Shane R. Monroe – Host
Shane R. MonroeFounder and host of the show, Shane has a great background in computers and video games – over 30 years of experience – not just as a user but as an avid programmer and professional.
At 11, he started working with a TSR-80 Model III then moved through the entire line of Commodore computers (Vic-20 to Amiga), finally making the leap to the evil PC in 1995 (when Windows finally caught up with AmigaDOS). Before he could afford a Commodore 64, he would sit at Sears in the local mall, programming and demonstrating the C64 machines there (selling more C64 computers than the sales people did – no wonder they gave him the run of the place). In 1985, Shane saw his first Amiga (playing Defender of the Crown) and knew he’d fallen in love with computers all over again. In 1988, he got his first Amiga 500 and spent the next 7 years of his live as an Amiga advocate, user, and sometimes retailer. He now does professional web site/application development and writes video games for the PC under the label Dark Unicorn Productions (the name of his former Amiga shareware programming group) and VenerableSoft.
Along the way, Shane did plenty of time on consoles. His cousins had a loaded Atari 2600 and many a weekend were spent playing Cosmic Ark and Adventure. One of his best friends soon got a Colecovision and marathon madness playing Venture, Ladybug, and Donkey Kong soon ensued. In the Navy, Shane went through a Sega Master System, Sega Genesis, Nintendo Gameboy (sold off almost immediately to get an …), Atari Lynx, and finally ended up with a PSOne and Dreamcast. He now owns most every major console and handheld in pursuit of the best that gaming has to offer.
Shane began to collect video game cabinets in 1997 when he obtained a dedicated Gauntlet II cab. He went on to get a Xybots, Ms. Pac Man, Super Sprint, and Top Gunner (JAMMA). He got his first pinball machine – Bone Busters – in 2000.
In the late 1990s, Shane became involved with classic video game emulation and went went on to run some of the most successful classic gaming/emulation websites in the world (Insert Coin, Amiga Emulation Zone). He started the Retro Radio show in 1998.
Alex J. Lopez – Producer
Alex J. LopezA lifetime video gamer, the first video game Alex ever saw happened to be the early arcade machine, Gun Fight from Midway. It was the summer of 1977 in a mall near Cape Cod in Massachusetts while on a family vacation, and he was only 6 years old. The day was made even more memorable later that evening, when his parents treated Alex and his two brothers to a new movie at a local drive-in theater. That movie happened to be Star Wars.
Throughout the years, Alex always found time to include video games as a favorite past time. He spent countless hours (and quarters) at the local arcade, skating rink, and pizza place enjoying the classic arcade machines of the 80’s. At home, what started out with a Sears knock-off of Pong transitioned to an Atari 2600 and eventually a Nintendo Entertainment System. He was also very much into the home computers of the 80’s, having spent hours upon hours playing games on a Commodore VIC-20 daily, and meticulously typing in game programs line by line from Magazines like Compute’s Gazette. He also got his first “online” experience on Commodore systems, frequenting various BBS’s and later playing his first online game after upgrading to a Commodore 64 via a simple game of Chess with a friend across town.
In 1991, Alex began his military service in the US Army. Being a soldier meant spending a ton of time on the move and in the field. Fortunately, Nintendo’s original Game Boy system was the perfect solution to keep Alex’s gaming needs satisfied under those circumstances. And although he briefly owned other handheld systems such as Sega’s Game Gear, none held his interest as much as the Game Boy. Back at the barracks, he did get some limited time with Nintendo’s SNES and Sega’s Genesis, mainly enjoying multiplayer games such as Super Mario Kart and Mortal Kombat with his fellow soldiers. One of his most memorable gaming moments was completing The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past on SNES over a relaxing week off from work. Alex credits this period in his gaming life for his ongoing love of Nintendo gaming.
In the next few years, Alex spent a lot of time enjoying the rise of PC gaming, playing everything from the early DOS games to Diablo II, and eventually MMO’s like Asheron’s Call and Everquest. But his ongoing interest in Nintendo gaming led him to the MonroeWorld community, right about the time when Shane R. Monroe and Chris Hentschel had started Dual Screen Radio. Over time, Alex became a regular at MonroeWorld and eventually started his own podcast, Wii Minute Radio which ran from 2008 to 2009.
In 2011, Alex joined RetroGaming Radio as producer, when Shane brought the show back from a three year hiatus. Alex also manages RetroGaming Radio Plus, an internet radio station that plays classic episodes of all MonroeWorld shows 24 hours a day, and is responsible for media relations for MonroeWorld.