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Earliest and Forgotten History of Arcade Games

The Beginning


We all know the golden age of video arcade games began in 1978 when Taito released Space Invaders but the real history of computer games started on the day when Alan Turing first wrote the chess-playing algorithm in 1948.  Earlier that year Thomas T. Goldsmith successfully developed a game out of a cathode -ray. Technically these are not the first arcade games but they were the starting points.


This game was an interactive electronic game,  players not only simulates an artillery shell arcing towards targets on (CRT) screen, they could even control it by adjusting knobs to change the trajectory of a cathode –ray tube beam spot on the display.

Arcade Games Of 1960’s


After that, for more than a decade, there was no progress in computer games (except few attempts like Nimrod, OXO, tennis for two) when suddenly in 1962 Steve Russell released Space war. This was a monochrome game featured two spaceships called ‘needle and the wedge’ in a combat with each other.


It was a space combat, a multi-player video game that broke all the popularity charts and became most played game of that era.

Before The Golden Age of Arcade Games

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There was a little progress on arcade games after Space War but the real popularity and arcade game culture started when Atari in 1972 released its first game PONG. It was a commercially successful game that is still played today and many games are based on the programming done behind the Pong.


Then there was a sudden boom in interactive electronic game industry , Taito released Astro Race which was a racing video game, controlled by a couple of joysticks followed by Midway MFG’s Gun Fight, Sega’s Moto-Cross and Road Race, Atari’s Night Driver and Breakout, and Exidy’s Death Race. This all happened before the golden age of arcade games that lasted 1978 till 1986.



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