What makes a video game a classic? For the World Video Game Hall of Fame, it often goes well beyond simple sales figures.
Take the induction of the arcade classic Centipede, for example. Did you know that this game was instrumental in helping bring women into arcade gaming? Did you further know that Donna Bailey, one of the principal developers on the game, was one of the first women in such a position in the industry?
Such are the kinds of things that the hall of fame wants to preserve.
The World Video Game Hall of Fame’s assistant vice president for electronic games and interpretation said of the induction of Centipede, “It’s also one of the best-selling arcade games of that era and its fast-paced, bug-blasting gameplay is as challenging and satisfying to play today as it was decades ago.”
But it isn’t just arcade classics that got this year’s consideration. The PC adventure games King’s Quest were also included in the ceremonies. For those of you not familiar with King’s Quest or Roberta Williams, let’s just say that she was the master of the point-and-click genre – and some would say still is.
World Video Game Hall of Fame archivist Julia Novakovic said of the inclusion of Roberta Williams’ classic series King’s Quest, “More than any other game of its type, King’s Quest established or reinforced many of the conventions of the adventure games that followed it. Many games still today can trace their lineage back to King’s Quest.”
One title that got recognition that many didn’t see coming is the popular timekiller Bejeweled.
Curator Shannon Symonds said of the induction of Bejeweled, “Players from around the world have devoted tens of billions of hours to playing Bejeweled and the games that it inspired. Now, Bejeweled and its successor puzzle games seem commonplace—a regular part of all our lives.”
But the big award went to Minecraft, one of those games that, like Tetris, is so firmly lodged in the psyche of gamers and beyond that it is its own phenomenon entirely.
Digital games curator Andrew Borman said of the voxel-based open-world sensation, Minecraft, “The success of Minecraft speaks to the maturing of video games as a cultural touchstone. No longer do game creators need to be obsessed about having the most realistic looking graphics… Minecraft came of age at a time when indie gaming had emerged to give individual developers a greater say in the games they developed, and no game is a better representative of this movement than this bestselling hit creation.”
What do you think of these games being added to the hall of fame? What titles do you think should be in there? Let us know your thoughts on this story in the comments section below.
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