The Ted Dabney Experience. Intimate conversations with leading lights from the Golden Age of video arcade gaming. A podcast project by Richard May, Paul Drury (Retro Gamer magazine) and Tony Temple (author of Missile Commander). Brought to you in association with The American Classic Arcade Museum.
TDE EP26 - Twin Galaxies founder Walter Day
We speak with Walter Day, the grandfather of e-sports and the inspiration for Wreck-it-Ralph’s avuncular arcade manager, Mr Litwack. Walter is the founder of the long-defunct but world-famous Twin Galaxies video arcade in Ottumwa, Iowa, and the international scoreboard of the same name. Day waxes lyrical about the trials and tribulations of running an arcade during the Golden Age of electronic gaming, the films Chasing Ghosts and King of Kong, his brief stint as an oil futures trader and, of course, transcendental meditation. We also ask Walter for his official position on the ongoing furore surrounding Billy Mitchell’s Donkey Kong high-scores.
TDE EP25 - Centuri coder Lee Feuling
Lee Feuling is a retired United States Airforce and American Airlines pilot who, once upon a time, was a coder for Centuri Video Games in Hialeah, Florida. Centuri was best known for its hugely popular licensed releases of Japanese titles such as Track & Field and Phoenix, but of far more interest to TDE listeners is Tim Stryker’s vector shooter, Aztarac, and for an even deeper cut, the unreleased Grabber Goose (another Stryker vector title); not to mention Feuling’s very own, also unreleased, Freddy Flames. Lee reminisces at length about his close relationship with the visionary Tim Stryker, Centuri’s productive but underutilsed in-house R&D department and flying fast jets over Saudi Arabia.
TDE EP24 - Death Race creator Howell Ivy
Howell Ivy is the creator of Exidy’s infamous Death Race. Released in 1976, this was the first arcade game to stir a moral panic over videogame violence in America, leading the company to hire round-the-clock security in response to many green-ink letters and phoned-in death threats. Exidy followed Death Race with the relatively innocuous but very successful Circus; Venture, arguably the spiritual forerunner to Atari’s Gauntlet, and then back to controversy with the genuinely gruesome light gun game, Chiller (1986). Howell departed Exidy under somewhat difficult circumstances and joined Sega of America where he oversaw the development of the company’s early Virtua series of games, and his long tenure at the company saw him bear witness to one of the most revolutionary periods of videogame design.
TDE EP23 - Atari graphic designer Evelyn Seto
Evelyn Seto worked at Atari under creative director George Opperman on some of the company’s most iconic graphic material, including arcade cabinets such as Fire Truck and Soccer, a wealth of arcade game sell sheets and console packaging for the consumer division; not to mention the famous Atari ‘Fuji’ logo. Evelyn’s long and storied career also saw her employed by industry giants HP and Apple, and Atari cofounder Nolan Bushnell at his post-Atari toy/tech ventures AG Bear and Androbot.
With guest co-host Tim Lapetino, author of Art of Atari and co-author of Pac-Man: Birth of an Icon.
TDE EP22 - Atari Battlezone and S.T.U.N. Runner programmer Ed Rotberg
In accordance with Theurer’s Law - named after Missile Command and Tempest programmer Dave Theurer, which states that every programmer’s first game will be a relative failure - Ed Rotberg’s first game for Atari, Baseball, didn’t exactly score a home run. However his sophomore title, 1981’s Battlezone, with its distinctive green XY monitor graphics and unique periscope-adorned cabinet is rightly regarded as one of Atari’s finest releases of the coin-op videogame Golden Age. You’ll also learn about Battlezone variants, such as the well-documented but still fascinating development of the Bradley Trainer (a version of the game adapted for military training purposes) and a unique Stereoscopic Battlezone that never left the lab.
TDE CLIPS - EP01
Excerpts from our interviews with the gentlemen who created Gottlieb’s Golden Age Video Arcade titles Q*Bert, Mad Planets and Krull. Featuring Warren Davis, Jeff Lee, Matt Householder and David Thiel.
Everyone knows their stuff and is obviously passionate about the era and the subject - probably more intended for listeners of the same ilk but without condescending the casual listener. I’m probably a bit younger than these guys and learning a lot. Agree with the other reviewer on here about the great presentation and music etc. Looking forward to more.
I’d give 6 stars if I could. Great podcast, top presenters and fantastic guests. I’ve learnt so much from listening.
I *hate* podcasts... but I *LOVE* this!
This podcast is pure quality from the opening music through to the quality and thought-through questions. A *quality* podcast.
All other retrogaming podcasts, take note...*this* is how it’s done!