The Chronology Of Video Games

Most popular games since 1976

OTHER CONSOLE GAMES OF 1979 — May 21, 2015

OTHER CONSOLE GAMES OF 1979

Here are the best video games for the Atari 2600, Bally Astrocade and Magnavox Odyssey 2 home consoles:

Lets get going with the Atari 2600. By today’s standards, not too many nice games were released for the Atari 2600 in 1979. I would like to mention just two games: a nice port of Arcade’s Canyon Bomber and Adventure.

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Adventure – is the first action-adventure fantasy game for the consoles. It is graphical version of the text adventure Colossal Cave Adventure released in 1977. Even if the graphics are minimal (you take control of a dot), the game was revolutionary for the time and highly enjoyable even today! At least for the retro gamers! You can read more about the story of the game here: Adventure

Canyon Bomber – is a console port of the Arcade’s Canyon Bomber released in 1978. And its a nice one! The game is colorful and it runs smoothly. Nice upgrade! A must try for a retro gamer!

The next is Bally Astrocade! The system had so much potential, but unfortunately almost nothing came out – rights of the console were sold to a 3rd party group. These were complicated times for the system. From total of five cartridges released in 1979, Amazing Maze / Tic Tac Toe and Astro Battle are the only ones worth to try.

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Astro Battle (first released as Space Invaders)
Astro Battle / Space Invaders is another port of the Arcade Coin-Op superhit title. You take control of a laser cannon and try to shoot down the alien invaders before it’s too late! No surprise, the game on Astrocade looks even better than the original! Give this classic title a try and you wont be disappointed!

Not much was released for the Odyssey 2 either, most enjoyable games must be another port of Gun Fighter (Showdown in 2100 A.D.) and Alpine Skiing.

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Alpine Skiing
Alpine Skiing is a fun single and two-player downhill skiing game. One of the first downhill skiing games (maybe even the first). That being said, it is a decent game and a must try especially for winter sports fans!

Before we can go to the next decade, lets take a closer look at the Arcade games in my next post!

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HOME COMPUTER GAMES IN 1979 — May 20, 2015

HOME COMPUTER GAMES IN 1979

I am going to split this section and write about every system separately!

And lets start with TI-99 by Texas Instruments. Gaming on TI-99 that year meant pretty much just board and card games. Releases that year included Connect Four, Yahtzee, Chess, Poker/Blackjack and others. But even so, these were pretty nice ports for the time – and for this type of games, it was much easier to play the game using keyboard (compared with joystick). After playing these games, I was not impressed – but it was a pleasant experience trying out these games!

Atari 400 also had a really basic games to offer in 1979. But they offered a little different games – they offered sports (Basketball), they offered action (Outlaw), they offered board games (Chess, Tic-Tac-Toe) and others. But even then, the only game I really enjoyed was another port of Outlaw. Maybe the future is a little brigher for Atari 8-bit systems!

Next one is Apple II. They had an advantage, they had been on the market since 1976/1977 and for some reason they chose a completely different way! They offered some revolutionary games for that time – RPG-s, Graphic Adventures and Simulators. Here I would like to name some of them:

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Temple of Apshai
Temple of Apshai is considered to be one of the first graphical RPG-s for home computers. Was highly popular at its release and after that! Nowadays it is fun to try this game, just to see where it all started – unfortunately this game has aged horribly! Recommended only to die hard retro fans.

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Akalabeth
Akalabeth is another early RPG title, release a little later than previously mentioned game. To be honest, for me this game has aged even more! But you can still try if you are die hard retro gamer!

Other honorable releases on Apple II: Flight Simulator and Lemonade Stand. Lemonade Stand is a wonderful port of Lemonade Stand computer game released in 1973! This is fun and highly enjoyable even today! You start running your own business – selling lemonade. In this game you can play with numbers – you can choose how many lemonades you make, how much you want to spend on advertisement and for what price you are going to sell. There is also a different weather, so watch out – you are not going to see a lot in the rain! A must try for everybody!

Unfortunately I could not find any information about the PC-8000 by NEC. If you have a chronological list of games for the system or you have some other information to share about this computer, please send me an email: predrulez@gmail.com

So much for computer games in 1979! In my next post I will write about the best console games!

See you in my next post!

HOME COMPUTERS OF 1979 — May 18, 2015

HOME COMPUTERS OF 1979

1979 was a year when personal computers really got going. For the first time they were kind of affordable and people decided to have them at home. We saw the release of three beautiful home computers: TI-99/4 by Texas Instruments, PC8001 by NEC and Atari 400 (first in the Atari 8-bit series). But lets take a look at these!

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TI-99/4 by Texas Instruments
TI-99 is a home computer, which was not very successful. Two years later, an advanced and improved version was released. This computer is important for being the first domestic computer with a 16-bit processor! Around 100 games were released for the system.

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PC-8001 by NEC
PC-8001 is a home computer, which was mostly sold in Japan. A first domestic computer in Japan. There is not much English documentation about the system, but it is known that it was sold in the United States as PC-8001A

Atari 400 (First in the 8-bit series)
Atari 400 is an important home computer (series). Maybe it was not the most successful commercially, but at the time of its release it had more advanced graphics and sound (much better than Apple II or Commodore PET) and it was going to get a huge library of games.

In my next posts I am not going to try all the released games on all these three computers. But I will try to mention the best releases from the Texas Instruments system and take a closer look at the Atari 8-bit series (obvious choice for gaming).

If you find any of this information incorrect or something very important is missing, please send me an email: predrulez@gmail.com

See you in the next posts!

INTELLIVISION GAMES 1979 — May 16, 2015

INTELLIVISION GAMES 1979

Armor_Battle_coverNot much to talk about in 1979. Just four titles released for the test market and only one of them I would recommend to play! Armor Battle – was a best looking tank-type game when it was released. And this time you have more than one tank to control. Unfortunately this game doesn’t offer a single player opportunity. But if you have a friend, it is a fun game to kill your time with! Recommended to all action game fans!

INTELLIVISION —

INTELLIVISION

1280px-Intellivision-Console-SetIntellivision – is a second generation home console developed by Mattel that saw a limited (test) release in 1979. It was meant to be the main competitor for the Atari 2600. Console is known for the superior sound and graphics for the time (compared directly with Atari 2600).

It also had a really cool looking controller – which kind of looked like a telephone. It had buttons with numbers and a disc which you could spin around. It also had four side buttons. Revolutionary for the time!

The console was not properly released until the next year and only 4 games were released in 1979. But it already gave us an idea what was coming.

In my next post I will take a closer look at the best games of those four!

See you in my next post!

1979 —

1979

1979-700x508Lets get started with the 1979! Mostly remembered for the releases of Galaxian by Namco and Asteroids by Atari for the Arcade Cabinets. And first graphical adventure game called Adventure was released on home console (Atari 2600). For home computers the most important releases were Temple of Apshai and Akalabeth – both early graphical role-playing games, affected many role-playing titles released in coming years. Those games were really basic but it had to start somewhere!

There were not many home consoles released that year – just one and even that was only released for the test market in 1979 – Intellivision. An important home console that became the main competitor to the Atari 2600 console. Some important home computers were released – TI-99/4 by Texas Instruments, PC-8001 by NEC (the first in PC-8000 Series) and also Atari 400 (the first in Atari 8-bit series). It is also important to know that the first handheld console with changeable cartridges was released – Microvision. For handhelds the best was still to come!

But lets have a closer look, in my next posts I will write more about Intellivision console, some of the home computers and the best video games released in 1979!

Stay tuned and see you in my next posts!

BEST VIDEO GAMES ON ARCADE AND APPLE II HOME COMPUTER 1978 — May 15, 2015

BEST VIDEO GAMES ON ARCADE AND APPLE II HOME COMPUTER 1978

ARCADES

1978 was a huge year for the Arcades! One of the all time greatest – Space Invaders was released by Taito (and by Midway in North-America). It marked the beginning of the Golden Age of Arcade video games (1978-1983). Here are the best Arcade games released in 1978:

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Space Invaders
Space Invaders is one of the most important video games of all time! It is a space shooter, where you take control of a laser cannon and your aim is to defeat the waves of aliens, scoring as many points as possible! Everyone loves this game!

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Gee Bee (by Namco)
Gee Bee is a pinball-breakout-type game, where your aim is to score as many points as possible! Is a fun time killer!!!

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Super Breakout
Super Breakout is a sequel to original Breakout (released 1976). Unlike the original, this game has microprocessor and is possible to emulate! There are three different and more advanced game types: Double, Cavity and Progressive. You can read more here: Super Breakout

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Sky Raider
Sky Raider is a sky shooter (quite advanced for the time). Your mission is to shoot everything and score as many points as possible! For the time this game was like a gift from the future (no blocks and dots). A fun game to play even today!

APPLE II HOME COMPUTER

Computer games these days were different! They were meant to be intelligent. Many text adventure games were released (which I am not a huge fan of), but also first graphical adventure games appeared. And the first dungeon crawler games were made. There is really hard to mention any of these games, all of them have aged a lot and there are not too many people who would like to play these! But if you must, I am going to name few games quickly and write why it was important!

Beneath Apple Manor – one of the first rogue-like dungeon crawler games.

Dungeon Campaign – another rogue-like dungeon crawler, which was even more basic (blocks and dots)

And that’s it! In my next post I will take you into the next year, the one and only, 1979

BEST HOME CONSOLE GAMES FOR ATARI 2600 AND BALLY ASTROCADE IN 1978 — May 14, 2015

BEST HOME CONSOLE GAMES FOR ATARI 2600 AND BALLY ASTROCADE IN 1978

ATARI 2600

1978 was not a huge year for Atari 2600, 17 games were released and most of them were not very good! Many boring educational games were released what these days have aged horribly! But here are few games that you could try:

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Basketball
Basketball is a basic basketball game (squares and blocks) but the gameplay is quite fun! Unfortunately it doesn’t offer a team play as you play one against one, but you can play against the computer or against your friend!

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Breakout
Breakout is a decent port (for the time) of an arcade game. Gameplay is not the smoothest but graphics are quite okay. You can play alone or with your friends.

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Outlaw
Outlaw is another port of an arcade game (Gun Fight 1975 / Boot Hill 1977). Game plays well, graphics are okay (for the time). Unfortunately it is just two players game so you can not try your skills against cpu. Still a fun cartridge to own on any console!

BALLY ASTROCADE

It wasn’t very strong year for Astrocade either, but the best graphics still delivered! Unfortunately only 5 cartridges were released and here are the best of them:

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Red Baron / Panzer Attack
Red Baron / Panzer Attack is a multi cartridge with two wonderful games! Red Baron is a flight game, where your mission is to shoot down your opponent! Simple game but the graphics were better than anything else at this time! Panzer Attack is a decent tank-type game, good graphics and plays well. A fun cartridge to own!

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Clowns / Brickyard
Clowns / Brickyard is a multi cartridge containing two arcade ports. Brickyard is a decent port of Breakout and Clowns is Clowns! A fun cartridge to kill some time!

INTERTON VC 4000 — May 13, 2015

INTERTON VC 4000

1280px-VC-4000-Console-SetVC 4000 – is a home video games console released by Interton. It belongs to 1292 Advanced Programmable Video System family. It is not clear if Interton built the console from the scratch or modified and redesigned the previous 1292 console. To read more about the 1292 family, please search for my previous post about 1292 console or just click on the following link: 1292 family consoles

It is possible to find the list of all games that were released (and re-released) for the system here: list of vc4000 games

As already mentioned, most of the titles were just re-released or slightly modified old games. Only few completely new titles were released and none of them is worth to mention! In my next post I will write about the other games released in 1978.

See you in my next post!

GAMES: 1292 ADVANCED PROGRAMMABLE VIDEO SYSTEM — May 12, 2015

GAMES: 1292 ADVANCED PROGRAMMABLE VIDEO SYSTEM

This is the selection of best games released on the 1292 Advanced Programmable Video System console compatibles around 1978. To be honest, most of the games on this console are quite bad! But here are some games you may enjoy even today!

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Cartridge 22: Spider’s Web / Monster-Man (1978)

Spider’s Web is a dark but fun Pac-Man-like game, but instead of you take control of a spider in the dark maze, where you hunt or get hunted by the other monsters! It is just one of a few games I really enjoyed on the system: fast paced action with nice atmosphere! A must cartridge to own for 1292 family consoles!

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Cartridge 25: Electronic Pinball (1978)

Must be honest, I am not a huge fan of pinball games, but for that time period of video games, Electronic Pinball is quite okay! It has some decent graphics for the time, has fast paced and fun gameplay. Recommended for pinball fans!

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Cartridge 27: Invaders (1978)

Invaders is another version of Space Invaders, and to be honest, not bad at all! It may have less sprites on the screen than some other versions but rows of the invaders are diagonal to compensate the gameplay and it came out quite okay. For sure you should at least give this game a chance, you may end up satisfied!

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Cartridge 31: Laser Attack (1978)

Laser Attack might not be the best game made, but it offers you some decent fun. In this game you take control of a group of super spaceships in the outer galaxy, flying on the hostile unnamed planet. There is a war going on and you must avoid the enemy fire and take down the laser cannons placed on the planet. Atmosphere in this game is one of the best for the whole system, gameplay is okay. Recommended for everybody!