5 Golden Age arcade video games that have made history

Arcade games remain some of the most popular and best-sold video games since the launch of the first commercial video arcade game in 1971 – when Syzygy, a precursor to Atari Inc. launched Computer Space. These coin-operated pieces of equipment were usually installed in public businesses like restaurants and bars and have lost their popularity after home-based video game consoles like PlayStation have been introduced in the 1990s. However, those who have been growing up in the late 1970s to mid-1980s will still remember the following 5 arcade games:

1. Space Invaders

Space Invaders has been launched in 1978 and is considered to be one of the earliest shooting games. Successful since its first release, Space Invaders was manufactured by Taito in Japan and was licensed for production in the United States by the Midway division of Bally. The purpose of the game is to defeat waves of aliens using a laser cannon in order to earn points. With games like Space Invaders the current video game industry has truly emerged and overcome the novelty phase. This two-dimensional game is very simple for today’s standards: the laser cannon can be controlled by the player by moving it horizontally at the bottom of the screen and shooting descending aliens. After eliminating more aliens, the enemy’s movement and the game’s music speed up and waves become more and more difficult to defeat. Aliens also try to destroy the cannon by firing at it. The game ends when aliens reach the bottom. Bonus points can be obtained by destroying a mystery ship occasionally crossing the screen. The laser cannon is protected by defence bunkers which are gradually destroyed by alien or player blasts. For eliminating alien invaders players can score from 10 to 30 points, and the mystery ship is worth 50 to 300 points.

2. Pac-Man

Also developed and released by Japanese video game designers, Pac-Man was launched in 1980 and created by Toru Iwatani. Months after being launched in Japan, it was also released in the United States and became incredibly popular. Pac-Man is considered an icon of the 1980s popular culture and it continues to have a strong fan base even today.it is also one of the highest grossing video games, having generated more than $2.5 billion by the 1990s. Pac-Man was different from other successful games from the Golden Age of arcade video games. Pac-Man is controlled by the player through a maze and is eating biscuits or dots; after eating all biscuits, Pac-Man reaches the next level. However, there are four enemies trying to catch Pac-Man: Blinky, Pinky, Inky, and Clyde. Being touched by one of the enemies means losing one life, and when all lives are lost the game is over.

3. Tempest

Unlike the other two games, Tempest was designed by Dave Theurer and launched in the United States. There are some premieres related to this game: the first game to allow the player to choose their starting level, one of the first games to use Atari’s Color-QuadraScan vector display technology, and one of the first games to provide a progressive level design, which means that levels varied instead of giving the player the same layout without increasing game difficulty. Players need to survive as long as possible and to collect as many points by eliminating enemies that have landed on the playing field. The player is controlling a ship which shots fire down the tube and eliminates enemies within the same segment. A special weapon, the Superzapper, destroys all enemies currently on the playfield.

4. Star Trek

This space combat arcade game is based on the Star Trek television program and was released by Sega in 1983. The player can choose between the two-dimensional and three-dimensional first-person perspective. As expected, in this game you need to control the Starship Enterprise and defend it from Klingon ships. The multiple views of the play field made it different from other arcade games at the time and the multiple controls to activate various weapons like warp engines and photon torpedoes made it very captivating for players in the 1980s. A review published in 1983 in Electronic Games said: “Star Trek is sure to be a top-grosser in the arcades this year. If you can squeeze through the crowd around the machine, you may never want to leave.”

5. Donkey Kong

Back to Japanese games with the last item on our list – Donkey Kong was released by Nintendo in 1981 and is one of the first games in the platform game genre. This means players need to control a character across platforms while also jumping over obstacles. The storyline is simple: the main character, Mario, needs to rescue a damsel in distress, Pauline, from a huge ape called Donkey Kong. The games also uses cut scenes to present the plot and the narrative ends when Mario manages to reach the top platform and rescue Pauline. A lesser-known fact is that Donkey Kong was created to recycle a large number of unsold machines, which originally ran an unsuccessful game in North America, Radar Scope.

Feeling nostalgic after going through our list? Which of these games do you remember best?

11 Benefits Of Playing Video Games

Is playing video games a guilty pleasure for you? Are you trying to give up on this habit because everybody is telling you how bad video games are for your health? It looks like you should stop worrying, since scientists have found multiple evidence suggesting video games come with surprising benefits. Unless you are addicted to video games and you don’t forget to eat and sleep because you can’t leave your computer or video game console, the following list of benefits is for you. If you know how to balance video games with other activities such as work, rest, socializing with other people and physical exercise, you’ll definitely enjoy the following advantages:

1. Improving vision

Playing games in moderation could improve your vision. A study has shown that after 10 weeks of play, subjects were able to distinguish between more shades of grey. In another study, people played video games using their eye with poorer vision, while the good one was obscured – improvement in the lazy eye was noticed at the end of the experiment.

2. Improving general knowledge

Many games have fascinating storyline and use history to make their narrative more interesting. This can sparkle one’s interest for history and culture and determine them to research books and other resources on topics they have seen in video games.

3. Improving cognitive functions in older players

If you are a fan of brain games, you will probably maintain your mental abilities at an older age. Multiple studies on participants 50 and older showed that after several hours of playing puzzles, memory games, and problem-solving games, these people had superior cognitive functioning and the effect lasted for years.

4. Faster decision-making

Some people are able to make the right decision in a split second and thus save their lives in difficult situations. It looks like this ability can be cultivated through gaming. Studies have shown that people who played fast-paced games had a higher reaction speed to unexpected stimuli than those who didn’t play at all.

5. Reducing stress

Video games are your comfort activity after a stressful day at work? You shouldn’t give up on the habit, because some games can reduce your adrenaline response by over 50% – of course, we are not talking here about violent games.

6. Better eye-hand coordination

Exercising ability helps improving it, and the same happens with eye-hand coordination, which can be trained by playing video games. This can be extremely helpful in a number of professions – for instance, surgeons can benefit from video games. A study performed on laparoscopic specialist showed that doctors who played video games for more than three hours a week made fewer errors that those who didn’t play – 32% fewer mistakes, actually.

7. Helping with dyslexia

Since the cause of dyslexia is not being able to concentrate one’s attention on visual stimuli, video games can help with this condition. A study performed on dyslexic children showed that 12 hours of playing video games helped to elevate their scores on reading and phonology tests – the same effect or even better than being enrolled in programs that treat dyslexia.

8. Better multitasking

Although multitasking is actually impossible since the human brain can only concentrate on one task at a time, in many professions people need to be able to switch their attention from one stimulus to another in a repeated manner. A study has shown that gamers who took a test modelled after skills required in piloting aircraft delivered superior performance compared to those who don’t play video games at all.

9. Making friends

Making friends is easier when you share a common interest with other people. Although parents see gaming as an isolated activity, children have a different opinion and see games as a common ground with other kids. Games are a conversation subject, especially for young boys, and children play video games with a group of friends, either in the same room or online. Some children may choose to play video games just to have a pretext to befriend other kids.

10. Encouraging physical exercise

This may sound like nonsense in the first place, but it’s not. Children who play sports games learn about all kinds of moves and strategies and are eager to try them in real life. They may go outside and practice very hard just to reproduce what they’ve seen in these realistic sports games.

11. Advancing your career

Some games can sharpen skills like governance, leadership, strategic thinking and so on – training these abilities can have a positive impact in one’s professional life. Having to make the right decision, and fast, in a game can make you respond better to crisis situations at the office.

All in all, video games are not good or bad themselves. What matters is how you use them, and moderation is once again the key to healthy living. Playing video games for a limited time while also engaging in other beneficial activities will bring you the benefits mentioned in this article and help you lead a happier, fuller life.

9 Video Games Announced For 2017

Each new year brings innovations in every field, including video games. Passionate gamers are looking forward to new titles, especially since 2016 has been a great year for games, with good quality releases like Hitman, Battlefield 1, and Final Fantasy XV. What surprises are waiting for us in 2017?

1. Yakuza

The first Yakuza game was launched in 2005 and due to its commercial success was expanded to an entire game franchise. Yakuza is a third-person game in the action-adventure genre, where players evolve through combat. The game was originally launched in Japan and for 2017 Sega has planned to release Yakuza 0, featuring a young Kazuma Kiryu living in the 1980s and fighting violence and corruption.

2. Days Gone

This title is most probably unknown to you because it’s a new game. Days Gone is being developed by SIE Bend Studio and will be an open world action-adventure video game in the survival horror genre. The action is placed in a zombie post-apocalyptic era and the main character is a former bounty hunter, called Deacon St. John. The game is expected to have amazing graphics and players will enjoy a vast open world to explore.

3. Sniper Elite 4

Scheduled for release on February 14, 2017, Sniper Elite 4 can be played on PS4, Xbox One, and PC. The action is placed in World War 2, and the protagonist Karl Fairburne reaches Mussolini’s Italy. This tactical shooter and stealth game was first released in 2005, and players can use weapons inspired from the World War II era, such as sniper rifles, light machine guns, anti-tank weapons, hand grenades, and so on.

4. Resident Evil 7

Resident Evil is a very popular title, because it’s more than just a video game, it has also been developed into a media franchise. Created by Shinji Mikami and Tokuro Fujiwara, Resident Evil was originally a survival horror video game that inspired novels, comic books, films, animations, action figure, and sound dramas. The first release dates from 1996, and for 2017 Capcom has scheduled Resident Evil 7: Biohazard. This is the first instalment in the series that has a first-person perspective and is adapted for PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4.

5. Sea of Thieves

 

Again a new title with Sea of Thieves, an upcoming action-adventure game developed by Rare and published for PC and Xbox One. Sea of Thieves uses Unreal Engine 4 and will include the following gameplay elements and key features: treasure hunting, cooperative gameplay mechanics, teamwork to manoeuvre the ship around the sea, day and night cycle, and proximity voice chat with other players, among others.

6. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

The Legend of Zelda is one of the video games with the highest longevity, and Breath of the Wild will be the 19th instalment of the series. A novelty for this game is that it will be developed with an HD resolution. The action-adventure game is placed in a vast open-world, populated by monsters, and is announced to have many things in common with the original game. Moreover, it will be using an advanced physics engine and voice acting. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is definitely a title that has made curious many video game fans and we are looking forward to see what’s new about it.

7. Yooka-Laylee

Looking for a good platform video game to remind you of your 90’s childhood, but which can also live up to today’s standards? The upcoming Yooka-Laylee may be the solution. The game will be released in April 2017 for Linux, Microsoft Windows, macOS, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Nintendo Switch. Yooka-Laylee is being developed by Playtonic Games and its gameplay will have many elements in common with predecessor Banjo-Kazooie.

8. Mass Effect Andromeda

Mass Effect Andromeda is an action role-playing, third-person shooter scheduled for March 2017. Its publisher is Electronic Arts and the game will be available for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. The last instalment in the series is Mass Effect 3, released in 2012, and this sequel has been announced in June 2015. The player controls one of two main characters, Sara or Scott Ryder, and navigates using the Tempest ship throughout the Andromeda galaxy.

9. Nier: Automata

Nier: Automata has been in production since 2014 and is being developed by Platinum Games. The action role-playing video game will be published for PlayStation 4 and Microsoft Windows. The main character is a combat android who protects the remnants of humanity from machines sent by alien invaders. This game will probably attract the attention of those who like Japanese role-playing games and is expected to retain many of the elements of the original Nier game.

Which of these games are you already expecting to be launched? What are your expectations for 2017 in gaming? One thing is for sure – this year will be very generous for those looking for a new video game passion.

5 Reasons Why You Should Play Video Games

People have a misconception that video games only have negative effects. They are addictive and they make you fat. But there are actually several benefits of video games.

1. They improve motor skills

Playing interactive video games are good for developing your motor skills. So, children who play these interactive games will be good at catching, kicking or throwing a ball. It also improves eye-hand coordination.

2. They help to relieve pain

Video games and virtual reality experiences help to relieve pain. So, for example, if you are going through intensive treatment like chemotherapy, then playing video games can ease your pain.

3. They improve eyesight

People have a misconception that playing video games is bad for your eyesight. But in reality, it is the opposite. Playing video games improves eyesight. You will be able to tell even very fine contrast differences.

4. Helps in decision making

Playing video games can help you make decisions faster. They develop increased sensitivity towards what goes on around them. You will get better at driving, multitasking, and other things. You get more efficient in collecting visual and auditory information.

5. They help in dealing with mental illness

Video games help people who suffer from mental illness like depression. It helps them to deal with their symptoms and make them feel relaxed and less stressed.

So, now you know that playing video games actually has lots of benefits. So, you should play video games to improve your various skills and spend some good time.