A Month of Throwback Thursdays: April


In case you missed them, here are all my #throwbackthursday posts for the month of April.

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“It was a huge moment for me…”

kfuQuestion: What’s one of your earliest memories of video games?

The first really memorable moment with a video game was the day I bought Kung Fu. I remember my parents let me stay up a little late to play the game and I was on my last life before I had to go to bed. Somehow, I managed to go from the first level to the final boss all in one life. It was a huge moment for me where I felt this major sense of accomplishment. My parents even made a point of congratulating me, but I’m sure they were more excited that everyone was finally going to bed.

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The other franchises let you experience the adrenaline and horror of war, or deep fantasy worlds, or pro sports. A Mario game lets you pretend to be a middle-aged chubster hopping onto a turtle shell.

― Jeff Ryan, Super Mario: How Nintendo Conquered America


Super Mario by Juyan16

“I could never get past the first goomba…”


Before I really got hooked, I must have played around with some of the early off-brand consoles at friends’ houses. I know because I remember flashes of light and sound and fun. Maybe some space monsters. However, the first clear memory I have of video games is playing a cocktail table version of Super Mario Bros at a hamburger joint in a college town near my family’s farm in upstate New York.

We were pretty poor, so we didn’t get to go to the burger joint very often. Sometimes in the summer, though, my mom would take us on the way home from the beach. On those days, I’d rush through my food as quickly as I could and plop myself down at the game table. I could never get past the first goomba, but I played over and over again just the same. I was 8, and I was hooked.  

Well, a handful of trips after I discovered the game, my mother must have figured out how many quarters were disappearing down that black hole. She finally came to investigate. One look at that goomba killing Mario, and she forbade me from ever again “wasting my savings on this stupid trash.” In addition to being frugal, my mother also prided herself on sheltering her children from what she considered mindless entertainment, especially anything violent. Just to give you an idea: on our three-channel television, we were only allowed to watch PBS— and only for an hour a day.

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Inside Every Adult…


I think that inside every adult is the heart of a child. We just gradually convince ourselves that we have to act more like adults.

– Shigeru Miyamoto 

“I Can Beat My Dad at This”

Welcome to the very first post in the Gamer Stories series! Each post in this series will feature a story, anecdote, tale, yarn, etc., from a gamer about his or her experiences with games. If you’d like to tell your story, please get in touch.


Super Mario Bros. was special for so many reasons. It was the first video game I owned, the first I beat, and it came on the same cartridge as the premier shooting sim of its day: Duck Hunt. But, the real reason it sticks out for me is that it was the first time I can remember thinking, “I can beat my dad at this.” Which was, just… huge. Obviously, my sofa cushion forts had been better and more livable than his for years, but Super Mario Bros. was something we both played, and that I won.

Brendan Hurt
San Francisco, CA:

Hi, my name is Brendan and I’m a gamer. They say admitting it is the hardest step.

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