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Video Games: A Comparison of Generations

Hey…You Got (Video) Games?

In 2016, a video of a little boy asking somebody if they “got games on your phone.” This reflects today’s younger generations asking adults if they have games on their phones to play with. It’s a present-day problem because parents are now relying on their phones and tablets to keep their children distracted. This turned into a meme, and became very popular throughout the internet. This infamous line is all about what I’m diving into, especially how the meaning has changed for generations.

Let’s Chat!

The modern-day mobile application games originated from desktop computer games. These started out in the 1970’s/80’s, starting out with the original Atari game, Pong. The original video games also included Tetris, online Solitaire, and other card games. The Nintendo console was the Nintendo Entertainment System, released in 1985. It was a simple system with only a pixelated screen and a few games.

Now Fortnite, Call of Duty, Sims (now on its fourth installation), PUBG, Red Dead Redemption 2, and the thousands (maybe millions) of other games that are available on countless platforms are becoming as popular as ever.

The games I grew up with include Webkinz.com, Neopets, Club Penguin (which was discontinued in 2017), Poptropica, Runescape, the Barbie World games, and any other early-2000’s online chatroom games. These are just some of the games that my generation (18-28 years old) thrived on. These are also some of the first games that included the chatroom aspect. This was after AOL created AIM, a widely used chatroom computer application in the early 2000’s. This technology morphed into gaming sites that had the chatroom aspect. Most of the before mentioned games had the ‘game’ as the main idea. There were solvable challenges, other activities to play, places to explore in every universe, and even mini games.

Modern Day Video Games

Technological games are still on an upward slope, and knowing their history is important to figure out how they are growing. They have inspired many new games, and the simple concepts have grown into these massive sources of entertainment for millions of people. Video games have turned into one of the biggest entertainment industries since their initial release in the 70’s.

It has even turned into a sport. Esports (electronic sports) are now being played for money and championships. There are many gamers out there who make 6 or 7 figures playing in these Esport/video game tournaments. Along with this, games like World of Warcraft, Fortnite, Overwatch, etc. have global gaming competitions that are televised and have teenagers competing in. Video games are no longer a pastime, it’s a job.

A Change in The Right Direction

All of the modern-day games have the same beginnings. In the simplest terms, it is a screen-oriented activity that has a goal. This could be on any type of platform; like a Nintendo Switch, XBOX One or 360, Playstation (2,3,4), Gameboy, Nintendo DS, an iPhone, even any type of desktop or laptop computer.

The concepts that have been around for almost 50 years will never go away. First Person Shooter (FPS), racing, educational, mystery, horror, thriller, puzzle, social, and sports games are just some of the genres that are out right now. Video game genres derived from movies and books with the same plot points and ideas within their storylines. Video game developers thought about how players could be immersed into a new world and solve problems that revolve around the setting of the game.

The video games themselves and the entire industry is still growing and will continue to grow. With new technology for games (like virtual reality), players and developers are constantly innovating on the new ways people can play these virtual games. Now, video games have also become inclusive for people with disabilities thanks to Microsoft’s innovative technology. So, what’s your favorite video game from your childhood? Comment below!

Sydney Sokol

Sydney Sokol

I’m Sydney Sokol '20, an accounting major in Whitman. I like the gym/nutrition/working out, shopping, hanging out with friends, and doing community service. Technology is very involved in my life because I need Excel to do simple functions for my major and personal life.

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