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Video Games: Pong to Present . Presentation by Doug Wilcox Com 546 – Evolution and Trends in Digital Media – December 6, 2005. Agenda. Who invented the video game? Brief Industry History Impact of Internet Games compared to Film Future of the Games Industry. Who Invented the Video Game?.

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Video Games: Pong to Present

Presentation by Doug Wilcox

Com 546 – Evolution and Trends in Digital Media – December 6, 2005


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Agenda

  • Who invented the video game?

  • Brief Industry History

  • Impact of Internet

  • Games compared to Film

  • Future of the Games Industry


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Who Invented the Video Game?

  • Ralph Baer

    • 1949: Loral tasks Baer to create next-generation television. Baer suggests interactive game, but management refuses.

    • 1966: revisits idea under new employer

    • 1970: Baer licenses his technology to Magnavox for tennis game

  • Steve Russell

    • 1961: Invents Spacewar! for MIT mainframe

    • Spacewar! popular on college campuses

    • Nolan Bushnell, Nutting Associates commercialize Spacewar!


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Early Years: 1970 - 1985

  • 1972: Atari is formed

    • Bushnell founds Atari, develops Pong

    • Pong popular in public trial

    • Bushnell breaks off negotiations with Bally and Midway

  • 1983: Atari starts decline

    • Overproduces ET, Pac Man

    • Games industry’s first slump


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Rise of Japanese Consoles: 1985 – 2000

  • 1980s: Nintendo and Sega

    • Donkey Kong boosts Nintendo

    • Mortal Kombat defines Sega as adult oriented console

  • 1994: Nintendo and Sony attempt collaboration, but fail. Sony goes on to develop Playstation.

  • 2000: Sega bows out of hardware market, leaving Nintendo and Sony. Xbox appears the following year.

  • 2000 – Present: Sony vs. Microsoft


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Effect of Internet

  • Online games offer unlimited game-play compared to traditional single-player game

  • Possibility for online distribution

  • Consumer can “mod” content for PC online games

    • Quake

    • Counterstrike

    • Starcraft

  • Social structures online

    • Bartle (1996) taxonomy

    • Jansz and Martens (2005) observe group dynamics for online gamers


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Games compared to Film Industry

  • 2004: Games surpass film revenues

    • $9.9 billion (Games) vs. $9.4 billion (Film)

    • Blockbusters: Spiderman ($114M) vs. Halo ($125M)


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Games compared to Film Industry

  • Shared Franchises: film versions of games

    • Tomb Raider

    • Final Fantasy

    • Doom

    • Halo

  • Consolidation

    • Film industry in 1930s – Studios leverage titles

    • Games industry at present

      • Advances against royalties

      • Rising costs – risk averse

      • Increasing reliance on recycled franchises


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Future of Games

  • Online Growth

    • Larger and richer multiplayer environments

    • Increasing transfer between virtual, real economies

    • Additional forms of communication

    • Advertising

  • Sony vs. Microsoft

    • Battle for the living room

    • HDTV to allow consoles to displace PCs



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