Evolution of Video Games: From Donkey Kong and Pacman to Console Wars, Here’s How Video Games Evolved

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HONG KONG: Video games have come a long way since the appearance of the first rudimentary arcade machines in the 1970s with offerings such as “Pong”, “Pacman” and “Space Invaders”.

Since then, each generation has benefited from rapid technological advancement, and the industry is now worth billions.

With the release of Microsoft’s Xbox X and Sony’s PlayStation 5 in a few days, here’s a look at the video game journey.

King ‘Pong’
Now widely regarded as the first video game to achieve serious commercial success, Atari’s “Pong” of 1972 allowed two people to play a basic game of table tennis on a black screen.

The graphics were simple, but it was a success – a version of the game designed to play at home sold over 100,000 units and paved the way for the multi-billion dollar gaming industry we know today.

AFP

2017 File Photo: Nintendo Super Famicom, a 16-bit console from the 1990s that was released outside of Japan as the Super NES (Nintendo Entertainment System), runs the hit Capcom game beat ’em up Street Fighter II, at a retro games exhibition in Hong Kong.

The first mega hits

The success of “Pong” laid the groundwork for an explosion of arcade games in the late 1970s and early 1980s, with the frenzied “Pacman” and alien shoot-em-up “Space Invaders” picking up billions of rich young people in coins desperate to score high.

But it was the advent of home consoles like the Atari 2600 and Nintendo NES around the same time that brought video games from arcades to living rooms.

The games popularized at that time still resonate today. One of Nintendo’s first games – the 1981 platformer “Donkey Kong” – featured a character known as Jumpman, later known as Mario, one of the most well-known video game heroes of all the time.

Console wars
As the gaming market grew, so did competition between hardware manufacturers, which led to the first of many “console wars” in the early 1990s between Sega and Nintendo.

Sega eventually emerged victorious – in part thanks to the popularity of its “Sonic the Hedgehog” franchise – but its Genesis console never quite appreciated the longevity of some of its competitors.

File photo from 2019: A boy playing the retro game 'Pacman' at the Gamescom video game fair in the German city of Cologne.AFP

File photo from 2019: A boy playing the retro game ‘Pacman’ at the Gamescom video game fair in the German city of Cologne.

The 1990s also brought massive innovation to video games – both in visual presentation and storyline.

First-person shooters like “Goldeneye” and the action-adventure puzzle “Tomb Raider” have revolutionized both graphics and storytelling, providing a more mature experience for an increasingly diverse audience. .

Go global

By the turn of the century, the stage was set for a new generation of home systems – and a whole new series of console wars, this time between the PlayStation 2, Nintendo GameCube, and Microsoft’s new competitor, Xbox.

The PlayStation 2 won that fight, becoming the best-selling console of all time with 155 million units moved, according to Forbes.

2001 File photo: Visitors playing Xbox video game consoles before their launch by US software giant Microsoft in November 2001 in the US at the annual Tokyo Game Show in Makuhari, a suburb of Tokyo.AFP

2001 File photo: Visitors playing Xbox video game consoles before their launch by US software giant Microsoft in November 2001 in the US at the annual Tokyo Game Show in Makuhari, a suburb of Tokyo.

Multiplayer Madness

The following decade saw online gaming, allowing players to go from one-on-one matches in their living rooms to battles with dozens of other players around the world.

From chaotic first-person shooter “Call of Duty” to massive multiplayer role-playing game “World of Warcraft”, online gaming has grown into a billion dollar industry in its own right – and has laid the groundwork for the massive growth of competitive esports in the 2010s.

Power

In 2013, Sony and Microsoft released their most powerful consoles of all time: the Xbox One and PlayStation 4. With revolutionary graphics, games such as “The Last of Us” and “Uncharted” gave gamers cinematic experiences.

The next generation

Sony and Microsoft are set to go head-to-head once again with their latest offerings, the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X, promising never-before-seen graphics and a range of exclusive titles as the battle lines unfold. plotted.

In the face of fierce competition from PC gaming and changing gamer habits, whatever expensive new console comes out victorious, it will really have to live up to the hype.

High-end OLED TV, WFH desktop solution and more! Here is the ultimate guide to Diwali Tech gifts …

Go tech or go home!

Diwali is just around the corner and choosing the perfect gift that will make your loved ones smile can be a pretty Herculean task. You can go for regular giveaways like boxes of disinfectant and bespoke masks, but the Covid-19 related giveaways are so outdated.

2020 has seen some of the most incredible tech launches and there is a wide range of tech products, gadgets and gadgets available to give away that would make the lives of your loved ones super easy.

This holiday season, treat your loved ones with high-end technology that would make their Diwali bright and colorful. Here is the ultimate guide to Diwali tech gifts for your reference.


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