Appeasing the Horse Crazy Kid for Christmas

I've been obsessed with horses since I knew what they were. I was always that weird horse kid. The margin of every notebook was filled with horse doodles and I had a stable full of Grand Champions (and later, when I got more sophisticated, Breyers).

Rox Dene was my favorite
mostly because she looked like my imaginary horse, Diamond

Every year for Christmas I asked for a pony, but since ponies are a little hard to fit under the tree I usually got every other horse related thing you could imagine. My favorites were definitely the horse computer games. The 90's were resplendent with tons of horse games and I had pretty much all of them.

One of the first ones I got was Mary King's Riding Star.


I loved this game but good lord, was I bad at it. For some reason, I could not figure out how to time the jumping right. My character was constantly falling off. Luckily these were old eventing rules so I could get back on after I fell off, and continue after a lot of refusals without eliminating. I could never finish the main story line, but it had a fun multiplayer version where you could take turns with your friends!


My dad thought this game was hilarious because there was a really judgmental British announcer who would talk shit about you if you screwed up. It was fun though, despite being eliminated from every event,  because there was a 'caring for the horse' part where you groomed them, cleaned their stall and fed them.

One of my favorite horse games when I was young was Barbie Riding Club. I think one of my aunts got this for me, and I wasn't expecting to like it, BUT IT WAS AMAZING.


You had a bevy of horses in the best colors to choose from, that you could name, groom, and feed treats too:



The rest of the game was about completing missions and trail riding. The missions were anything from cleaning up debris on the trail, to beating the pants off your friends at races, to finding clues to solve a mystery.


I freakin' loved this game. And you know what? I'm not ashamed to admit it. I'd board at Barbie Riding Club if I could. It has an amazing trail system with jumps. Apparently they all wear show coats every day too so I could wear my purple coat on the regular and never feel weird about it.

The last game I wanted to mention I played right up until it no longer worked on my computer anymore. It was Equestriad 2001.


This was based on the 2000 Olympics in Sydney, and you could compete at Rolex, Burghley, Badminton and Sydney. The horse and riders you could choose from were all real team members, including the O'Connors, Ian Stark, Pippa Funnell, and Phillip Dutton (back when he was still an Aussie!!)


You rode all three phases, and could ride in different weather conditions. Once you got the hang of it you progressed in difficulty and the courses got longer and harder. I spent a really inordinate amount of time trying to fix my OS so it could back play this game. Stupid Windows XP. My life was never the same.

The game also, for some reason, had a bunch of really hilarious cheats. You could hack your horse to be really super tiny or huge, or launch you a mile if you fell off. It really made me giggle to see Karen O'Connor pinging 40 feet off Prince Panache into another jump. Whoever designed this game deserves a medal. A gold one.

No Olympians were injured in the making of this game.
I had so many more but these were definitely the most memorable to me. Did any of you have the same ones? Any others that were your favorite that I didn't mention? Was I the only one playing Barbie Riding Club???

Comments

  1. Hahahahah!! I could watch that last gif all damn day. The only horse game I had was a racing game that I never quite figured out but enjoyed the funny track names and getting to pick my silk colors and fill my barn. I wonder if there are any new games in the App Store for phones? Off to search.....

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    1. I had one I think it was called 'my horse'... but it wasn't as good as these!!

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  2. I played the shit out of that Barbie riding game too πŸ˜…πŸ˜…πŸ˜… I also was incredibly active on Horseland and had sooooooo many stables full of fancy $$$ horses. At one point I was breeding like 50 million dollar straight Egyptian Arabians πŸ˜† oh god, what a trip down memory lane!

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    1. omg I am so glad/I can't believe I was not the only one. Admitting I had that game and loved it might have been my most vulnerable moment on the internet

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    2. I used to like non stop do the beach rides haha. Wasn't it like double space to jump things? You were not alone, I also adored that game haha.

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  3. I LOVED Riding Star. Like mega obsessed. I still remember the codes you entered to make your horse purple, or a mini, or a zebra. So glad I've retained such useful information for so long.

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    1. omg could you beat it?? I think part of my issue that I failed at it so hard was because my computer was not QUITE well enough equipped to play it. So it would kinda seize up and then I'd crash into things :P

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    2. I got pretty good at it, but I don't think I beat it? I don't remember.

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    1. it's suuuuuch a good one. I would definitely still be playing it now if I could get it to work on anything.

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  5. OMG I played all of these and loved them so much. I particularly loved hacking my horse to be elephant sized.

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  6. those games look like so much fun. It would be a good add on for the nintendo switch. :)

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  7. OMG I had Riding Star and was completely obsessed with it! I was also very into online horse games (like HorseLand and bulletin board based SIM games) for most of middle school.

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    1. ooooh lordie I did some bulletin board based SIM games. The less said about that, probably the better.

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  8. I'm a little older than you all, but I will admit to playing riding star some while I was in college. That game was so fun! You had to actually leave the ground like three strides out to make it. It was so hard!
    I also dabbled in Horseland a bit... I was a weird college kid.

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    1. HAH brilliant. And TBH, if it had come out when I was in college I would've played it too. Horse crazy has no age limit. That's so true about when you had to leave the ground it killed me.

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  9. I loved Equestriad 2001. I thought it was really cool how the jumps and courses were so closely matched to the real events. I would totally play that one again if it were still available.

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  10. Omg I lived for Barbie Riding Club back in the day. And I've watched that last gif for way longer than I should I admit LOL

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  11. I LOVED Barbie Riding Club. Literally the only Barbie thing I ever did.

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  12. I got barbie riding club for christmas one year and beat it in like an hour but would still take my horses out for a spin everyday... I honestly wonder if I still have the cd floating around someplace.

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  13. OMG. I spent soooo many hours playing that Barbie game. SO MANY. It made me want to jump more than anything else.

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  14. *flails hands around* ME. I have all those computer games, AND MORE. I may also have spent a silly amount of time getting it on later computer systems in my adult life... :D

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