Jump to content

High Score (Netflix Docu Series 2020)


Recommended Posts

Sorry if there's another thread about this somewhere on the forum - I guess it would fit into several places.

I'm really enjoying this, only watched the first 2 episodes. What surprises me is that theres a lot of stories I haven't heard before , and material I haven't seen. Considering they are talking about very mainstream gaming stuff so far (Space Invaders, Mario) , I was expecting it to just be rehashed stuff I've seen in loads of documentaries before. For example the "Nintendo counselors" playing games blind and hand-drawing maps so they could give US players tips and help with finishing them. 

 

It really feels like people are starting to take videogame history seriously as culturally important these days. I'd love to see follow-up series focusing on the European and Asian stories. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

I enjoyed it, though it's a very US-centric take on it all again. There's an episode coming up about Sega where they only ever refer to the Genesis: the words "Mega" and "Drive" are not uttered even once (except for once, when someone is speaking Japanese, IIRC). And there's no mention of the Master System at all.

 

But it's still a very enjoyable show!

Link to post
Share on other sites
41 minutes ago, ulala said:

ive seen the first episode, and fear that we are about to have the "video game crash". 

 

 

Seen up to the end of episode 3 and so far it hasn't been mentioned I don't think, which is refreshing. 

But yeah it's probably coming up. 

But what I like about this show, as I said, is that it does seem to be going for less well explored stories, to some extent. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

I've been enjoying this a lot, other than the emphasis on videogame competitions. The first of these stories (about the Space Invaders comp) was cool, but they keep devoting massive stretches of episodes to interviewing/following at length one particular competitor per competition they cover. I really didn't need half of the fighting games episode to be devoted to a guy who won a Street Fighter competition, or the Sega vs Nintendo episode to concentrate so much on the guy who won the Sonic The Hedgehog competition. This time and effort would have been much better spent on further interesting industry stories.

 

The only other issue (for me!) is that my 7 year old has been loving the show and it seemed totally fine for him in the early going (and very cool for him to learn about the history of videogames), but the next episode is the one about violent shooters so I may have to pull the plug!

 

Hey, I'm sure they would never do this, but going through the timeline again and this time concentrating on British game development and the industry in general over here, would make for an excellent season 2.

Link to post
Share on other sites
22 minutes ago, Anne Summers said:

Seen up to the end of episode 3 and so far it hasn't been mentioned I don't think, which is refreshing. 

But yeah it's probably coming up. 

But what I like about this show, as I said, is that it does seem to be going for less well explored stories, to some extent. 

 

There's a bit about the crash at the end of Episode 1 (the episode is called 'Boom and Bust'!) and Gail Tilden mentions it in Episode 2 when talking about the launch of the NES. There's no real explanation for it other than there being "a wave of crappy games" and kids getting bored with games. 

 

I'm enjoying it for the most part (I'm part-way through E3), but I think it could have been put together better. There's no coherent story, just snapshots of things. I guess it could be argued that they've focused on a diversity of people and looked at some stories that don't usually get told though.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Very hit and miss for me. Half very enjoyable, half very dull. Very very unfocused too. The devotion of time to competitions is bizarre, a good quarter of an episode is devoted to some kid getting taken to a mall to play a game to win prizes. It’s completely meaningless and boring. I think they are trying in some way to show the history of esports but it’s hardly the same thing. They should spend more time focusing on those involved in the creation of these games, the interviews with those people have been the most interesting moments. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, ulala said:

“Mystery house was the first video game that had graphics”

 

riiiiiiiight 

 

In her defence, she said computer game. :PWhich is still wrong of course, but I think Roberta meant the first Adventure computer game that had graphics.

 

Or she knew exactly what she was saying and wants to be remembered for more than she already is.

 

Either way, a lot of people are going to think her and Ken made the computer game with graphics now. Netflix have even made a clip of it with the badly titled The First Computer Graphics Game.

 

 

The stuff about Jerry Lawson was wrong too. He deserved some recognition, but it wasn't him that invented the game cartridge. He led the team that designed the console that took games cartridges. The technology already existed (as a prototype) and Fairchild licensed it.

 

I found the lack of anything about Ralph Baer and the Odyssey frustrating too.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, robotattack said:

And straight after showing Roberta Williams saying she'd made the first computer game with graphics they show the be very graphical Akalabeth, which came out before Mystery House. :seanr:

 

Yeah, I'm pretty sure she meant the first text adventure with graphics.

 

When they go off the beaten path is where it's most interesting. Becky talking about her experience pre her career in games as a champion Space Invaders player was interesting, especially her musings on how it enabled her to play in a space where she wasn't defined by her assigned gender.

 

Frustrating that they didn't follow up with a bit on The Bard's Tale.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Completed the series last night - it wasn’t bad, but it just didn’t flow. 

too many inaccurate statements, too USA focussed, and a bit all over the place. Why waste 3 minutes of watching an esports team faking doing exercise?

 

a missed opportunity 

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, ulala said:

Completed the series last night - it wasn’t bad, but it just didn’t flow. 

too many inaccurate statements, too USA focussed, and a bit all over the place. Why waste 3 minutes of watching an esports team faking doing exercise?

 

a missed opportunity 

 

Which inaccurate statements where these?

Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, robotattack said:

The stuff about Jerry Lawson was wrong too. He deserved some recognition, but it wasn't him that invented the game cartridge. He led the team that designed the console that took games cartridges. The technology already existed (as a prototype) and Fairchild licensed it.

 

He certainly didn't tell his son that blowing on cartridges was a bad idea.

 

Fascinatingly enough my son did it once or twice with our SNES carts before inserting them. I have absolutely no idea where he picked that up from.

Link to post
Share on other sites
10 minutes ago, ulala said:

 

see this thread for some examples. /\ 

 

Mystery House perhaps not pedantically being the first game ever to have graphics is that upsetting?

 

It's almost like the show producers picked that story because the whole thing is interesting, and a milestone in graphics for adventure games regardless. A Husband and Wife team that had a really endearing dynamic that rose to the challenge of creating graphics for the Apple II, and it all lead to the founding of Sierra. I don't think the show having to specify that this is maybe not actually the very first game with graphics  would matter at all. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, robotattack said:

And straight after showing Roberta Williams saying she'd made the first computer game with graphics they show the be very graphical Akalabeth, which came out before Mystery House. :seanr:

 

She obviously meant text adventure with graphics (graphic adventure) which seems like a reasonable claim. The game you mention is obviously an early RPG and I would argue that they have always been separate genres.

Link to post
Share on other sites

So I binge-watched this - and have mixed feelings.

 

It is great that it's out there, we need more coverage of gaming on TV beyond sensationalist news slots on eSports and loot boxes.

I loved the pixel art and seeing some different names in front of the camera (especially Dylan Cuthbert).

 

But... We also need respectful, well-researched and insightful documentaries, not junk-food for the eyes that skims the surface.

I mean, Becky Heinemann did so much for the RPG genre as designer on The Bard's Tale Series - and the games don't even get mentioned.

 

Glaring inaccuracies like Street Fighter II "pioneering" the fighting genre are also annoying. And how bizarre was it to end on a segment about Nolan Bushnell playing Spacewar? That's the start, not the end.

 

And any toxic gamers/SJWs whinging about "Netflix pushing the gay agenda" can get in the sea.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, merman said:

So I binge-watched this - and have mixed feelings.

 

It is great that it's out there, we need more coverage of gaming on TV beyond sensationalist news slots on eSports and loot boxes.

I loved the pixel art and seeing some different names in front of the camera (especially Dylan Cuthbert).

 

But... We also need respectful, well-researched and insightful documentaries, not junk-food for the eyes that skims the surface.

I mean, Becky Heinemann did so much for the RPG genre as designer on The Bard's Tale Series - and the games don't even get mentioned.

 

Glaring inaccuracies like Street Fighter II "pioneering" the fighting genre are also annoying. And how bizarre was it to end on a segment about Nolan Bushnell playing Spacewar? That's the start, not the end.

 

And any toxic gamers/SJWs whinging about "Netflix pushing the gay agenda" can get in the sea.

Street Fighter 2 was pretty pioneering, no?

I mean - didn't it introduce that whole Choose Your Fighter thing that's pretty much become the standard format for fighters? 

 

Agree that the pixel art was great, I loved the stuff with the Space Invaders guy watching space invaders appearing over his city as he looked out of his window. And lots of the other stuff that mixed pixels with real video. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
15 minutes ago, Anne Summers said:

Street Fighter 2 was pretty pioneering, no?

I mean - didn't it introduce that whole Choose Your Fighter thing that's pretty much become the standard format for fighters? 

 

Agree that the pixel art was great, I loved the stuff with the Space Invaders guy watching space invaders appearing over his city as he looked out of his window. And lots of the other stuff that mixed pixels with real video. 

 

Well, the fact it's a *sequel* tends to suggest it wasn't the first of anything, doesn't it?

 

It refined and established some of the modern conventions, but it built upon:

Karate Champ / Way of the Exploding Fist - winning rounds

Yie Ar Kung-Fu - different opponents, energy bars

Uchi Mata - rotational command inputs

 

and there were other fighting games between Street Fighter (1988) and Street Fighter II (1991/2).

 

Agreed on the in-show graphics though. I do like that sort of "environmental" use of graphic elements, such as rebuilding landmarks on history shows.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

For a show focused on discussing the history of videogames, I thought it was crap that most of the footage of sprite-based 2D stuff had an awful smoothing filter applied to it. A lot of what they showed looked like it was running on an emulator.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Enjoying this series. Just watching episode 5 on fighters in particular Street fighter 2 love the fact they get the creators on and interview them.

 

Street fighter is a work of genius love that game. I'm crap at it mind but love playing it!

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 28/08/2020 at 14:57, merman said:

 

Well, the fact it's a *sequel* tends to suggest it wasn't the first of anything, doesn't it?

 

It refined and established some of the modern conventions, but it built upon:

Karate Champ / Way of the Exploding Fist - winning rounds

Yie Ar Kung-Fu - different opponents, energy bars

Uchi Mata - rotational command inputs

 

and there were other fighting games between Street Fighter (1988) and Street Fighter II (1991/2).

 

Agreed on the in-show graphics though. I do like that sort of "environmental" use of graphic elements, such as rebuilding landmarks on history shows.

 

Yes but it was a sequel that was hugely different in structure to the original, due to one particular innovation. And introduced a feature that went on to become one of the defining characteristics of the genre. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 4 months later...

I had a look for a thread in here but couldn't find one.

 

I've just watched the first episode of this and I really enjoyed it, and found it quite informative (but admittedly I'm not as knowledgable as some of you in this section).

 

 

https://www.netflix.com/title/81019087

 

"High Score features interviews and segments around the creation and development of video games in the 1980s and 1990s. These are intermixed with animated segments rendered in a pixel art-style similar to video games of this period. The show's intro sequence is also animated in the pixel style and includes numerous references to past video games, with its theme song by the Australian band Power Glove. The series is narrated by Charles Martinet, who is the voice actor for Mario. "

 

I found the first episode fascinating especially as i had no idea that the first multi cartridge console wasn't the Atari one, but one lost in time before that.

 

Looking forward too tucking into the next episodes of the series. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

It is very US-centric, but it's a fun little documentary series and definitely worth watching. Just don't expect to see much Spectrum and BBC Micro talk.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. Use of this website is subject to our Privacy Policy, Terms of Use, and Guidelines.