Things Only 90s Gamers Will Understand

Being a gamer now is very different from how it was when I was a child. The modern gamer is lucky. If they want the newest release they don’t even have to go to the shop and buy it. We are more connected than ever and it shows in the way that we deal with our entertainment. But it hasn’t always been that way. Here are things that only 90s gamers will get.

Wired controllers

In the modern world, gamers take these for granted but it wasn’t really until the Xbox 360 and the PS3 that these really became mainstream, before that our parents had to vault over wires every time we fancied a dozen laps on Forza

Tuning in the tv

Now if you were from a poor family you may have even had a TV with an actual dial! My first tv was black and white and had a dial. Let me tell you that playing world cup striker on that thing was a living nightmare. However even the more sophisticated TVs often needed manual tuning. The struggle was real and while we are on the subject…

Big-screen TVs

It was not like the modern world where you can handily mount a large tv on your walls. flat screens were featured on Tomorrow’s World and if you wanted any screen bigger than 24 inches then the actual tv set would be roughly the size of an adult elephant. I personally had a 28-inch behemoth and could hardly lift it without assistance.


Or even tapes for some of us! Before the PlayStation came along and made games on cd-rom the games came on cartridges that plugged into your console. For pc gamers, we used to have games that were provided on floppy disks. Yes, I know that might sound rude, but honestly, a three and a quarter inch floppy was perfectly innocent. for us c64 users we had to use tapes. Trust me you would never complain about 7 second load times if ever you had waited for a game to load via tape!

Buggy games stayed bugged

In this day and age games are released that are littered with bugs. This is annoying but often those titles are patched to resemble something at least vaguely playable. However back in the 90s, the internet was very much in its infancy meaning that if a game was released with lots of bugs it would spend its entire life with bugs. Fortunately, games were far more polished back then. These days it feels like the end-user is a glorified tester!

You had to be able to read.

Voice overs that we now take for granted were the work of science fiction in the nineties. About the closest we got was when you had defeated someone on Mortal kombat the game yelled “finish him” most games displayed dialogue via the medium of the written word. Well, it was a good way of getting young people to read, wasn’t it?

We were scared of square eyes

We might have VR these days where the screen is literally an inch from our face, but in our formative years, unless we were sat about 70 metres away from the TV screen out parents would warn us about getting square eyes. To this day I’m yet to meet a person with square eyes.


These days the two primary methods of video game controllers are a controller or a mouse and keyboard. For a long time, we had what was known as a joystick. Not only did it have a name that made it sound like a sex toy it also looked like a frigging sex toy.

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