Anyone remember Special Reserve? Page 6

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  • fontgeeksogood 3 Dec 2019 20:42:25 11,154 posts
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    Also, the fuck does it matter if it was your birthday or not? You were a shitty employee and I would have worked out how to somehow super fire you - maybe fire, re-hire and then immediately fire again just to underline how shit you were
  • fontgeeksogood 3 Dec 2019 20:42:49 11,154 posts
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    And then tip off the cops that you'd stolen loads of games
  • spurslol 3 Dec 2019 20:52:26 518 posts
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    I can't believe he registered just to tell that terrible story
  • fontgeeksogood 3 Dec 2019 20:59:04 11,154 posts
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    We both had Minidisc Walkmans, as did the assistant manager, so 'Special Reserve Radio' only got played when the regional manager visited. The rest of the time it was mix sets of UK garage, jungle, hip hop, oldskool rave and we even occasionally indulged the assistant manager's preference for indie albums like Super Furry Animals or Gorky's Zygotic Mynci. Customers asked us more about the music than they did the special offers
    "Why are you playing this utter shit?"
    "Can you turn this shit off?"
    "Are you racially profiling your assistant manager via music preferences?"

    Are just a smattering of what I suspect the reality of these music queries were.

    I'm imagining the shop from High Fidelity only with even bigger cunts staffing it
  • Mola_Ram 3 Dec 2019 22:05:34 24,819 posts
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    PES is your name Tony
  • Lukus 3 Dec 2019 22:25:00 23,759 posts
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    Super Furry Animals are great, I'll fight anyone who says otherwise
  • arty 3 Dec 2019 22:55:46 775 posts
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    So were gorkys.
  • Vortex808 4 Dec 2019 12:17:01 14,282 posts
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    Lukus wrote:
    Super Furry Animals are great, I'll fight anyone who says otherwise
    Definitely this.
  • JayR 9 Dec 2019 22:43:39 1 posts
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    @up_the_ante It should be, that's from the Bristol store on Gloucester Road that I used to work at, was only there for 2 months before they shut it down. The building was boarded up as it wasn't particularly safe and hasn't been touched since 2005 I don't think.

    I still remember my last day, two lads along with a regional(?) manager (his name I forget, Steve maybe) came to tell us that the company was going into a CVA administration, he offered us £50 each to help pack up the stock but our store manager, Keith Stanton told him no chance. They all went to the pub and I went home as I just had my first new PC delivered.

    I do wonder where Keith, Bill, Owen and Olubumi ended up, there was another one that introduced me to Salad Fingers, I forget his name but him and Keith were a musical duo called cybermonkey. Then there was Sadie who only joined a week or two before the store was closed.

    Can't say I was surprised about the company failing, people only ever came in to trade-in their old copies of PES/FIFA. We failed hard when the new PES was out and we had no stock of it, seemed to be the only thing customer's were interested in.

    Not that it mattered overall, but I think our location was poor, it wasn't where all the school kids from Cotham or Monks Park walked past, where we could entice them with Donkey Konga.

    Fond memories of standing around for 9hrs a day doing nothing but wiping the shelves down and alphabetically ordering the game discs in the drawers...
  • up_the_ante 10 Dec 2019 04:31:10 1,440 posts
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    @JayR Yes I found the sign on google street view. You can flick through 7 photos of it at different stages of deterioration between 2008 - 2018.
    WARNING - may trigger the contemplation of time and an existential crisis.

    https://www.google.com/maps/@51.4824772,-2.5875319,3a,75y,154.63h,96.16t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sJ08W4Ku6b0U2KczINVavIA!2e0!7i13312!8i6656

    Edited by up_the_ante at 04:32:44 10-12-2019
  • Singularity 10 Dec 2019 10:47:50 3,255 posts
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    I love it when this thread gets bumped. And I love hearing that people enjoyed the magazine. It was often pretty hellish times when we were putting it together.
  • ChiefGB 11 Dec 2019 10:01:06 12,997 posts
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    RawShark wrote:
    Kids today wonít understand just how long it used to take just to buy a video game from a mail order place like Special Reserve. Youíd actually give up on ever getting the game before it finally arrived in a crushed cardboard box.
    This really was a thing, but before all of that ordering you had to beg your parents for the money and convince them to write and post a cheque for it, maybe towards the end they had phone ordering too. There was no order ďdispatchedĒ emails or feedback unless you got bored of waiting and finally convinced your parent to ring them. Eurgh, shit times.
  • barchetta 11 Dec 2019 11:04:33 2,939 posts
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    I remember racking up quite a bill ringing around various software houses: Ocean, US Gold, Microprose to check on release dates trying to work out which games would release before a birthday.

    Used the Stapleford store a few times and also Castle Computers for mail order.... good times.
  • brassicGamer 7 Feb 2020 00:15:29 3 posts
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    Woah - replies!

    up_the_ante wrote:
    I never actually went to any of the stores. It was my childhood dream to do so though. [snip] Now I suspect I would've been sorely disappointed.
    Indeed you would have, my man. Indeed you would have.

    Mola_Ram wrote:
    Not saying that he wasn't a cunt, but this doesn't sound like a particularly good example of that.
    I guess it was the equivalent of someone knocking your pint over by accident - not really their fault, but significant personal cost as a result.

    Lukus wrote:
    fontgeeksogood wrote:
    Yeah, Tony did nothing wrong, you were a terrible worker
    Haha, exactly. The nerve of him, paying you to do a specific job the way he wanted.
    Can't argue, guys. I've always had a problem with micromanagers, but I think the story comes across better if I sound indignant.

    Mola_Ram wrote:
    Sure, it sucks being fired. But in that case getting fired seems like a fair cop, regardless of what you think about your manager.
    Yeah I guess I didn't care that much about the job but that had nothing to do with my motivation in that situation. If we're to get deep about this, my early childhood development involved being a bit weird at school and so I developed a coping strategy that made me adaptable to almost any situation in pursuit of social acceptance. While this worked in my favour many times, it also led to me 'going along' with a lot of stuff where the other person was either dominant, where I perceived to be superior, or where I respected them. When Andy asked me to cover for him there was no question whatsoever that I would show loyalty - we were friends, after all, and he was my immediate superior. I never formed a bond with Tony (says something about his management style - some owners insist on meeting every employee) so I only had contempt for him.

    Maybe I've said too much...
  • LewisPackwood 12 Feb 2020 10:16:42 5 posts
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    @skillian Hi! I'm researching a feature on Special Reserve, and I'd love to speak to you about your experiences there! Could you drop me a message so we can have a chat over email? You can contact me through my website: lewispackwood.com. Thanks!
  • LewisPackwood 12 Feb 2020 10:41:22 5 posts
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    @Singularity Hello! I'm researching an article on Special Reserve, could we have a chat? You can contact me through my website lewispackwood.com. Cheers!
  • Singularity 12 Feb 2020 10:53:40 3,255 posts
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    @LewisPackwood Sure. What is your article about?

    Edited by Singularity at 11:00:14 12-02-2020
  • LewisPackwood 12 Feb 2020 11:04:15 5 posts
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    @Singularity itís The Story or Special Reserve for Retro Gamer magazine, and I want to explore the history of the company and the people who worked for it. Most gamers fondly remember the adverts and getting games through mail order, but donít know anything about the company itself, so I think it will be interesting to explore that!
  • LewisPackwood 12 Feb 2020 11:04:16 5 posts
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    @Singularity itís The Story or Special Reserve for Retro Gamer magazine, and I want to explore the history of the company and the people who worked for it. Most gamers fondly remember the adverts and getting games through mail order, but donít know anything about the company itself, so I think it will be interesting to explore that!
  • Singularity 12 Feb 2020 11:08:43 3,255 posts
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    @LewisPackwood Cool. Have messaged you.
  • Chasloyal 4 May 2020 16:46:29 2 posts
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    @brassicGamer Do you know if this Tony lived in a big pad down a small gated cul-de-sac of maybe three houses in one of The Rodings, possibly White Roding, at that time?

    Needless to say I don't want to go in to that much detail but I actually made a delivery to a big cheese from Special Reserve at the above mentioned property at precisely the time that the shit really hit the fan for them.

    I literally pulled up out the front to drop a package and strolled straight in what can only be described as a rather interesting and most ungentlemanly business 'discussion' between two fellas on the front drive.

    A week or two later I discovered they'd gone under and the penny dropped about what I must have walked in on that day.
  • brassicGamer 4 May 2020 16:52:41 3 posts
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    @Chasloyal woah that's a cracking little nugget there. Imagine having enough information to be able to make a documentary about it!
  • Chasloyal 4 May 2020 17:04:21 2 posts
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    @brassicGamer once again I don't want to say too much but Special Reserve in Sawbo was very much on our radar in my miss-spent youth during the Megadrive/SNES era so I knew exactly what his business was when I rocked up that day.

    Funnily enough the missus was there too, but in the background looking mortified about what was unfolding on their doorstep for all the neighbours to see.

    If my memory serves me right I don't think she was what you'd describe as your standard fare Essexshire 'trophy wife' but quite a plain mumsy looking middle aged woman.
  • Frum 18 May 2020 12:11:01 1 posts
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    @LewisPackwood I can tell you loads mate...I worked there for 4 years in Sawbridgeworth. Most people would not believe the stuff that went on in that place.

    Edited by Frum at 12:23:11 18-05-2020
  • LewisPackwood 19 May 2020 10:59:57 5 posts
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    @Frum That's great! Could you drop me an email so we could arrange a chat, either by phone or email? You can contact me through the form on my website: lewispackwood.com. Cheers!
  • cowell 19 May 2020 14:00:35 2,216 posts
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    Iíve got this feint memory of a few stories I heard about Special Reserve. I heard it was basically banter central behind the scenes, bordering on bullying at times.

    I was also on a Midway retail conference out on Sicily at a very expensive hotel, probably around 2003. Basically 3 days of sightseeing and drinking with about two hours of actual work. The SR rep sent out for it overslept through and missed the presentation on the morning of day 2. That rep may or may not have been part of the family. Memory is feint
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