Our next Trading Card Spotlight features Derek Sorrells, who is displayed on card number 832, from the Superstars of 2014 Collection.  Derek is also featured on cards 1280, 2158 and 2254.   Derek is an old school gamer who loves arcade machines.  He grew up in the prime of the arcade era and played as many arcade machines possible.  His love grew until the crash of the arcades in 1983.  He relived his childhood in 2006 and began restoring and collecting arcade machines from the mid-80s.   His collection of about 50 machines can be seen when Derek run a local tournament in his Arcade.  Derek offers his expertise to other Arcade collectors and helps them with restoring and maintaining arcade machines.  Derek is also one of the people responsible for the creation of the Walter Day Collection Web site.  Any suggestions or ideas for the website can be sent to Derek at derek@thewalterdaycollection.com .

What are your opinions about today’s generation of video games? 

Today’s games are all about graphics and drawing the game play out. In the 80s, arcade games were designed to take your quarter and generally let you play for a mere 90 seconds. The games of today have downloadable content and multiplayer options that allow you to play for hours.  Only the best of the best played for hours in our generation.

Do you remember your first video game / arcade you played and what do you remember about it?

It was Pac-Man. It seemed so simple, yet so very difficult when game play actually started.

Did you ever think when you were younger you would be on a Video game Trading card? 

Absolutely not. I always dreamed of being the best at Pac-Man, or Defender, or Bosconican (don’t see that one too often now do you!), but I never was. Good but not great. Appearing on a trading card is a great honor.

Have you ever received any media coverage for your appearance on the Trading Card?  If so, where?

Not specifically for being on a trading card, but I was interviewed by kake.com, the local ABC affiliate in regards to a fund raiser we put on for the Dragon Master Foundation (dragonmasterfoundation.org) by showing Jeff Von Ward’s The Space Invaders movie. Great turn out remembering the old days and for a great cause (fighting childhood cancer)

When did you first meet Walter day and where was it at?

It was at the Kong-Off 3 at the 1-Up in Denver, Co.

If you could describe Walter Day in one word, what would that word be and why?


Are you still involved with gaming today, and what role do you play?

Very much so. I had the Walter Day Collection website built and also continue to restore classic games.

Do you prefer PC or Console gaming and why?

Neither. If it isn’t in the arcade, it isn’t being played!

What games today do you play and what are your favorite genres of games?

Only the old games!

If you could own one arcade game or pinball game, what would it be and why? 

Environmental Discs of Tron.

Growing up were you team Sega or Nintendo and why?

Neither. I got out of the consoles before either hit big.

What does it take to be a Video Game Journalist?

Patience with geeks. LOL

How does video game music influence games past and present?

The music of the 80s games many times was an afterthought almost. “What can I cram into what little space I have left in memory?” While it is and has been very important to us as players, I don’t think anyone thought it would be as significant as it is. As far as music outside of the games, nothing will ever be as popular as Buckner and Garcia’s Pac-Man Fever. It defined our generation and the popularity of the song mirror what was happening in the arcade at the time.

Are video games aimed mainly at children, adolescents or adults?

Today’s games are primarily built for those 14-25. Arcade games of the day had a wider net that they cast, and that was partially because of the newness of the scene. Today, anyone can play amazing high quality games on their home computer.

Do you believe some Video Games are too violent and lead to violence in America today?

Not sure if they lead to violence per se, but they certainly appear to numb the feelings of those playing them.

Do you prefer playing video games alone, against friends or online against the world and why?

I love multiplayer games like Track and Field and Joust, but nothing like playing alone in an arcade full of people.

Which company makes the best games and why?

Bally/Midway. Pac-Man, Ms. Pac-Man, Galaga, Tron, and the list just go on and on.

Do you learn anything from playing video games?


Are video games good for relieving stress?

They are today…. I can retreat to my home arcade and relax and play a few games. Back in the day, I stressed about it more than relaxed from it.

Do you like it when Hollywood makes a movie from the video game?

Only when they are good; this is few and far between.

Who is your favorite video game character and what makes that character special?

Dirk in Dragon’s Lair…. Because he is the one that got Daphnie!

Where do you see Video gaming in the next 20 years?

Virtual reality if where it is all headed. Books like Ready Player One are a good look at where we are going. Full immersion. Touch, feel, sound, it will be all encompassing.

This is one of an ongoing series of articles based on the Walter Day Collection of e-sports/video gaming trading cards – check out more information at thewalterdaycollection.com

Todd Friedman Todd Friedman (386 Posts)

Todd Friedman is heavily involved in the retro gaming community and has co-promoted the Video Game Summit in Chicago, IL for the past 16 years. He also has published 2 books and written for various different gaming magazines including Old School Gamer.