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Sunday, March 30, 2014

Golf Quest

This post will be a bit of an odyssey, so hold on, buckle your seatbelts, place lap-bars in their locked position, keep hands inside the ride, don't sprinkle your dead relative's ashes everywhere etc.

On the morning of Saturday, March 28th, I entered Gamenut. It's a really nice store in downtown Lawrence where they sell used and new games ranging from the earliest age of games to modern consoles. They have a commitment to quality that they uphold very well, and they have one of the best selections of games in the state of Kansas (which has a surprisingly solid number of game stores, actually. Gamenut and Gameguy in Lawrence, Gamecycle in Gardner, Pittsburg, Iola, and Olathe, Vintage Stock throughout most of the larger cities).

Atop the main shelf sit a number of stacks. Stacks of older cartridge-based games complete in box. N64, Sega Genesis, SNES, NES, and all of that. The cartridges themselves are in the glass cases by the register.

This paragraph might seem like a digression, but it leads into the rest of the story, please don't worry. I don't typically buy CIB games unless I really, really like them, or I am particularly interested in the box. In that weird second category stand the original NES "Black Box" games, documented in this video by Pat the NES Punk
They come in all uniform black boxes with art from the game instead of any sort of drawn representation. I like the aesthetic of these, and I try to buy them whenever I see them for a decent price. Gamenut, on Saturday, March 29th, 2014, had Golf in-box (no manual, unfortunately, but hey). Fifteen dollars. Of course, I make the transaction. 

They keep all of their boxed games (that includes disc-based and cartridge-based) in the back for understandable reasons. So the guy working there goes back and looks for a cartridge. He can't find one in the usual place. He looks in another place. It's not their either. He looks in the racks of unboxed carts. It's not there either. He goes upstairs. No luck there, either. There is no Golf in this store. Along with being one of the first, Golf is one of the most common NES games, so I'm actually sort of surprised that any store could feasibly run out of Golf because not many people go looking for a Golf cartridge and a lot of people had them back in the '80s, but that's not important in this case. Point is, Gamenut on that day, Saturday, March 29th, 2014 is a Golf-free zone.

He then offers me a way out of this. "Buy the box here for 14.99, then go to the store on Iowa street, and show them your copy of the receipt and they'll give you the cartridge, they have a few."

So, me being me, I buy an empty box for $14.99 and go on my way. Upon reaching the other location, I am presented with one of the most bizarre transactions of my life. I walk to the counter, with my empty box, and say "Hi, this is weird, but I was just at the Mass. Street location and they said you guys have some copies of Golf for the NES." The employees there knew what I was talking about, thankfully, and gave me the cartridge that they had.

Anyway, the point of this shaggy-dog-esque story here is that on Saturday, March 29th, 2014, Joe Bush spent $14.99 on an empty box.

This story will eventually become my award winning Twine game.

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