Simon supplied so many photos of his unbelievable collection that we hardly knew where to start. His games room is a shrine to old school gaming and in particular his love of all things Game Boy. His original Nintendo display cabinets are bulging with every kind of Game Boy and accessory imaginable. We’ll let the pictures do the rest of the talking (oh, and Simon himself in our interview with him below the images).
Click on images to enlarge
Q and A with Simon Pring
When did you become interested in video games and what was the first video game you played?
Simon: Wow that is a tough one!! I started gaming in the early to mid eighties, as far as the first game I played? …no idea but it would probably have been Pac-Man or Space Invaders on an arcade machine.
What was the first games console or computer you owned and how old were you?
Simon: The first computer I owned was the Sinclair ZX81 – I was only about 7 or 8 and i remember being very proud when I input the code to make it repeat happy Birthday across the screen in Marquee style !
What got you into collecting videogames, computers and consoles?
Simon: Well, I didn’t get the opportunity to own very many consoles or games as a child, but the Game boy had been one of my all time favourites, so with the advent of Ebay in the early 2000’s I discovered I could start buying all the things I had always wanted as a child, it started with just a few Game Boy items and soon spiralled into a passion for all things retro.
Where do you source most of your retro purchases from (ebay, flea markets etc) ?
Simon: Ebay has been the main source of my purchases for a lot of the rarer items from Japan and the US but I always keep an eye out for items at boot sales or charity shops, it is getting much more difficult to get hold of retro from shops now as most people are savvy to it now.
What is your most prized retrogaming possession and how much did it cost you?
Simon: Almost impossible to pick!! it would probably have to be my factory sealed 1989 Game boy it took a while to get hold of one through Ebay and the price… well lets just say it had three digits and the first digit was not a 1!
What makes Nintendo your favourite game and console manufacturer?
Simon: I think Nintendo of the 80’s and 90’s had a real charm, they didn’t take themselves too seriously they made really good solid products that had everything a child wanted. I remember the joy of me and 3 friends linking our Game Boys for the first time to play formula 1. Bliss
What is your favourite console next to Game Boy?
Simon: That would have to be my Spectrum+2, some of my fondest memories are in the late 80’s playing Dizzy – sitting listening to the shrill loading chirps and waiting for the music to start and off into another adventure with that fantastic little egg.
What console/computer have you least enjoyed playing?
Simon: That would most definitely be my Virtual Boy – OMG 5 minutes and I have a stinking headache and the worst travel sickness…. I don’t even get travel sickness, such a shame because the games are actually not half bad!!
The burning house scenario: which part of your collection would you save first?
Simon: Would have to be the rarer items in my display case like the sealed Game Boy, the shop displays and the fibre optic sign.
The Desert Island scenario: which one console and game would you take?
Simon: Simple. My modified DMG01 (original Game Boy with blue indigo backlight) and a copy of The Legend of Zelda.
Where do you want to go now with the collection?
Simon: I think the only option is to a bigger room !!
Have you any tips for budding retro games collectors?
Simon: It is getting very hard to be a collector now as most sellers have cottoned on to the retro collecting scene and have started to artificially inflate prices so whatever you do, don’t be fooled by the Ebay tag RARE… Know what you want and shop around, there are some great communities out there on facebook, don’t be afraid to ask as most of us don’t bite and would be happy to give advice.