashy light show will only keep people’s focus for a hot minute, but good core gameplay will keep players engaged for so much longer. Just look at dwarf fortress, lol. on 29 Aug 2023 04:42 next collapse

Battlebit is a good example of this for me - graphics are super basic but it's fun af and they get the important parts right. on 03 Sep 2023 20:25 collapse

I would say It Depends. I play almost exclusively indy games and yes AAA graphics aren’t what I’m expecting.

But some indy games just look like the dev threw the sprites together in less than half a day and it can be offputting. Dated can be ok, but rushed and butt ugly… Hell I almost skipped Rimworld way back when because the visuals looked so lazy.

The gameplay has to be really freaking fantastic to cover that up. In Rimworld’s case it was.

[deleted] on 03 Sep 2023 21:59 collapse

. on 29 Aug 2023 03:20 next collapse

Idk dude, Ultra Action Guys looks pretty fuckin rad. on 29 Aug 2023 05:17 next collapse

For me the worst was handed down PS1 games with awesome CD art… that just wouldn’t load ☹️ on 29 Aug 2023 05:34 next collapse

Except in the case of the Sega Master System, where the simplistic 8-bit graphics felt like a massive leap up from the terrible box art!

<img alt="Ugh" src="">

[deleted] on 29 Aug 2023 09:03 next collapse

. on 29 Aug 2023 11:47 next collapse

probably the nostalgia talking, but it was satisfying having all your games look the same on the shelf on 29 Aug 2023 13:17 collapse

The common style is iconic, but that plain grid on a white background is a pretty boring style.

That said it did evoke a little imagination, especially with the manuals. on 29 Aug 2023 13:24 collapse

Ugh, yeah those identical cartridges. The cases they came in had some ok art sometimes, but it was always in the middle of that ugly grid. on 29 Aug 2023 05:47 next collapse

A couple of examples from the comments of another post:

<img alt="" src="">

Source of the image: Retro 19 – Abu Simbel, Profanation | Commodore Spain

<img alt="" src="">

Source of the image: El confidencial on 29 Aug 2023 06:27 collapse

Spanish developers using Alfonso Azpiri’s art for their games is actually genius. If I was a kid in the late 80’s I would have bought game over or R.A.M the moment I saw the cover. on 29 Aug 2023 05:50 next collapse

Always so kick ass


Have you seen the cover art for the first MegaMan game? lmao

<img alt="" src="">

Even funnier with the boasting of “state of the art high resolution graphics” at the top. Though to be fair, the actual game looks infinitely better than that cover. on 29 Aug 2023 06:24 next collapse

Even funnier with the boasting of “state of the art high resolution graphics” at the top.

At the time, this want really that inaccurate. There weren’t many video games with the same quality.

The only reason it’s laughable now is because it’s been 35 years since the claim was made. on 29 Aug 2023 10:42 collapse

No, it was inaccurate, even at the time. The Famicom was built to cost and and mainly used cheap off-the-shelf components that were already obsolete when the system first released in 1983. The NES released in North America the same year as the Commodore Amiga, a system that actually was cutting edge, and represented a big leap forward in what home computers could do graphically. By the time Mega Man released, the Amiga was on it's second revision and other home computers were rapidly catching up to it's capabilities.
While Mega Man was one of the best games on the NES, it ran at the same resolution as every other game on the system, and was stuck working within the same limited color palette and low sprite limit that were more than five years behind the curve when it released. on 29 Aug 2023 08:19 next collapse

I don’t know which I love better

  1. This isn’t even the right color scheme for the character, so it’s not like they misinterpreted the sprite
  2. Rock over here looks like he shit himself upon seeing a Mettaur and is trying (and failing) to pretend he didn’t.
  3. Mega Man doesn’t even use a gun, he uses a Buster. The only time Mega Man has used a gun are instances that parody this boxart or rare occasions like when his internet incarnation uses the Gun Del Sol during crossover events with Boktai on 29 Aug 2023 10:50 next collapse

God damn, that cover art is so weird. It belongs in a Scientology propaganda pamphlet. on 29 Aug 2023 10:55 next collapse

Looking at this cover art again now, it kinda reminds me of AI-generated art lol on 29 Aug 2023 11:06 collapse

I love bashing AI art but in AI art it’s usually the details that you spot at second glance that makes it fall apart. The Mega Man cover is just fundamentally messed up to a degree where even AI art is miles ahead. on 29 Aug 2023 11:18 collapse

Yeah true, AI art is more “looks OK at first glance, but smaller details are messed up”, while this one is the opposite of that so “smaller details are actually fine, but as a whole it looks quite messed up” haha on 29 Aug 2023 11:20 next collapse

He does make a face like he doesn’t want to be seen in that suit and with his frog legs. on 29 Aug 2023 12:35 next collapse

If you really want to experience the magic of a good and a terrible covert art check the us version of ico compared to the japanese/eu cover art. Now, that’s gonna be fun… on 29 Aug 2023 13:15 collapse

The american Ico cover is a crime against art on 29 Aug 2023 12:51 collapse

On the other hand, the European box art is fucking awesome

<img alt="" src=""> on 29 Aug 2023 13:26 collapse

Other than Dr. Wiley lookin’ like fuckin’ Mark Twain, that is pretty sick. Actually, fighting Mark Twain would be sick, too. on 29 Aug 2023 05:57 next collapse

Last panel inaccurate, games were vibrant and awesome

Just like the ones today that will feel amateurish compared to future immersive games. Give it time on 29 Aug 2023 11:25 next collapse

Perhaps like this?

<img alt="" src=""> on 29 Aug 2023 13:22 collapse

I like this version better! on 29 Aug 2023 13:18 next collapse

It’s a little less impressive when I got my 8-bit console after 16-bit ones were already out, but that didn’t stop me from playing. on 29 Aug 2023 13:22 collapse

Yeah, I played them a little out of order too, but I never cared as a kid. on 29 Aug 2023 19:11 collapse

Games today (also games in the mid 90s) tend to focus on graphics and not as much gameplay, problem with this is that they tend to age poorly, which is why Atari, Famicom, and C64 games are well remembered and still being played to this day but Amiga games aren’t as much, they were primarily designed for graphics and thus look dated today.

It’s also why many Indie games embrace the retro style and game mechanics instead of going for graphical wows. These games are just relevant and enjoyed for longer. on 29 Aug 2023 08:18 next collapse

Remember the coverart for Phalanax and how it had NOTHING to do with the game at all? And when asked the company said they simply put a cover they thought would be eyecatching.

Why a random old coot with a banjo on a rocking chair would accomplish that is beyond me on 29 Aug 2023 11:21 collapse

When everything is spaceships and big men with guns. You might ask whats this thing with old man and a banjo? on 29 Aug 2023 08:39 next collapse

VHS covers were the same way.

None of this is in the movie.

Also, it’s a terrible movie that was on Mystery Science Theater 3000. on 29 Aug 2023 12:06 next collapse

It depends on the movie, og terminator VHS slip art is fucking great. Also honorable mention to monty python and the holy grail. on 29 Aug 2023 13:23 next collapse

The VHS covers of the 80s-90s Godzilla movies were so good. I still have those tapes for the art. on 29 Aug 2023 13:44 collapse

It was apparently worth the time and money to make four of these movies. on 29 Aug 2023 13:45 collapse

And the star of two of them, Miles O’Keefe, hates the ones he was in. He praised MST3K for being so merciless. on 29 Aug 2023 12:34 next collapse

I think it’s still true, after all the success of minimalist games (like vvvvv) and similar concepts is a tangible proof of that. Than, if we go back to the past, both atari and nintendo games used the in-game gaphics on the cover art. I remember getting into games cover art after that avgn cover art christmas episodes…side note: they’re still fun, give it a watch of you want. on 29 Aug 2023 13:15 collapse

I dunno if that’s the same. VVVVVV at no point indicates it’s supposed to represent anything more complex than what it looks like, it just embraces minimalism as it is. on 29 Aug 2023 14:19 collapse

You’re right on this…that was to say that minimalism never disappeared. I mean, as the technology evolved we adopted complex and detailed graphics. Of course, that was what they could do with what they had. Still, some atari games were complex, if not cryptic, some would be now full arg. Like that swordquest series, with modern technology that would have been a huge arg. on 29 Aug 2023 12:41 next collapse

My favorite

<img alt="" src=""> on 29 Aug 2023 13:06 next collapse

How have I never seen this before? on 29 Aug 2023 13:13 next collapse

I love that they brought back Bad Box Art Mega Man in Street Fighter x Tekken on 29 Aug 2023 13:14 next collapse

I love this one. Why is his face off center? Why does he have a normal gun? on 29 Aug 2023 15:54 next collapse

So many questions…I want to know who paid real money for this on 29 Aug 2023 16:01 next collapse

The 80s on 30 Aug 2023 07:21 collapse

At least in Mega Man 2 he looks like a slightly more normal dude in riot gear with a gun.

<img alt="" src=""> on 30 Aug 2023 07:58 collapse

He put all his points into thighs and had none left over for neck. on 29 Aug 2023 19:43 next collapse

I remember there being some sci-fi shootet game for the SNES that had some old fart playing a banjo on the cover. What was that game? on 29 Aug 2023 21:32 collapse

Phalanx? on 30 Aug 2023 08:02 collapse

I just googled it, and what the fuck?

It looks like the artwork guy got one order for a sci-fi videogame, and one order for a hilbilly folk band album, and was like “I think I know how to halve my workload!” on 31 Aug 2023 12:38 next collapse

It’s certainly a puzzling design… but I guess it did its job. We’re still here talking about it!

…that said, I don’t know a darn thing about the actual game… on 08 Sep 2023 02:51 collapse

OMG? What? on 29 Aug 2023 19:54 next collapse

This is how I feel about mobile games. Even the good mobile games will have some epically animated scene that shows all out war between a bunch of magical badasses with explosions and all kinds of epic shit.

Then the gameplay is some low effort turn based game where the characters barely move and the attack effects are pathetic light shows. on 29 Aug 2023 19:56 next collapse

To be fair actually sick effects and attacks would probably take like 30 seconds per turn. Looking at you final fantasy VII on 29 Aug 2023 20:15 next collapse

But, I’ve been told my entire life that FFVII is literally the solely greatest thing ever and is itself the 2nd coming of christ its apparently so perfectionly good. on 30 Aug 2023 07:40 collapse

It is. Doesnt mean the turns aren’t long though on 30 Aug 2023 08:16 collapse

30 seconds per turn (…) Final Fantasy

I’m pretty sure that’s minutes, not seconds. on 29 Aug 2023 21:23 collapse

Can’t forget the microtransactions.

Mobile games could have been so much better than they turned out to be. on 03 Sep 2023 17:07 collapse

How I feel now everytime I load up a new 8bit indie game. I want those kinds of game mechanics. I want those style of games from the perspective of playstyle. I do not enjoy 8bit graphics. on 03 Sep 2023 17:14 collapse

My experience has been that 8-bit on the consoles in the 1980s is very different from 8-bit in most indie games right now.

The art direction in old games felt more polished and easier to look at. on 03 Sep 2023 17:18 collapse

Yeah. I have a similar experience. Those developers were working pretty hard within the constraints of the mediums they were working with and they made some truly amazing stuff as a result. I feel like 8bit is an attempt at nostalgia in new games and it doesn’t land for me. I know I’m probably in the minority. That’s okay though.