A comprehensive overview of the evolution of video games covering topics such as, "Atari revolution;" "rise of cartridge-based consoles;" American video game industry; international video game industry; "Apple Mac;" "Nintendo Entertainment System;" Sega video games; PlayStation video games; and "girl gaming."
Inside the Games You Grew Up with but Never Forgot With all the whiz, bang, pop, and shimmer of a glowing arcade. The Ultimate History of Video Games reveals everything you ever wanted to know and more about the unforgettable games that changed the world, the visionaries who made them, and the fanatics who played them. From the arcade to television and from the PC to the handheld device, video games have entraced kids at heart for nearly 30 years. And author and gaming historian Steven L. Kent has been there to record the craze from the very beginning. This engrossing book tells the incredible tale of how this backroom novelty transformed into a cultural phenomenon. Through meticulous research and personal interviews with hundreds of industry luminaries, you'll read firsthand accounts of how yesterday's games like Space Invaders, Centipede, and Pac-Man helped create an arcade culture that defined a generation, and how today's empires like Sony, Nintendo, and Electronic Arts have galvanized a multibillion-dollar industry and a new generation of games. Inside, you'll discover: ·The video game that saved Nintendo from bankruptcy ·The serendipitous story of Pac-Man's design ·The misstep that helped topple Atari's $2 billion-a-year empire ·The coin shortage caused by Space Invaders ·The fascinating reasons behind the rise, fall, and rebirth of Sega ·And much more! Entertaining, addictive, and as mesmerizing as the games it chronicles, this book is a must-have for anyone who's ever touched a joystick.
If you have ever looked at a fantastic adventure or science fiction movie, or an amazingly complex and rich computer game, or a TV commercial where cars or gas pumps or biscuits behaved liked people and wondered, “How do they do that?”, then you’ve experienced the magic of 3D worlds generated by a computer. 3D in computers began as a way to represent automotive designs and illustrate the construction of molecules. 3D graphics use evolved to visualizations of simulated data and artistic representations of imaginary worlds. In order to overcome the processing limitations of the computer, graphics had to exploit the characteristics of the eye and brain, and develop visual tricks to simulate realism. The goal is to create graphics images that will overcome the visual cues that cause disbelief and tell the viewer this is not real. Thousands of people over thousands of years have developed the building blocks and made the discoveries in mathematics and science to make such 3D magic possible, and The History of Visual Magic in Computers is dedicated to all of them and tells a little of their story. It traces the earliest understanding of 3D and then foundational mathematics to explain and construct 3D; from mechanical computers up to today’s tablets. Several of the amazing computer graphics algorithms and tricks came of periods where eruptions of new ideas and techniques seem to occur all at once. Applications emerged as the fundamentals of how to draw lines and create realistic images were better understood, leading to hardware 3D controllers that drive the display all the way to stereovision and virtual reality.
Drawing on extensive research, this book explores the techniques that old computer games used to run on tightly-constrained platforms. Retrogame developers faced incredible challenges of limited space, computing power, rudimentary tools, and the lack of homogeneous environments. Using examples from over 100 retrogames, this book examines the clever implementation tricks that game designers employed to make their creations possible, documenting these techniques that are being lost. However, these retrogame techniques have modern analogues and applications in general computer systems, not just games, and this book makes these contemporary connections. It also uses retrogames' implementation to introduce a wide variety of topics in computer systems including memory management, interpretation, data compression, procedural content generation, and software protection. Retrogame Archeology targets professionals and advanced-level students in computer science, engineering, and mathematics but would also be of interest to retrogame enthusiasts, computer historians, and game studies researchers in the humanities.
"[An] entertaining jaunt through city wildlife." —Kirkus Reviews We tend to think of cities as a realm apart, somehow separate from nature, but nothing could be further from the truth. In Feral Cities, Tristan Donovan digs below the urban gloss to uncover the wild creatures that we share our streets and homes with, and profiles the brave and fascinating people who try to manage them. Along the way readers will meet the wall-eating snails that are invading Miami, the boars that roam Berlin, and the monkey gangs of Cape Town. From feral chickens and carpet-roaming bugs to coyotes hanging out in sandwich shops and birds crashing into skyscrapers, Feral Cities takes readers on a journey through streets and neighborhoods that are far more alive than we often realize, shows how animals are adjusting to urban living, and asks what messages the wildlife in our metropolises have for us. Tristan Donovan is the author of two widely praised books, Replay: The History of Video Games and Fizz: How Soda Shook Up the World. His journalism has appeared in many major newspapers, magazines, and web sites. He has a degree in ecology.
In The Interface Envelope, James Ash develops a series of concepts to understand how digital interfaces work to shape the spatial and temporal perception of players. Drawing upon examples from videogame design and work from post-phenomenology, speculative realism, new materialism and media theory, Ash argues that interfaces create envelopes, or localised foldings of space time, around which bodily and perceptual capacities are organised for the explicit production of economic profit. Modifying and developing Bernard Stiegler's account of psychopower and Warren Neidich's account of neuropower, Ash argues the aim of interface designers and publishers is the production of envelope power. Envelope power refers to the ways that interfaces in games are designed to increase users perceptual and habitual capacities to sense difference. Examining a range of examples from specific videogames, Ash identities a series of logics that are key to producing envelope power and shows how these logics have intensified over the last thirty years. In turn, Ash suggests that the logics of interface envelopes in videogames are spreading to other types of interface. In doing so life becomes enveloped as the environments people inhabit becoming increasingly loaded with digital interfaces. Rather than simply negative, Ash develops a series of responses to the potential problematics of interface envelopes and envelope power and emphasizes their pharmacological nature.
The number of publications dealing with video game studies has exploded over the course of the last decade, but the field has produced few comprehensive reference works. The Routledge Companion to Video Game Studies, compiled by well-known video game scholars Mark J. P. Wolf and Bernard Perron, aims to address the ongoing theoretical and methodological development of game studies, providing students, scholars, and game designers with a definitive look at contemporary video game studies. Features include: comprehensive and interdisciplinary models and approaches for analyzing video games; new perspectives on video games both as art form and cultural phenomenon; explorations of the technical and creative dimensions of video games; accounts of the political, social, and cultural dynamics of video games. Each essay provides a lively and succinct summary of its target area, quickly bringing the reader up-to-date on the pertinent issues surrounding each aspect of the field, including references for further reading. Together, they provide an overview of the present state of game studies that will undoubtedly prove invaluable to student, scholar, and designer alike.
Classical music is everywhere in video games. Works by composers like Bach and Mozart fill the soundtracks of games ranging from arcade classics, to indie titles, to major franchises like BioShock, Civilization, and Fallout. Children can learn about classical works and their histories from interactive iPad games. World-renowned classical orchestras frequently perform concerts of game music to sold-out audiences. But what do such combinations of art and entertainment reveal about the cultural value we place on these media? Can classical music ever be video game music, and can game music ever be classical? Delving into the shifting and often contradictory cultural definitions that emerge when classical music meets video games, Replay Value offers a new perspective on the possibilities and challenges of trying to distinguish between art and pop culture in contemporary society.