Go watch "Rise of the videogame" now!!!

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Go watch "Rise of the videogame" now!!!

Post by Keavy » Thu Nov 22, 2007 7:06 am

For those not aware, Discovery Channel is airing a five-part series on video games and their history. I finished the first part just a little while ago and I loved it. Compared to the last video game related show I watched, SciFi Channel's "Sci vs. FI: Mass Effect" its incredibly amazing.

For those that missed it "Sci vs. Fi: Mass Effect" was, essentially a 22-minute commercial for the game. While I like Wayne Brady and Shannon Elizabeth I don't understand why they were talking about Mass Effect. I would have liked to have heard more from the BioWare guys and Keith David (Only because I love his voice. Seriously, if I had that voice I would never stop talking) but comedians and actors who, I guess, played the game I really don't care about.

OK, so "Sci vs. Fi" had Jessica Chobot from IGN, Geoff Keighley, and some guy from X-Play but they, like the BioWare guys, weren't given much time and most of what they said seemed to be poorly-written canned praise probably conceived by some suit at Microsoft.

"Rise of the Videogame" was totally different. Not only did it treat its subject with respect it featured people who are in the industry. Every person who appeared to discuss something is somehow related to the industry and they all had something relevant to add or elaborate on. There was Peter Moore talking about Pong, Nolan Bushnell talking about Atari, Toru Iwatani talking about Pac-Man, Alexey Pajitnov talking about Tetris, and John Carmack discussing games. I imagine as the series moves into the 1990's we'll hear more from Carmack.

OH! And Tommy Tallarico talking about music in video games. His part was small but I hope he gets more screentime in the later episodes.

The things they discussed were absolutely fascinating. For example, I didn't know Pac-Man was inspired by and aimed at Japanese girls or that Nolan Bushnell had lied to the makers of Pong about having a contract with GE to convince them to work harder or that he made more dumping his Atari stock prior to the crash than he did when he sold the company to Time Warner. Stuff like that is the kind of insider info I love to hear. I love those weird stories about how things were behind the scenes.

Part one discussed the earliest beginnings of video games with Tennis for Two and ended with the 1983 crash of the video game market. About halfway through they switched off to Japan discussing Space Invaders and had a good segment on Tetris. Everything was paced well and it was easy to follow their timeline.

It looks like part two will focus more on Nintendo and their contribution to the video game industry with Donkey Kong. I cannot wait. In fact, I can't remember the last time I was this excited to see a TV show. I will definitely buy "Rise of the Videogame" as soon as its available on DVD. From what I have seen so far it looks like it will be a must-own for any video game enthusiast.
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Keavy's thought for the day: "Grand Theft Auto IV has stolen my heart! :love:"

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