Tagged: games

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The Board Game Craze (1890’s)

With the industrialization and urbanization of the United States in the early 1800’s, the American middle class experienced an increase in leisure time. The home gradually lost its traditional role as the center of economic production and became the locus of leisure activities and education under the supervision of loving mothers. As a result of this increased leisure time, the demand increased for children’s board games.

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Pokemon (1990’s)

Pokemon has undoubtedly left its mark on pop culture. The Pokemon characters themselves have become pop culture icons. Two different Pikachu balloons in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, an appearance on the cover of Time magazine, Pokemon Jets operated by All Nippon Airways, thousands of merchandise items, and a theme park in Nagoya, Japan in 2005 and Taipei in 2006, all attest to the impact the cute little monster characters had on our culture.

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The Monopoly Board Game (1930’s)

It was 1934, the height of the Great Depression, when Charles B. Darrow of Germantown, Pennsylvania, took what he called the MONOPOLY game to the executives at Parker Brothers. They soundly rejected the game due to “52 design errors”. The game’s exciting promise of fame and fortune inspired him to produce the game on his own. People loved the game that would eventually become the highest selling board game in history, even though the “legend” of its invention would soon be proven as false.

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Video Games (1980’s)

As early as the late 1940’s, missile defense systems employed by the United States government and run off of large mainframe computers, resembled a video game in both appearance and internal design. A couple of years later, Charley Adama created a “bouncing ball” program at MIT. By the late 1950’s university students in various colleges in the United States were using university computers to write rudimentary interactive games including popular collegiate hits such as tic-tac-toe and Spacewar. These developments built the base that the 1980’s video game craze was founded on.