The World Video Game Hall of Fame has announced its inductees for 2016. Half a dozen games designed for home or arcade use (or in some cases, both) are being added. Each of the entries not achieved huge commercial success, but pushed the boundaries of how video games could look or feel. Here are the latests inductees:
This was the first colossal hit of the video arcade era, ushering in a new age of digital gaming. The game was easy to learn in theory, but much harder to master and win. It was also one of the first cartridge based home game successes.
This PC-based game included non-competitive play. The idea was to simply move around, interact, and engage with other characters. If it seems pointless, that was kind of the idea.
Grand Theft Auto III
It might seem strange to start in the middle of a series, but GTA3 was a special game. The graphics engine and complex play presented a giant revolutionary step forward not just for the series, but for an entire genre of games.
The Legend of Zelda
Zelda was one of the first games that allowed characters to freely explore their world. Most games at the time required players to follow a defined path while encountering a set list of obstacles and enemies. Zelda players could interact with other players make more lifelike decisions along the way, opening the door for a new generation of adventure games.
Sonic the Hedgehog
Sonic was one of the first characters to break out of the screen and become an industry to himself. Much like Mario and his friends did for Nintendo, this rodent anchored an entire franchise of games, merchandising and other entertainment for Sega.
There are many ways to die in video games, but only one ever announced “You have Died of Dysentery.” Oregon Trail was a text-based adventure in which players typed in instructions for their characters in response to prompts from the game. It was a pioneer in long form adventures that could take weeks or even months to complete.
Unlike some virtual, online-only halls of fame, this one exists for real as part of The Strong National Museum of Play in Rochester, New York. 2016 is only the second year for this particular exhibit, and nominations are already open for next year. There are many interactive exhibits at The Strong including the larger and more established National Toy Hall of Fame.
What was your favorite classic video game? Let us know in the comments, and if it’s not in the hobbyDB database, would you mind adding it?