Classic Gaming Expo 2k3

August 9th & 10th, 2003

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They make a fine "breakfast burrito" in Las Vegas. These hungry patrons are about to feast upon the greatest breakfast of their lives. "What's this?" a young man in an Atari shirt gasps, "Is there some OTHER reason why this line is slightly longer than usual?" "Why... it seems to be some kind of electronic gaming thing!" a studious looking lad shouts out. "Perhaps after our breakfast we should stop by and see what all this bother is about!"
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And so, Classic Gaming Expo 2003 began, as the first guests entered, thoughts of salsa-coated eggs still dancing in their minds and bellies. Lots of freebies at the main door, flanked by one of the show's many door prizes... a brand new Rubbermaid trash can!
Or maybe it was the ArcadeWerx cabinet donated by HanaHo Games. Yeah, that's what it was.
Ah, the hustle and bustle of CGE. There were even a few celebrity vendors this year, including Howard Scott Warshaw (of 2600 Yar's Revenge, Raiders of the Lost Ark fame, in the red shirt and vest) was selling his new DVD compilation of "Once Upon Atari" while Steve Woita (of 2600 Quadrun, Taz fame) had his new PC game Clickum for sale.
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Telegames USA was back as both a sponsor and an exhibitor. Ian "ianoid" Baronofsky (just behind the TV set) may appear to have gone stark raving mad, but the thing of it is, he ALWAYS appears this way. Just humor him and everything will go fine. Ask about Dactar cartridges or something. Two of our favorite people in the world are the Cody's of, who had the brand new Klax for Atari 5200 released and for sale at the show, in addition to their usual enormous selection of classic games.
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Game developer and publishers Ubi Soft had this slick little booth demo'ing the new Prince of Persia game. For effect, they had the original game running off to the side. Hassan chop! Lots of cool stuff at the Good Deal Games/OlderGames booth, including the new ColecoVision 14-in-1 Pack and a new title by R.W. Bivins called Weird World, a text adventure for Commodore 64! What a terrific family business. Packrat Video Games brought their fab line of homebrews to CGE, with prices lower than you've seen elsewhere.
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All of the booths were busy, but not so busy that you couldn't get what you needed to get. Guests could park themselves just about anywhere and relax in front of a game. On any given moment you could find Walter Day of Twin Galaxies with a stopwatch, a pen, and a pad. I wonder if any new records were set? Celebs strolled along for most of the weekend, taking pictures, signing autographs, attending interviews, and even playing games. Here, Bill Wentworth, David Crane, and Garry Kitchen are rudely interrupted by a nosy photographer. Erm... heh.
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One of Twin Galaxies' main tournament events was the "Javelin Throw" using an Atari 2600 version of The Activision Decathlon. I don't know if anyone got close to Todd Rogers' (right) world record, but as expected, he won the tourney. Dave G and Ian play "good cop, bad cop" with some of the booth visitors. They're both pretty bad cops though, really. There were an incredible number of couples in attendance this year, which inspired this year's runner-up slogan: "Classic Gaming Expo: Where Lovers Go."
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Call it "Roundtable Dogs II" if you must. These are Roundtable members Phosphor Dot Fossils, l_lamb, Drexel923 and icbrkr chillin'. A lucky winner of the door prize contest checks his common Atari 2600 cart and finds out that he's a winner! This particular guy won a brand new GameCube with Game Boy Player. Let's not forget the table exhibitors, who brought with them a diverse range of products, from Raina Lee's 1-Up Zine to Cryptic Allusion's Feet of Fury for Dreamcast to the fascinating artifacts at the Fresno Commodore Users's Group. I spent hours in this area alone.
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The gang from were just about ready to perform. Take a look at this stage! The blocks are giant pixels! Professional Expo attendee Don Rogers describes CGE as "a community and industry event", as opposed to other shows that he refers to as "giant indoor flea markets".
Guess Don didn't find that shoebox full of rare games that he's always dreamed about!
Digital Press' version of the classic horror story "The Ring" is this video image of an Atari cartridge not registering in the system. One other difference - in one week, this young man will be dancing uncontrollably. We're not big fans of scary curses, but silly ones... yeah, we've got those.
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Who's got the biggest smile at CGE? The giant floating smiley face in the background or Video Game Bible's Andy Slaven? Apparently these retro-professionals have some serious work to do! So they parked themselves on the couches and got back to work. Gaming? Pshaw! We've got quarterly budgets to manage! The mesmerizing background animations were supplied by The C-Men, prompting the most overused gag of the show "is that C-Men on the wall?"
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As you may have noticed, this year's Expo received significant attention from the media and modern day game industry, including publishers like Midway and Ubi Soft. I wonder if that's what drew the aliens to the show? Jammin' along here is one of's performers firestARTer. His electronic music is original yet sounds like the stuff you'd hear back in the 8-bit era: catchy stuff! Do we like aliens with nice legs? Yes. Yes, we do.


Home Next
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Classic Gaming Expo 2012 Aug 11-12, 2012 HERE
Classic Gaming Expo 2010 July 31-Aug 1, 2010 HERE
Classic Gaming Expo 2007 July 28-29, 2007 HERE
Classic Gaming Expo 2005 August 20-21, 2005 HERE
Classic Gaming Expo 2004 August 21-22, 2004 HERE
Classic Gaming Expo 2003 August 09-10, 2003 HERE
Classic Gaming Expo 2002 August 10-11, 2002 HERE
Classic Gaming Expo 2001 August 11-12, 2001 HERE
Classic Gaming Expo 2000 July 29-30, 2000 HERE
Classic Gaming Expo 1999 August 14-15, 1999 HERE


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Last updated: Monday, August 16, 2010 08:34 AM