Like the cliffhanging end to a movie, this gathering only just came together right at the very end.  It had been over 6 months since our last official kick off tourney, and although we were rusty we were revvved up and ready!




1. Brian C
2. Garry C
3. Simon K
4. Steve E

I – Ski Jump (Winter Games)

First though,  with arctic conditions outside, what better time to take a look again at Winter Games. Had the weather not beaten John M’s motorcycling travel plans (catch ya next time mate!), we’d have played on authentic C64 hardware but instead we settled for the VICE emulator. A high skill ‘sports simulation’ and simply trying to land was the first challenge, though watching each other land in a heap could be entertaining too. Still, get the forward lean just right, forward but not too far forward, keep the skis parallel skis and straight knees, and you were away. If it sounds like I know what I’m talking about, you’d be mistaken. I was rubbish back then and no different today (my first attempt I simply fell off the ramp) but it’s still a great game and great fun. We each had 5 attempts but don’t think anyone landed more than twice. Anyway, here’s how it panned out, with Steve the Eagle Edwards taking gold….


1. Steve E – 61.0m; 197.2pts
2. Garry C – 60.0m; 194.1pts
3. Simom K – 56.1m; 180.4pts
4. Brian C – 54.2m; 170.8pts

II – Kick Off Tourney (Birmingham XLI)

By strange coincidence, this was our 41st Birmingham tournament (aka KOBRA) in the week of my bro’s birthday of the same number. Spooky! He’s not the KO2 nut that the rest of us are so, taking advantage of KO2CV’s extra tactics, we all agreed to play Blitz when against Bri to open things up a little…

Round #1
Steve E 5 – 1 Brian C
Garry C 5 – 1 Simon K
Garry C 3 – 1 Steve E
Simon K 5 – 2 Brian C
Steve E 5 – 7 Simon K
Brian C 3 – 6 Garry C

My first round went very well. Against Si things fell too easily into place almost like this result was destined to happen no matter what, and Ste’s unusually below-par performance seemed circa 2007 when he first joined the KOA. Was there really some time travelling going on here??? Who knows! My 100% start was complete with an entertaining 9-goal feast against my KO-lobbing brother.

Round #2
Brian C 3 – 5 Steve E
Simon K 3 – 0 Garry C
Steve E 7 – 3 Garry C
Brian C 2 – 6 Simon K
Simon K 5 – 6 Steve E
Garry C 11 – 4 Brian C

For round #2 I was back in the present alright! With roles reversed I couldn’t even score against Si, my sparring partner of old, who’s elite defensive skills blocked certain goals and he even saved a penalty too. Steve had warped to his UK Champion days by now and think I was 0-6 down at HT. Despite my second half rally with three quick goals, Ste was on the march. This left the table very tight indeed, with three of us all in with a shout of the title. Simon called out that he needed a point to clinch it, Ste needed to beat Si, and Gaz win aginst Bri and hope the other result went his way. We played simultaneously, not knowing each others scores.

Initially there was some confusion over who actually had come top, me believing it was Si, Ste believing it was Si, and Si believing it was himself lol. Yet, in this ‘king of kings’ ending, I managed to squeeze through the photo-finish amid claims of ruthless conduct hehe and a 2-goal advantage. I got a bit of ribbing but it’s all good fun really (esp when you come top of the pile lol).



How close was that!

III – Speed Skating (Winter Games)
Anyway, our Winter Games sandwich was completed by some Speed Skating, which itself stirred up some controversy. Steve was at his most evil for this one. Genuinely taking credit for his Semi-Final trimph until it transpired he wasn’t even playing! We didn’t realise the game was still in 1P mode and Ste’s part had been played by the computer!!! We all kidded Ste about this but he was he who had the last laugh to take the Winter Games crown once more.


Which one’s Steve? lol

1.Steve E 30.3s
2.Simon K 32.1s

1.Garry C 28.6s
2.Brian C 30.3s

1.Steve E 29.0s
2.Garry C 30.6s

It was late by now and the rest of the household asleep, so no one to take the team photo! My smartphone’s timer feature came to the rescue (sort of) After some faffing and some failed attempts we started cracking up. An hilarious end to a real good night. Cheers once again to the lads for making the effort last friday.


Take #1 LOL


Take #2 Garry C, Simon K, Steve E and Brian C


One thought on “88mph and ready to go…

  1. No tournament for ages and then one as the West Midlands is in the firm grip of Snow and Ice? That’ll be the KOBRA lads then! With the theme to Ski-Sunday firmly in our minds Gaz had a great treat in store…as well as the main course of a Kick Off tournament, we’ll have a side helping and desert of other retro games to accompany the feast (the starter was some fine Custard Creams!)
    KOBRA has always evolved with the times and 2013 is no exception, Gaz started organising small tournaments along with fostering friendships with other retro gamers and this in turn resulted in more tournaments throughout the Midlands with KOOHL and Sutty’s place (can’t remember name), buoyed by an increase in enthusiasm it then resulted in regular tournaments in Newent, continuing with more UK Champs and then culminating in the Kick Off World Cup. But where do you go from here?
    Well you just do what you’ve already done and play more retro games lol but what was an interesting aside at the very first 8 Bits has now bitten us fully. When you play old classics in the same fevered atmosphere of a Kick Off tournament it brings restbite to everyone and anyone struggling at Dino Dini’s classic can enjoy some time on another game they excelled at in times gone by.

    So January 2013 saw the next rung on the evolutionary ladder for KOBRA and first up was Winter Games! A fine classic with great graphics for it’s time and a topsy turvey kinda game with how tricky it is to balance your player. A theme for the night was me doing poorly in practising but then doing great when the games were played for real and I managed to sneak a victory, although Gaz was very close.

    Next up was KO2! Blimey, where have you been so long? I struggled badly at first I must say and my posisitionaing and composure were sorely lacking. In days gone by I took the game seriously, a little too seriously, but now I’m pretty cool with it. Consequently my focus was well and truly off and the first round of games with Gaz and Si were very reminiscent of when we first used to meetup (a little TOO reminiscent!)

    Steve E 5 – 1 Brian C
    Garry C 3 – 1 Steve E
    Steve E 5 – 7 Simon K

    My 5-1 victory of Bri was a very close affair with me getting a bag of goals in the last few minutes. It was 2-1 to me with not much time left and Bri had some great chances to equalise but thankfully for me this didn’t transpire and so I relied on some old faithful routines to put the matter to bed.
    My game with Gaz was f r u s t r a t I n g! I just couldn’t get going at all. I’m even struggling to write about it now because for me it was a total non-event. I asked for a copy a catalogue to rest my joystick on and I may as well have flicked through it’s pages to look for a few bargains rather than try to win on the football field. I felt a weird barrier in getting to the ball in this one. Well played Gaz!
    The final game of the Round saw me pit my wits against Si and I said goodbye to my inability to score and hello to my newfound ability to concede! If truth be told I was always 2 goals behind Si and would have been more had his keeper not lurpack’d one in the net (although it did happen to me as well hehe)

    Brian C 3 – 5 Steve E
    Steve E 7 – 3 Garry C
    Simon K 5 – 6 Steve E

    With the ultra thick ‘Next’ catalogue being my trusty steed (if a little distracting with a scantily clad woman on the front lol) I had a tremendously close game with Bri. I still had a few kinks to iron out but was very happy to come away with the win against a player who gets more dangerous with every game.
    My game with Gaz was the ‘other Amiga’…an Amiga I felt more comfortable with (probably why my last round of games were all on here hehe sorry lads!), just the right shade of green I capitalised on this comfort and felt in control and I had scored 5 by half time (if memory serves me correctly). Gaz made a great comeback in the second half, only for me to recapture some of my 1st half form again to get the win.
    By the time the last game came to pass I realised I had a chance of winning. I remember starting out in KO2 and seeing established players seemingly lose lots of games but still be in with a shout of winning something and it seems I’m now one of those. In my mind I had to win by 2 clear goals against Si and what a game this was. Topsy and indeed Turvey. Looking back it seems I won 5-6 but for me it seemed like a defeat, however when Si put in the results I somehow went to top of the table! Yes! I had won but then Gaz entered his result against Bri and he went to 1st place! Shit!

    Well played Gaz on the first place bud, it seems I’m going to try and get to greater heights of goal scoring to claim that first place! It’s a challenge I look forward to recommencing soon! Hehe 

    The desert of the evening with a speed skating game which had us all in stitches when we realised that people playing as ‘player B’ were actually the computer lol There was a certain method to it’s madness though and although I wasn’t the kick off champ, I managed a nice win of retro gaming challenges hehe.
    Lol at the laughing during the photo too and a massive thanks to Si for driving back to Gaz’s in offering help as I’d lost my keys. They were in the end found in the middle of the pavement outside having falled from my jacket. Appreciate your help fella’s

    For all of the banter of the Winter Games primitive nature, when the rounds ended we were all itching to have another go to see if we could do better. With games today I feel the opposite in that I feel worn out from a game of Fifa or a session on Call of Duty s but games of yesteryear? Fun is the new technology. For every gigabyte of data or multitude of polygons in games today, give me the one simple impulse that supercedes anything in it’s way, the simple pleasure of picking up my joystick and pressing fire to play.

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