The History of Arcade Games

  • Pong - Atari

    Pong - Atari
    Contrary to popular belief, Pong was NOT the first video game ever created. It is simply the first commercial video game to be incredibly successful.
  • Western Gun - Taito

    Western Gun - Taito
    Western Gun, known n the United States as Gun Fight, was the first video game to show a firearm being used.
  • Space Invaders - Taito

    Space Invaders - Taito
    Space Invaders is considered te first runaway success in the arcade industry. Upon the game's release in Japan, it became so successful that the country ran into a shortage of 100 Yen coins. Space Invaders is one of the few remaining Golden Age arcade games to still be around today.
  • Galaxian - Namco'Midway

    Galaxian - Namco'Midway
    Galaxian was created by Japanese developer Namco in 1979, but it was released in the US by Bally-Midway. Galaxian can be considered an update of Space Invaders. Galaxian was one of the first arcade games that featured full color, as well as one of the first to feature boss battles. It would gain a sequel in Namco's Galaga, which allowed the players' ship to be captured b the enemy, as well as the ability to re-gain that captured ship by destroying enemies.
  • Pac Man - Namco/Midway

    Pac Man - Namco/Midway
  • Donkey Kong - Nintendo

    Donkey Kong - Nintendo
    Donkey Kong was created by Shigeru Miyamoto, of Nintendo of Japan. This game marks the first appearance of Nintendo's long-time mascot, Mario. Donkey Kong is considered the best early example of the Platform genre of gaming, as well as one of the first games that has a true storyline. This game was the subject of a lawsuit by Universal Studios, due to Donkey Kong's similarities to King Kong. Universal lost the case after it was revealed that they didn't own the license to King Kong.
  • Dragon's Lair

    Dragon's Lair
    Dragon's Lair is not really a video game in the traditional sense. It's more of an interactive movie. The movie was played via Laserdisc, and at certain points, a plaer would have to move a joystick or press a button at the right time for the action to keep going. Dragons Lair was given a sequel later on, as well as a spin-off called Space Ace, which featured the same sort of gameplay. Dragon's Lair is curretnly offered as a DVD, where the game can be played with a DVD remote.
  • Double Dragon - Technos Japan

    Double Dragon - Technos Japan
    Double Dragon was one of the best examples of the Beat 'Em Up genre, where the player would face hoardes of enemies armed with nothing but their fists. Games like Renegade and Kung Fu Master existed before Double Dragon, but this game has become the basis for many other beat 'em up games, like the Simpsons arcade game, Final Fight, and Streets of Rage.
  • Street Fighter II - Capcom

    Street Fighter II - Capcom
    The original Street Fighter was one of Capcom's early mistakes. It suffered from an awkward control scheme that didn't work as intended, and the game was incredibly difficult. SFII took the issues that the first game had and got rid of them. Street Fighter II used a revolutionary control scheme of an eight-way joystick and six buttons per player. The game spawned competitions throughout the country, and is one of the main forced behind the figting game boom in the 1990's.
  • Mortal Kombat - Midway

    Mortal Kombat - Midway
    Mortal Kombat is mostly known for being incredibly violent. There have been violent games on the market before, like Exidy's Chiller, but MK's violence was much more realistic. The series is also well-known for its' technique of palette swapping, where additional characters would be made by altering other ones. For instance, MK fighters Scorpion and Sub-Zero are identical in appearance, but they differ in movesets and, most ofviously, color.
  • Killer Instinct - Rare/Nintendo

    Killer Instinct - Rare/Nintendo
    Killer Instinct was made by then-Nintendo-owned Rare. It uses computer-generared graphics for most of the characters and backgrounds, and it had so much data that each arcade cabnet had to be outfitted with a Seagate hard drive to store everything. This makes finding working machines difficult today. Killer Instinct's gameplay was similar to Mortal Kombat, but instead of focusing on violence, KI focused on combos. Chaining attacks together often lead to higher damage and higher scores.
  • Dance Dance Revolution - Konami

    Dance Dance Revolution - Konami
    DDR is one of the arcade franchises that is still going strong in arcades today, no doubt due to the machine's visually striking and fun nature. To play DDR, one must step on colored arrows in time with the directions on the screen. On higher difficultis, this gives the appearance of a player 'dancing'. This is one of the founding games in the rhythm game genre.
  • Sega releases the Dreamcast

    Sega releases the Dreamcast
    To many people, this date is considered the end ot the arcade. The Sega Dreamcast was built using pieces from Sega's Naomi arcade board, which means that a lot of Sega'a games could be ported from the arcades to the Dreamcast relatively easy. Arcade games like Power Stone, Marvel Vs. Capcom 2, and Ikaruga are functinally identical on the Dreamcast as they are in the arcades. It is at this point that console gaming caught up with the arcade industry, and it has kept on going since.