Pritthijit Datta’s ‘Interactive 80’s Game’ contains fun & games, trivia facts and insights into the best decade that ever was. From the themes that defined it to the games people played, the volume will help anyone take a trip back in time and plan many evenings of nostalgia steeped in fun. There’s even two board games that can be downloaded, so grab that Spandex and get ready!
INTERACTIVE 80’s GAME: THE INTERVIEW
We spoke exclusively to Pritthijit all about his love for the 80’s – and be sure to follow us on twitter for a chance to win a copy of the book! #FOLLOWTHEJ
THE J: Are you an 80’s child?
PD: I was born in 1978. I have been so fortunate to be raised in the 1980’s as a child. It was an awesome decade. I have so many fond memories. I remember going to the seaside with family and friends on a scorching hot day, playing conkers with friends in our neighbourhood, receiving my first BMX as a birthday present.
We played 80’s tunes at a children’s party that my parents arranged for us like anthems Black Lace’s “Superman”, A-ha’s “Take On Me” and many more. Of course, there were the awesome cartoons I watched in the morning and afternoons like He-Man, Thundercats, Smurfs, GI Joe and Transformers.
80’s POP CULTURE
THE J: What makes the 80’s such a great decade?
PD: The music was quality in the decade, producing some of greatest artists and bands like George Michael, Michael Jackson, Madonna, Billy Joel, A-ha, Duran Duran, Madness and heaps more. Unarguably, the best music of all-time. The decade produced blockbuster movies like Ghostbusters, Back to the Future, E.T., Empire Strikes Back and much more.
TV was quality in the decade with the likes of Bullseye, Going Live, A-Team, Knight Rider, Golden Girls and much more.
The quality of cartoons was awesome like Transformers, He-Man, Thundercats and much more. The high street shops would be flooded with children wanting to buy the latest merchandise associated with the cartoons like Woolworths. The level of engagement was great in the decade. Families and friends would mingle with each other having great times.
THE J: The book explores board games many of which come from that time. Which is your favourite?
PD: I played many board games during the eighties like Monopoly, Scrabble and Game of Life and much more. We would sit on table playing board games with friends. I personally like Scrabble, Guess Who and Connect Four.
THE J: The video game market grew exceptionally during that time, were you a Mario or a Sonic fan
I was a big fan of Mario Game.
PD: I found Mario games more appealing than Sonic games.
THE J: Did you own a Rubik’s cube or a space hooper game?
PD: Rubik’s cube was one of the popular fashions and fads during the decade. A great toy to play with. I owned a Rubik cube that time. Even today, I have one and play with to relieve the nostalgia of the decade.
THE J: The 80’s was a booming decade yet the Internet, smart phones and social media were not popular. Were these simpler times happier times?
PD: In the 1980’s, we did not have the distractions of smart phones, the Internet and social media. Many people engaged with each other through visiting neighbours and families and friends. The quality of the social interactions was excellent in the decade.
Children would play each other and engage like playing conkers and marbles.
Today, we are missing those times.
We are living in a world that technology is dominating. It is a new trend in society. I do not want it to affect our communication skills and we take things for granted of what is important in life like talking to people directly. I feel that these should be done in moderation.
It is important to move with the times, but not let it take over our life and we are constantly on it.
THE J: 80’s TV had some classic shows for children – which do you have the fondest memories of?
PD: My fondest memory is watching Transformers. Waking up in the morning racing downstairs to watch this awesome cartoon featuring good and evil robots. I watched He-Man and Thundercats after school.
I would indulge in snacks and be completely engrossed in the screen watching the action and humour. 80’s produced iconic heroes like Lion-O, He-Man and Optimus and of course villains like Skeletor, Megatron. I collected toys associated with the cartoon and still have the items stored in my cupboard of old childhood toys.
THE J: Can you tell us the interactivity elements of the book?
PD: I could write a whole essay about the 80’s decade as there is so much to write about. I did not want to do that. I made the book different as it features two interactive board games like a trivia quiz round testing your knowledge of the decade on different areas like music, TV, movies, sports and cartoons.
You can download a board game from www.engagedgames.co.uk to play with friends or families via online platforms or directly. Due to COVID-19, I tapped into a new opportunity as we cannot meet friends or families, but we can create an experience of playing board game via online and engage during these difficult times.
There is also another board game you can play, where there are trivia questions, charades, and a picture round. There is a mallet mallet and music games. I want to make the book interactive, enjoyable, and fun. The goal is about having fun. It is about bringing families around the dining table or sitting in a living room with a drink at hand and to have good old-fashioned quality time.
LIVING WITH DYSPRAXIA
THE J: Your previous book focuses on your experiences with Dyspraxia, how does this affect your writing?
PD: Dyspraxia has affected me since childhood. I had to work extremely hard to overcome this difficulty. In school, my writing was atrocious. I practised to improve my skill in writing through self-teaching myself. It takes me time to gather my thoughts and put this in writing due to my dyspraxia. I am deeply passionate about writing and not let this condition be a hinderance.
THE J: You were inspired to write by Michael Connelly – what makes him such a brilliant writer?
PD: During the late 90s, my interest in reading grew. I got so bored with so much time before a seminar. I purchased a Michael Connelly’s novel from Waterstones and read during the free time. That how my love of reading grew. Michael Connelly is an excellent American crime fiction writer.
The moment you read the first page; you are glued to the book. His writing is compelling and written so concisely and in details, as you feel that you are part of the story and you want to finish the book in one go to reach the climax. He creates a buzz in his novels and that is what inspired me to get into writing.
THE J: What does the future hold for you?
PD: I want to continue with writing, focusing on Quiz Interactive Game books, short stories, and a feature novel. One project on the pipeline is a Disney Interactive Game, which will be a similar style to the Interactive 80’s game book. I want to continue being an ambassador for dyspraxia through my charity work, being dyspraxia myself and inspire those with the condition to achieve their potential.
INTERACTIVE 80’s GAME BOOK IS OUT NOW!
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