Ever since i can remember I’ve loved video games. From my early days, of playing the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) to now, i have always had a passion of obtaining whatever goal that was set forth in front of me, on that wonderful glowing box called a TV. I remember Spending hours and hours trying to defeat the forces of bowser, trying to get the high score in Mortal Kombat, and saving hyrule from the evil Gannon. At that time, the most exciting games to play were the arcade machines. Although they are growing more and more of a rarity in this day and age, arcade machines, and more specifically arcades themselves brought an experience unlike any other. There was nothing like Digging through your couch cushions searching wildly for the one thing that made those wonderful machines alive, The Quarter. Armed with a pocket full of quarters, children would flock to arcades like birds flying south for winter. As a young child, i rarely had extra money to play arcade machines, which made them that much more special to me. As i get older now, the passion i once had for gaming is still there, but the ability to play is gone. Too many real life projects now get in the way. One of the many reality’s of being an adult. I remember wishing so much that i was older, now i look back, and wish i still had that care free life. As i grew up, I became very involved in the computer world.
One day i learned that there was a way to take those old video games and replay them on my computer exactly the way i remember them. People out there on the internet have been working on ways to backup and preserve the video games i once loved so that future generations will have access to them. During this process, something called Emulation was created. Emulators were written and designed to recreate the hardware of these dying systems, and in turn we were now able to play old NES Atari, Colico Vision, ECT video games on any computer we can find. As i continued to dig deeper and deeper into this world i found out that not only were classic gaming systems being emulated, but now the full stand-up coin op arcade machines were being emulated as well. The Multi Arcade Machine Emulator, or MAME for short, takes the dying world of arcade games, and gives you the ability to play them in the comfort of your home on your computer. I then found out that there were people recreating the whole arcade experience at their homes, by building full arcade machines powered by their personal computers.
From that point my arcade machine passion was started. 8-10 years ago i was heavy into researching the process to building an arcade machine. I even went out and bough a tun of buttons and controllers so i can build my own machine. But unfortunately i am very good at starting projects i never finish. Every year i get a little closer to completing my dream. This year i am determined to finish it. I have come pretty far in this project. In upcoming weeks i will post my progress on this project, from what i can remember of my early days hacking a keyboard interface, to my wood working experiments to where i am now. I hope you will join me for the ride and enjoy the trip with me.