57 episodes

An award-nominated documentary and narrative audio series about video games and the video game industry — as they were in the past, and how they came to be the way they are today. History doesn't just vanish into the distance behind us; it casts a very long shadow that affects everything that comes after it, and so with The Life and Times of Video Games journalist and historian Richard Moss draws those through lines to tell fascinating stories about the past that link right back to the present. 

The Life & Times of Video Games The HP Video Game Podcast Network

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An award-nominated documentary and narrative audio series about video games and the video game industry — as they were in the past, and how they came to be the way they are today. History doesn't just vanish into the distance behind us; it casts a very long shadow that affects everything that comes after it, and so with The Life and Times of Video Games journalist and historian Richard Moss draws those through lines to tell fascinating stories about the past that link right back to the present. 

    Interview: Andrew Borman (Strong Museum of Play, PtoPOnline)

    Interview: Andrew Borman (Strong Museum of Play, PtoPOnline)

    The Strong Museum of Play's digital games curator Andrew Borman describes his deep passion for uncovering and preserving cancelled, unreleased, and prototype games. This is so much more than a vocation for him, and here you get to hear all the stories and insights he shared with me when I interviewed him for the season 4 finale, The Ghosts of Games That Never Were.
    Highlights include the stories behind cancelled Halo and Elder Scrolls games, an unreleased version of Until Dawn, an early version of Resident Evil 2, and some in-depth discussion about the significance of finding and sharing these stories. We also talk a bit about Andrew's work at The Strong and the amazing power and value of institutional backing in games preservation.
    Interview conducted January 14th, 2021.
    Links (many of these go to YouTube):

    I can't find a surviving archive of Andrew's Resident Evil 1.5 post, but here's a great Eurogamer article about the game and the community quest to preserve it

    The Strong Museum of Play

    Research fellowships at The Strong


    This page on The Tomb of Ash has info, screenshots, and download links for Core Design's cancelled Tomb Raider 10th Anniversary Edition


    Episode 31 of this show also included a segment on said 10th Anniversary Edition

    Tomb Raider's video game hall of fame entry

    Andrew has multiple videos on the Haggar Xbox demo build for a Halo Mega Bloks game. Here's the most recent one. And here's the first one.


    A video Andrew made about the Sonic Extreme skateboarding/hoverboarding game that turned into the Sonic Extreme we actually got

    Elder Scrolls Oblivion cancelled PSP game

    Andrew's Star Wars Battlefront 3 unseen PC footage video


    Andrew's video on Until Dawn's unreleased PS3 version


    VICE Gaming/Waypoint has an excellent Halo 1 oral history


    Manse was mentioned four times in Ambrosia Software's newsletter before its quiet cancellation

    Here's the Wikipedia page on Captain Comic


    Andrew's Stargate SG1: The Alliance hub page from his old website has both articles and videos

    Women in Games exhibit at The Strong

    Andrew Borman is @borman18 on Twitter


    I am @MossRC and @LifeandTimesVG on Twitter

    Thank you to my Patreon supporters for making this episode possible — especially my producer-level backers Carey Clanton, Joel Webber, Scott Grant, Rob Eberhardt, Simon Moss, Seth Robinson, Wade Tregaskis, and Vivek Mohan.
    To support my work, so that I can uncover more untold stories from video game history, you can make a donation via paypal.me/mossrc or subscribe to my Patreon. (I also accept commissions and the like over email or Ko-Fi, if you're after something specific.)
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

    • 58 min
    Chris Crawford on thinking in processes vs facts

    Chris Crawford on thinking in processes vs facts

    When I interviewed the legendary game designer and GDC founder Chris Crawford for episode 30, on his famous Dragon Speech, I asked him if he'd have pursued this dragon had he known he'd still be chasing it three decades later. He admitted that he probably would have not. He'd have instead put his energy into making more simulations, teaching people to think in a way that he only recently realised is rare.
    He calls it process-intensive thinking, and here, in this excerpt from our interview, he explains what that means, why he thinks it's rare, and how he believes it will eventually reshape our society.
    He's also written multiple short essays about this idea on his website. Here are links to a couple of them:

    https://www.erasmatazz.com/personal/self/i-really-blew-it.html

    https://www.erasmatazz.com/library/course-description-2018/object-versus-process.html

    You can find a full transcript of this soundbite at lifeandtimes.games/episodes/files/soundbite-chris-crawford-2
    To support The Life and Times of Video Games, please remember to share your favourite episodes with other people. You can also donate to the show via paypal.me/mossrc or sign up for a monthly subscription on patreon.com/lifeandtimesofvideogames (which will get you various tier-dependent bonus perks like an ad-free podcast feed and research and production notes).
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

    • 10 min
    Ghosts of Games That Never Were

    Ghosts of Games That Never Were

    What about the games that never make it to market? Do they have stories worth telling, or lessons worth learning? These are the ghosts of games that never were.
    With help from The Video Game History Foundation's Frank Cifaldi, The Strong Museum of Play's Andrew Borman, Games That Weren't author/curator Frank Gasking, Tomb Raider superfan Ash Kaprielov, and a couple of old developer interviews, I round out season four by looking at the life and death (and afterlife) of Half-Life for Mac, Desert Bus, Citizens, and Core Design's Tomb Raider: 10th Anniversary Edition — along with the strange fascination we have with games that didn't get published.
    LINKS

    PtoPOnline YouTube channel


    Tomb of Ash page about Core Design's cancelled Tomb Raider: 10th Anniversary Edition (with instructions on how to play it)


    Ash's highlights video from his Twitch livestream (and his Twitch channel)

    The Games That Weren't book

    Desert Bus for Hope


    The Video Game History Foundation blog (which includes stories of a few cancelled games as well as a cancelled Sega VR headset)

    Episode 7 - The Tomb Raider Grid


    Thank you to my patreon supporters for making this episode possible — especially my producer-level backers Chaun Huff, Carey Clanton, Rob Eberhardt, Simon Moss, Seth Robinson, Scott Grant, Vivek Mohan, and Wade Tregaskis.
    To support my work, so that I can uncover more untold stories from video game history, you can make a donation via paypal.me/mossrc or subscribe to my Patreon. (I also accept commissions and the like over email, if you're after something specific or just don't want to deal through those platforms.)
    Thank you also to my sponsor, Richard Bannister, for his support. You can check out his modern reimaginings of classic arcade games at retrogamesformac.com.
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

    • 42 min
    Soundbite: Chris Crawford on how to give a great speech

    Soundbite: Chris Crawford on how to give a great speech

    If you've listened to episode 30 of the show, even if you weren't previously aware of his work, you'll know what a brilliant orator Chris Crawford is. The Dragon Speech, that famous moment where he charged out of the games industry — by literally charging out of the room — was arguably his magnum opus. And it was only possible thanks to Chris's mastery of the spoken word. Here he describes his approach to public speaking and gives tips on how everyone can give better speeches.
    To learn more about Chris, his Dragon Speech, and his immense importance to the early years of the games industry, be sure to listen to episode 30, 'The Dragon Speech, and Chris Crawford's improbable dream'.
    You can support The Life and Times of Video Games by sharing your favourite episodes with others and by making a donation, either in the form of a one-off payment via paypal.me/mossrc or a recurring payment (with some reward perks!) via patreon.com/lifeandtimesofvideogames
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

    • 11 min
    A Christmas gift from meow to you

    A Christmas gift from meow to you

    Given the hellish year we've had in 2020, I thought it'd be fun to close the year with a touch of levity...in the form of my cat, interrupting me, and just generally wanting to be podcast famous. 
    Happy holidays. May your 2021 be blessed with joy and happiness and dreams fulfilled. Or at least better tidings than this year brought.
    Thank you to my Patreon supporters for making this show possible — especially my producer-level backers Scott Grant, Rob Eberhardt, Carey Clanton, Vivek Mohan, Seth Robinson, Wade Tregaskis, and Simon Moss.
    To support my work, so that I can uncover more untold stories from video game history, you can make a donation via paypal.me/mossrc or subscribe to my Patreon. (I also accept commissions and the like over email, if you're after something specific.)
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

    • 11 min
    Interview: Sam Dyer (Bitmap Books)

    Interview: Sam Dyer (Bitmap Books)

    I speak to Bitmap Books founder/publisher/owner/designer Sam Dyer about the hows and whys of publishing visually-led, high-quality books about games history, including why he loves to publish them and why they are so much more than just "picture books" — indeed, as we cover in the interview, there's both a huge amount of care and craft that goes into making them and we can learn so, so much from looking at the graphical evolution of the medium. We also discuss the challenges and processes of book publishing, the history of Bitmap Books, and Bitmap's current and upcoming projects. 
    This is the sixth entry in a new series of interviews I'm running alongside the main show — every month-or-three I'll talk to a different person who's exploring games history, in one way or another, to learn about the many ways people are preserving the games industry's past as well as to further our understanding of how this wonderful medium (and the industry that's built around it) has come to be the way it is now. The previous one was with Kelsey Lewin of The Video Game History Foundation. Before that, I talked about computer role-playing games with the author of The CRPG Addict blog. Other interviews include Shmuplations.com proprietor and Japanese-to-English translator extraordinaire Alex Highsmith. Follow the "games history explorers" tag or the Interviews category on my website to see them all.
    Interview conducted November 24th, 2020.
    Links:

    Commodore 64: A Visual Compendium

    Commodore Amiga: A Visual Compendium


    NES/Famicom and SNES/Super Famicom visual compendiums

    The Art of Point-and-Click Adventure Games

    Metal Slug Book


    The Secret History of Mac Gaming (out of print right now but stay tuned — it'll be back available in 2021)


    Video footage of Dark Castle in action during a livestream I did to promote my book

    Royal Mail video games postage stamp set

    The CRPG Book

    Super Famicom: The Box Art Collection

    Game Boy: The Box Art Collection

    Sega Master System Visual Compendium

    Bitmap on Twitter, Instagram, YouTube



    Thank you to my Patreon supporters for making this episode possible — especially my producer-level backers Carey Clanton, Scott Grant, Rob Eberhardt, Simon Moss, Seth Robinson, Wade Tregaskis, and Vivek Mohan.

    To support my work, so that I can uncover more untold stories from video game history, you can make a donation via paypal.me/mossrc or subscribe to my Patreon. (I also accept commissions and the like over email, if you're after something specific.)
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

    • 1 hr 15 min

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