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The Ultimate History of Video Games: From…
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The Ultimate History of Video Games: From Pong to Pokemon--The Story… (original 2001; edition 2001)

by Steven L. Kent

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348747,879 (4.02)2
Member:clubside
Title:The Ultimate History of Video Games: From Pong to Pokemon--The Story Behind the Craze That Touched Our Lives and Changed
Authors:Steven L. Kent
Info:Three Rivers Press (2001), Edition: 1, Paperback, 624 pages
Collections:Your library
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The Ultimate History of Video Games: From Pong to Pokemon--The Story Behind the Craze That Touched Our Lives and Changed the World by Steven L. Kent (2001)

  1. 00
    Game Over Press Start To Continue by David Sheff (lampbane)
    lampbane: Steven Kent's tome purposefully skims over the history of Nintendo, directing you to read this book instead.
  2. 00
    The Encyclopedia of Game Machines by Winnie Forster (lampbane)
    lampbane: Strong focus on the hardware side of video gaming, with an international perspective that covers North America, Europe, and Asia. Also has the added advantage of being more up-to-date.
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» See also 2 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
Mi primer computador fue un ZX81 y luego dos atari: 65XE y 800XL y jugué Asteroids en las recreativas. Habiendo crecido en esa época, compré este libro para leer los primeros capítulos solamente, ya que nunca completé un nivel de Mario ni nada de eso. El último juego que terminé completo fue Max Payne, pero no sabía diferenciar los juegos de SEGA y Nintendo.
Sin embargo, una vez que comencé, no pude terminar hasta el final. Wow, impresionante la historia de como un grupito de personajes estuvo a cargo del desarrollo de todas estas maravillas. Muy bueno. ( )
  sergiouribe | Feb 20, 2018 |
A very interesting look at the history of video game companies. I really enjoyed learning about how many of these companies got their start and the troubles they may have had. The book goes very deep into the history, discussing even pinball. It focuses a lot on how games and consoles were designed, but more so on the relationships different companies had. It focuses much more on consoles and stops discussing the computer pretty early on. It also discusses the start of video game companies much more in-depth and skims over consoles and events that are more modern. For instance, the discussion of Pokemon is much less then Pong. It also ends with the formation of Playstation and doesn't really discuss Microsoft. I really enjoyed it though and thought the narrator for the audiobook did a great job. ( )
  renbedell | Nov 17, 2017 |
I purchased the ebook version of this one late night when blearily clicking the wrong button. But since I've had this book on my wish list for something like a decade now, I felt it was time that Mr. Kent had some of my money, and so I've kept it.

[Eventually I'll say more. You know, when I've managed to get to reading it.]
  bookishbat | Sep 25, 2013 |
I've always been fascinated with video gaming history. Although I was born in the mid 80's, consoles such as the Atari 2600 have always captured my interest even though they were "outdated" by the time I got into video games. The neat thing about gaming history is that you can tell the story from so many different angles - different companies, different time periods, etc. Although I've read many books (and articles) on video games prior to this one, there is still plenty to learn - and there was certainly information in here new to me.

There were many things to enjoy in this book, but there were a few shortcomings. I loved how the book went in-depth on the history of the classic gaming era, but it seemed to go a bit soft when it came to the 8-bit and 16-bit systems. Arcade games are discussed thoroughly in the beginning of the book, but are ignored near the end. Nintendo and Atari have chapters upon chapters of history, but lesser selling systems (such as the Neo*Geo) are restricted to the footnotes. The book also tended to waste too much time discussing court cases. Now, although many of those cases were turning-points for the gaming industry, a few seemed irrelevant (e.g., Donkey Kong vs. King Kong) and were confusing and hard to follow for someone like me without a background in law.

Make no mistake, the first half of this book is excellent. And in the closing paragraph the author says he intended to publish this book in 1995 or 1996. I think, given the little coverage he makes of anything past the mid-90's, his book would have fared better if released earlier. A few chapters (mainly the ones concerning the legal disputes) I could do without. The book also had a bad habit of jumping around in time. It documents the rise and fall of Atari's coin-op division, but then starts over to talk about the rise and fall of the Atari VCS.

Bottom Line: If classic gaming history is your thing, there are better books to be read than this one. But if you want a broader look on video games that encompasses all generations - you may just enjoy this! ( )
  forkyfork | Jul 30, 2009 |
Interesting collection of sources, but the flow between "eras" is scattered and the coverage of European and other overseas markets (outside of Japan) generally begins and ends with single sentence throwaways vaguely related to the topic at hand. Sales numbers and demographics were fascinating and were used well to make solid conclusions about the various ups and downs of the industry. Interestingly little on the actual successful game designs, though that would understandably be the first casualty of a guide on "history" rather than "mechanics" or "legacy." Nothing shockingly new - blame the internet for that - and quickly showing age during the epilogue notes, shortly before the release of Microsoft's XBox. Still, a comprehensive and factually lush resource. ( )
  annenoise | Jun 5, 2009 |
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To Professor Alf Pratte, that rare individual who understands the full responsibilities of journalism and teaching.
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(Foreword by Peter Molyneux): When Steven Kent asked me to write the foreword to this book, I was deeply honored and rather pleased.
New technologies do not simply spring out of thin air.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0761536434, Paperback)

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.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:13:55 -0400)

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:… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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