The Obsolete Gamer Show: Ghana’s National eSports event – Playbox’s Gamers Fest


eSports is taking the world by storm as millions watch gamers compete in fighting and RTS games live and online. Most of us as used to seeing competition come from the U.S. Europe and Asia, but Africa also has a strong eSports community and we were happy to sit down with Aaron Boateng founder and event coordinator of event fest to talk about Ghana’s National eSports event, Playbox’s Gamers Fest.

We were also joined by Isaiah TriForce Johnson Founder & CEO Empire Arcadia whose work with the global eSport initiative continues to help expand eSports into new regions. It was an interesting leaning experience to discover the gaming culture with Africa and the eSports scene on the content and talk about the upcoming Gamer fest and release of a new eSports fighting game, Indie Assault that will feature an African character.

The Obsolete Gamer Show #8: The year was 2015

We’re recapping 2015! The Obsolete Gamer Show looks back at some of their funnier and interesting interviews and skits including guest clips from Jordan Weisman, Isaiah-Triforce Johnson, Regina Carpinelli, Richard Morgan and more.

We also look back on some of our favorite games and interesting gaming news stories that had an impact on the gaming world.

You can also listen or download the podcast version below.

The Obsolete Gamer Show #6: Isaiah-Triforce Johnson

We welcome CEO and founder of Empire Arcadia, world record holder and classic gamer, Isaiah-Triforce Johnson to the show this week for a candid conversation about his early days of gaming from playing his first videos games on the Game and Watch to tearing it up in the arcades of New York.

There was no subject off the table from his thoughts on gamers today to the controversy surrounding his company and how some people in the gaming community view him. Triforce wanted to set the record straight on a number of issues and we let him say his peace.

Goin’ Out West: Running the gauntlet at E3 2012

Goin’ Out West: Running the gauntlet at E3 2012

E3 2012 has come and gone, bringing forth tons of people, announcements, events and bleary-eyed game journalists who haven’t had a real meal in a week.

I was not among them.  While I attended the full event this year I did not go to cover it.  There are easily tens of thousands of others who went to do just that, so I chose not to.  I went with my other professional priorities in mind instead, leaving the thousands of blogs about the new Call of Dutygame or Nintendo‘s press conference to others.  I do not classify myself as a gaming journalist nor is reporting and writing all that I do in gaming.

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That being said there seems to be expectations from followers of my columns here and social media.  Several e-mails have been asking me where my coverage is, despite numerous public statements that I was not going to E3 to report on it.  Only now am I writing this in an attempt to satiate those who seem to expect it while also showing what I was really out there to do.

Therefore this E3 column will be different as I provide short stories and thoughts on my adventures in Los Angeles this year.

Tuesday, June 5 –

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I always skip the Monday press conferences, knowing whatever I missed can quickly be watched from a comfortable chair later and knowing whatever is shown is going to be seen when I walk the floor anyway.  I rolled into the event on Tuesday morning instead.

Got to walk the floor very little on Tuesday as I caught up with business contacts and potential business contacts along with some friends.  Notable moment came from the VIP area atop the Microsoft booth when I met Philadelphia Eagles wide reciever DeSean Jackson.  He is as tiny in person as he is fast on the field, but quite friendly.  No, I did not let him know I’m a Dallas Cowboys fan.

Wednesday, June 6 –

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Hit E3 early this day to meet-up with veteran video game journalist Rusel DeMaria, a man who has been writing about video games longer than a lot of the gaming media in attendence have been playing.  Also got to catch up with Spy Hunter world champion Paul Dean, who is always an interesting guy to talk to.

The most interesting portion of the day for me started late afternoon as the Los Angeles Kings fans began to arrive to the area.  A lot of tension existed in the area that day, as if the Kings won the Stanley Cup that night there may have been quite a moment in an area surrounded by other video game events.

Met up with Twin Galaxies founder Walter Day at the Nokiato help him out with some stuff he needed to do for the Video Games Live event taking place there that night.  This became a point for multi-tasking, as the VIP party for VGL was going on at the same time as the red carpet premiere of the film noobz at the theatre down the street.  After becoming one of the few people on earth to see exactly how Billy Mitchell primps his hair a group of us walked from the Nokia and past a sea of hockey fans and alert LAPD to the red carpet premiere.

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It was a while before our turn to walk to red carpet, where actor/producer Blake Freeman was presented with a historic award and trading card for the film.  I have to look for footage of a media interview with actor Ron Livingston to see if my accidental blurting out of “Holy ****, the guy from Office Space!” can be heard.  Exactly 45 minutes late for the Video Games Live party we had to skip the screening of the film and head for the door.

As soon as he hit the front door of the theatre, Walter Daysuddenly ran off at a full sprint.  I turned around to see the rest of our group had not yet caught up with us, then back to see Walter still running at a surprisingly high speed.  Not knowing what else to do I took off after him, as a 63-year-old man in a referee uniform shouldn’t run through a pack of hockey fans alone.

We plowed through the barricades in front of the Nokia as I tried to keep up with Walter.  He ran right into the main theatre with me after him as people we starting to take their seats.  I truly hope someone out there got cellphone video of me and Walter Day’s run through the streets of Downtown Los Angeles.  If you do, please post it or send it to me.  It has to be quite a sight.

Plopping down in the Video Games Live VIP party I noticed two things.  I was sweating half to death and the godfather of video games himself, Nolan Bushnell, was sitting 5 feet from me.  Was an honor to finally meet him, even if I was short of breath at the time.

Also glad that the LA Kings lost that night.  Not only was I not prepared to spend the night in a riot scene but a popular story subject in this space, Rachel Lara, might have been a red skidmark on the pavement outside if they had.  Luckily she arrived through the exiting hockey fans in tact that night.

Thursday, June 8 –

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This day marked the first day of the event that I actually got to play anything.  To sum that up, those who complain that football games are the same thing every year will find the new physics in Madden NFL 13 really do change the feel of the game in a big way and that I think Nintendo’s Wii U will catch on well with those that made the original Wii a big success.

A great surprise came to me this morning as me and Walter Day met up at the Nintendo booth along with Guinness World Records’ Gaz Deaves to present Isaiah Triforce Johnson with awards for his successful attempts at being the first-in-line to purchase numerous Nintendo consoles at launch.  The surprise came in the form of Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime along with a photo op alongside him.  Quite a hard fellow to get to, it was a fun thing to happen to me, even if the photos I saw later claimed I was Gaz Deaves.  I can’t quite imagine him with my haircut.

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Later hit the G4tv set for Walter to present Nikole Zivalichwith an award as well only to have the fun surprise of getting one myself while there.

For the rest of the event I got to walk the floor with Walter Day, meet up with some more folks and end up in more cellphone photos than I can count.  Ironically, despite not going to E3 to report on it I ended up meeting more people and becoming more exhausted than I have at any previous E3 event.  I am also still catching up on the trailers I actually failed to find the time to see while out there.

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Quite a fun time overall, and the slideshow to the left will show some of these very adventures.  If anyone reading this also has photos or videos of the happenings mentioned here please Tweet them to me @OriginalPSP or send them to my website at PatrickScottPatterson.com.

In the meantime I rest in this window between E3 and ComicCon as I hope and pray for no more downtown street runs.

Video Game Trading Cards to Premier at 56th Philly Non-Sports Card Show

Video Game Trading Cards

Twin Galaxies International announces that it will be an exhibitor at the 56th Philly Non-Sports Card Show to introduce the video game trading cards to the industry and media, conduct celebrity card signings and present awards.

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Twin Galaxies will display more than 200 published trading cards – including the completed “Superstars of 2011” set.  Samples of cards from the forthcoming “Superstars of 2012” set will be on hand as well. In addition to honoring video game champions who hold world records, these sets will commemorate the history of the worldwide video game industry by honoring iconic industry pioneers, historic events, landmark milestones and noted video game personalities.

A number of gaming celebrities on the cards are planning to attend the event to sign their cards for the public.  Celebrities already confirmed to attend include Billy Mitchell and Walter Day as well as CEO of Twin Galaxies International Pete Bouvier.  More appearances will be announced upon confirmation.

The Philly Non-Sports Card Show is the premier event for non-sport and entertainment card collectors. The “Philly Show” is one of the countries only exclusively non-sport only trading card shows and is the largest of its kind.

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Collectors will find a diverse array of trading cards depicting The Walking Dead to Wacky Packages and Star Wars to Marvel Comics. The show boasts card dealers, artists, publishers, manufacturers, free exclusive promotional card give-aways , and more. Exhibiting manufacturers include Breygent Marketing, Cryptozoic Entertainment, Famous Fabrics, Non-Sport Update, Rittenhouse Archives, SideKick, and shopTopps.com.

The artist line-up for the 56th Philly Non-Sports Show is outstanding and features the top sketch card artists in the field of trading cards. Those artists include: Axebone, David Gross, Rhiannon Owens, Sean Pence, Elaine Perna, and Tony Perna. Top artists from Ireland Trev Murphy and Veronica O’Connell will be exhibiting at their first-ever U.S. card show. Together, these artists
have worked on Marvel, Star Wars, Dexter, Vampirella, Bettie Page, DC Comics, and many, many other trading card titles.
Admission to the Philly Non-Sports Card Show is just $8 daily. A two-day pass may be purchased for $12. Show hours are Saturday, 10 AM to 5 PM and Sunday, 10 AM to 3 PM.

The 56th Philly Non-Sports Card Show will take place at the Merchants Square Mall, 1901 S 12th Street, Allentown, PA, 18103.

Complete show details can be found on Non-Sport Update’s website at: http://nonsportupdate.com/philly.

The Interview: Twin Galaxies Video Game Trading Cards

Twin Galaxies Video Game Trading Cards

About a week ago, we announced Twin Galaxies video game trading cards being featured in the non-sport update price guide. Obsolete Gamer was able to speak with Walter Day and Grace Snoke of Twin Galaxies International about their trading card rollout.

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How did the idea come about to create video game trading cards?

Walter: The Twin Galaxies Video Game Trading Card Set was originally created to celebrate Twin Galaxies’ 30th Anniversary. But the vision for the card set soon expanded to encompass the history of the worldwide video game industry, with cards created to honor the iconic industry pioneers, the world champions, the video game personalities, landmark milestones and events and significant people who, through their creative contributions, have enriched the global video game community. The card set already honors people including Atari Founder Nolan Bushnell in addition to the most recent world record holders on the hottest new games on the Nintendo Wii, PS3 and Xbox 360.

What were the requirements in selecting who would be on a card?

Walter: The basic requirement to be on a card is to contribute something of importance to the global video game culture, either as a business person, a creative professional or a superstar gamer.

What has the reaction been by fans and those featured on cards?

Grace:  Many of the individuals featured on cards feel honored to be on the cards.  Tommy Tallarico, for example, was excited and recommended other individuals, like Nolan Bushnell, and others to appear on cards and asked us to contact them.  The response of the fans has been curiosity and excited.  They’re interested in seeing where this goes and how it will expand.

Walter:  There has been a lot of support in the initial card sets, which resulted in us going beyond the initial 100 cards that were planned. Already, TGI has held numerous autograph sessions that featured celebrities pictured on the cards appearing at events to sign their cards. Public support for these autograph sessions has been very strong and exciting. On March 16, 2012, at the Smithsonian Institute, Walter Day presented to Nolan Bushnell (Founder of Atari) an enlarged version of his new Twin Galaxies Video Game Trading Card (#165) in front of a crowded auditorium. Both Nolan Bushnell and the audience were very appreciative of the cultural importance of the video game trading cards.

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Can you tell us a little more about the upcoming magazine issue featuring the cards?

Grace:  Sure can.  The Non-Sport Update is a bi-monthly publication which contains two parts, the magazine itself with articles and features on non-sport trading cards – like the new Big Bang Theory Cards and other cards distributed by Cryptozoic Entertainment.  This upcoming edition contains information on the 56th Annual Philly Non-Sports Card Show in Allenstown, Penn., where we will be featured and premiering our card to the non-sport trading card industry.  Inside the main magazine is a flyer that talks about the Twin Galaxies Video Game Trading Cards and information on the cards.  There’s another full page toward the back of the book, titled “Trains, Planes and Video Games” which talks about the history of video games and the fact that Twin Galaxies International and Non-Sports Update will have a feature displayed at the Smithsonian launch event “The Art of Video Games,” March 16-18.

The front cover of the Non-Sport Update Price Guide features a number of cards available in our card set and promotes the fact we will be featured at their upcoming card show.  The Price Guide contains pricing and information on a large number of card series both past and present.

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Can you tell us about some of the rare and error cards one can get?

Walter:  Rare cards are produced as limited editions that are individually numbered on the back, with each card having its own registration number. The rare cards are randomly distributed among the plexiglass collector’s cases, with the promise of at least 2-3 rare cards in each case. So far, there have been about ten cards produced with only 100 copies printed and individually numbered and five others printed with 500 copies individually numbered. In the cards planned for Series C (coming out in April at the Philly Card Show) and beyond, there are plans to produce numerous cards in limited runs of 50 cards only — and a few as low as 10-25 copies total. These cards will be distributed randomly in many of the forthcoming sets. There have been numerous cards that were printed, released in very small quantities and then with re-called due to typos that were later discovered. Already, there is competition among collectors to get these error cards, too. There have been three error cards so far and two other cards that were re-released due to data changes on the backside text.

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Do you think these cards could become valuable the way baseball cards are?

Walter:  Yes, the Twin Galaxies Video Game Trading Card Set is the gaming industry’s first set of trading cards and we hope to position it to be on a par with TOPPS baseball cards and become the definitive card set that commemorates gaming accomplishments in all genre of gaming.

What about those who want to have their card signed, any advice?

Grace: Definitely.  Throughout the year we will be doing various card signings at multiple locations.  For example, Midwest Gaming Classic, which takes place March 24-25, will be doing a card signing ceremony.  People will be able to get some cards signed at the Philly Non-Sports Card Show in April.  Information about upcoming shows, once they are solidified, will be posted on the Video Game Trading Cards website.

Some of the individuals who appear on cards will sign cards and send them back if you include a self-addressed stamped envelope.  With their permission, we may post their contact information on the website.  Understandably, some individuals may not wish to have their personal information made public.

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What would you say is the most valued card out right now?

Grace: I honestly couldn’t say.  I’m interested to see what the appraisers say in a few months.  I’d suspect that some of the cards that are rarer will be more valued, especially those that are signed by the relevant person.

Walter:  We have already been in discussions with PSA – a firm that specializes in grading and authenticating trading cards – to establish the Video Game Trading Cards as certified collectibles that are preserved and graded in the same way that TOPPS and other more establish baseball cards are.

Do you have a favorite card?

Grace:  My favorite card has to be the Video Games Live Card where I was introduced to Tommy Tallarico and his team after we presented them with their card at a Video Games Live Concert in Sioux City Iowa.  I have always loved video game music and the fact they’re being recognized for the art of music in video games with this card is awesome.

How can we keep up on changes and new releases?

Grace:  We recently launched a website dedicated to the trading cards at http://www.videogametradingcards.com.  This site will contain links to press releases, press coverage, event pictures, information on upcoming events where cards can be purchased, checklists for cards in various lists, updates on individuals who have agreed to be on cards, how to order cards and more.   The site is constantly being updated with both current and past events.