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What Moment Hooked You as a Gamer?

Well, will wonder never cease? The Non-Fiction Gaming crew has been asked a question for our Theme week articles for the first time. The folks over at Man Crates asked the following question in celebration of their Super Retro Gaming Crate:

“We want to hear about the moment that really hooked you as a gamer. What was that one level that took you so long that you can vividly remember the when you finally beat it?

We also want to hear what items you would want in a personal nostalgia gaming crate. What sort of things really bring all those memories rushing back? Is it certain music? Foods you always used to snack on? Or maybe even an old arm chair that you always used to play in?”

Man Crate Retro Games
Man Crates loves the NES generation.

Let it never be said that Non-Fiction Gaming does not willingly lose ourselves in Nostalgia!


Senior Stiv

The one moment that got me hooked on gaming would have to be beating Yoshi’s Island. The last level was insanely difficult trying to beat Bowser. I went through it over and over, but the massive bowser would reach the platform and defeat me. But, after taking a quick break and returning to the level I finally stopped that monstrosity.

He is pretty intimidating

Realizing a little perseverance and ingenuity did while playing a game ends with a feeling of satisfaction, I continued on with more difficult games the first being Ocarina of Time which also took sometime beating, but I enjoyed every hour I played through.

If there was one thing I would love to get in a gaming crate, would honestly be Yoshi’s Island. My SNES and several of those games are now in my older brother’s hands. I didn’t think I would miss it, but now I’m thinking about it I would love to play that game again and relive my most memorable gaming moment.



As far as I know, I’ve always played games since I was a young lad and have many memories associated with the good old NES. The earliest memory I have is asking my parents if they knew how to set up the NES so I could play while my brothers were at school, so I assume that happened before I was 7, or whatever age kids start school.

All the childhood memories are flooding back!

Other memories I have include once managing to beat the infamous hover bike stage in Battle Toads (at least I think so), going over to a family friends place to play whatever games they had rented (one time they borrowed Zelda but I don’t remember actually playing it myself). I think I got most excited as a child when I received a copy of Pokemon Blue after months of watching the anime every morning. That was great.

As for a crate full of nostalgic game related things, I would put an entire video rental store (in this scenario, I got this gaming crate from Hogwarts). Nothing takes me back to my childhood like the memory of going to the local video store with my parents and borrowing incredible SNES games like Megaman X or Pocky & Rocky. Actually, I would put a copy of Pocky and Rocky into a retro game case just so other people can experience the joy (and brutal punishment) of that game.


Aidan B

Is there a moment that you know you’re a gamer? It’s hard to tell since games have been such a core experience in my upbringing. Ever since my brother and I received a Sega Mega Drive (which still works and will be getting set up son) from our aunt, I’ve been a gamer. Sitting on the lounge floor at Christmas and playing Sonic or Super Mario World (we got a SNES years later) are some of the fondest gaming memories I have.

…But which did you like better!?

I think developers are starting to realise the power of nostalgia and are using it against us. Remakes of Zelda, Sonic Generations, subtle nods to games of the eras gone by. It’s through them doing this that we know we are still gamers. It’s that little pang of recognition when the theme for Green Hill Zone is playing or playing an old game and uncovering some new secret.

What reminds me, most of all, that I am a gamer are the times a friend of mine and I played Mario Kart for six months without getting bored or how we can play the same missions in Splinter Cell Blacklist over and over and find something new to laugh about each time.


James Wilson

The moment I was hooked as a gamer was when I first played through the Crash Bandicoot series on the PlayStation 1. Sony and Naughty Dog’s answer to Mario swayed me into nagging my parents into purchasing other games for the system, and ultimately led me to become the gamer I am today.

You have to respect someone with eyebrows that thick

The level that I can vividly remember beating, and what arguably made me get more Crash games, was the final race in Crash Team Racing against Nitros Oxide; that took me ages!

I can also recall difficult Game Boy games such as Mickey Mouse and the Bugs Bunny Crazy Castle and still remember the catchy music from both games, and the agony that followed it. I also really enjoyed the soundtrack to the Metal Gear games. More recently Dark Souls 2 and Shovel Knight stand out as games where I really wanted to just get past a specific level.

When it comes to what I’d personally like to see in a Retro Crate – posters and tshirts all always good and key rings, old game cartridges and small retro toys would be great additions. Things like game soundtracks and art would also be cool. (Though I’d doubt you’d be able to fit an arm chair in there!)


Ed – Ed

As someone who was relatively late to gaming, now cult classics formed the basis of my introduction. I was extremely fortunate to be exposed to both Duke Nukem 3D and Shadow Warrior somewhere between the ages of 7 and 10.

I’m sure that impacted my upbringing as much as it did my attitude to gaming. The simplicity of both of those FPS’ still has my respect- this is a day and age where one didn’t have to look up or down in shooters. Goldeneye did however create the necessity to treat the world as greater than 2.5D.

Dual wielding was a really big deal in this graphically advanced shooter
Dual wielding was a really big deal in this graphically advanced shooter

I know it’s not just me that was a fan of these blood spilling episodes, Shadow Warrior, Duke Nukem and Goldeneye have all undergone a recent reboot in one form or another. Though causing someone’s heart to explode with your mind from a distance seems so much more morbid with the advancement of our ability to render graphics.


Nasty Nate – (Ed)

Long, Long ago, back in the never-never time, I received a GameBoy. This, as many of you would know, was the highlight of my short life to that date. Obviously, I wasted hours on Tetris, but it wasn’t until my dear old mother splashed out on Pokemon (Red) that I discovered what gaming could really give.

Living vicariously through him, Ash became an extension of my young self- ambitious, curious and eager to explore every square inch (or pixel) of the world around me. Whilst near bankrupting my parents through use of countless batteries, hour upon hour was spent trying to “catch ’em all”. I remember the frustration of losing Zapdos, as I took upon that quest equipped with just a couple of great balls, rather than the numerous Ultras I should have equipped myself with.

As I grew older into my teenage years, I lost interest in the handheld device (in favour of others) and didn’t really get back into gaming full time until I joined the “real” world and could afford to build an adequate PC. I haven’t kept up with, let alone played any other the newer versions of Pokemon since, but it will always have place in own personal gaming hall of fame.


That’s it from us this week.

But we want to know what got YOU into gaming? Any special achievement or memory that comes to mind?

How about nostalgic loot you’d like to see in a gaming crate? Let us know in the comments!


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