Archive for the 'Old Toys & Games' Category

My First Nintendo

Those who have read my previous post on the old Casio Calculator Space Invader game, may also like this.

No it wasn’t the Nintendo Game Boy my son is playing, it was a very simple handheld single game type! Called it “Game & Watch”;

It’s not so expensive though but the LCD screen resolution and color is a far cry from the games nowadays. Each set has 2 games : Game A and Game B – Game B is the same but at a faster speed. At that time (in the early 80s), a lot of youngsters were addicted to this game set! Almost everywhere you can see them playing as there were many different games. Among them, my favourite was the Octopus one;

The battery was not those rechargeable type like the GameBoy now. To change to a different game then means to buy another new game set.

My son’s GameBoy – what he called the SP Advance was so expensive when we first bought it few years back and now, the price dropped like hell. It even has a carry pouch;

Even the external appearance is enough to attract one to play;

It’s resolution and color of course were much better than my old “GameBoy”;

Now to change game is easy, just buy a new cartridge (expensive though).

Any place still sell the old Game & Watch?

If you can’t find them anymore, fret not. Play it online here at Retro Remake.

My Casio Calculator Invader Game

My first electronic handheld game was most probably the Casio Calculator ‘Space Invader’ game, or more correctly – ‘Number Invader’ game. It was actually modeled after the late 70s popular Space Invader game.

I don’t really remember the model of that Casio calculator, but a Google search shows me the model MG-880. Wonder if it was the same calculator… Anyway it looks alike;

The player have to press the correct number on the extreme left to match any of the number on the right that keeps coming out randomly, so as to kill ‘it’. The 3 horizontal short lines on the right of the extreme left number indicates the number of lives you have remaining. The ‘n’ is what makes me remember the game most!

Here is the closeup of the screen;

So when was this calculator game in fashion? It should be in the early 80s, during my Poly time. Now where have I dumped this calculator???

For those that wish to try out this ‘Number Invader’ game, here it is;


The instructions are here.

Some Old Tin Toys

The above wind-up tin toys may ring a bell to some but maybe not to the younger generations. They may be rather dull toys to the kids now, but these are some of the fabulous toys that I’m keen to get my hands on in the past.

To play, you just need to wind-up the toys and it will “action”! No batteries needed! But be careful, if you “over-wind” then the toy will breakdown.

If you take a closer look at these toys you bought in Singapore then, majority were made in China;

All the while I thought such tin toys originated from China but I am wrong until I read up on it – History of Tin Toys. In fact, such tin toys only started producing in China in the early 1920s.

Show me yours if you have! Oh, by the way the above 3 tin toys shown are still available at a shop here in Singapore – maybe of limited quantities…


Tikam tikam – a very popular gambling game in the past – guess during the 60s or around that time. Saw the below mock-up Tikam board at the Singapore Philatelic Museum;

I almost burst out laughing…couldn’t they find the real thing?

Managed to find the real one at the Grandfather’s Collections shop at Kampong Glam;

Don’t worry I’ve no relationship or any link with this shop. It’s a shop selling those old “collectible” items, pricing rather reasonable. For those like me, it’s worth paying the shop a visit.

Now here are the real Tikams, and how it looks like;

Sorry, a partially hidden one above.

Here is a better one;

Personally I feel that this is a highly addictive game as I’ve personally experienced it. I will keep going back hoping to win the “Big One”! I won’t stop until I’ve emptied my pockets…

How to play the game then? In the past, it cost about 5 cents to 20 cents for a try. You will pull a piece of paper off the Tikam board and check if you have won any prizes. Prizes depending on what is written or printed on the paper, varies from different types of cheap toys and sometimes money in terms of coins like 10 cents, 20 cents, 50 cents, etc.

The current “Gashapon”(gachapon) :Capsule toys, plastic spheres containing all sort of items like action figures, snap-together models, etc.. is probably evolved from our old Tikam board game. Now you just need to drop a few coins (probably $1 to a few dollars now depending on what’s inside) and turn the knob and the capsule will drop out;

Photo credit :

Blowing Balloon

Most of us would have played these – blowing balloon with;

Luckily it’s still commonly and easily available at around 40cents to 50cents for a few sticks. Shown above are the smaller size sticks where once opened, it must be finished. Anyway, the content inside is very little only.

We used to buy them from ‘Mama’ stores and at provision shops in the past. It’s much cheaper then, and it’s really fun to play it with the neighbours. The most enjoyable part is to join 2 or more balloons together. My son learning the trick here;


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April 2020