In 1968 Ralph H. Baer completed the first home console prototype called the Brown Box. He got the idea for the Brown Box when he was discussing designs for a new TV set with his colleagues and he thought if they added some sort of interactive game to the TV it would stand out from the competition. In 1966 when Ralph was sitting bored at a bus stop he started thinking about his idea of an interactive video game machine. With this he started to write his idea down on paper. The first game he made was a Chase game, where two squares could move on screen in both directions while being controlled by 2 players. The Brown Box had varies different games which you could play, they were Ping-Pong, Checkers, four different sports games, target shooting game and a golf putting game. The Brown Box was then licensed to Magnavox in 1971 and was renamed Magnavox Odyssey. The console was released to the public in 1972.
In 1977 Atari released Atari Video Computer System (VCS). Its name changed in 1982 to Atari 2600, the 2600 was taken from the unit’s part number CX2600. The VCS had a 1.19MHz, 8-bit microprocessor and 128 bytes of RAM. The VCS came with two CX40 joysticks, one set of CX30 paddle controllers, an AC adapter, a TV/game switch and a combat game cartridge. The VCS was the first successful home video game console to use plug-in cartridges instead of built-in games. This made it possible to have the latest games for the console without having to buy a brand new console to play them.
The top 6 bestselling games of the Atari 2600 are: Pac-Man, Pitfall, Asteroids, Missile Command, Space Invaders and Frogger.
Pac-Man was released in 1982 and is a maze game. This was a poor version of the arcade version because it had many faults like the escape routes in the wrong places and the scoring wasn’t right plus many more different faults, but despite that it still sold approx. 7.81m worldwide from 1982-2013.
Pitfall was released in 1981 and a platform game. This was an action game were you had to collect 32 pieces of treasure. Atari sold approx. 4.50m copies worldwide from 1981-2013.
Asteroids were released in 1980 and is a multi-directional shooter game. This was a console version of the arcade game but with better graphics. Atari sold approx. 4.31m copies worldwide from 1980-2013.
Missile Command was released in 1980 and was a shoot ‘em up game. This was a console version of the arcade game with a few missing elements and a watered down storyline. Atari sold approx. 2.76m copies worldwide from 1980-2013.
Space Invaders port was released in 1980 and is a fixed shooter game. This was a console version of the arcade game with 112 different variations of the game. Atari sold approx. 2.53m copies worldwide from 1980-2013.
Frogger was released in 1981 and is an overhead view action game. This was a console version of the arcade game. Atari sold approx. 2.20m copies worldwide from 1981-2013.
At number 8 of bestselling games of the Atari 2600 was E.T which is an adventure game. E.T was released in 1982 and was considered to be the worst game ever and urban legends of Atari burying millions of copies of E.T on a new Mexico landfill makes this game one of the biggest failures of video gaming. Despite this Atari sold approx. 1.97m copies worldwide from 1982-2013.
In 1985 Nintendo released Nintendo’s Entertainment System (NES). The NES was an American version of the Famicon but it had a new redesigned case and a new name. The NES was the bestselling gaming console of its time and it help revitalize the US video game industry. The NES had an 8-bit microprocessor and 2Kb of RAM. The NES controller had arrow keys to move, start and select buttons and A and B buttons.
The top 6 bestselling games of the NES are: Super Mario Bros, Duck Hunt, Super Mario Bros 3, Super Mario Bros 2, The Legend of Zelda and Tetris.
Super Mario Bros was released in 1985 and is a platform game. This game was the game that really sold the NES and is widely known as being the mascot of Nintendo. Mario Bros is still being played today with it being available to download from the Nintendo online store. Nintendo sold 40.24 million copies worldwide from 1985-2013.
Duck Hunt was released in 1985 and is a light gun shooter, first person shooter and hunting simulator game. This game used a light gun to shoot ducks and clay pigeons out of the sky. Nintendo sold 28.31m copies worldwide from 1985-2013.
Super Mario Bros 3 was released in 1988 and is a platform game. This game is the third Super Mario Bros game and it has new features in the game like a map screen and bonus games. Nintendo sold 17.28m copies worldwide from 1988-2013.
Super Mario Bros 2 was released in 1988 and is a platform game. This was the second Super Mario game in the series. In this version players had the ability to select a character to play with; they could choose Mario, Luigi, The Princess or Toadstool. Nintendo sold 7.46m copies worldwide from 1988-2013.
The Legend of Zelda was released in 1987 and is an action/adventure game. This game was the first NES cartridge to include battery-backed memory for saving your progress. This game is about a boy called Link who has to save Princess Zelda. Nintendo sold approx. 17.28m copies worldwide from 1987-2013.
Tetris was released in 1988 and is a puzzle game. This game had you fitting different blocks so that each line was filled in and then the line would clear. This game is helpful when you have to fit things in a tight space because it teaches you how to do it. Nintendo sold approx. 5.58m copies worldwide from 1988-2013.
In 1989 Sega released Sega Genesis also known as Sega Megadrive. The Sega Genesis had a 16/32-bit processor and 64kb RAM. This console was the first of its generation to achieve a notable market share in Europe and North America.
The top 5 bestselling games of the Sega Genesis are: Sonic the Hedgehog 2, Sonic the Hedgehog, Mortal Kombat, Streets of Rage, NBA Jams T.E.
Sonic the Hedgehog 2 was released in 1992 and is a platform, racing game. This is the second game in the series and it’s the game that introduced Tails as Sonic’s sidekick. This also allowed a second player to play as tails. Sega sold approx. 6.03 copies worldwide from 1992-2013.
Sonic the Hedgehog was released in 1991 and is a platform, racing, puzzle, sports game. This game was made to compete against Super Mario and become Sega’s mascot. Sega sold approx. 4.34m copies worldwide from 1991-2013.
Mortal Kombat was released in 1992 and is a fighting game. This game is a console version of the arcade game. Sega sold approx. 2.67m copies worldwide from 1992-2013.
Streets of Rage were released in 1990 and is a beat ‘em up game. This game was a fighting game where players had to defeat each opponent in order to progress. Sega sold 2.60m copies worldwide from1990-2013.
NBA Jam T.E was released in 1992 and is a sports game. This game was ported to many different consoles like the Gameboy and PlayStation. Sega sold approx. 2.05m worldwide from 1992-2013.
In 1994 Sony released PlayStation. The PlayStation introduced 3D gaming and it kick started the CD-ROMs revolution in video games. Sony manufactured and sold the PlayStation for 12 years and in 2006 Sony stopped manufacturing the PlayStation. The PlayStation had a LSI LR333x0-based Core MIPS R3000A-compatible 32-bit RISC chip running at 33.8688 MHz Central processing unit and 2 MB of main RAM.
The top 3 bestselling games of the PlayStation are: Gran Turismo, Final Fantasy vii and Gran Turismo 2.
Gran Turismo was released in 1997 and is a racing game. This game has been used to show off the PlayStation graphic capabilities and is often used in demonstration to show the potential of PlayStation. Sony sold approx. 10.95m copies worldwide from 1997-2013.
Final Fantasy vii was released in 1997 and is a racing game. Final Fantasy vii is the seventh game in the Final Fantasy series. The game was released on to the PlayStation Network in 2009 and it was downloaded 100,000 times in its first two weeks making this game the fastest selling PlayStation game on the PlayStation Network. Sony sold approx. 9.7m copies worldwide from 1997-2013.
Gran Turismo 2 was released in 1999 and is a sim racing game. This game is the second game in the Gran Turismo series. The game is also the first PlayStation One game to be emulated on the Dreamcast. Sony sold approx. 9.49m copies worldwide.
In 2001 Microsoft released Xbox. The Xbox was the first console to be released by an American company after Atari stopped sales in 1996. In 2002 Xbox released an online service called Xbox Live; this was a similar service that the PS2 had but Xbox Live was better because it had better servers and better features like the buddy list. The Xbox had a 32-bit; 733MHz custom built Intel Pentium iii Coppermine-based processor and a 64Mb RAM.
The top 3 best-selling games of Xbox are: Halo 2, Halo: Combat Evolved and Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell.
Halo 2 was released in 2004 and is a first person shooter game. This game is the second game in the Halo series. Halo 2 was the most popular online game in 2004. Microsoft sold approx. 8.49m copies worldwide from 2004-2013.
Halo: Combat Evolved was released in 2001 and is a first person shooter game. This game is considered to be this consoles killer app and its popularity and its graphics inspired a fan created video series called Red and Blue. Microsoft sold approx. 6.43m copies worldwide from 2001-2003.
Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell was released in 2002 and is an action/adventure, stealth game. This game was a very successful game and was Ubisoft’s killer app. Microsoft sold approx. 3.02m copies worldwide from 2002-2013.
Between 2005 and 2012 Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft were the most popular companies to get consoles from. Microsoft released Xbox 360 in 2005 and then in 2006 Sony released PlayStation 3 and Nintendo released the Nintendo Wii. These three consoles are the most popular consoles to have and there is lots of competition with each other.
My favourite console is the Nintendo Wii. The Nintendo Wii has an IBM PowerPC CPU and a 512 MB RAM. The white Wii was the first edition to be released and came with Wii sports game, a white Wii remote and a white nunchuck controller.
The black Wii was released in 2009 and came with Wii sports and Wii sports resort game, a black Wii motionplus remote and a black nunchuck controller.
The red Wii was released in 2010 and is a 25th anniversary special edition Wii. It came with Wii Sports and New Super Mario Bros, a red Wii motionplus remote and a red nunchuck controller.
The blue Wii was released in 2011 and is the London 2012 Olympic Games edition Wii. It came with Mario and Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic games Wii game, a blue motionplus remote and a blue nunchuck controller. This edition is the only one which didn’t come with Wii Sports game.
The top 3 best-selling games on the Nintendo Wii are: Wii Sports, Mario Karts Wii and Wii Sports Resort.
Wii Sports was released in 2006 and is a sports game. The Wii Sports game has varies different games to play which include bowling, tennis, golf, baseball and boxing. Nintendo sold approx. 81.52m copies worldwide from 2006-2013.
Mario Karts Wii was released in 2008 and is a racing game. Mario Karts Wii lets you play as popular characters from Mario, Donkey Kong and Wario games. Nintendo sold approx. 33.93m copies worldwide from 2008-2013.
Wii Sports Resort was released in 2009 and is a sports game. Wii Sports Resort is the second in the series of Wii Sports games and has 12 different games. The games you can play on Wii sports resort are swordplay, wakeboarding, Frisbee, archery, basketball, table tennis, golf, bowling, power cruising, canoeing, cycling and air sports. Nintendo sold approx. 31.88m copies worldwide from 2009-2013.
My favourite Wii game is New Super Mario Bros. This game was released in 2009 and is a side-scrolling platform game. I like this game because I’m a big fan of Mario Bros and I think this game has a lot of great features like being able to play with 3 other players and also the graphics and levels are great but you still have the Mario storyline which keeps it familiar and still enjoyable.
In 2012 the Nintendo Wii U came out and in 2013 the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One are being released. These consoles have been said to have better graphics and different and advanced features.
As technology advances with better graphics, sound and possibilities in the future video games will have more advanced graphics, sounds, storylines and consoles will have better hardware and capabilities not even thought of yet.
click on the link below for my timeline for consoles.