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Member Since 07 Feb 2006
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Topics I've Started

No Red Cross for Health Packs in Video Games

17 January 2017 - 04:32 PM

Not sure how I feel about this, I mean I am so accustomed to seeing health depicted this way in video games.


Attached File  redcross.jpg   6.11KB   0 downloads



The developers of Prison Architect found themselves in a pinch of legal trouble recently when they were contacted by the British Red Cross over the game’s use of a red cross on a white background to denote health. While that may seem harmless, turns out it’s not allowed.


As PC Gamer report, the famous symbol isn’t actually in the public domain; it’s governed by the International Committee of the Red Cross, who seek to protect it from any acts of what they believe is misuse.

“If the red cross emblem or similar signs are used for other purposes, no matter how beneficial or inconsequential they may seem, the special significance of the emblem will be diminished,” an email sent to the game’s developers reads. “The red cross emblem or similar designs are not general signs of ambulances, health care, first aid, the nursing or medical profession, or similar matters. Moreover, they are not signs to be used for commercial purposes, such as for advertising campaigns or on products.”


Which, fine, whatever. Introversion’s Mark Morris and Chris Delay are understandably upset, though, that the ICRC’s enforcement of this rule is so inconsistent; you can point to countless games, TV shows and movies that use the red cross symbol and get away with it, while their indie game hasn’t just been targeted, but they’ve been told that their use of it technically constitutes a violation of the Geneva Conventions, and by extension British law as well.




The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Map Size

17 January 2017 - 04:25 PM

Pretty impressive if this is true!


Attached File  16105791_10155683992153294_7626023055403251828_n.jpg   17.63KB   0 downloads

What Systems Did You Go To School With?

10 January 2017 - 08:59 AM

Sometimes when I am reading thru an old GamePro or Nintendo Power, I wonder what age or grade I was when a specific console or game came out. Well today I put together a helpful chart to show me what age and grade I was in when major game systems dropped. I have always felt like I grew up at the best time for video games, I was the perfect age in the 80s and 90s when new systems were dropping every year. Before anyone points this out....I did repeat 7th grade, because I switched schools over summer (wasn't my choice).


Note this just shows when a console came out, for example, I actually got my NES in 1988/89.  I think the only systems I got on launch were the PSx, SNES, N64 and Gameboy.


Attached File  Video Game Console Chart.png   127.33KB   1 downloads

Massive Upgrade Starting From January 9th-16th

27 December 2016 - 09:35 AM

Retromags will be going thru major upgrades and changes starting January 9th and continuing for about a week. We currently run the Invision Power Board suite and the version that we are on at the moment is no longer being patched or provided support. The newest major revision of this software came out back in June of 2015 and I have kept us back to let all the bugs get worked out. I also kept us back to allow the third party developers time to port their modifications to this new version. So what does all this mean? Well whenever we do a major upgrade, we usually lose a few modifications. When I last did a major upgrade it was back in 2009 when we moved from version 2.x to 3.x. For those of you who have been with us since that time, you will probably remember that we had an arcade, casino and battle system. Unfortunately when we upgraded those features went away. So what may disappear this time?


Statistics - The tab at the top of the site for statistics will disappear. This is a third party modification and I am trying to contact the author of this mod and see if he has plans to port this functionality to the newest version.


Shoutbox - The current shoutbox that we use is a free one and unfortunately doesn't seem to be around any longer. I have found another shoutbox, but this one requires a one time fee of $100 and $45 per year to continue to receive support/updates.


Classifieds - The classifieds system will most likely not be brought back. I have never really seen it take off in terms of use. We will just continue to allow users to link to their eBay auctions from the designated section in the forums.


Credits System - Another system that we really never used. I had hoped that the author would have expanded the functionality to suit our needs. This system was supposed to give credits for posting, adding images, contributing to the databases, and in turn....those credits could be used to download more magazine releases. The hang up was that we needed an exclusion for Staff, Team Members and Patrons, and it seems as though the author is no longer developing this mod.


Then we have non facing items that you guys probably don't know are mods, like the Welcome message that gets sent to newly registered members, the inactivity mod that emails members who haven't visited in 6 months. So that is everything that will be going away when we upgrade, what will we gain?



18 months - Worth of patches, upgrades and improvements. I don't believe I could even list them all in this post without making it a mile long. So in short....


New Embeds


Personal Messenger Improvements

Search Improvements

Notification Improvements

Editor Improvements


Database Fields - The current version we run for our databases does not really allow for customizing who can edit certain fields. I had to really jump thru hoops to allow Team Members and Staff to edit the Year and Month fields for our Magazine Database, but not allow standard members to edit these fields. With the new version of the databases, this functionality is finally built in. Not only can I set fields to be edited by certain member groups, but I can also allow a field to only be editable if it is currently blank! Another improvement is relational fields, where we can now start cross linking between databases. Another great improvement is the ability to turn off fields in a database. Why turn off a field? Let's say we don't want to use fake issue numbers in the DieHard Gamefan section, we can now turn off that field and instead use the alternate issue field to define the August 1994 issue as Vol 2, Issue 9.


So what to expect?


On January 8th I will be contacting our hosting company and have them do a complete snapshot of Retromags. If anything goes sideways and we can't upgrade, I will have the ability to contact them and ask them to restore that snapshot. This may make the website a bit slow on January 8th and I would ask that you hold off adding new releases, gallery images, blog posts, forum posts, etc. Once the snapshot is complete, the first order of bushiness is to collapse Retromags back to 1 domain. Years ago I thought it would be a good idea to have the databases and home page run from www.retromags.com, and the forums, blogs, downloads run from community.retromags.com. This choice has just made things more complicated over the years, and I swear that Google penalizes us for doing this. Once everything is collapsed back into www.retromags.com, we will set up redirects so that pages that point to community.retromags.com, will forward correctly.


This part of the process will take a couple of hours, and afterwards we will bring the site back online. Then I am handing over our database templates to a freelancer that is familiar with this suite of products. He will work on converting those templates so that once we upgrade.....the records in our databases will still display correctly. The Retromags website will continue to be available for use while he does these conversions. Once he is finished converting the templates, we will again put the website into offline mode, contact our webhost to perform another snapshot......and then the real fun begins. This is where we will upgrade the website to the most current version, and once that upgrade is complete, we will put the newly converted templates back in place, and then test out everything before bringing the website back online.



Retromags Naming Convention

29 September 2016 - 11:07 AM

I would like to gather some input from you guys on naming conventions for our releases at Retromags. Since 2005 I have been a fan of the following standard which I refer to as the lowercase/underscore method.....




Single Month


Double Month


Double Year


For seasonal releases we use the abbreviations.....

  • SUM
  • WIN
  • AUT
  • SPR

For Holiday issues we use the abbreviation of how it was written on the magazine.....

  • HOL
  • XMS

And for unknown months we use the following place holder in the Month/Season location.....


  • UNK


As you may or may not know, I am creating a program that will organize and rename any files released from Retromags. This tool helps to do a few things.....


1) Renames all files downloaded from Retromags into a standard format. It is hard to enforce naming conventions with volunteers uploading magazines, and it is silly to have to redo them after the fact to just fix file names.


2) Organizes all files downloaded from Retromags into sub-folders for easier browsing.


3) Notifies users when a file they have downloaded has been classified as incomplete, low quality, corrupt or otherwise replaced.


4) Lets users know exactly what they have and are missing.



Now this is a huge step forward, many of you who dabble in emulation and ROMS know that their are tools out there that rename and organize your romsets. This tool will be similar but for magazine files. Over the past few months we have chatted about the possibility to leverage the Retromags databases to be inclusive of other preservation websites. With that in mind, we should include these other preservation sites in our renaming tool. This way when you download a GamePro magazine from Retromags and then another issue from OGM.....they get renamed and organized into the same location with the same naming format.


I am looking for idea's on naming conventions that I can deploy via our collection tool. If a great enough need comes for customization on this front, I may invest time into coding the ability for you guys to write your own naming conventions in the configuration of the program.....something like......


Also on discussing the renaming standard, should we include an abbreviation for the releasing site? Then when you downloaded a GamePro magazine it would show like this.....


And more food for thought is, how to handle versioning. Do we want to do like some romset renamers do and tag the filename with an abbreviation on why the file is no longer good/current?




Low Quality


Missing Pages


Pages out of order


Thoughts, Questions, Concerns? :)