People have enjoyed playing computer games ever since the beginning of the computer era. Decades ago with the first programmable calculators with only one-line displays, people were coding and playing basic games like “higher/lower”. The rules were simple, but the game was fun, and revolutionary for the time. You’d enter a range (such as from 1 to 100) and the computer would choose a number. You’d guess, and the computer would display a plus or minus depending on whether your guess was too high or too low.
When computer technology evolved to using TVs and monitors instead of one-line displays, two main types of games followed:
1) Text based games – these were mostly text-based RPGs (role playing games) that presented the player with a text description of what was happening and let the user make choices, similar to “Choose Your Own Adventure” books. In fact, text based games became very popular and even today there are still some new ones being released! LIVE22
2) Graphic-based games – the first noteworthy example of this is Pong. The graphics were basic and the rules were simple, but a revolution had started!
Soon came the consoles: Atari, Nintendo, Sega, PlayStation, and so on. Video games were growing in popularity at an astounding rate!
Around this time, the internet began to rise in popularity as well. At first being just for military and business use, the internet became accessible to the masses and shortly thereafter, online games were created.
The first online games were simple, but fun. Many games had “online mode” where you could play against your friends on a server. This type of game used the internet, but was not necessarily an “online game.” As internet technology advanced, new developments like Adobe Flash were released which opened up a whole new realm of possibilities. Suddenly, it was possible to have high quality graphics and animation in the games like never before.
Online game sites started to pop up. At first, there were one or two games on a site. Memory was still at a premium and webmasters had to use their resources wisely.
But soon, as the internet became even more accessible, you could find collections of online games on a single website, in many different genres, including single player, multiplayer, racing, action, adventure, castle defense, sports, and of course, classics like chess and poker.
Today, online games are at an all-time high in popularity, with people choosing to play them for a variety of reasons, whether having a hardcore competition against their friends (or themselves) for the high score, or just to pass some time at work in between meetings, or on the train on the way to work.