September 26, 2022

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Playing on an old fantasy computer in “Last Call BBS”

Not everything was better in the past, but many things were different. This is also the case with computers, which differ from today’s devices in many ways. Now we can easily jump into a 30-year-old system and play games on it, when in reality this device never existed.

Written by Robert Glachtner

We’ll get the parents’ or grandparents’ old computer out of the attic and see if it’s still running. Of course we want to play games on the device, games from a long time ago, but hopefully it’s still fun.

In fact, it’s fun above all because it’s not actually old, but new and just pretending to be old games. Even the old computer system doesn’t exist at all, but it’s just a fantasy from a funny new game collection by the adventurous and extremely talented game developer Zach Barth aka Zachtronics. The game is called “Last Call BBS” It provides some descriptive levels.

Fantasy retro computer game collection

It really is a gem, the Sawayama Z5 Powerlance. The latest technology from 1991 in the best shades of intense red, black and gray is here in an intuitive PC experience – even with a graphical user interface! A simple solitaire game is already included in the calculator, but of course we want a more interesting gaming experience. We’ll just download it, though wait a minute, it’s…1991? Never mind even back then, you could already download content online, a little differently than it is with the internet or WWW today.

Zactronix

We are using our old fake computer with its virtual modem to connect to a fake machine BBS or mailbox server A – As already happened in the eighties and nineties. Upon reaching the server, we are greeted with an easy-to-use info text and a list of eight different games that we can download. Nothing more is said than done, and it only takes a few minutes! This load time – despite the real timer – is of course only part of the legacy experience and is not dependent on any actual necessity. Moreover, in the past something like this would have taken at least half an hour.

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There is a bunch of colorful games, such as a Sudoku-style logic game, an automation game and a building kit for robot models. When one of these games is downloaded, our download quota is exhausted for a while and we have to wait 25 minutes before we can “connect” again and “download” something. This is ridiculous, but of course it fits well with the old-school computer illusion that is constantly implemented here. “Last Call BBS” also offers a mysterious backstory with messages from characters such as the system administrator or the waiter. Also, as time goes on, we learn more and more facts about the legendary (fictional) computer company Sawayama Corporation.

Last Call BBS is a collection of fun and charming meta-retrogames presented in a very reasonable context.

Screenshot of a computer game "BBS' last call".

Zactronix

Retro game room show with Pixel Prophecy guest

Diese Woche, am Donnerstag, 11. August, wird in der FM4 Spielekammerl-Show (mit Host Robert Glashüttner) ab 17 Uhr „Last Call BBS“ gespielt – wie auch das Videospielhallen-Planungs-Game „Arcade Paradise“, dasneu gerade en gerade he is.

JUST is a busy, non-commercial game developer, game jam expert, video designer, and graphic designer Phil Ray Nick name Pixel Prophecy.