Tag Archives: art

UFO Master Blaster by Bambino: Video Game Consoles as Art

The early 80’s were the golden era for handheld electronic games, and Bambino produced some of the most beautifully designed units. UFO Master Blaster was an unremarkable (at least in terms of gameplay) space invader clone, using a similar Vacuum Florescent Display as the more common Galaxy Invader handhelds. What set the game apart was the large sculpted plastic body shell that hinted towards a sleek spaceship that would not have felt out of place in Star Wars or Battlestar Galactica.

UFO Master Blaster Handheld Game by Bambino
UFO Master Blaster Handheld Game by Bambino

All of the Bambino handhelds featured these over-the-top futuristic designs, that look as good today as they did when they were first released. Combined with the fact that theu are virtually bomb-proof, UFO Master Blaster and it’s Bambino siblings make a great subject for retro game collectors today.

I couldn’t find a picture online that really did this unit justice so I took one myself – it took a while to get the right angle that showed off the flowing lines and the luminous finish of the plastic casing on this fantastic retro handheld.

Nintendo 64: Video Game Consoles as Art

The Nintendo 64 console was the last major console to feature cartridges, and following on from the hugely successful Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES), it had a tough act to follow. It aped exactly the format of the SNES, with the cartridge slot at the rear of the top side of the console, and 2 large buttons for power and game reset.  With it’s large “power bulge” towards the front of the console, the Nintendo 64 console somehow suggests the case could scarcely contain the graphical muscle within.  It featured some “feet” at the front of the console, giving off a sense of weight and substance, another reference to the increased power of the Nintendo machine.

The Nintendo 64 Console
The Nintendo 64 Console

Unlike its major competitor of the time, the Sony Playstation 1, it was also a friendly looking console, smoothed and without a straight line to be seen, and large colourful graphic on the front breaking up the otherwise monotone colour scheme.  This fit with Nintendo’s targeted audience, and was the choice for younger gamers everywhere, as opposed to the Playstation with its subdued design which was clearly aimed at a more mature demographic.

When researching this article I couldn’t find the right image to represent the console, so I took some pictures myself with my Nikon D60 digital SLR, and I hope you like the image I created. I wanted to capture the smooth curves and friendly face of the Nintendo 64 console which in this photo looks organic, almost frog-like.

So if you like the image please feel free to use, share, tweet and Pin!