Online Games – The Evolution

Now we see thousands of people playing free online games like tetris, ping pong, mario bros, super mario etc but despite its history dating back to the 1970s, for most people online gaming started with the explosion of the Internet in 1993 and with the advent of Doom and Warcraft in 1994 or 1995. This got a further impetus with publishers starting to add Internet connectivity to computer games in 1994-95.

The media, in fact, ignored the history of online games. As far as they are concerned, online games happened randomly when their advertisers started producing internet compatible games. But is not so …

First years of development

In the early 1950s a college student created a game very similar to Tic-Tac-Toe for a class project to be played on dinosaur computers of those days complete with cathode ray tubes for screen viewing. In the 1960s, MIT students programmed a game called “Space War” that could be played with two people on a primitive network. The late 1960s brought the first “real” video games such as table tennis and shooters.

1970s: the game begins

The serious online game started with the first interactive online game called ADVENT. Indeed, online gaming was conceptualized with ADVENT. Online games have made users play against each other in an online fantasy world. The first online game was called Mazewar, a game involving networked players traveling through a maze and trying to kill each other.

Then came interpersonal interaction in a multiplayer environment. The first of these games was called DUNGEN. DUNGEN made players compete against each other to complete a series of missions. DUNGEN provided new settings and new players every time the user logged in.

The late 1970s saw the start of the video game craze with more and more families becoming familiar with computers. As a natural corollary, people started writing their own games for home computers. These programming enthusiasts traded and sold these homegrown games in local markets.

Other changes in the 1970s were home game consoles that used game cartridges. This meant that people could collect game cartridges for a base unit instead of having bulky game console systems.

The 1980s: a break before the storm

The 1980s saw a growing craze for video games and computer games, but online gaming was not yet on the horizon. New games with better sound and graphics have been introduced and have gained popularity. Pole Position and Pac-man were two that achieved great popularity. It was during the 1980s when Nintendo introduced its first gaming system.

1990s: the revolution begins

The 1990s saw phenomenal growth in both popularity and technology mainly due to the rise of 3-D and multimedia.

Myst, the intellectual adventure game introduced games in CD-ROM format. More elaborate 3-D graphics hardware made FPS (first person shooter) games like Quake possible.

The late 1990s saw the exponential growth of the Internet, MUDs (multi-user dungeons) making online games extremely popular. New and improved graphical interfaces have allowed people from all over the world to play against each other not only in FPS games but also in real time strategy games (RTS games) and third person games like Grand Theft Auto .

This was also the time when websites started offering online games like tetris, ping pong, mario bros, super Mario and other free online flash games and free non-flash based games to play after registering with them. This has really pushed online gaming into the popular psyche.

The 21st century: the world is just a playground

The early years of the 21st century were dominated by DVD-CD-ROM. It has changed the way online games are played. The latest gaming systems like Sony’s play station and Microsoft’s X-box have networking capabilities to allow people to play with each other in real time from around the world. Exponentially growing broadband internet services have made it possible to play these online games in the truest sense of the word.

The only drawback of the ever-changing technology for online games is that what you buy today may become obsolete within the next year. Fortunately, for serious gamers, the resale industry of these online games is huge. This resale sector is just another element in the story in cont samongkon