Thirty Years Ago Today: Videogames Make the Cover of Time Magazine

Posted by Michael Pinto on Jan 18, 2012 in Videogames |

Twenty Years Ago Today: Videogames Make the Cover of Time Magazine

On January 18, 1982 the cover of Time magazine proudly proclaimed “GRONK! FLASH! ZAP! Video Games are Blitzing the World”. The article went on to give an interesting picture of a new industry that was coming of age:

“Of the hundreds of video games introduced each year, most flop utterly, as if their screens and chips gave out algebra rays or tax-audit emanations. A few do moderately well And once every year or so a new game jumps into the public’s lap and licks its face, and proves so endearing that money in unbelievable abundance falls on the heads of its fortunate makers. It is very hard to predict which game will be a lap jumper.”

In retrospect it’s easy to see that this was really the dawn of a golden age of early videogames — here are the top ten games from almost a year earlier in April 1981 (from the book Defending the Galaxy) that inspired a mainstream publication like Time to cover a new industry:

Crazy Climber

#10. Crazy Climber

#9. Astro Blaster

Coleco Galaxian (1981, VFD, 4 C Batteries, Model# 2380)

#8. Galaxian

#7. Star Castle

Gorf 1981

#6. Gorf

Phoenix videogame 1981

#5. Phoenix

Berzerk 1981 videogame

#4. Berzerk

Asteroids 1981 Atari

#3. Asteroids

Pac-Man

#2. Pac-Man

Atari Defender 1981

#1. Defender

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