The Evolution of Video Games

Current Generations are raised on the lightning-fast processing speeds and crystal clear graphics like Xboxes and PlayStations. Hence, it is easy to forge that just 50 years ago digital gaming existed only in a few laboratories around the world the experiments of unknown Ph.D. Students or well-known scientists and mathematicians.

Today, Video games are a part of our cultures and routines.Teenage boys aren’t the only packs that play these video games, either. The Average game played is 31 years old and 48 percent are women. According to the Entertainment Software Association consumers spent $21.5 billion on an average on video games.

Video games have rapidly and radically evolved. Here is a peek back at how it all happened and a glimpse of what’s to come.

Nintendo is Born – 1889

Mr. Fusajiro Yamauchi introduces ‘The Nintendo Playing Card Co.’. Although not a video game company yet, Nintendo card games were very popular in Japan, and it is by 1960’s the company experiments with electric business ventures.

The so called First Computer Game- 1952

Mr. A.S. Douglas, a British computer science Ph.D. candidate creates the first ever documented computer game, ‘Noughts and Crosses’; a tic-tac-toe game, which runs on a computer. However, the game was available only in the computers of the university where Mr. Douglas was.

The rise of Wars – 1955

No later than Mr. Douglas’ computer game, a computer-based was stimulation game was created by non-other than the US Military. ‘Hutspiel’, was a game that had red and blue players representing the Soviet Union and the US fight.

The first interactive Game – 1958

Dr. William Higinbotham, an American Physicist created the ‘Tennis for Two’ which is referred to by many as the first interactive video game. Dr. Higinbotham was also part of the team that developed the first atomic bomb. The game ‘Tennis for Two’ uses an oscilloscope as a screen with a cathode ray tube.

SpaceWars – 1962

The first computer based video game called ‘Spacewars’ was created by the MIT researchers. However, the game was not distributed because the hardware itself was too expensive for mass production.

The beginning of Game Programmers– 1964

A former research assistant to Albert Einstein, Hungarian-American mathematician, Dr. John Kemeny co-develops the BASIC computer programming language that enables the creation of video games from then on.

The first Commercial Aracade Game – 1971

The first ever commercial sold video game is an arcade game known as ‘Computer Space’. The creators Nolan Bushnell and Ted Dabney later found ‘Atari’.

‘The Oregon Trail’ – 1971

It was the same year the ‘Computer Space’ was released, four University of Minnesota students design, ’The Oregon Trail for the teletype. Later in the year 1973 they adapted the game to the computer and began distribution on diskettes by the year 1978.

The first home console – 1972

Based on Ralph Baer’s Brown Box design, the first video game console that plugs into a television ‘Odyssey’ was released by Magnavox. The console features 12 games, including the game known as the father of Video Games, ‘Ping Pong’, who sadly died in 2014.

The rise of Atari – 1972

Nolan Bunshell and Al Alcorn from Atari Develop ‘Pong’. Pong leads the way for other video games development because companies began creating knock offs. In 1975 Altari releases a home version of Pong.

The first video game Controversy – 1976

Arcade game ‘Death Race’ sparks outrage because its gameplay has players kill zombies by hitting them with cars.  Many authorities calls the game gross only 1000 units are sold globally. A few are on display at arcades and museums today.

Setting the home console Standards – 1977

Atari releases its first multi game home console the Atari 2600. The ground breaking system has cartridges that can save game information, a joystick a growing game library and the ability to change difficulty level.

Space invaders – 1978

Taito releases Space Invaders making it an international sensation, first in Japan and later in the US. The game was first released in arcade format and later in 1980s it was released to Atari 2600 and goes on to generate more revenue throughout its lifetime than expected.

The introduction of Activision – 1979

The first ever stand-alone game manufacturer Activision, was released by four former Atari employees.

Pacman – 1980

Japanese game company Namco develops Pacman creating a mega hit in the industry selling 100,000 arcade units and generates about $1billion in revenue in its first 15 months. It becomes the first arcade game adapted to Atari and the first game to have an animated and eponymous main character.

Nintendo and Donkey Kong – 1981

Shigeru Miyamoto creates Donkey Kong for Nintendo, which moved into video games so fast that it becomes a massive hit and the first game to feature multiple levels. It also introduces the character we are all familiar with as he is known as to many today, Mario.

Falling into right places – 1984

AlexyPajitnov created the revolutionary Tetris game in Russia. But the game was not published independently as it had to be given to the Soviet Government until 1988. Mr. Henk Rogers then purchased the game from the Soviet Government and sells it to Nintendo, who later released it into Gameboy. And it was the right choice for Nintendo generating huge revenue.

Nintendo at it again – 1985

One of the best ever selling systems was released by Nintendo Entertainment Systems (NES), with a fresh breath of better graphics, audio and gameplay.

The good old SimCity – 1989

Even though no one was sure about the gameplay that centered on urban design the game took off surprisingly creating a hit among video game lovers.

Gameboy got the game – 1989

Nintendo’s iconic 8-bit hand held Gameboy already with Tetris, invades the gaming industry.

Sega Mega intro – 1989

With a 16- bit Genesis console Sega releases in US and sets Sonic the Hedgehog as its flagship character.

Nintendo VS Sega – 1991

The gaming industry wasn’t easy on Sega. Soon after the release of Sega Genesis, Nintendo released its 16-bit Super NES and wins, thanks to Mario, The Legend of Zelda and Donkey Kong.

The involvement of Regulators – 1993

By the release of revolutionary first ever first-person shooting game Doom, concerns have raised among the parents and regulators about video game violence. With the pressure from the public and the government Nintendo and Sega Electronics combine together and form a regulatory Board, “Entertainment Software Ratings Board”, that provides video game ratings.

Divide and Conquer – 1994

Blizzard Entertainment releases WarcraftOrcs and Humans as one of the first strategy games with detailed mission. It also created its own genre as massively multiplayer online game (MMO)

Sony Playstation – 1995

Sega was on a good lead with its Sega Saturn release with 32-bit graphics and a built in modem. That’s when the Sony releases the Playstation with a 3-D visual 100$ less than Sega, easily firing back at Sega and acquiring the leading position in the industry.

Nintendo 64 – 1996

With 64- bit graphics, fast load time, cartridge based storage system and 3-Dgames like new installation to Mario and Zelda series as well as the debut title in the James Bond series Nintendo was again a massive hit in the industry. The NES 64 was the last cartridge based system.

Sega’s last attempt – 1999

Combining with a third party company, Dreamcast, Sega launched its first console capable of online gameplay.

Shockwave from Playstation 2 – 2000

A shocking 128 bits was released by Sony with graphics better than a computer as well as DVD technology.

Microsoft into gaming – 2001

Xbox releases with its PC technology, Ethernet port and 8GB hard drive. The ability to play games with users around the world made it instantly popular.

Wii – 2006

Nintendo’s Wii becomes a worldwide hit convincing active people who normally don’t describe themselves as gamers.

Xbox with its third strike – 2013

Voice integration, improved Kinect sensor, cloud integration and ability to overlay live TV; Microsoft leaps way ahead of its competitors with its Xbox One.

PlayStation fires back – 2013

Soon after the release of Xbox One, Sony released PlayStation 4 with an emphasis on social game play using a new share button and second-screen gaming with smartphone connectivity.

The Future of Gaming – 2014

Facebook purchases Oculus VR, a company that makes virtual reality headset that is ready to be used by consumers for future gaming.

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