|I have a painting background, and there you just go in and muck about till something starts to take shape. (Then deal with the cultural references emerging or lingering in what you're creating. Does it look too 50s? Too Bart Simpson?)
I would imagine working with the NES would be frustrating in terms of playing around to get spontaneous results. Poke the code, redo the chip, test, repoke...
One reason I always use the patches on the Sidstation is that programming it is frustrating because you can't hear the changes in real time. I guess if I practiced more I'd anticipate what this or that 1-127 parameter would do, but I'd rather turn knobs. [Update: you can hear the Sidstation changes in real time, this was an error based on my lack of experience.]