Terminator 2 – Every Balkanians Favorite Childhood Game Console

Everyone in Bulgaria seemed to have one writes EUROGAMER. You could buy them at electronics shops but the real business was done at weekend flea markets, where hordes of people would buy and trade games as well as all manner of other things. Seeing all those yellow cartridges lined up together made quite the impression on a young mind, and you could pick one up for one Lev, the equivalent of 50p.

In Bulgaria, there was Communism, and the People’s Republic of Bulgaria didn’t end until 1990, at which point the market opened up. But even then it was exorbitantly expensive to import things from further west and people didn’t have a lot of money.

Move over GameBoy, it’s another Balkan nostalgia trip.


“I spoke to some of Dessie’s friends and they all quickly remembered it, and a friend of mine in Serbia remembered it too. These things were everywhere and it’s no surprise, given they cost the equivalent of €10.”

Most brands, Nintendo included, didn’t see much of an opportunity there, which made way for cheap knock-offs from Russia and China to swoop in. If you imported a NES or a SNES, you were uncommonly rich. Everyone else had a Terminator 2.


As we browse through photos of the Terminator 2 and watch compilation videos of NES games, I see memories flit across Dessie’s eyes as nostalgia bubbles within. She’s seeing her childhood. She’s seeing her and her brother squabbling over who gets to play, while sitting on the floor near the TV because the cables weren’t long enough. She’s seeing memories like mine.

What do you think?

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