I was blown away when I first saw Sonic and it was the reason I bought a Megadrive. This was like playing a cartoon (although I first though that when I saw Atari's Peter Pack Rat in a seaside arcade) and I had to get a Megadrive. I was working at the Little Chef then so money was no object.
I think there and then I decided I wanted to work in games. I started university a few months later and then about five years along the road, that is what I was doing... for about two years..!