Blip

Blip electronic game

When Atari released Pong in 1972, the immediate popularity of this electronic version of table tennis would give birth to an entire video game industry. A few years later, the game would become one of the first available on the newly emerging home game systems. But, what if you didn't have one of those expensive systems? Furthermore, what if you wanted to play this game on a road trip or in a school cafeteria? The solution was a small handheld game called Blip. Released by Tomy in 1977, Blip was portable and certainly challenging. But, in the truest sense of the word, it wasn't really a video game; it just looked like one. Let's take a look back. Continue reading...

ColecoVision

ColecoVision

Perhaps one the most ambitious home video game systems ever contrived, ColecoVision took the world by storm in the early 80s, offering an enthusiastic public seemingly everything under the sun. Unfortunately, the only thing quicker than its ascent was its decline due to promises not kept. For the couple of years it was around though, ColecoVision made quite the mark, and is still fondly remembered to this day. Continue reading...

Canyon Bomber

Canyon Bomber

The names of early arcade games left little doubt as to what the player’s responsibilities would entail. Lunar Lander meant sheer frustration as you tried to set down on the moon’s surface. Asteroids put you in deep space, shooting madly at the rocky obstacles bent on destroying you. And with a name like Canyon Bomber, your mission was crystal clear – you were going to bomb some canyons. Let's take a look back at this 1978 offering from Atari. Continue reading...

Indy 800

Indy 800 arcade game

When Atari released their first attempt at a racing game in 1974, called Gran Track 10, the response was somewhat underwhelming. Undaunted, they forged forward the following year with the much more ambitious Indy 800. This time around, the game allowed up to eight players to compete simultaneously against each other and the notorious clock. A steady stream of quarters would soon follow, making this one of the most popular racing games of the 70s. Continue reading...

Gauntlet

Gauntlet arcade game

Roleplay and dungeons gained much popularity in the 1980s and naturally, arcade games cashed in on the trend. Being one of the first games to accommodate from one to four simultaneous players, Gauntlet featured a sprawling set of mazes through which the characters wandered and slew monsters. The arcade community embraced the game with open arms and filled each machine with a steady supply of quarters. Continue reading...

Fire Truck

Atari Fire Truck

Where's the fire? Well, there was no fire, just a fire truck that had to be steered around roads full of obstacles in the 1978 Atari game. The player(s) had to steer a fire truck through the winding streets, accumulating points and--hopefully--earning extended play with a high enough score. Continue reading...

Area 51

Area 51

As any conspiracy theorist can attest, deep in the confines of the Nevada desert lies the super-secret Area 51, a hotbed for extraterrestrial activity unlike any other in the world. Atari took arcade gamers to this mysterious locale in 1995, as a highly trained marine from STAAR (Special tactical Advanced Alien Response, of course) whose mission was to rid the base of a gaggle of unfriendly interplanetary visitors and (for good measure) their human zombie cohorts. The result was a hit in arcades around the globe. Continue reading...

Lunar Lander

Lunar Lander

A decade had passed since humans set foot on the moon, when Atari decided to give their quarter-bearing customers a whack at it. Released in 1979, Lunar Lander was a challenging, pressure-filled game that probably sucked up enough quarters to finance the real Apollo mission. Continue reading...

Pole Position

Pole Position

Since the advent of arcade games, those that offered a chance at testing your racing skills have always remained a popular attraction. In the early days, the graphics left much to be desired, as you guided your dot through a track of dots without a fellow racer to be found. This all changed in 1983, with the introduction of Namco's Pole Position. Offering state-of-the-art graphics and realistic controls, the game offered a much more realistic racing experience - and aspiring drivers lined up in droves. Continue reading...

Odyssey

Magnavox Odyssey

It's strange to fathom those dark ages prior to the advent of the home video game, but civilization waited until 1972, when we were forever changed by the release of the Odyssey. We owe our thanks to a man named Ralph Baer (who would later introduce us to a beloved electronic memory game called Simon). He was the mastermind that teamed with Magnavox to change the world forever and make home gaming the preferred recreational activity of children and adults alike. Continue reading...