Early video games were thought of as the latest technology, yet they are no comparison to the games we have today. With all the different types and systems there were to choose from, the earlier models such as Atari seem like a silly comparison. Although these games at one time when released to the public were very popular.
The Magnavox Odyssey was the very first game system to be released in the United States. The prototype was called the brown box; it was a crude version of what was going to become the Odyssey. The design of the odyssey was to use cartridges which altered the circuits inside the box.
This game was based on plastic sheets that were attached to the television screen with tape. The sheets added the graphics that were used in conjunction with the images projected onto the screen from the game system. This was released in 1972.
The gaming systems usually went for about $100.00 and always sold over 100,000 units in their first year of production. Compared to standards today the beginning years were primitive, but this was the start of the home console gaming systems.
In 1972, Atari was founded by Nolan Bushnell. The name of this company was originally planned to be Syzygy. Since the name was already in use Atari was settled on for the company. A developer, Al Alcorn joined Atari and the game “Pong” originated. The popularity of this game was quite impressive when it went on sale in 1975 as a home version for Atari.
Many games were later released in 1976 and 1977 that included some hand-held games. In 1976 Coleco got into the gaming craze with the Telstar. In 1977, Atari released their Atari 2600 home game system. Mattel released their electronic baseball video game for Atari in 1978. The following year, microvision game that had cartridges that changed the games was released by Milton Bradley.
By 1980 Mattel was ready to launch their answer to Atari – the Intellivision game system. The Nintendo game system was on the horizon. When Mario brothers games came out in 1981, the world was ready for something different. Gaining popularity, this was a game that seemed to be an instant hit.
In 1981 Sega was yet another video gaming system that got in on the competition with the release of Turbo. This was one of the first driving video games that simulated reality. In comparison, the only driving game up to this point was Atari’s Night Driver and it was not nearly as realistic.
In 1982, the replacement for the Atari 2600 was born. It was the Atari 5200 which was created to compete with the intellivision but ended up being in competition for Coleco. The Atari 5200 was not the hit, that they had planned it to be due to many design flaws.
These early systems, were nowhere near as sophisticated as the systems you can buy today. Nintendo’s systems play Station systems, and the Xbox made yesterday’s games a little more than children’s toys. The Nintendo Wii and Xbox 360 are the trendsetters for future technology advances.