My sanctuary. NOTE
I think I've got the way this works figured out now, but I had already released this same post on friday evening. A few hours later the site went down, so basically no one noticed. I have been visiting the site for quite a while now, and I know that my favourite articles involve getting to see other peoples setups and found treasures, so I'm reposting again in the hopes that others will get the same satisfaction out of seeing my setup. Sorry if the whole reposting thing isn't kosher - it won't happen again.
So I've been visiting the site passively for over a year now, and I figured it's about time that I started getting more involved. All the cool kids seem to start out with an introductory post that includes their gaming setup, so I'm just going with the flow. Also I'm pretty proud of my setup, so it doesn't take much of an excuse for me to try and show it off.
I consider myself a collector, and currently I've got about 1100 games, although I suppose that it should be pointed out that about 20% actually belong to my brother. I've probably only played 15% of them personally, but of the games that I do play (mostly CoD4), I play a lot. Like 50 days on CoD4. I would have to say that after CoD4, my second favourite game of all time is Microsoft Excel. I know it's pathetic, but I really enjoy designing spreadsheets, of which my pride and joy is the workbook that contains all of the details of my gaming collection (more on that later).
When I posted this before, Pure Poison queried where I got the games from which I thought was a good question. I try to buy the recent stuff a few months after it comes out from Wal-Mart/Best Buy/Superstore/EB Games. The older stuff I like to get off of ebay/goozex.com(great site that unfortunately excludes Australia)/Cash Converters (a pawn shop). I buy a lot of guides from amazon. It was also suggested that I post again later with close ups of the games, but that's probably not something I'm going to do for my entire collection. As it stands, for those interested in what games I have in specific, the pictures at the bottom of the post are a high enough resolution to read most of the spines of the games. I know, it's lazy.
My PC and Sega station in the same shot as part of my handheld shelves.
I spend the (vast) majority of my time in my gaming room, so I've put a lot of effort into it. The long white wall shelves I painted and installed, and most of the cabinetry came from Ikea. The shelves above my good TV that hold all my recent generation console games are 12' 6" long, and the handheld shelves above my old TV are 7' long, totalling about 64'. Out of curiousity I took a tape measure to my games, and stacked on top of each other, the contents of these shelves come out to over 50', which I thought was a pretty novel way to measure game quantities.
Continuing on around the room, is some exercise equipment, and my gaming closet. Back to the left side of my console shelves for a closer look.
Some of my favourites here include Counterstrike, Dreamfall, KOTOR, Bomberman, Mario Power Tennis, Skies of Arcadia, Atelier Iris, Dynasty Warriors, and Final Fantasy X, X-2 and XII. I collect a lot of good games, but I also get a lot of volume so there's some filler in there like World War II Combat: Iwo Jima (horrible, horrible game, among the most broken that I've got), and ATHF: ZNPA which is also exceedingly not-fun.
The middle (barren) section of my console shelves. Mostly just swag.
Of note here is some stuff that Funktastic was kind enough to help me obtain including the Jap Club Nintendo Mario Gamecube Controller, and the Club Nintendo Wii controller that works as a TV remote. The LoZ: TP Hyrulian Shield and Master Sword set is pretty sweet, and the Hanafuda cards there are alright I guess. Games that I particularly enjoyed are MGS3: Subsistence (the best example of storytelling in a video game that I've ever come across, although Dreamfall was really engaging too), Phantom Brave and Metal Saga (because I really enjoy dungeon crawling/ level grinding).
The right section of my console shelves - current generation of systems.
On the middle shelf on the left is one of the preorder bonus plush toys from Elebits. It's the creepy blue one, so I keep it inside the box. My favourite games here include CoD2, and CoD4, which are two of the best shooters ever made hands down. I've probably got 90 days played between the two of them, and I honestly consider being in the top 200 X360 CoD4 players worldwide more of an accomplishment than the degree I just finished. Other favourites include Portal, TF2, Dokapon Kingdom and MGS4.
My good TV.
Under my console shelves is my good TV - a 52" Sharp Aquos LCD, that lets me play CoD4 and MGS4 in 1080p. I've got a small soundsystem on the bottom left, my HD Digital Cable box bottom right, and my Dreamcast top left. The item on the top right is a Joytech Control Center, which allows me to route my audio through the soundsystem, and provides 6+ extra inputs for all of my consoles. It's an exceptional product that I strongly recommend for anyone who wants to hook up a bunch of equipment, and I wouldn't be able to keep all of my consoles in a ready-to-play state without it.
The backside of my TV is a veritable clusterfuck of cables. The left section under my console shelves is my Nintendo cabinet.
I've got my older Nintendo games in this cabinet, and I keep the more recent Nintendo systems here.
My more recent Nintendo Handhelds and my SNES games
I don't have a more visible way to display my SNES games which is unfortunate because I've got a lot of the good ones (although I have to admit that I'm totally jealous of Funktastic's SNES collection - it's pretty incredible). Some of the best I've got include BoF 1&2, Chrono Trigger, Contra III, Earthbound, FF II&III, Harvest Moon, LoZ: LttP, Secret of Evermore, Secret of Mana, Sunset Riders, Super Mario RPG, and Super Metroid.
My NES games
I've got a few good ones here including Contra, Contra Super C, Contra Force, Final Fantasy, Metal Gear, Metroid, River City Ransom, and the two original Zeldas.
My N64 games
Although I started with the NES and the SNES growing up, I didn't really get into gaming until the N64, so it's one of my favourite systems. I have to mention my exceptional Perfect Dark file. I confess to using the Combat Simulator glitch to get 1-4 stars on each of the challenges, and I used a gameshark to beat the Perfect Agent Difficulty of Attack Ship Covert Assault on Co-op. Other than that I was completely honest in obtaining every other star in the game, and obtaining every cheat honestly. I reached the status of Perfect Agent 1 with my multiplayer character, and frustrated friends badly enough that they refused to play multiplayer with me. It was my greatest accomplishment as a 14-year-old.
When I have friends over, the N64 is still played because its split-screen multiplayer is just unrivaled by anything that's come out since. Mario Kart 64 battle mode and Kirby Crystal Shards multiplayer are some of the best competitions ever. Rogue Squadron is another of my all time favourite games.
My other console cabinet
I've got an assortment of systems on my other console cabinet including all of my playstations. These pictures were taken a few months ago and a couple X360s ago, so now I've got my refurbished Elite here, and my other X360 on another TV. I am supremely hooked on XBOX Live but I despise M$, and particularly their lack of accountability for their hardware. I am currently playing on my 8th X360 Console. I gave the refurb that was a descendent of my launch console to Funktastic, and eventually bought a second Console just so that I can keep one up and running at all times, so now I've got two at my house.
My original Playstation and Dreamcast games.
I've got some good stuff here including a ton of FF games, and a bunch of other Square games for the original Playstation. Some of the quality stuff on the Dreamcast includes Grandia II, Shenmue, a sealed Skies of Arcadia, and recently a Marvel VS Capcom 2 that isn't pictured (go Goozex!).
The left side of my handheld shelves.
Moving onto my handheld shelves, I've got my DS, PSP, and GB/GBC/GBA games here. Unfortunately I've got a lot of really great in box GBA games since taking these photos such as Perfect Dark, Pokemon Pinball and Golden Sun that aren't pictured here. Of the stuff that is pictured here, most of it is pretty recent/standard fare, but of note is the GBC Metal Gear complete in box I found at an EB not too long ago, as well as a Final Fantasy Adventure Complete that I got off of ebay.
The right side of my handheld shelves.
I've got a couple art cells that I really like here, and the feather stylus bonus from Phantom Hourglass. I got a PAL copy of Breath of Fire III, and Tales of Eternia, and also some moonspeak Tales games. For a brief time I collected some Jap games, but I've since decided that I don't want to go down that road first because I can't understand the language, and second because the moonspeak on the spines of the games looks really out of place in my collection.
The rest of my handheld collection is unfortunately cartridge only.
I used to move around a lot, so I threw out the boxes for games because they took up too much space. Unfortunately some of these included Contra on GBA, the original Pokemon trilogy, Mario Kart GBA, Metroid Fusion and Zelda Four Swords Adventure. I've since learned my lesson, and I try to buy only complete games from places like Ebay, and Cash Converters (a pawn shop). Funktastic has a pretty sweet deal going on there with Diamond Dave, and he's kind enough to let me pick through his leftovers. I did have my photographer (Funktastic) get some close ups of these games, but I figure that the length of this post is probably already trying the readers patience so I haven't included them.
My old TV.
I kept my old TV when I got my good one and I use it mostly to watch hockey when I'm playing CoD4. I've got a VCR and my old Nintendo consoles hooked up to it, along with my original XBOX so that I can play DVDs.
I truly dislike PC gaming and I have no idea what sort of specs this machine has. The games here are all my brothers, and I'm pretty sure that the last PC game that I played was either Oregon Trail II, or the original The Sims. It does have Media Centre, so I've got it hooked up with cable and linked to my X360. It also has the undisputed greatest PC game of all time - Microsoft Office Excel. I've got a pretty sweet RE4 mousepad there.
Screenshot of my Collection File.
I really enjoy making spreadsheets, and this is the one I'm proudest of. It's got 12 tabs, and ~200k cells representing a detailed description and record of my gaming collection. I've probably spent 120 hours on it now, and it includes macros for entering new games, running reports out of the game database and sorting automatically various tabs on the file. I have modified a copy of the file for Funktastic, and would be thrilled to discuss/develop files for other people that are interested in having a record of their gaming library.
Of the things that I can bring to the community, the cataloguing/recording and organization of gaming stuff is something that I have a lot of experience with, and I plan on making future posts about these topics.
Sega station. Older Sega games.
Next to my PC I've got my pitiful assortment of Sega games. I've got some Sega Master System stuff, a Genesis, and a Saturn. Of particular note is the Nights with 3D Control pad, but other than that it's pretty much the most common games for the systems. Mostly a bunch of Sonic stuff, some Lethal Enforcers, and Alien Syndrome for the SMS.
My gaming closet.
Unlike certain members on this site (*cough* Funktastic) I prefer to keep as much of the clutter as possible out of sight. I have a closet filled with extra cables/swag so that I can keep my room tidy. I have OCD or something, so the neatness that I hope is conveyed in these pictures is actually how I keep this room at all times, except for when I have people over and we pull a bunch of controllers and games out.
Top shelf of my bookcase. Bottom shelf of my bookcase.
I got an Ikea bookcase to hold all my gaming literature and some assorted gaming paraphanalia. My old handheld graveyard is on the top shelf along with a ton of little accessories, and some GC-GBA link cables. Wii junk and some wired GC controllers on the next shelf.
I am a huge fan of game guides and I feel that the artwork and record of the gaming experience contained in these is valuable even if you consider it cheating to use them. I really like collecting things in games, and I find that it's convenient to have a list in your hand of all the things that you're trying to collect, rather than checking up on a computer screen, or worse, generating piles of garbage printoffs. Some of my favourite guides include the Zelda Collector's Edition guide, and the MGS3 guide. I've got the official guide for every Final Fantasy Playstation game I own, and I have most of the guides for the Zelda series.
Left side of my closet.
I keep the issues of NP that I read, and have a bunch of connecting cables for my Nintendo Systems here. The stack of cases houses all of my cartidge only games, as well as my game gear. The top shelf is the place in this room that houses all of my non-gaming related items. I've got some DVDs of some TV series that I like here including Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Arrested Development, ATHF, and Trailer Park Boys, along with some VHS of Married with Chlidren.
Right side of my closet.
I keep my French copies of instructions/cover inserts on the top shelf here (Canadian gamers know what I'm talking about), and other assorted swag on the top shelf. The next shelf is a pile of Atari 2600 games, and a 2600 of some sort that I bought as a single lot from Cash Converters recently. I don't know if it works, because I'm uncertain that my attempts at hooking it up have been correct, so any advice on this relic would be most welcome. (I'll probably make a plea for help about it later). I've got some historically relevant games for it such as E.T. The Extra Terrestrial, Space Invaders, Pac-Man, Ms. Pac-Man, Donkey Kong, and Asteroids, and it would be pretty cool to find out if any of them actually still play.
I've got my extra PS and SNES here as well as a Super Scope. Other than that, it's mostly just a bunch of extra connection cables.
In the top of my closet, I've stacked a TON of old system boxes and some game boxes for things that have large peripherals. It takes a good 15 minutes to take everything down out of there, and about an hour to tetris everything in a way that fits.
PARTY MODE - ACTIVATE!
I regularly have people over to play multiplayer games - something that I'll probably post about at a later time. I really like having the seating arrangement with two perpendicular TVs so that I can keep more stuff going at once. Being able to fold out the couch is a pretty sweet way to increase the seating. Funktastic and I occassionally get CoD4 online going on both TVs, so that if I die on my screen I can commandeer his controller, effectively gaining an extra life (I take Hardcore S&D seriously).
That's pretty much the end of what I've got to say. I hope that the quantity of pictures (thanks Funktastic) is apology enough for the length of the post. I must say that I'm quite grateful for a site that allows such independent thought and consideration of gaming news and interests, and I plan on being a more active contributor to the community.