Few people have heard of it, yet many consider John Blankenbaker's KENBAK-1 to be the first commercial personal computer.

Koss introduced these headphones over 40 years ago, and they remain affordable favorites to this day.

Can You Escape Fireball Island?

I've always been fond of board games, and tonight I was remembering some of the large games from the 60's. Lots of ambitious concepts in the era, and many giant sized 3D games. I remember an all plastic mountain game called King of the Hill. It was a 3D version of the classic "Snakes and Ladders" game, but played with real marbles and many random perils.Star Wars figures liked the hill, too.

As we chatted, a younger friend remembered a board game from the early 90's that sounded a bit similar, and it turned out to be Fireball Island. The game is a 3D environment for the playing pieces to explore. A draw of the "fireball" card entitled you to roll a red marble though the 3D terrain, hopefully knocking down your opponents. I found a copy of the commercial, and from the looks of it this game could be tremendously fun even for adults.

Clearly inspired by Indiana Jones (just take a look at the main font), the game promises a gaming adventure free of any electronic gimmickry and annoying sound effects. Just an actual bona-fide non-virtual experience. I really want to try it out, but with so many pieces & easily wrecked gameboard, it's difficut to find a complete set in good shape. Ebay has complete sets ringing in at quite a bit of money... nut there are many finished auctions showing that there are still bargains to be had out there.  In case you're wondering, yes that's a lot for a game that's not even 20 years old.  I guess it must be the most fun game ever, but it looks like I'll never get to try. I'd better just stick with the ol' King of the Hill.


A few more box shots & details of King of the Hill thanks to boardgamekeek.com
Want to grab one on Ebay and tell us about?


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