Special Reserve - did you ever order from them (90s game mail order)

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Imrahil
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PostRe: Special Reserve - did you ever order from them (90s game mail order)
by Imrahil » Sun Aug 16, 2020 5:22 pm

I remember ordering Syndicate from Special Reserve in the summer of 1993. I carefully cut out the slip from Amiga Power (best gaming mag of all time) and got my dad to write a cheque for me, and I gave him my pocket money for it.

Waiting 28 days for delivery was a bugger, but the anticipation was immense.

EDIT: by the way, the Amiga Power back catalogue can be found here in its entirety, every page scanned:

http://amr.abime.net/issues_5

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Albear
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PostRe: Special Reserve - did you ever order from them (90s game mail order)
by Albear » Sun Aug 16, 2020 6:06 pm

Imrahil wrote:I remember ordering Syndicate from Special Reserve in the summer of 1993. I carefully cut out the slip from Amiga Power (best gaming mag of all time) and got my dad to write a cheque for me, and I gave him my pocket money for it.

Waiting 28 days for delivery was a bugger, but the anticipation was immense.

EDIT: by the way, the Amiga Power back catalogue can be found here in its entirety, every page scanned:

http://amr.abime.net/issues_5


Amzing! Going to have a look through those later, thanks for sharing :toot:

Syndicate was amazing. Also enjoyed the sequal even if it did go a bit off the rails.

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Vermilion
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PostRe: Special Reserve - did you ever order from them (90s game mail order)
by Vermilion » Sun Aug 16, 2020 8:31 pm

Imrahil wrote:EDIT: by the way, the Amiga Power back catalogue can be found here in its entirety, every page scanned:

http://amr.abime.net/issues_5


Interesting, will need to set aside some time to look at this.

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kazanova_Frankenstein
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PostRe: Special Reserve - did you ever order from them (90s game mail order)
by kazanova_Frankenstein » Mon Aug 17, 2020 10:25 am

I still have a lot of my Amiga Power issues from back in the day. I have looked at that archive a few times to fill in the blanks though (some of the later ones, by which time i had shelved my trusty A500 with 1mb ram and internal clock upgrade) and its a great resource. And yes, definitely the best magazine of all time (and the only one with attitude).

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Cumberdanes
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PostRe: Special Reserve - did you ever order from them (90s game mail order)
by Cumberdanes » Thu Aug 20, 2020 1:06 pm

KK wrote:The best thing about ordering from Gameplay (and I presume other mail order companies) is that aside from the lower prices, the games were all brand spanking new and sealed. Not high street 'new', where they'd slapped a sticker on the box, everyone and the dog had handled the case on the shelf, and they'd stuffed all the discs and manuals in a cupboard behind the cash register or like HMV wrapped the manual so tight in cling film it was bent.


God that was annoying. The only time I ever got 'new' games from a high street store was stuff I'd pre-ordered. Anything else was as you say strictly speaking second hand at best.

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Vermilion
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PostRe: Special Reserve - did you ever order from them (90s game mail order)
by Vermilion » Thu Aug 20, 2020 2:51 pm

Cumberdanes wrote:
KK wrote:The best thing about ordering from Gameplay (and I presume other mail order companies) is that aside from the lower prices, the games were all brand spanking new and sealed. Not high street 'new', where they'd slapped a sticker on the box, everyone and the dog had handled the case on the shelf, and they'd stuffed all the discs and manuals in a cupboard behind the cash register or like HMV wrapped the manual so tight in cling film it was bent.


God that was annoying. The only time I ever got 'new' games from a high street store was stuff I'd pre-ordered. Anything else was as you say strictly speaking second hand at best.


Woolworths was particularly bad with that, even on launch day you'd end up with a DVD or CD which was scratched to hell or had a broken case.

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PostRe: Special Reserve - did you ever order from them (90s game mail order)
by KK » Thu Aug 20, 2020 3:10 pm

WHSmith took the term new to a new level as they introduced a print your own disc machine for PC software into stores in the early 00s. You'd go over to this big old machine, choose from a range of products, and it would print the discs for you there and then. This resulted in you having just these boring silver discs and a knock-off case to put it in. Did it once and never again.

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Cumberdanes
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PostRe: Special Reserve - did you ever order from them (90s game mail order)
by Cumberdanes » Thu Aug 20, 2020 3:17 pm

KK wrote:WHSmith took the term new to a new level as they introduced a print your own disc machine for PC software into stores in the early 00s. You'd go over to this big old machine, choose from a range of products, and it would print the discs for you there and then. This resulted in you having just these boring silver discs and a knock-off case to put it in. Did it once and never again.


Weirdly that sort of thing was pretty common in Japan I think. Several systems had re-writable discs and carts that you took to in store kiosks.

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kerr9000
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PostRe: Special Reserve - did you ever order from them (90s game mail order)
by kerr9000 » Mon Aug 24, 2020 8:14 pm

I never ordered from Special Reserve but I did find these in a charity shop today, games with Special Reserve labels on them and figured id post here after reading this thread

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Victor Mildew
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PostRe: Special Reserve - did you ever order from them (90s game mail order)
by Victor Mildew » Mon Aug 24, 2020 10:31 pm

Thanks for posting, I'd not bought from them in that era so I've never seen those labels.

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PostRe: Special Reserve - did you ever order from them (90s game mail order)
by Vermilion » Tue Aug 25, 2020 8:08 am

I miss watching The Weakest Link, it was such brutal fun.

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PostRe: Special Reserve - did you ever order from them (90s game mail order)
by KK » Tue Aug 25, 2020 10:45 am

I enjoyed Medal of Honor Frontline, but 10/10? Really? My copy doesn't have a sticker on it (I got it near launch, where it also came in a black box). Like Rising Sun, though nowhere near to the same extent, it was one of those games that plateaued in the first level and then goes steadily downhill with almost each passing mission. Opening level: legendary (if you haven't played it, I doubt it will have the same impact now as it did, but at the time it was the most mind blowing thing I'd ever played. Another of those 'oh, so this is the so-called 'emotion engine'...). Second level set in the bombed out streets of France: also fantastic. I think it was the first war game, certainly that I'd played, where you were going along with other soldiers. They were window dressing, but it got the atmospherics across well. Also of note is the music and real video reels that precede each mission. It's after you've stowed away on a U-boat and end up in the submarine base that things start going awry as the game settles into the familiar pattern of 'I'm winning this entire war by myself' and rather mundane levels (though also worth mentioning is the level set in a field, with a parachuter hanging from an old windmill).

A very good FPS for PlayStation at the time (2002) but if you'd had any experience of Xbox and PC shooters I wouldn't be surprised if you felt the game to be a bit average.

By the way, if you have a PS3 the remastered version of Frontline comes free with Medal of Honor (currently £1.95 on eBay).

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Cumberdanes
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PostRe: Special Reserve - did you ever order from them (90s game mail order)
by Cumberdanes » Tue Aug 25, 2020 12:27 pm

I have Frontline for XBOX (along with some others Rising Sun and European Assault I think). I played through it on Gamecube back in the day and enjoyed it but started it again last year and it hasn't aged very well. The complete lack of checkpoints or manual saves is a nightmare, replaying a 30+ minute mission only to die right at the end for the 15th time just isn't fun.

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