Gaming has changed MASSIVELY over the years and so has the players, no longer is it deemed as ‘geeky’, it’s now a ‘cool’ hobby. To celebrate the negative stigma removal, we thought it would be fun and quite refreshing to look at the history of gaming, and reflect on where we are now as a community!
1940 – Edward U. Condon designed a computer that plays the traditional game NIM – for the Westinghouse display at the World’s Fair. Nim is a Players vs. Computer format, where the aim is to try and avoid picking up the last matchstick. It was a great success; thousands of people played it.
1947 – Thomas T. Goldsmith Jr. and Estle Ray Mann filed a patent for a “cathode ray tube amusement device”. Their game challenges players to fire a gun at a target – which is now a standard feature in most gameplay today!
1950 – Claude Shannon created guidelines in an article; “Programming a Computer for Playing Chess.” That year, chess programs were actually created by Claude and Englishman Alan Turning.
1952 – The well-known noughts and crosses (U.K) / tic – tac – toe (U.S) was created by A.S. Douglas on Cambridge’s EDSAC computer as part of his research on human-computer interactions.
1954 – The year of programmers! At New Mexico’s Las Alamos laboratories (birthplace of the atomic bomb – just some interesting trivia there) developed the FIRST blackjack programme on an IBM – 701 computer.
1955 – Hutspiel, a war-game has finally entered the computer age! In this game, Red and Blue players (representing NATO and Soviet commanders) wage war.
1958 – Tennis is created as a game by; Willy Higinbotham on an oscilloscope and analog computer for public demonstration at Brookhaven National Laboratory in 1958. It anticipated later games such as; Pong.
The 50’s certainly gave us a lot of fundamental’s needed to create the games we have and enjoy today! There was no “stereotypical gamer” then as games and consoles were just being tested.
However, the 60s interestingly had a theme of ‘everyone’s a programmer’ when John Kemeny created the computer time-share system and BASIC programming language at Dartmouth – this meant programming was easier for students to make their own games!
But we still needed a console to play it on right? Right, which is why fast forward to 1966; Ralph Baer conceived the idea of playing a game on television – we are getting closer to modern day gaming! The following year, the good old “Brown Box” prototype was created that allowed users to play tennis and other games.
1972 – An arcade table tennis game was created and tested in California, but it stopped working due to the volume of people playing – it jammed with quarters! Which is why Pong, the legendary arcade game was born.
Just under ten years into the future, the arcades are extremely successful and continue to do well throughout the 80s as does Pizza sales – Namco’s Toru Iwatani is inspired (by a missing piece of pizza) to create the beloved Pac-Man which became the first arcade hit to appear on a home console.
Two years later, the lovely Ms. Pac – Man strikes a blow for gender equality by becoming THE best – selling arcade game.
But that’s not the only game fans are going ape over! Nintendo has made its grand entrance; in 1981 – Donkey Kong was released, and featured one of the most loved characters that Nintendo has ever made! It’s the one and only; Jumpman – do you know him? Just kidding, it’s Mario (who only got his name later).
Already, it is clear to see that the Xmade a huge contribution to the gaming world – in terms of consoles and actual games. Here is more evidence as to why;
1982 – Disney muscles in on the gaming market with the release of the video game Tron.
1984 – The classic Tetris is created, the very addictive and classical puzzle game. Four years later, Nintendo bundles it with every new Gameboy.
1985 – Good old NES (Nintendo Entertainment System) appears!
1986 – The educational system is benefiting from the gaming industry, with the introduction of Reader Rabbit programme which then introduces the CD –ROMs available in the 90s.
1987 – It’s a huge year for Fantasy Role Playing Games, The Legend of Zelda has been created and SSI wins the license for Dungeons and Dragons and Sierra’s Leisure Suit Larry.
1988 – John Madden Football introduces gridiron realism to computer games, making this game – and it’s many sequels, perennial best-sellers.
1989 – Brings much joy! Nintendo’s Game Boy dominates the handheld gaming market!
Wow! The 80s made such an impact with the number of games and consoles that became available – and sets the tone for the 90s!
So, we’ve highlighted some of the amazing feats made in the 80’s – now we get to move onto the BEST decade ever! The 1990’s of course;
1990 – Microsofts’ classic card game; Solitaire, opened up the door for many people, some of which didn’t even think about picking up a game console prior. If you were looking for a quick, casual and easy to play game then this was the one for you!
1991 – Our favourite blue hedgehog has graced us, we all loved the fast-paced and edgy attitude that Sonic the Hedgehog offered us.
1992 – If you are a strategical thinker, then Westwood Studios’ Dune 2 was the game for you! It required players to act as military leaders deploying their resources and forces in to defeat opponents.
1993 – For those that enjoy first player shooter games, well 1993 is the year that popularizes this genre. However, they didn’t come without backlash – many believed that games such as; ‘Mortal Kombat’ and ‘Doom’ encouraged video game violence and started the debate; Do video games make people violent?
1994 – The legendary world of Azeroth is created with Blizzard’s release of Warcraft: Orcs and Humans (a real strategy game with millions of players)
1995 – The year of PlayStation! Rather cleverly, PlayStation overtook Nintendo by selling for $100 less than Sega Saturn. When PlayStation 2 graced the world, it became the dominant home console and Sega exited the home console business.
1996 – A huge argument was born! Lara Croft debuts as the star of Eidos’s adventure game; Tomb Raider, but not without backlash – even though players loved her, critics claimed that she’s an example of sexism in video games.
1998 – Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time transported its players into the world of Hyrule and with engaging characters, interesting puzzles and amazing musical instruments it was always going to be a hit!
1999 – Everquest leads hundreds of thousands of users to join guilds, fight monster and level up in the multiplayer online world of Norrath.
It is argued that these big releases defined a whole generation – and set the tone for gaming and influenced game-play today! Thankfully, we are getting even closer to modern day – so, let’s fly through the 000’s and get us to the here and now;
2000 saw the much-loved simulation game; The Sims brought to life. Created by Will Wright – this game became extremely popular with a female audience. While 2001 – 2002 was heavily focused on Xbox hit games such as; Halo – Combat Evolved and America’s Army, which provided more fans just four years later!
2004 – The DS is here! The portable gaming system packed with two processors was a BIG hit, with good reason with such games; Super Mario Kart.
2005 – Console alert! Microsoft’s Xbox 360 brought us great definition to the market and some brilliant multiplayer competitions.
2006 – Getting fit with WII! This appealed to millions of people who didn’t really like gaming previously.
2008 – WoW! This hit surpassed 10 million subscribers, which was a pretty big deal!
2009 – The world of mobile! The classic social games; Farmville and Angry Birds opened up the minds of millions who started to play for the first time!
2010 – The indie game movement comes of age with the well – known addictive game; Minecraft.
2011 – Skylanders: Spyro’s Adventure is the first AI to be introduced!
2013 – Gone Home, The Last of Us, and Papers, Please makes way for mature gaming stories with emotional choices.
2014 – Free – to – Play becomes dominant and earns hundreds of millions with in-game content.
2015 – Twitch expands the growth of eSports.
2016 – Pokemon Go took the world by storm with its AI reality.
2017 – Nintendo’s Switch makes its appearance with amazing results!
We believe it can now be established that there is not one set of ‘gamers,’ therefore, there shouldn’t really be any constraints, stereotypes or stigma as everyone at some point has or will play a game. Perhaps via mobile, tablet, PC or Console – everyone is a part of the gaming community one way or another, which we think is quite nice.
The future does look bright and with amazing releases of games and consoles – we genuinely can’t wait to see what the future of gaming will bring.
But what we can be certain of is that with releases such as; God of War – storytelling, graphics and the way games are being perceived is constantly changing (for the better).
What do you think the future of gaming will look like?
Added By: Stealth Gaming | Date Added: 11th May 2018