Spacewar!

Games that are interesting for one reason or another
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impaktor
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Spacewar!

Post by impaktor » Sat Nov 10, 2018 12:33 pm

We need a post about the first computer game ever, from 1962, which was a space game!

In spacewar!, two players control a spaceship each (two unique models), you can hyperspace (random re-spawn location), and also make use of the gravity well of the central star to speed up your ship. AND they have real star (locations) in the background/skybox! Also looks like you can shoot the torpedoes of the enemy.

Note how the fluorescence of the screen naturally gives you the trails of both your torpedoes and the ship itself.

4 minute intro to the game's history: (note in the archival footage, it was initially played through the flip-switches on the front panel of the PDP-1, later they built controllers):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_L1HeZ2kPck

A 22 min video tour of the PDP-1 from 1959; among other, showing the original source code of the game, loading all 4k of it from paper(!) tape, playing on the original monitor (a radar screen!):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1EWQYAfuMYw&t=12m22s


You can play an emulation of it in the browser here:
https://www.masswerk.at/spacewar/

Keeper
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Joined: Thu Jan 04, 2018 9:23 pm
Location: Indian Hills, Nevada, USA
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Re: Spacewar!

Post by Keeper » Fri Feb 08, 2019 2:21 am

There was a remake of this in video arcades of the 1980s. I loved playing it if I could convince someone to play it with me (it wasn't particularly popular). It also had a vector-scan screen like the original, but square.

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