Life As A Retro Gamer: Meet Tony
Whether it’s the high score tables, challenges or just forming friendships, Antstream Arcade is all about community and bringing gamers both young and old together. With our carefully-curated selection of retro classics the starting point, there’s a whole new virtual neighbourhood at the heart of what we do.
For our next gamer profile we present Tony McPartland, known as Tee-1000 on Antstream, and a fervent Antstream Arcade supporter. Why not friend him up, and throw a challenge his way – if you dare!
Name: Tony McPartland
Antstream Arcade Handle: Tee-1000
First Gaming Love: Amstrad CPC464
Favourite Games on Antstream Arcade: The Last Ninja Trilogy, Head Over Heels, Dizzy
Favourite Challenges: Mine All Mine (Spinmaster), High Stakes Pinball (Nitroball), Bug Stomper (Act Fancer)
Many gamers began their video games experience by sharing a computer or console with their siblings, and this week’s Antstream Arcade fan, Tony McPartland, is a prime example. “My first gaming experience was at the age of four when my older brothers and I got an Amstrad CPC for Christmas,” remembers Tony. “We played Roland On The Ropes, Harrier Attack and Oh Mummy non-stop until we gradually built up a larger collection of games.” But despite nailing his colours to the Alan Michael Sugar mast early doors, there is no animosity towards the Amstrad CPC’s rivals for Tony. “Our neighbours had a Commodore 64, and another group of friends had a ZX Spectrum, so I was lucky enough to experience all three computers, and enjoy the huge variety of games.” The result was Daley Thompson and Combat School tournaments during which many joysticks made the ultimate sacrifice.
Tony On The Ropes
With Tony spending all his money in the arcades, his family agreed to sell the beloved Amstrad CPC in order to fund the purchase of a Nintendo Entertainment System. “I have wonderful memories of discovering games for the first time in the arcades,” he says, “and would then try and get my hands on the home computer or console conversions of my favourites.” The late Eighties period in particular was a memorable time for Tony, and he cites several Antstream Arcade staples among his favourites. “Rygar, Bad Dudes, Double Dragon, Joe and Mac, Golden Axe, Final Fight, Ghosts ‘n’ Goblins, Strider and Sunset Riders – the conversions didn’t always live up to their arcade originals, but I was always fascinated and amazed at the programming skills in porting those games over, especially given the hardware limitations.”
Tony In Time
The only time Tony has ever parted with a console or game was as a teenager, usually when forced to sell in order to fund another purchase. “I am very nostalgic for my retro games, and I think that a big part of collecting and playing these older games is that it transports me back in time.” Having always played a big part in his life, replaying retro games is like reliving that point in his life. “I could fire up Kung Fu Master now, and would all of a sudden vividly remember the arcades where I played it in as a child, or sitting around in my bedroom with my best friends and playing it on the Amstrad 464.” With hundreds of retro games available, Antstream Arcade is the perfect destination for Tony to trigger those warm and pixelated memories.
Tony In The Caves
Today, every room in Tony’s house is a game room of varying degrees. “You could open any random drawer and find a Gameboy, or look under the bed or couch and find a Game Gear or Nintendo DS waiting to be played!” he smiles. This dedication to ensuring no potential gaming time is missed is most admirable, but he never forgets his responsibilities. “I enjoy spending most of my free time with my family – I am already looking forward to schooling the kids in Goldeneye or Street Fighter!” With planning underway for a dedicated games room, Tony will one day have a retro cave in which to store all his prized gaming possessions.
Antstream Arcade Tony
As a proud eternal backer, Tony has the honour of a lifetime subscription to Antstream Arcade. “I think the streaming service is incredible and has grown so much since launch, with the number of classic games and challenges steadily increasing.” With the Antstream team constantly updating the system’s user interface, and adding new features and challenges, Tony feels there is something for everyone. “There’s a lovely sense of community and friendship on the Discord server, and it’s a place where gamers of all abilities and ages can feel at home. My favourite part of the service itself is getting into a high score battle with other users and completing challenges – it’s so cool to see it all grow.”
Another exciting facet of Antstream Arcade is the opportunity to unearth new games. “I have discovered so many fantastic games I never knew existed,” grins Tony. “Most notably, Tilt on the Commodore 64 – I am currently top of its leader board, but that probably won’t last long as there are lots of really talented players on Antstream Arcade.” While Tony is excitedly waiting for Antstream Arcade to appear on PlayStation 4, he would also like to be able to challenge his family and friends living abroad to a multiplayer session of Ikari Warriors or POW. “But the team are doing amazing work, and have taken all the feedback on board since launch. I have no doubt that the future is very bright for Antstream Arcade, and am really excited to be following them every step of the way!”