Queen West Video Game Toronto

Queen West as a video game

This post is for 1) people who love Toronto and 2) who have eight minutes to kill on a bit of early 90s nostalgia. It's Queen West as a video game! Or, more accurately, it's a YouTube video of Queen West / West Queen West as a side-scrolling, Mario Brothers-esque pseudo video game. Now that's a mouthful -- but it's also quite a bit of fun.

The handiwork of illustrator Brett Lamb (with music from Suba Sankaran and Dylan Bell), there's something that a 80s/90s hound like me finds irresistible about a little souvenir like this, which was originally put together for the 2010 Queen West Art Crawl fundraiser. We posted about a Toronto-based LEPOS prototype arcade game that was on display at Magic Pony a few months back that also got me longing for my childhood days, but although it featured notable landmarks like Honest Ed's and Spadina Subway Station, Lamb's take on the genre is even more specific to our city.

Essentially what you get here -- if you're willing to stay on board for the duration of the game -- is a tour of Queen from University to Roncesvalles, complete with retro-styled landmarks like the MuchMusic/CTV building, Trinity Bellwoods Park and the Gladstone. Also included, of course, are our colourful cabs, newspaper boxes and TTC streetcars.

If there's a criticism to be made here -- but really why would someone bother with something that's so obviously lighthearted -- it's simply that the pace is a little slow. So before hitting play, remember the warning at the outset of this post.

Hat tip to Mondoville, through whom I found out about this bit of nostalgia tripping.


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