Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Pop Culture League: The First Quarter for Star Castle

This week's assignment from the PCL: First Quarter - or first arcade/video game memory!

What is your earliest arcade or video game memory.

Since I was a kid in the 70s, I was the perfect age for the arcade/video game phenomenon. I am sure a played a few different ones, but for some reason, Star Castle sticks out in my mind.  It was a simple game. I don't think I ever got to a very high level, but for some reason, I remember playing it a lot in the early days.

The objective of the game was to blast the walls around the enemy ship that was in the center. If I remember correctly, each wall regenerated or took more hits to destroy it. As time went on, the walls expanded.

A big reason I remember this game was because we always played it when we visited my mom's aunt and uncle, and they always liked to go to the pizza buffet at Shakey's Pub and Pizza.

My brother and I would always get a few quarters and play away.

Over the years, I got really good at Ms. Pac Man, I loved Burger Time and Rampage. We got an Atari 2600 and played Pitfall, Enduro, Combat, and Demon Attack.

I always loved the commercial for Demon Attack.

As I neared the end of high school and arcades had basically died out, my friend and I put many a quarter into Twin Cobra at the local bowling alley.  My all time favorite. I even found a full size arcade version on Ebay a few months back. Someday...

So Star Castle and Twin Cobra bookended my arcade playing days. I don't have an XBox or Playstation. I only played an XBox once in my life.  Can't afford another hobby.

From the rest of the league.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Marvel Legends Spider Man - Space Venom BAF Series

I love Marvel Legends but why do they release three series all within three months and basically the rest of the year is empty? Man, does my wallet take a hit all at once too. Hasbro - you're killing me!

Anyway, here is the newest assortment of Marvel Legends. Pretty cool line up to include Spider Man (duh), Elektro, Hobgoblin, Miles Morales Ultimate Spider Man, Silk, and Spider Girl.

The Build-A-Figure is Space Venom. Once again, a hulking figure that is worthy of BAF parts.

Which is your favorite?

Sunday, August 28, 2016

NECA CineMachines Aliens Sulaco Dropship and APC


Pop Culture League: I Could So Win This Gold Medal

Welcome back to the second installment of the Pop Culture League. I'm posting a little late (traveling on business all week). The topic was:

If ____ was an Olympic Sport, I'd have a gold medal around my neck.

So my answer is - If "Collecting Toys to Build Dioramas, and then Never Getting Around To Them" was an Olympic Sport, I'd have a gold medal around my neck. Actually, I'd have more than Phelps and Ledecky combined.

People collect for different reasons. Most people like to display and admire their collections. My wife often asks me why more packages arrive every day and what I am going to do with them.

My answer - "I have some diorama ideas I want to do and photograph them."

If you take a look at the first two years (2009-2010) of this blog, you'll see a lot of different dioramas which I converted into jigsaw puzzles. I was trying to build a business out of that. In later years of this blog, you'll see a diorama, or a puzzle even from time to time, but most of the time it's just packaged photos.

But, rest assured, behind every purchase, there is a vision in my head of a diorama I want to build and photograph. Regular life often gets in the way, and so the visions stay right in my head and I never get around to it. But since that is an Olympic sport now, just hand me the gold medal before the race even starts.

As my wife continues to roll her eyes and shake her head, I have consolation in the fact that her mom is very similar to me. She has a hobby and starts a million projects. Finishes some. Has a list of 100 others. So I tell my wife - the next package of toys is my next "knitting project."

Here's a few puzzles and dioramas from the early days. If you click on Custom Puzzles on the keyword cloud, you'll see a ton more.

More from the rest of the PCL.

Friday, August 26, 2016

NECA ALIENS Creature Pack

With the 30th anniversary of Aliens here, NECA added to its already awesome Aliens lineup with this creature accessory pack. It comes with two facehuggers in statis tubes, two loose face huggers and two loose chest bursters. Hoping they bring us some sentry guns soon. The statis tubes will make for a great diorama. Time to dig out Bishop.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

My Holy Grail - The Dragon Cyber-Hobby Saving Private Ryan Set

This is what drives me nuts with collecting toys. I don't collect for investments sake. If the value goes up, great. If not, whatevs. However, it really torques me when I decide not to collect something I really like, then it disappears, and it is impossible to find, and then you pay high prices for it.

This happened with the Dragon 1/6th scale "Saving Private Ryan" figures. Of course, due to copywrite laws, they weren't called Saving Private Ryan figures, and the names were changed slightly. Most of the head sculpts are right on the money though. Most of them.

Anyway, I eyed these for years and always hesitated. I'll get them someday. They sat on online store inventories forever. Then one day they were gone. No worries. I'll head over to Ebay. Non-existent!!!! All of them except Mickey.

So it was only a few months ago that someone had the entire set of six for sale together on Ebay. We negotiated the Buy It Now price. I think I got them at a fair price. Glad to finally have this set. Same thing happened with the Sideshow "Platoon" figures.

Cappy - Private Caparzo - Vin Diesel

Captain Mill - Captain John Miller - Tom Hanks

Jim - Private James Ryan - Matt Damon

This is one headsculpt that doesn't look right. Maybe Matt has the most lawyers.

Danny - Private Daniel Jackson - Barry Pepper

Mickey - SSG Mike Horvath - Tom Sizemore

Richie - Private Reiban - Edward Burns