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Your average gamers these days are in their late 20s--young enough to still find new ways to destroy brain cells, old enough to worry about bills and 401Ks, and wise enough to reminisce about the good ol' days of videogames. But was the age of Pong, Atari, Mattel handheld Football, and Donkey Kong really all that great, or are we just blinded by fuzzy, warm nostalgia?
There's only one way to find out: subject today's kids to the games we played when we were their age. So we rounded up nine children of the PlayStation generation--ages 10 to 13--and forced them to play titles from the '70s and '80s. We wanted to strap the kids to brain scanners and whatnot, but...you know, child-safety laws and stuff. Instead, we just recorded their reactions. If you grew up with these classics, prepare to feel old....
Atari acents 1975
Atari's home version of its simple ball-and-paddle coin-op became the first smash-hit console and made videogames a new pastime in the swinging '70s.
Niko: Hey--Pong. My parents played this game.
Brian: It takes this whole console just to do Pong?
Kirk: What is this? [Picks up and twists the paddle controller] Am I controlling the volume?
John: I'm just going to do this [twists the paddle controller as rapidly as possible].
Tim: John, don't do that. You'll die.
Andrew: This is a lot like that game. Um, whatchamacallit--air hockey.
Sheldon: Except worse.
Andrew: Blip. Blip. Blip. Blip.
Becky: I don't even see the point of having sound on this.
Andrew: Wow. The score is tied. It's so exhilarating.
Brian: I saw a documentary on this. The game was so popular in arcades that it got jammed up with quarters.
John: In this thing? [Points to the Pong game console] …