Even though the history of modern electronic gaming is not a long one, it is a tale full of exciting moments and interesting developments. In a relatively short time frame, video games have come a long way, and from their humble beginnings, they are now a part of our everyday lives.
Modern culture is unimaginable without video games, and the gaming industry is now worth more than $100 billion. Games are now produced “in all shapes and sizes”, and many genres and sub-types have created actual social movements and separate groups.
However, constant changes and innovation are pushing the gaming world further into the unknown, and we can only wait and see what the future holds for this exciting activity.
The actual birth of gaming as a phenomenon was difficult to pinpoint, but an approximate date can be established since simple games and simulations appeared in the 1950s and even 40s.
Those were the pioneer days of computer science, and today’s gamers will probably have problems trying to understand the actual size of the first machines.
Also, the origins of video games were a side-effect of research, and the first games certainly did not focus exclusively on entertainment. Tic-tac-toe and puzzle games were the first games, but “Spacewar!” from 1962 is usually referred to as the first public video game.
The 1960s are known for many things, and gaming is hardly one of them, but in 1967, Ralph Baer, one of the founding fathers of gaming, created “Brown Box” – a legendary device which is usually called the first gaming system for home use.
Ping-pong and checkers were available on this machine, and the device was later known as Magnavox Odyssey. Soon after the success of Baer’s device, Nolan Bushnell, another famous man in the history of video games, created Atari – a company well-known in the gaming circles.
Atari 2600, with its game called “Space Invaders,” still has a legendary status in modern popular culture.
Later years brought more and more attention to the gaming industry, and companies like Nintendo or Sega seized the opportunity, and they dominated the 1980s and the early 90s.
Also, personal computers, such as the Commodore 64, Apple II or Macintosh were introduced to the general populace, and the price of these machines was continually getting lower.
With the appearance of Windows 95 and LAN gaming, players gained a whole new dimension to their gaming experience, and the subsequent Internet revolution introduced multiplayer gaming and thus made gaming more popular than ever.
The start of the 2000s was marked by gaming consoles such as Play Station or Xbox, and they are still dominating the gaming world, together with Nintendo Wii.
However, mobile gaming is taking more and more players away from the consoles, and smartphones and tablets are now changing the gaming world once again.
Games like Angry Birds or Clash of Clans achieved amazing results, and software developers are hoping that the need for high-quality games is still present in today’s society. The wheels of evolution are probably not yet done with the gaming world, and further changes are just around the corner.