The annual craze of Black Friday/Cyber Monday begins, and we’re here to give you an insight into the best Black Friday gifts for under $100 each that retro gamers can buy. Rather than fight it out in high street stores – risking getting caught up in embarrassing Snapchat stories, Instagram posts, and viral videos – all these early Xmas stocking fillers can be purchased online. So, rather than getting ready for battle, you can sit back, relax, and get nostalgic.
This article is split into three core areas, but the first was a true no-brainer – classic consoles! While the PS4 Pro and Xbox One X have been breaking technological boundaries, the entertainment systems of a few decades ago have been quietly making a comeback.
The first retro games console to catch our eye is the Commodore 64 (THEC64 Mini) reboot. First released way back in 1982, it broke new ground in the industry with up to 17 million units being sold. These days, THEC64 Mini allows you to experience dozens of the console’s best games in 720 HD output, add your own game and files via USB, and challenge your friends in multiplayer mode.
Another old-school console that would go perfectly with your living room decor is the PlayStation Classic which is around half the size of the original design. This iconic system was re-released just in time for Christmas 2018 and allows you to play 20 pre-loaded PS1 games with that classic controller. There’s no need to fumble around with memory cards either as your progress will be saved to the device’s internal memory (leaving those empty memory card slots to be a mere kick of nostalgia.
Finally, we couldn’t leave out perhaps the most retro games console ever made – the SEGA Genesis Mini (or SEGA Mega Drive Mini for non-US players). Released in 2019 after a few delays, you’re treated to 42 classic games with a saved state feature. This allows you to pause a game, save it, and pick up from that exact moment again at a later date rather than being forced to complete the entire thing in one sitting. It also has two controllers included so you can team up with your old friends one again.
Retro Online Slot Machines
Anyone fancy a flutter? Online casinos are known to be generous around Black Friday, with many offers doing the rounds! To get started, you can select one of the many casino bonuses from the online comparison site Casino Professor. These will give you extra money to play with which you splurge on some retro-infused slot games!
Many of these old-school slots are designed like 8-bit consoles and games. Take Roasty McFry and the Flame Busters as a prime example. Gaming studio Thunderkick may have released this in May 2017 (don’t be fooled by the 1986 claim on the intro!), but it has all the hallmarks of a SEGA Genesis special. And just like the retro games of yesteryear, you get to play the hero by joining firefighter Roasty and his team.
Books, Clothes and Props
With consoles and games out of the way, there’s one final piece of the retro gaming puzzle – accessories! Of course, there’s an endless supply of gaming souvenirs online, but here’s our pick of the bunch to wrap up the piece.
Are you a true retro gamer? Then you’ll surely be sporting one of the many classic t-shirts on offer at 80sTees! You can choose to browse through the entire collection or narrow it down to character, game or many other useful filters.
If you’re a frequent traveler or happen to live within the vicinity, there are loads of video game museums to check out. These literally span the entire globe – from the US all the way through Europe and western Russia to Japan and South Korea. Of course, the airfare will almost certainly cost over $100 to reach one of these destinations, but we’re confident most entry tickets will not.
It’s fitting that we round off with an item from what’s considered to be the best video game ever created – with The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time landing that honor according to Metacritic’s average. Now, while this instrument won’t see you transported to new worlds, if you learn the songs of this game using your shiny new Zelda ocarina then surely you’d have to be crowned the ultimate retro gamer…
But is Ocarina of Time the best video game ever created? Let us know in the comments below!
Visual journalist/Graduating student, University of Missouri-Columbia. Lover of everything in the gaming industry and an avid fan of all films!