My earliest memories of my first experience with video games comes in the early 90s when I first picked up the controller for the SNES. Around the same time, the Gameboy also resided in our household and I spent hours going between the two consoles playing Mario, Paperboy 2, Donkey Kong, Star Fox and Gremlins among others. I like to think I know a little about the history of gaming but upon receiving a review copy of The History of Video Games in 64 Objects, I actually realised that there were so many earlier devices which offered a gaming experience which I had no knowledge of whatsoever.
The History of Video Games in 64 Objects is a collection of gaming nostalgia brought to us by the experts at The World Video Game Hall of Fame and features 64 of the pioneering gaming objects in their collection which kickstarted one of our favourite modern day pastimes. From the humble pinball machines to Pokémon Go, from Dungeons and Dragons to Pacman there’s likely to be some objects contained within this book that you may never have heard of.
Over the course of reading, I feel like I have expanded my gaming knowledge while also wishing I had been alive at the time of these early computers, games and consoles being created so I could see them up close and see how far technology has come over the years. To imagine the first ‘computer game’ being created for a visitors day project from giant computers compared to the Nintendo Switch, Playstation 4 and XBOX One which are massed produced for gamers all over the world is just crazy and unbelievable; but it did happen!
The book contains some wonderful images of items in the collection, including a copy of E.T. still covered in dirt from where they were buried all those years ago along with essays explaining the history and people behind their creation. While you may sigh at the prospect of reading an essay when you would just like to enjoy a moment of nostalgia, you will be glad to hear that it is not more than a couple of pages and you’ll find yourself halfway through before you know it. The History of Video Games in 64 Objects is a great book for a coffee table, a lunch time read (which is how I have been spending my time with it) or as a gift for a collector or enthusiastic gamer but it’s also a nice educational tools which young people considering a career in the gaming industry may appreciate as a means to understand how far gaming has come over the last 80 years or so.
I would highly recommend The History of Video Games in 64 Objects to anyone who has an interest in history, gaming or just wants to reminisce about a console they once had or those D&D adventures they use to go on or even just to try and understand the Pokémon Go craze. Whatever tickles your fancy, this book offers a treasure trove of delight for gamers old and new.