May 21, 2024

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Carinthians relive childhood memories at Austria's first toy museum

Carinthians relive childhood memories at Austria's first toy museum

Next to the Haus des Meeres in Vienna, the Retro Gaming Museum Vienna has been around for almost a year now – the first of its kind in Austria. Before that, the Torture Museum had been located on this site for 25 years. As you walk down the stairs, only the narrowness of the stairs reminds you of the museum's previous theme. Today you feel like you're descending into a Super Mario dungeon.

Complete contemporary history

At the museum, you are instantly transported back to your childhood and even further – straight to the beginnings of gaming. The “Magnavox Odyssey”, the world's first gaming console, is shown right at the beginning. If you look at Markus Kreiner, founder and director museumAs you listen, you will immediately notice the passion and emotions he associates with gaming. The Carinthian tells the story of each individual exhibition from memory. “We currently have about 3,500 exhibits. Our big goal is 10,000. But it has to be reasonable exhibits, not just 7,000 Xbox games,” Kreiner says.

The museum's organizers also received many exhibits as gifts and sponsors. “Some things are very rare and scarce. People know that and they still put them in our hands because they know we will take care of them.”

Big emphasis on interactivity

The big difference from other museums is the ability to interact with the exhibits. “We want people to stay here, experience things, and thus experience this contemporary history in a fun way,” Kreiner says. This means you can play almost all your old consoles at the site and experience old video game classics for the first time or play them again years later.

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“We capture people at the lowest point of their emotions — in their childhood,” says Carinthian, who himself curated a very personal display piece. “My blue copy of Pokémon for Game Boy. “My old scores from back then are still there.” Kreiner starts the game twice a year so the score doesn't get lost.

Museum founder Markus Kreiner in an interview

Planned expansion

Kreiner still has big plans for the museum. On the one hand, he wants to expand the existing room in Vienna with additional rooms: “We still have rooms left where we can create a role-playing room, for example, with Final Fantasy, World of Warcraft and Zelda. A small horror room is also planned. On the other hand, he wants Carinthian is planning to open a branch of the museum in his home country. “This will be smaller and more focused on one subject.”