Monday, 26 October 2009

The 2000's

We are now in the 2000's and games have come along way since the very first console/game. There has been a growing market, many new consoles with more graphical and processing power allowing
more things that can be added to games and how many things it can handle. From the beginning of 2000 games have entered its "sixth" generation - each generation lasting about 5 years which makes
games at present (after 2005) the seventh Generation. During this period companies such as Sony, Nintendo and Microsoft spawned a new race of consoles; the PS2, Gamecube and the Xbox. I actually owned
a Gamecube and the Xbox since I was mainly interested in the Star Wars games which I seen on the Gamecube such as "The Clone Wars", "Rogue Leader", "Bounty Hunter" and "Jedi Knight 2: Jedi Outcast".
(I also got a Zelda Game pack for the the Gamecube which contained Zelda Ocarina Of Time which I played for the first time and thought it was very well done). The Gamecube could handle quite a lot considering
that the game discs were quite small and its small stature made it unique and like the PS2 it used Memory Cards where-as the Xbox had an internal Hard Drive.
I bought the Xbox quite cheaply of Ebay in approximately 2004 which was A year before the Seventh Generation of consoles were released again mainly for the Star wars Games such as Knights Of The Old Republic, Halo and Fable.
With me nothing much changed and with Gaming I was mainly using the Xbox, Gamecube and The PC for the online game "Jedi Academy" which I still continue to play now with my Clan.
Games of this period were well done compared to the earlier consoles where It was basically "Pong" with 6 different backgrounds, the Genres were carried on from the 90's which allowed a wider range of different games and for
a Variety of ages and interests.
We are now in the Seventh Generation, close to the Eighth Generation which has spawned the Xbox 360 (which I bought), the Wii and the PS3. Main reason for the Xbox 360 was for Halo 3 but also some other Games which I had an interest in.
The Market for games is at its peak so far and there are many game companies spread throughout the world that deal with the production and programming of these newer games. There is now this pressure on game creation since a lot of people are going into it
who are learning similar skills and more and it is a very competitive area (but so are other things in this era..) but I believe that there will always me this demand for games as its attracted more people of different ages/Backgrounds into playing games
and the amount of games you see advertised on TV daily is quite incredible. The Game industry is moving with everything else in the world, forever growing and advancing and will always continue to. In the future its difficult to predict what could happen,
with technology changing and upgrading all the time we could see things like Virtual Reality, Sensors or objects to create sensations in our brains making the Game environment seem ultra realistic as though you were living what's happening and going on.
Similar to what'ss seen in the Star Trek series with the "Holodeck" feature which raises questions like peoplebecomingg so addicted to it that they choose the games over their career/families and even that is happening right now.
Its an exciting time but also there is the worry for how far the new technologies go and its consequences on us.

Sunday, 18 October 2009

The "Middle Ages" Of Games

From the first ever games that were released developers have been gradually trying to enhance and advance the idea of computer games. For a fairly long period nothing much happened with games this could have been a "fear" or uncertainty in this new idea with what is and could be possible. As I have mentioned in my previous week about Ralph Baer and his experiments with a gaming system working with a television set, one of the most significant changes would be for these games to be played at home rather than at an arcade center. The technology being better understood allowed the developers to fit computer equipment into smaller spaces which even now is continuing with all these new iPhones, iPods and other gadgets. The first actual “consol” being able to work with a TV set is the “Odyssey” released by Magnavox and in 1976, 2 years later the “the first programmable home game console called the Fairchild Video Entertainment System” which started to use the Microchip. Games during this time could process more data and information and in a smaller system.

Then the new consol which was apparently quite popular the “Atari VCS 2600” which had games such as a ported version of the Arcade Game “Pac-Man” as well as “Adventure” which looks very similar in style to the Legend Of Zelda yet made earlier on and simplified quite considerably. This period was known as the second generation of games consoles and used a Cartridge based system, similar yet earlier on than the NES. Even so things were starting to quicken their pace in producing games and consoles, the 80’s were when things started to kick off. The creation of game systems such as the Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum, and later on in 1985 the NES was finally released during the “3rd Generation of computer games”. Every 5 years the games consoles kept advancing and a new generation would be formed, the 5th generation consoles occurring between 1995 – 2000.

The first consol that I ever actually got was the Playstation although around other people’s houses I was playing a few games on the SNES. And the next consoles that I got were the Game Boy Colour, a N64 (which someone gave to me) followed on by the Xbox that I purchased several years after it was released.
I cannot specify exactly what has kept me interested in computer-games; during school and other things it seemed to be the thing to “look forward to” when I was back at home. I believe it was an area where you could go into this space that was a retreat from the real world and also where my friends and I could discuss and invite each other to their houses, making this small community with similar interests – Video games.

Sunday, 11 October 2009

Computer Games began when?

Its a fact that information on this is limited as there are no official records stating everything exactly, I would say the formation of games was during a period where other things were being invented and discovered around the same time. From even the early 1900’s it seems that more of an effort was made to create and enhance humanities technical understandings and abilities to create.
From the sources a man named Ralph Baer was apparently the man who worked and created the first computer-based game. Reading through his history he went through quite a lot during the time periods he eventually came to the point where he was part of a Television company who was asked to build the best TV. He wanted to add the concept of playing games through television which his boss refused putting his idea on hold. He did come back to this and started building videogame prototypes. The question that comes to mind is the “why?” why would someone suddenly decide to make games to be played on television? It must have been quite a daring move but that era was based around neo-technology and its advancements, just to prove that it is possible.
Baer was German and Jewish and had an interest in technology, became an engineer and as an engineer his leading code was to create, test, repair and experiment with technology.

First games are listed yet I am not entirely sure about the first official one, as “computer games” is a large matter, the first in date;
1952 A.S Douglas – version of “Tic-Tac-Toe” on a computer.
1958 William Higinbotham – “Tennis for two”
1962 Steve Russel “SpaceWar!” (I would class as the first one)
Pong came after in 1978.

These are the main ones but others have been ever advancing.

For me the first game that I actually played was Crash Bandicoot at a friend’s house (yes I didn’t even play Super Mario first!) and since then iv come to play quite a few different things, moved onto games on the PC, Gamecube, Xbox then Xbox 360. The most recent “new” one, which I have played, is Fable 2.

Saturday, 10 October 2009

What is this thing called "Blog"?

In my opinion the people who write blogs who would like to show their skills/abilities and thoughts in a specific area as a constantly updating and changing log based on recent events and things created/discovered. These people as those who wish to speak to an audience (and to themselves) recording things for later use, I see them as individuals wanting to get their thoughts/ideas and comments across to other people. The people who enter things in blogs I would think that its only an individuals point of view but I'm sure there are blogs where its a discussion between a group, these people are those who are confident writing to an invisible "relative" audience and want others to view quite often keeping track of the life of the person. Its a personal space where people can share everything and anything that they experience and want to share with others.

I find it to be quite a strange thing really as its something that I haven't really done before, only in sketchbooks during projects but not posted so that everyone and anyone will read and see. It is a good opportunity to keep a record of thoughts even if they are not read again for a while, writing to me seems the best way to add current thoughts and ideas as mentally to record them helps justify them and can inspire questions like "Why do I think that?" which can then be explored. I'm not sure if I like the idea of anyone and everyone reading my thoughts but its just chance that people will be able to read and see them and if not for an invisible audience for myself it would be useful.