Arcade player Matt Hall, AKA LordBBH, recently hit 3000 games played on his Monday night MAME Roulette twitch stream.
LordBBH has been entertaining arcade fans on Twitch.tv since November 2015, but his enthusiasm for games started at a young age in the mid-’80s. He recently became one of the first people to 1 Credit Clear on a newly added to MAME 6 Korean game called “The Destroyer from Jail.” LordBBH also has been playing thru almost every arcade game on his MAME Roulette streams, where he recently hit 3000 arcade games played. We sat down with LordBBH and talked a bit about the big 3000, MAME arcade games, and his past few years featuring classic arcade games on this Twitch.tv channel.
AnnK: You hit 3000 games in MAME Roulette. Explain a little on what MAME Roulette is and how long you have been streaming this.
LordBBH: MAME Roulette is a series of streams I started in March 2016 (nearly 4 years ago!), and I’ve been continuing it every Monday at 6pm PST / 9pm EST. It’s a stream where I am trying to explore as much of the arcade library as possible in random order. So nobody has any idea what’s going to show up in each stream, including me. Absolutely anything could get played, although I have ended up curating the list to get rid of the annoying gambling games that aren’t really interactive arcade games. I’ve also removed the Mahjong / Gals Panic-style games that contain risque material.
I called it MAME Roulette, although it’s always focused on arcade games. On occasion, I’ve used other emulators for arcade games that don’t work yet in MAME. Not every game gets played through to the end (a lot of old arcade games don’t even have an end). It’s more a matter of just wanting to see how every game plays at the very least. Share some memories of old favorites and maybe show off a thing or two if I have past experiences with the game. Or try to find some bizarre games that hardly anyone knows anything about. I’ve done over 250 of these streams, and they’ve always been a blast to do.
AnnK: What game was your 3000? Have you seen or played that game before? Tell us a bit about that game.
LordBBH: Game #3000 was Sega Rally 2, which was added to the pool of games kinda late. It was actually a game that runs on Sega Model 3 hardware, which isn’t supported in MAME. However, a different emulator called Supermodel runs it. I worried about the analog steering, but it ended up running okay. However, I wasn’t good enough at the game to actually reach the goal in the primary rally mode. At least everyone got to hear GAME OVER YEAAAAAAAH again!
AnnK: What is the best thing about doing the MAME Roulette streams?
LordBBH: Discovering weird new games that almost nobody has heard of has always been one of the most exciting things about emulation. Games only released overseas in foreign countries, prototype games that never got released. Still, aboard survived and were dumped and have ended up being preserved forever. There’s been a lot of things to discover. I do also enjoy when games come up that I have memories of actually playing in an arcade, of course, because I’ve spent a lot of time in arcades over the years.
There are very distinct memories that still stick out in my head, so getting to share those on stream has always been a joy. I also have to give a special shoutout to you (Ann) and all the other artist-type folks (Cooky, leilei, goemonsama, Guntanks, MakotoTruth, DasYati, etc. etc.) who make art of the games being streamed. Some of these games are so obscure that they are probably the first time they’ve ever gotten the art of any kind, and I think that’s awesome. I’m grateful people have come back week after week over the last few years to watch the stream every Monday because I didn’t expect it to get as many viewers as it has. Thank!
AnnK: What will happen when you have played all the games for MAME in your Roulette streams?
LordBBH: The #1 thing I get asked is if I’m going to do a different Roulette series when all is said and done, like NES Roulette, or Amiga Roulette, or Tiger Handheld Roulette, or whatever. And the answer to all of these is no. Arcade games are special to me, and I don’t think the quick-switching format of Roulette translates well across every game platform. There’s no reason other streamers can’t do it themselves though, some have made it a goal to finish every NES or Genesis game, for instance.
But back to the question… when MAME Roulette has reached its end, I will not be disappearing, and I still intend to keep streaming arcade games on Mondays. I’m still kicking ideas around in my head. Again, I might use that time slot to go back to making raffle requests sometimes, I might do “themed” nights of particular game types, I might do general score / 1 Credit Clear attempts… there’s a lot of options, and nothing is set in stone right now. And of course, I’m also often asked if I might do a “Loop 2” of Roulette and start all over again.
Unlike the other Roulette types, this has a genuine chance of happening, although there are some changes I’d want to make in the format, so it’s not exactly the same. I’d really want to up the production values on everything, but I have no idea how I would go about doing it.
AnnK: Out of all the games you’ve played on MAME Roulette, can you choose one that stood out and surprised you or stood out the most?
LordBBH: I can’t pick just one! I think two of the most important cornerstones of MAME Roulette early on were, of course, Danny Sullivan’s Indy Heat and Chicken Farm. Yeah, they gave birth to a lot of memes, but they were both games that ended up being far more entertaining in ways I couldn’t have predicted.
I do, however, think that my favorite Roulette moment of all time was the discovery of Stack Columns. I was expecting just a simple update to the puzzle formula of Columns but was utterly unprepared that the game had a bizarre storyline to go with it. It involved a man looking for the truth about the murder of his father, only to discover that his father was alive and was dedicated to protecting a baby whose tears were so powerful they could destroy the world, and… I’ve said too much already. I was absolutely speechless at the end of it. These are the moments that have made the MAME Roulette project all worth it.