I’ve been spending some time lately cleaning up some old items in the basement and ran into an absolute GEM. One of my high school games on a VHS tape. This by itself would have been an amazing find, but in that same box was an old VCR. Even better I plugged it in, it fired right up, and then I proceeded to experience a wonderful nostalgic 1 hour of my life. I will say though I learned to appreciate today’s media even more as I felt quite nauseous after watching the quality of the the video. It got me thinking about how the “game tape” has changed over those years since my playing days through my coaching days until now. During this process of cleaning out I found a lot of old game tapes so here’s my quick journey so maybe you can reminisce as well.
1990's to Early 2000's
I remember seeing those huge camcorders on the sidelines with their beefy tripods as onlookers tried to take video of their kids. The game tape I watched was from 2003 and we were still rocking VHS tapes. The signature grainy quality the jerky motions of the camera as it panned across the field. Hooking up the VCR and changing the channel to Ch. 3. All fun memories that I’m glad I don’t have to do anymore. Looking back at this, I’m blown away I was able to make a highlight tape to send to coaches with this technology back then.
Mid 2000's to Late 2000's
Here we took a big jump to the little CD’s. This allowed the video recording equipment to shrink quite a bit. The camera could write right on this mini disc. And somehow the standard computer CD-rom’s could still read this little guy. Was kinda nice for storing all the tapes because it wasn’t as big.
Late 2000's to Early 2010's
Then we moved on to regular sized DVD’s. Camera’s were still able to be small enough to write directly onto a DVD and I think could be used to view the file’s as well as the video itself. I remember buying the thick spindles with a 50 pack of DVD+R and DVD-R. Still don’t really know what that means but its over so I don’t care anymore.
Mid 2010's to Now
Just 10 years after I was watching my old game tapes on a VCR, I began watching my game tapes via files on the computer. Not only that, I see I began using Hudl in 2013. Now I could watch digital game tapes and share them with the players to watch whenever they wanted. What a great change because you would no longer “loan” a gametape to a player only for them to lose it and its gone forever. And as the year go on, the storage of these things is cheaper and cheaper.
What a fun find in the storage area. Amazing to me to see what transpired in those 10+ years. The camera shrank in size drastically. The media was improved so it was able to hold more content. This allowed for tremendously better quality of video. And now the access and sharing of that content is easier than ever before.
What other storage media did you use for game tapes that I missed? Comment below.
Funny I/we still say game “tapes”, as they aren’t tapes anymore!