Retro has become a huge niche market in almost all areas – t-shirts included. And one t-shirt company out of Ireland are taking advantage of that rise in popularity of all things retro.
8BIT has a collection of carefully designed tees based on the glory days of retro gaming. The 8-bit era produced some of the best games and established the modern-day industry as it stands now. Their limited edition run of shirts (snap them up quick: there are only four designs, and each design only has 100 or 125 versions) appeal to the kind of person who lived through the 8-bit era the first time round, and now wants to show their love for their childhood with a beautifully crafted piece of clothing.
That care in the end product comes as soon as you receive the package. Your tee is encased in a brilliant white box, sturdy enough to keep the quarry inside clean and tidy but not too heavy.
And once you open the box, and take aside the tissue paper and the cool postcard with an old-school Gameboy on a washed out beach, you realise that the shirt inside is pretty great, too. The design I received was ‘001 – Grace’ (€30) which is a limited print run of 125 (mine was #19).
It’s a luscious representation of the kind of huge sprites from the classic era of 8-bit games that you grew up with; this footballer performing an overhead kick could have been ripped right out of something like Amiga’s Sensible Soccer franchise.
The quality is great, as you’d expect from a company so invested in producing the great packaging they do. The tiny touches such as a nicely presented package are one of the best ways to separate the wheat from the chaff in an industry where the ability to enter it is becoming ever lower. Those who take pride in their work will make sure to present it neatly.
The tee is a thick, soft one, and it holds up well in a wash. Overall, if the bright lights of the 1980s and early 90s gaming world is your thing, you should head on over to 8BIT and grab yourself a tee.