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Firstly, I'd like to say that I've just discovered that this new SE site exists and I'm very excited!

There are a few games that I played in my childhood that I would like to play again but I don't know the titles. Is it on-topic to describe the games as much as possible and what platform they ran on and ask what they were called (one game per question)? It doesn't seem appropriate to ask on gaming.SE as it seems that site is only for recent games.

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There are a number of sites within the SE network that have tags, so why not this one?

Note that a few of these sites periodically have on their metas a proposal to ban them. Particularly where there are a lot of such questions. See the soul searching on Movies & TV, a site that has a large number of them.

As with all questions, they would go on merit. A good question describing one game from yesteryear clearly enough for a chance of an answer would be good for the site.

We may attract vague questions - they should be closed as "Unclear what you're asking". Let us take some and see how we go.

Note also, this site isn't for asking "Where can I buy..." questions, so we would restrict ourselves to identification.

While on the subject - why not "Identify this computer" questions. After all, they have already been asked elsewhere too.

  • Super User has seen some at least "identify this connector" questions, too. – a CVn Jul 1 '16 at 10:45
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    Retro computer parts sure, but games? Gaming SE already has an entire badge for identifying games and allowing this might divert some traffic away from them – Anthony Pham Jul 12 '16 at 0:04
  • @PythonMaster Gaming SE requires a screenshot. Questions that describe the game but do not have a screenshot will be closed, regardless of how detailed they. – user3335 Sep 19 '16 at 16:31
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My only hesitation to a qualified "yes" is that I think Arquade already has a retro-gaming and game-identification tag. I don't see us usurping that. They have a vibrant and knowledgeable population of users over there that I feel will be able to talk about finding, identifying, and running old game and gaming systems much more effectively than the average cross-section of Retro folks.

To be fair, the "retro-gaming" tag is a synonym for "backwards-compatibility" (what?) so there is some strange overlap.

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    [backwards-compatibilty] says the following: Use this tag for compatibility issues with games that will no longer natively run on current generation hardware, like running DOS games on 64-bit Windows systems, configuring compatibility settings for those garbled XP-era Japanese games or looking for legal ways of playing games for the NES. Do not use this tag for questions about identifying old games; these questions are off-topic. (emphasis mine) – CJ Dennis Jun 27 '16 at 19:52
  • @CJDennis, fair enough. This implies that game-identification is off-topic there, at least for so-called retro gaming. I guess that makes the obvious home for such questions Retro.SE. – user12 Jun 27 '16 at 21:19
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    Tat being said, even Gaming says about game-identification: "USE WITH CAUTION: These questions are allowed only if you have an actual screenshot, video, etc. of the game you want to identify; not just a description of vague recollections. Questions about identifying games in movies, pictures, videos, or anywhere an unknown game appears." This seems like good advice, even for us. It isn't just about appropriateness, but promoting high-quality questions answers. – user12 Jun 28 '16 at 2:43
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I don't think retrocomputing is appropriate for these types of questions. Gaming.SE might be a better fit for these types of questions, as they are dedicated to gaming across multiple generations.

If we allow game identification questions, this site might become a dumping ground with them, rather than general retrocomputing questions.

  • Gaming.SE has over 250 000 questions, and searching for "Amstrad" or "CPC" finds no hits. This suggests that there isn't the interest there for these types of questions. It's tricky. Where do you go for Retro Games? Retrocomputing or Gaming? I've never before considered asking a game-identification question for a 30-year old game on Gaming before because it just doesn't feel like a good fit based on the typical questions they get. – CJ Dennis Jun 27 '16 at 19:56
  • @CJDennis fair points, but I would make the argument that just because the questions don't exist just means that no one has asked them yet. Why don't you ask a test question and see how it is received? (Unless of course there are deleted questions about the Amstrad or CPC which we can't see) – JAL Jun 29 '16 at 15:48
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    Gaming.SE only allows game identification questions that include a screenshot – user3335 Sep 19 '16 at 16:28
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I think "identify-this" should be permitted, subject to the same restriction as on Gaming.SE: you need to have some artifact from the software. This could be

  • A screenshot
  • A clip of the soundtrack or a distinctive sound effect
  • A photo of a pair of peril-sensitive sunglasses
  • A distinctive line of text ("YOU ARE IN A MAZE OF TWISTY LITTLE PASSAGES, ALL ALIKE.")
  • and so on

In short, there needs to be a way for the person answering to verify that yes, their answer matches the question.

Note that "identify-this" should not be restricted to games. "What Apple II calculation program is this screenshot from?" should be perfectly acceptable.

  • I have zero experience with the Apple II but I'm going to take a stab in the dark. Is it called Visicalc? – CJ Dennis Jun 28 '16 at 7:26
  • No, this was "VisiCalcLand III" – user12 Jun 28 '16 at 16:28
  • @jdv Are you sure it wasn't the Apple][e remake, "New VisiCalcLand III for Apple ][e"? – wizzwizz4 Jun 28 '16 at 20:10
  • @wizzwizz4, I'm not sure. My cassette was eaten by a Grue. – user12 Jun 29 '16 at 2:02
  • All of your artifacts are searchable on Google. Someone commented that search-only questions are low quality and should be closed. If I already had as much information as you suggest is required I wouldn't need to ask other people as it would be easy to find it myself. – CJ Dennis Jun 29 '16 at 22:07

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