History of video games/Print version/Arcade games

Arcade History

Atari, Inc.'s Pong and Breakout are two of the most significant arcade video games in History. They were, respectively, a table tennis (ping-pong, from which the name) simulator and a wall-breaking simulator, released the former in 1972 and the latter in 1976. Pong became a pop culture icon, while Breakout started a whole clone video game genre Their chronology is listed below:

An Allan Alcorn-signed Pong cabinet.

Pong edit

Pong is one of the earliest arcade video games, being notorious for its significance in video game history. It was manufactured by "Atari Corporation Syzygy Engineered" (as the publicity flyer reads[1]) and first released in 1972. It consisted of a rough table tennis simulator, possibly inspired by 1958's Tennis for Two (but more likely by the Magnavox Odyssey, bringing the similarities in court), with two white vertical one-dimensionally-moveable dashes symbolizing two rackets controlled by as many users via one potentiometer paddle each and a white, two-dimensionally-moving, dot symbolizing the ball. Each time the ball (which could bounce only on the two rackets or on the two horizontal borders of the screen) exited the screen on one of its two sides (even if it bounced on that side's defender's racket), the player on the other side gained a point, and the first player to gain eleven (or fifteen, depending on the settings[2]) points won the one-quarter-costing virtual match[3]. Below is a chronology of Pong's history.

  • 1972-11-29: The Pong upright arcade cabinet is released.
  • 1972/1973: Atari, Inc.'s Barrel Pong upright arcade cabinet (shaped like a table with a barrel on, in which the monitor is) is released by Hunter Electronics Pty.[4][5].
  • 1973: The Pong-In-A-Barrel half-barrel-shaped cocktail arcade machine is released.
  • 1973: The four-player Pong Doubles upright and cocktail arcade machines are released.
  • 1973: The TV Ping Pong upright arcade cabinet is released by Amutronics, Inc.[3][6].
  • 1973-10: The four-player Elimination cocktail-like arcade machine is released by Kee Games on license from Atari, Inc.. Players play on the four sides of the screen-table.
  • 1974: The Rebound upright arcade cabinet, simulating a game of volleyball, is released.
  • 1974: The Coup Franc cocktail arcade machine, somewhat resembling Pong-In-A-Barrel (1973), is released.
  • 1974-02: The Superpong upright arcade cabinet, increasing the game's difficulty by having each player control three different rackets, adding a random element and varying the ball's velocity, is released.
  • 1974-03: Atari, Inc. re-releases Elimination as Quadrapong.
  • 1975: The Model 474 cocktail arcade machine is released by Digital Games[3][7]. It allows player-versus-AI gaming.
  • 1975: Kee Games either clones or authorizedly re-releases Rebound as Spike.
  • 1975-10-01: Through the Sears Tele-Games brand, Atari, Inc. releases the dedicated home video game console port of Pong, to later sell it under the Atari, Inc. brand. This console is commonly referred to as "Home Pong".
  • 1977-09-11: Atari, Inc. releases Video Olympics for the Atari Video Computer System (VCS), later renamed "Atari 2600", including various Pong variants. Sears re-releases the cartridge as the Tele-Games title Pong Sports.
  • 1978/1979: Atari, Inc. releases the BASIC Programming cartridge for the Atari VCS, a crude educational BASIC interpreter. Included in the cartridge's manual is the source code for a Pong port.

Breakout edit

Breakout was a game released by Atari in 1976.[8] The game was designed by Nolan Bushnell and delegated the implementation to then Atari employee Steve Jobs, who further delegated the game implementation to Steve Wozniak.[9] Steve Wozniak makes a greatly cost reduced implementation of the game over four days, a task that would normally take several months.[10][9]

Breakout would influence the design of Space Invaders.[11] Also in 1976 Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak would go on to found Apple Computer.[12] Breakout would also play a role in the development of the Apple II computer, which was designed to be able to run games like breakout in color, an innovative feature at the time.[13] Much later in 1989 Breakout would play a major role in the court case Atari Games Corp. v. Oman where future Supreme Court justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg would effectively rule that games like Breakout could be copyrighted.[14][15]

References edit

  1. http://www.atarimuseum.com/videogames/arcade/fullsize/pong.jpg
  2. https://www.arcade-history.com/?n=pong&page=detail&id=2007
  3. a b c http://www.pong-story.com/arcade.htm
  4. https://www.arcade-museum.com/game_detail.php?game_id=13335
  5. https://www.arcade-history.com/?n=barrel-pong&page=detail&id=36520
  6. https://www.arcade-museum.com/game_detail.php?game_id=18638
  7. https://archive.org/details/ArcadeGameManualDigitalgames474
  8. "Games at the American Classic Arcade Museum - Breakout". www.classicarcademuseum.org. Retrieved 3 December 2020.
  9. a b "Breakout". The Dot Eaters. Retrieved 3 December 2020.
  10. "Steve Wozniak on Breakout, Atari and Steve Jobs". The Telegraph. Retrieved 3 December 2020.
  11. "The story of Breakout". Den of Geek. 12 May 2011. Retrieved 3 December 2020.
  12. "Steve Wozniak: Inventor and Apple co-founder". Berkeley Engineering. 7 December 2018. Retrieved 3 December 2020.
  13. Hanson, Ben. "How Steve Wozniak's Breakout Defined Apple's Future". Game Informer. Retrieved 3 December 2020.
  14. "A "Breakout" Case: Atari Games Corp. v. Oman – Patent Arcade". Retrieved 3 December 2020.
  15. "Atari Games Corp. v. Oman". h2o.law.harvard.edu. Retrieved 3 December 2020.

Important arcade games edit

Pong edit

Pong is widely credited with sparking public interest in arcade games, and by extension the golden age of arcade games.

For information on Pong, please read its dedicated section in this book.

Wild Gunman edit

Wild Gunman was an early arcade game made by Nintendo in 1974 with Gunpei Yokoi as a designer.[1][2] The Wild Gunman arcade machine used prerecorded video and a light gun to create a wild west experience.[1] The game was released in North America in 1976 through a partnership with Sega.[2][3]

Space Invaders edit

Space Invaders was released in 1978 by Taito to critical success[4]. The development of Space Invaders was unorthodox for the time, because its designer Tomohiro Nishikado treated the game as more of a software project than a hardware project, and pushed the limits of the medium[5].

The inability of the computer to render all sprites at once without slowdown lead to desirable features kept in the game, namely a satisfying adaptive difficulty where enemies got faster when the player did well, and music that got faster as the game got faster.[6] Space Invaders is often credited with popularizing, though not inventing, high scores and leaderboards.[6][5] The original arcade cabinet uses a cellophane overlay to add color to it's normally monochrome graphics.[7]

Space Invaders would highly influence a number of notable developers, including Shigeru Miyamoto, John Carmack, Hideo Kojima, and John Romero[5].

In 1980, Space Invaders was successfully ported to the Atari 2600 (the first arcade game to receive a home port) by Atari, Inc. programmer Rick Maurer, becoming the first video game to sell over a million copies (six millions by 1984). This version was the one used during the first esports event, The Space Invaders Tournament, held by Atari in the United States to launch the game in 1980. The tournament was won by Rebecca Heineman, then known as "William Salvador Heineman", who practiced with the game on pirate cartridges made by himself/herself. Heineman would later become a notable games developer.

Numerous other ports, both official and unauthorized, appeared on the consoles and computers markets, as well as various arcade games imitating and improving the game's gameplay.

Pac-Man edit

First launched in Japan on May 22, 1980 as Puck Man by Namco, and then released in the United States of America by Midway Games in October of 1980 as Pac-Man (the name was changed to prevent cabinet defacement) to massive success[8][9] , Toru Iwatani's masterpiece video game soon conquered the video game market. Pac-Man was designed to reach out to demographics that were not being serviced by other arcade games, leading to expanded interest in video games,[10] and also received a great number of console and arcade ports. Pac-Man contains 255 levels (simply due to a bug leading to level 256 being impossible to beat[11]) and has four ghosts chasing Pac-Man - each with their own individual AI[8][12].

Pac-Man was followed by a number of sequels, remakes and reimaginings. The first of those was 1982's Ms. Pac-Man, a Midway-published game developed by General Computer Corporation, derived from their Pac-Man modkit Crazy Otto. Ms. Pac-Man was a noticeably more advanced game, with four different mazes alternating, new ghost AIs, new music, audio and graphics and other enhancements, but ran on the same Namco arcade system as the original Pac-Man. It started a series of Midway-published pinballs and video games using Pac-Man characters, which included Pac-Man Plus (1982), Mr. & Mrs. Pac-Man (1982), Baby Pac-Man (1982), Professor Pac-Man (1983) and Jr. Pac-Man (1983). This deliberately unauthorized usage of the Namco assets for the Western market led to an end in the partnership between the two companies.

Galaga edit

A sequel of the 1979 Galaxian, Galaga was released in 1981.[13][14] Galaga was quite popular in arcades, and received a number of home ports.[15]

Donkey Kong edit

Radar Scope was a Space Invaders and Galaxian inspired game released by Nintendo in December 1979.[16] After the failure of Radar Scope in America, a Nintendo employee fairly new to game design, Shigeru Miyamoto worked with a technical team at the firm Ikegami Tsushinki to reuse the failed machines as a new game.[17][16] Since Donkey Kong was based on older Radar Scope arcade game machines, some features like the typeface used remained the same.[18] Shigeru Miyamoto designed Donkey Kong around a jumping mechanic, which he tried to tap into the intrinsic joy of physical activity.[19]

Donkey Kong launched in the United States on June 2nd, 1981 and achieved widespread popularity.[20]

Gallery edit

References edit

  1. a b "Nintendo's Wild Gunman (1974)". 2 Warps to Neptune. 13 September 2013. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  2. a b Glennon, Jen. "'Wild Gunman': How Nintendo's "baby's toy" changed games forever". Inverse. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  3. "Feature: The Unlikely Story Of Sega And Nintendo's Early Coin-Op Alliance". Nintendo Life. 13 August 2018. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  4. "Space Invaders' Creator Says He Would Have Made It 'Far Easier'". Kotaku. Retrieved 3 December 2020.
  5. a b c "Space Invaders at 40: 'I tried soldiers, but shooting people was frowned upon'". the Guardian. 4 June 2018. Retrieved 3 December 2020.
  6. a b "6 Fascinating Facts About 'Space Invaders' UNIQLO TODAY UNIQLO US". UNIQLO TODAY UNIQLO US. Retrieved 3 December 2020.
  7. "5 things you never knew about Space Invaders". GAME Media. 5 July 2018. Retrieved 3 December 2020.
  8. a b CNN, Jacopo Prisco. "Pac-Man at 40: The eating icon that changed gaming history". CNN. Retrieved 27 November 2020. {{cite web}}: |last1= has generic name (help)
  9. "HISTORY│ The Official Site for PAC-MAN - Video Games & More". HISTORY│ The Official Site for PAC-MAN - Video Games & More. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  10. Delgado, Michelle. "Why Players Around the World Gobbled Up Pac-Man". Smithsonian Magazine. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  11. Video on YouTube}}
  12. Pac-Man Ghost AI Explained on YouTube.
  13. "Galaga (Namco)". Gaming History 101. 22 March 2012. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  14. "Galaga Web BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment Inc". Galaga Web BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment Inc. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  15. "Galaga Web BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment Inc". Galaga Web BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment Inc. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  16. a b Parish, Jeremy (20 January 2014). "35 Years Ago, Nintendo's First Brush With Video Disaster". USgamer. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  17. "The Secret History of Donkey Kong". www.gamasutra.com. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  18. "STS13: Videogame Typography and its Antecedents". Zach Whalen. 8 March 2013. Retrieved 11 November 2020.
  19. "Shigeru Miyamoto Shares Nintendo Secrets". Rolling Stone. 8 April 2013. https://www.rollingstone.com/culture/culture-lists/shigeru-miyamoto-shares-nintendo-secrets-19215/a-star-is-born-178703/. 
  20. "How Donkey Kong and Mario Changed the World". Time. Retrieved 27 November 2020.

XR · Arcades after the golden age

Emerging Models of Arcade edit

Barcade edit

The Barcade emerged an extension of the strategy of placing arcade machines in bars dating back to 1971 when a Computer Space cabinet was installed at the Stanford, California icon, the Dutch Goose bar.[1][2] The first bar to pioneer the barcade model was the 2004 establishment of Barcade in Brooklyn, New York City.[3] Barcades gained popularity in the 2010's.[4][5]

VR Arcade edit

In 1991 the Virtuality VR arcade machine is launched, among the first VR arcade machines.[6][7]

By 1992 there was at least one VR arcade in New York City and Chicago each.[8]

Major arcade games edit

Street Fighter edit

Street Fighter I was launched in arcades in 1987 and was followed up by the beginning of the more successful Street Fighter II series in 1991.[9] The unauthorized modification Street Fighter II Rainbow Edition likely influenced later editions of Street Fighter II.[10][11]

Mortal Kombat edit

Launched in 1992, Mortal Kombat is noted for it's intense use of violence compared to other fighting games of the time.[12][13] Midway, the developers of Mortal Kombat, used real actors and digitized them for the game, and inserted dev team in jokes like "Toasty!" to the game.[14][15] For at least a year following release, Mortal Kombat was in high demand in arcades, leading to versions for home consoles.[16]

Dance Dance Revolution edit

Released in 1998, Dance Dance Revolution became a huge hit due to its unique gameplay.[17]

Other Notable Games edit

Metal Slug edit

Launched in 1996, Metal Slug is renowned for both it's solid gameplay and it's excellent 2D graphics.[18][19]

Silent Scope edit

The Silent Scope arcade machine has a gun controller with an additional LCD screen in the scope of the gun.[20]

Timeline edit

2005 edit

In 2005 North American arcades were still available in dense urban areas, though had mostly vanished from suburbs.[21]

2020 edit

Sega sells off it's arcades in Japan because of the COVID-19 pandemic.[22]

Arcades across the globe edit

Italian arcades edit

In Italy arcade video gaming developed circa at the same time as in the United Kingdom and the rest of Western Europe in the 1980s and 1990s, although it always remained focused in holiday locations, especially on the seaside, where today the last remaining video arcades are found.

Japanese arcades edit

The 1970's saw the first Japanese arcade games.[23] By 1995 Japan had 51,520 arcades and 831,369 arcade machines.[24] As of 2019 the number of arcades in Japan were in decline but continued to be culturally important.[24][25] The COVID-19 pandemic shuttered iconic Japanese arcades.[26][27]

North Korean arcades edit

Due to the secrecy of North Korea as a whole, little is known about the gaming culture there. However occasional glimpses of arcade gaming culture have been witnessed and recorded.

In 2008 photos of a North Korean arcade were released, showing a rather bare bones experience of mostly 1980's era machines.[28] A 2013 commercial from North Korea shows an arcade including then recent games from 2010, though it is unknown how popular such arcades are.[29]

United Kingdom edit

The Novelty Automation arcade in London took a unique take on the Arcade.

Gallery edit

References edit

  1. Sedacca, Matthew (10 April 2017). "How Arcade Bars Became Boozy Playgrounds for Adults". Eater. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  2. "What You Don't Know About the Dutch Goose". stanfordmag.org. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  3. Parkin, Simon (26 February 2013). "Drink and Revive: The rise of Barcade". Polygon. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  4. "Resetting the bar-cade". The Blade. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  5. Hahn, Fritz. "Why do so many bars have pinball and video games? Because people want more than just drinks". Washington Post. Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  6. "History of virtual reality: Timeline". Verdict. 29 January 2020. Retrieved 28 November 2020.
  7. "A look at the history of virtual reality and VR gaming". Ren Reynolds. 3 August 2017. Retrieved 28 November 2020.
  8. "Almost Reality -- A Look at Virtual Reality". www.gamezero.com. Retrieved 28 November 2020.
  9. "Hadoken! The History of Street Fighter - Cheat Code Central". www.cheatcc.com. Retrieved 28 November 2020.
  10. "This Bootleg Game Changed Street Fighter History". Kotaku. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
  11. Snape, Joel (21 February 2014). "How hackers reinvented Street Fighter 2". Eurogamer. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
  12. Wilds, Stephen (23 May 2019). "Mortal Kombat began something special: the idea of fighting games with lore". Polygon. Retrieved 28 November 2020.
  13. Forsythe, Dana (10 June 2019). "How Mortal Kombat's Super Nintendo debut changed video games forever". SYFY WIRE. Retrieved 28 November 2020.
  14. Francisco, Eric. "New documentary reveals why the studio behind Mortal Kombat collapsed". Inverse. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
  15. "Where Mortal Kombat's Toasty Line Came From". ScreenRant. 19 August 2020. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
  16. Gruson, Lindsey (16 September 1993). "Video Violence: It's Hot! It's Mortal! It's Kombat!; Teen-Agers Eagerly Await Electronic Carnage While Adults Debate Message Being Sent (Published 1993)". The New York Times. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
  17. Chau, Danny (15 November 2018). "Are We Human, or Are We Dancer? The Legacy of 'Dance Dance Revolution,' 20 Years Later". The Ringer. Retrieved 28 November 2020.
  18. "The Timeless Perfection of Metal Slug Green Man Gaming". Green Man Gaming Blog. 4 March 2020. Retrieved 28 November 2020.
  19. "Metal Slug Review - IGN". Retrieved 28 November 2020.
  20. "Silent Scope - IGN". Retrieved 27 November 2020.
  21. June, Laura (16 January 2013). "For Amusement Only: the life and death of the American arcade". The Verge. Retrieved 6 November 2020.
  22. "Sega sells its arcade business due to the COVID-19 pandemic". Engadget. Retrieved 6 November 2020.
  23. "Japanese arcades: what you will find and how game centers work in Japan". Go! Go! Nihon. 16 February 2019. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
  24. a b McKirdy, Andrew (17 August 2019). "Game not over: Japan's amusement arcades tap community spirit to stay relevant". The Japan Times. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
  25. "Inside Game Center Mikado: One of the Best Arcades in Japan - IGN". Retrieved 2 December 2020.
  26. Faulkner, Cameron (23 September 2020). "Pour one out for the iconic Sega building in Akihabara". The Verge. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
  27. Hussain, Mazin (22 August 2020). "How Arcades Have Evolved To Survive". Medium. Retrieved 2 December 2020.
  28. "Arcades in North Korea Aren't Quite What You'd Expect". Koreaboo. 5 May 2017. Retrieved 8 November 2020.
  29. Wehner, Mike (21 April 2017). "Arcades in North Korea are like a blast from the past". BGR. Retrieved 8 November 2020.

Golden age of arcade games · First generation of video game consoles