My First Computer and Gaming History – Tagged

I was tagged again by Brent Ozar in which I am asked about my first computer and favorite games.

The first computers I used were Apple II and and the TRS 80 Color Computer. Gotta love the Tape drive goodness, and I actually used punch cards with the Apple. Yes, I am old school.

TRS 80

TRS 80 Model 3

However, the first computer we owned was the TRS 80 Model 3. I learned to program BASIC on one and when my father had a falling out with a contracted programmer, I had to customize the program written specifically for his business. It had two 5.25 floppy drives, but had no sound and the graphics were laughable. I did however, create and play text based adventure games on it.

The first IBM machine I was able to use was an 8088 with a monochrome green screen monitor. It ran at a whopping speed of 4.77 Mhz which is slower than a modern calculator today, and no hard drive.

I never had access to Atari computers, so the first gaming computer I used was the Commodore 64. It had amazing graphics for the time. I didn’t own one but had several friends who did. I was the only one with transportation, a moped (stop laughing, it was cool when I was 15), and I would transport the umm… “back up” copies from friend to friend back in the day. So, I was constantly playing C64. My favorite game was Racing Destruction Set. Though it took literally 5 minutes to load, I loved staying up late at night and creating diabolical new tracks for my buddies and I to race the next day.

At this time Arcades were in their golden age and I spent a good deal of my childhood in them experiencing nirvana one quarter at a time. My personal favorite is Asteroids, and I once played it for 48 hours on one quarter to try to break the world record. A guy at Disney Quest saw me playing Asteroids last year, and tried to hustle me out of a buck at it. He failed and I made him take this picture of me with his dollar.


Disney Quest, Orlando

Other gaming experiences that rank very high with me are Wing Commander series, Civilization series, Doom, and various Dungeons and Dragons and Lucas Arts games on the PC.

As far as console gaming experiences I would list my favorites as Adventure, Yars Revenge, and Pitfall! for Atari; the original Super Mario and Zelda series for the Nintendo NES; Grand Theft Auto Vice City for Playstation 2; and the Halo Series for Xbox and 360.

I’ve mentioned in prior blog posts that I have a huge video game collection and am obviously addicted to electronics. I just thought I’d close this post with a picture of some of my favorite things. They include my Mario statue, a new Atari 2600 sealed in the box, a new original Gameboy also in the box, and an original Nintendo NES with the R.O.B. Robot also complete.


What about my readers? What was your first computer and your memorable gaming experiences?

9 comments to My First Computer and Gaming History – Tagged

  • Jason Griffith

    I actually didn’t get my first computer until I was in college and could afford it myself. I had my roommate help me build it from scratch and don’t really remember any of the specs off hand.

    I’m not one for collecting for the sake of collecting, so when I have a console or a game it comes out of the box and it gets played. I still have my original Nintendo but don’t even remember what the box looked like, though I do know we got it for Christmas the year it came out. My mom sold off most of our games while I was in college, so the collection of games to go with it is rather sad compared to what it used to be.

    Mario Bro. I, II, & III along with Duck Hunt and Super Track & Field still rank among my favorite games as does Zelda, Final Fantasy, and Wizardry IV: Knight of Diamonds, and Baseball Stars.

    The closest arcade growing up was 57 miles away, so while I may have been able to get 48 in on a single quarter, I would never have had an opportunity to even make an attempt at it.

    My favorite console game of all time is Shining Force II for the Sega Genesis. I can play that game over and over, start to finish, and still want to play it again.

    Getting away from console games though, Dungeons & Dragons is easily my favorite game outside of technology. But, I do use a lot of programs, spreadsheets and databases I make to help me in my playing. I have played several D&D games on console and PC, but they just can’t compare with the real deal.

  • Andrew

    Have you played Atari today? 🙂

  • Tad

    What no captcha?!

    VIC-20 for me, ah the good ol’ days of typing in compute’s basic programs and saving to tape (not really that good). doom definitely was fun either death match on 486’s or even single player.

  • michelle

    my first computer was a trs80 – the color computer that you hooked up to the computer and it was just a keyboard. then my dad gave me the big one piece computer as pictured above. i loved programming in basic. i was 9 yrs its so funny to talk to about it because most people dont know what im talking about, or even the cassette tapes with the lovely screeching i still have my original trs80 color keyboard that connects to the tv with the manual. i try to get my kids to play with it just so they can learn basic and make goofy doesnt work of course, but its great to try. nice to know someone else use these

  • Josh u

    Would you sell that Mario? I really want one. Please get in touch


  • Thanks for your interest, but I can’t part with Mario, much to the chagrin of my girlfriend.

  • josh u

    Alright, well if you ever decide to part with him in your later years, please get in touch with me. Id be willing to pay 350$ + Shipping on him. Thats what I can do. Best Wishes

  • billy

    me too, i am so interested to buy this mario, willing to pay $500 + shipping

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