Dungeons & Dragons Electronic Labyrinth Game

My brother gave me an early Christmas present this year while we were down visiting my parents for Thanksgiving. It was the Mattel electronic Dungeons & Dragons Labyrinth game that my parents gave me for Christmas in 1980! What an awesome blast from the past.

Let me give you some background on this awesome little game. I would have been 8 years old. An electronic toy with dragons and mazes and treasure! It was possibly the coolest thing i got that year (aside from some possible competition from the Star Wars lineup). I remember the beeps and bleeps and ominous sound when the dragon would start chasing you around!

Over the years i’d dig the game out from time to time and either play myself (it was one or two players), or talk someone into playing it with me. Well, after a while, i packed all my old toys (including this and the aforementioned star wars collection – which was considerable, btw) into some boxes and stashed them in my parents garage while i went away to college. I fully intended to get them back out once i had a place of my own. I’d fill up a room in my new house with all my old toys and collectibles. It would be right next to my den.

Alas, my plan went awry. While i was away to college, my parents moved. I didn’t give it much though – i assumed my boxes were safe. So i left for two years to go sell fire and life insurance in Florida, blissfully unaware that perhaps something was wrong. When i got home, i resumed college life. Somewhere in here, i asked about my old stuff. I wanted to dig it out of storage and check on its safety. My mom (who loves to keep a tidy house) informed me that those boxes were either thrown out or sold off in a yard sale when they moved! My wonderful collection of toys and games was lost to the sands of time.

Over the years i figured that someone, somewhere (assuming the yard-sale option; the trash option is too morbid to even grant thought) was enjoying my old toys. Perhaps i could buy them back on ebay some day. Then several years ago, i went to my brothers house and he pulled out my old D&D labyrinth game! He had saved it from the yard sale. Happy days. It was all i could do not to steal it from him, but … being the nice brother that i was, i figured it was better that he have it than someone else. That was probably close to a decade ago.

In the interim, i had forgotten all about the old game. But this year, my brother comes to my parents house and hands me my old game. “Here you go, i figured you might like to have this back.” [insert misty-eyed sentimental comment here]. Thanks bro! That’s the most awesome gift ever. And the game still works. Sure, it’s missing a few pieces (all of which i can easily replace with acceptable substitutes), but the electronics are good. It still makes all the beeps and bleeps. I can’t wait to sit down with my kids and defeat that pesky dragon again!

Music to my ears

Sometimes I just love my job :) Today i got the play around with embedding some sound effects into an application that we’re creating. The sounds i picked didn’t really matter – it’s just a proof of concept. The artists and marketing people will come up with some “official” sounds later. So … what to pick? :)

There’s nothing better than classic arcade sounds! oh yes. Who could forget the crushing sound of defeat when pac man gets eaten, or the ultra-cool sound of the defender ship appearing on screen? And it’s all available for your listening pleasure over here.

Dungeons and Dragons cartoon

If you’re like me … well, let’s hope you’re not, right?   I’m just a big geek.  But when I was growing up, i LOVED watched the saturday morning cartoon of Dungeons and Dragons.  A few years ago, several (but not all) of the episodes ran on one of the networks and I recorded them onto VHS.  Hey, give me a break – DVD recording wasn’t a possibility quite yet at the time.  Anyway, I was pleased to see the announcement by Wizards of the Coast that they’re releasing the cartoon on DVD in December. 

Christmas gift anyone?  No, don’t bother … i’m sure i’ll have already purchased it by then :)

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Fast Forward a few months: Yep, i bought it. And it’s everything i remember it to be. Baby G even sat through all the episodes with me and seemed to be enjoying herself.