Types Of Game Machine 36.1

UNIT 36

Arcade.

An original arcade game is housed in a wooden cabinet which is painted in bright colours designed to advertise the game type and attract players. Arcade games are usually coin operated and are popular in pubs and entertainment locations due to the amount of money they bring in. Arcade games entice customers to come and play by running in an 'Attract Mode' when not being played, this shows game footage. Although this has an advantage of enticing people to play the game, it also has a problem, it can cause screen burn because it is constantly playing and this will leave a permenant mark inside the screen, this will eventually spoil game play.


Arcade games can be contriolled in a number of ways, a popular traditional one is the joy stick controller, this allows the gamer to have control over the characters on screen and decide which direction they want them to go and what they want them to do. Also a popular arcade control is also buttons, which allow the gamer to make the character in gameplay jump over obstacles in their way.


There are a number of games which can be played on an arcade machine one of them being Pac man; Pacman, the icon of the 1980's pop culture, became one of the most popular gaming figures of all time. The basis is simple, a little yellow circle chomping his way around boards collecting pellets while trying to stay away from the ghosts, yet so genius as it is immensely popular from its original issue to the present day, Pacman is still going strong with clothing merchandise, video games, and arcade machines still all around the world. Another popular arcade game is Donkey Kong; donkey Kong involves Mario running around the screen with a hammer trying to save princess peach, although this is not that straight forward because donkey Kong throws barrels at him which he must smash through with his hammer in order to achieve his goal.


Arcade machines cannot often be bought from the average shop especially traditional ones and businesses such as pubs and entertainment locations often have to rent them for a year per say, and then continue to rent it if it makes them enough money. Although they are buyable from some places such as auction houses, however the price for a traditional one can range from £1,800 to £4,500.

Arcade Machines like everything else have been updated over the years, a modern day arcade machine will usually be housed in metal as opposed to the traditional wood, this makes the arcade machine last longer as it will not rot, or splinter. Also the types of games have advanced some what, the games are more interactive now, such as shooting games where the gamer actually holds a gun and shoots at the characters on the screen. There are also some games which are touchscreen and the gamer does not need to use the traditional joy stick control and can actually use their hands to play the game.


Below are some examples of: Screen burn, An arcade machine game, How an arcade machine works. (From left to right)


Console.

Video game consoles have been around since 1972. They are a device that outputs a signal to display a video game on a television. These consoles have been developed from the first generation right through to the eighth generation. The first ever home video game console was created and designed by Magnavox in 1972 and it was named the Magnavox Odyssey. This only had a few games that were able to be played on it, and you switched games by switching the cartridges. The second generation began when Fairchild released the Fairchild Video Entertainment System in 1976. While there had been previous game consoles that used cartridges, either the cartridges had no information and served the same function as flipping switches (the Odyssey) or the console itself was empty and the cartridge contained all of the game components. In 1983 the third generation of video game consoles developed Nintendo released the Famicom. The Famicom had more detailed graphics and allowed the game play to actually be a lot longer. Later Nintendo changed the Famicom to the Nintendo Entertainment System which had a front loading cartridge port similar to a VCR. This was the highest selling console in America and revitalized the video game market. This is when Mario from the super Mario bros became a global icon. The first of the fourth generation consoles were brought to the market by NEC with their PC engine (or the Turbografx16) when Hudson Soft approached them with an advanced graphics chip. He had previously approached Nintendo but they declined due to them still raking in the profits from the Nintendo Entertainment System. The Turbografx was using the unusual HuCard format to store games. The fact that the size of these cards was very small allowed NEC to release the console as a hand held one. The first of the fifth generation consoles were the 3DO and the Atari Jaguar. Although both the consoles were much more powerful than the previous fourth generation consoles, neither would ever really be serious threats to Sega or Nintendo. The 3DO was initially very popular in part because of a licencing scheme where hey licensed the manufacturing to third parties, similar to DVD players. However this meant that the 3DO manufactures had no choice but to sell the console for a profit, therefore it was very expensive indeed. Atari cancelled their entire line of home computers before releasing the Jaguar. This gamble ran the company into the ground entirely. To compete with next gen consoles which were emerging everywhere Nintendo released Donkey Kong games which could display much better. Sega followed later releasing Virtua Racing. The sixth generation promoted a move towards PC like building in gamin consoles as well as moving more towards DVD’s for gaming. This brought games that were not only longer but more appealing; also they began experimentation with gaming online against other people. Sega's Dreamcast was released in Japan on November 27, 1998, in North America on September 9, 1999, in Europe on October 14, 1999 and in Australia on November 30, 1999. It was the company's last video game console, and was the first of the generation's consoles to be discontinued unfortunately. Sony's PlayStation 2 was released in Japan on March 4, 2000, in North America on October 26, 2000, in Europe on November 24, 2000 and in Australia on November 30, 2000. It was the follow-up to its highly successful PlayStation, and was also the first home game console to be able to play DVDs. Microsoft released their first games console, the Xbox in North America on November 15, 2001, in Japan on February 22, 2002, and in Europe and Australia on March 14, 2002. It was the first console to employ a hard drive right out of the box to save games, the first to include an Ethernet port for broadband internet, and the beginning of Microsoft's online Xbox LIVE service. The seventh generation is changed completely it now supports new disk formats such as blue ray etc. Another new technology is the use of motion as input with the Wii for Nintendo and Kinetic for Microsoft’s Xbox these also allow you to use the manual control with the joystick and buttons too if you wish. This generation also introduces Nintendo’s DS and DSI for hand held portable gaming which includes touch screen. The seventh generation totally modernizes video console gaming and allows gamers to get the best out of their games. The very latest generation was actually released very recently, this is the eighth generation. Aside from hardware improvements, consoles of the eighth generation concentrate on further integration with other media and increased connectivity. The 3DS introduced autostereoscopic 3D on its consoles. The Wii U later introduced a controller/tablet hybrid whose features include the possibility of augmented reality in gaming. The OUYA, a Kickstarter-funded Android-based game console, Valve Corporation is also planning to have their system, the Steam Box, be released in 2014, and also the Xbox one was released in November 2013. These are common consoles for games such as FIFA and Call of Duty to be played on. Play station 4 and Xbox One sold one million units each in 24 hours after its release. Also with the latest generation it is more common to download games online from the store rather than go get one from the shop as it is quicker and in some cases cheaper.


Below are some examples of gaming consoles.

Personal Computer.

A PC (personal computer) is designed to be a general purpose computer, whose size, capabilities, and original sale price makes it useful for people to buy, and which is also intended to be operated by an end user with no intervening computer operator. Software applications for most average personal computers include, but are not limited to, word processing, databases, spread sheets, web browsers, emails, digital playback, digital media and games. Modern PC’s will almost always have a connection of some sort to the internet to allow access to the World Wide Web and several other resources. Personal computers may also be connected to a ‘local area network’ either by a wireless connection or a cable.


Early Personal Computer owners usually had to write their own programmes to make the machines do anything which could be seen as mildly useful. The computers at first even lacked an operating system. The first computers however, were only ever used for scientific purposes as they were very expensive and actually filled whole rooms, they were huge and nothing like the Personal Computers we have today. Early personal computers, which were generally called microcomputers were often sold in kit form and also in very limited volumes, and were mostly an interest to technicians. There was very minimal programming done with toggles and switches to enter instructions, and output was provided by front panel lamps. Practical usage really required keyboards, computer displays, disk drives, and printers. Micral N was the earliest non-kit microcomputer; this was based on a microprocessor, the Intel 8008. It was built from 1972 and approximately 90,000 units were sold.


During the early 1980’s home computers were developed even more for household use, with software installed for personal productivity, programming and games. They typically could be used with a television already in the house as the computer display, with low detail blocky graphics and colour range, and text approximately 40 characters wide by 25 characters tall. A machine the ZX spectrum had all this was introduced in 1982 totalled at 8 million units sold. And following this came the Commodore 64, and this totalled at a staggering 17 million units sold.


In 2001, 125 million personal computers were shipped in comparison to 48 thousand in 1977. More than 500 million personal computers were in use in 2002 and one billion personal computers had been sold worldwide from the mid-1970s up to this time. Of the latter figure, 75 present were professional or work related, while the rest were sold for personal or home use.


When you are controlling your computer you use a number of things; monitor, hard drive, mouse, keyboard, scanner, printer and a modem. Hardware consists of devices, such as the computer it’s self along with the list of things above. However inside your computer there are again more bits of hardware including the motherboard where you would find the main processing chips which make up the central processing unit. The hardware processes the commands it receives from the software which is the name given to programmes which you install on your computer to perform certain types of activities. You however provide the input, firstly by switching the computer on with the on button which then the system software tells the CPU to start up certain programmes and to turn on some hardware devices so that they are ready for more input. Then when you type a command using the keyboard or click on an icon with the mouse, you are telling the computer what to do. This is called the input.


You can play a number of games using your PC, some of the most popular being; The Sims 3, Assassin’s Creed 4, Football Manager 2014, Call of Duty Ghosts, and battle field 4. You can control all these games by using either your keyboard or your mouse. Also you can buy these from your local game shop, or even online. Not only this, these days some laptops and PC’s don’t have a disk drive, so there is an online shop called ‘Steam’ which allows you to download the game straight to your computer without needing a disk, this widens the market for PC games due to the ever increasing sale in tablets and netbooks which perhaps don’t have a disk drive.

Mobile.

In this day and age a mobile game is a video game which is played on a smartphone or computer tablet. Although it does not include games which are played on handheld devices such as Nintendo 3DS or PlayStation Vista.


The very first game to be played on a mobile phone was launched back in 1994; it was a Tetris game on the Hagenuk MT-2000 device. Three years later Nokia launched the very successful game Snake on selected models in 1997, snake consists of the player controlling a long thin creature which resembles a Snake, which roams around a bordered plane picking up items which are supposed to be food, trying to avoid hitting its own tail or the ‘walls’ which surround the playing area, its tail gradually grows longer making it increasingly difficult. The user controls the direction of the Snakes head and the Snakes body follows. The user uses the phones keypad to control the direction of the snake (up, down, left, right). Nokia then went on to pre-installing Snake on all its devices and since then has become one of the most played video games and is found on more than 350 million devices worldwide. The first two-player game for mobile phones was also a variant of Snake for the Nokia 6110 using the infrared port.


With the introduction of the camera phone, mobile phones themselves became more common. The storage and graphic capabilities of these phones were now much better, than the older phones. This allowed for higher quality games to be produced. This also meant that companies could now make a profit of the games because they are of a high quality. Some early companies utilized the camera phone technology for mobile games such as Panasonic and Namco. Namco released a fighting game in 2003, which used the mobile phones camera to create a character which was based on the player’s profile, thus allowing them to determine the characters speed, power, etc. This is based on the image captured. After this the character could be sent to another person’s mobile to battle. Panasonic also released a virtual pet game which the pet is fed by images captured by the camera phone in the same year.


The launch of the Apple App Store radically changed the market in 2008. It widened consumer’s opportunities to choose where to download their apps; the app store on the device itself, third party stores via the internet or the operator’s store. However the apple users can only use Apple’s App Store, this is because Apple forbids the distribution of apps via any other distribution channel. This is increased the market drastically.


After the integration of 3D into mobile phone platforms, the mobile gaming world started to launch its own brand games. Real Soccer, Assault Team 3D, Crash Arena 3D, Edge, Labyrinth and Tournament Arena Soccer 3D are examples of the first 3D games who became the well-known brands. After the huge success of Tournament Arena Soccer 3D by Mobilenter with getting over 35 million of downloads in only 1 week before World Cup 2010, the 3D game development became the primary area of mobile game development and mobile gaming became one of the most important gaming platforms around.


Today tablets and mobile phones/smart phones have come a long way. Their graphics are about the same as you would expect on a 6th or 7th generation game console, this may not seem like a huge improvement yet it is considered one because the game is being played on a mobile phone which isn’t necessarily designed just for mobile gaming.


See images below for some examples of Mobile Gaming.

Television.

A television or TV for short is a telecommunication medium for transmitting and receiving moving images which can either be black and white or coloured, with or without sound to accompany it. The phrase television may also refer specifically to a television program or a television set.


Television sets have been available for several years now, since the late 1920’s it has become very common in homes, businesses and institutions. It is a source of entertainment, advertising and news. Since the 1950’s television has become the main medium for moulding public opinion. Since the 1970’s the availability of video cassettes, DVD’s and now blue ray have resulted in the television set frequently being used for pre-recorded viewing and entertainment.


In 2009 78% present of the world’s households owned at least one television; this figure had increased a huge 5% since 2003.


Televisions are controlled by remote controls, a remote control is a component of an electronics device, and they are most commonly used for television sets but can also be used for other things such as CD players and overhead projectors. Remote control has continually advanced over these recent years to include Bluetooth, motion sensor capabilities and in some cases even voice control.


The main technology which is used in home television remote controls is infrared light. The signal is sent between the remote and the television by pulses of infrared light which is invisible to the human eye; however it can often be seen through a camera. The remote allows audiences to interact with their television set without having to use the buttons on the actual television set, this allowed them to channel surf and also change the channel when adverts came on and they didn’t want to watch.


There aren’t as many games that you are able to play on a television as a game console or perhaps a personal computer, but there are a few. Some children’s channels for example have what they call ‘Red button games’ this means that if you press the red button on your remote control you will be able to play games (usually for an additional charge), an example of this is mini golf which was available on Nickelodeon for a short time.


Comparisons.

There are quite a lot of differences between these five game platforms, as arcade machines are quite old and are not used as a form of entertainment as much as they used to be they come with all the games built in and you cannot upgrade the software on them. Whereas when you’re using a more modern form of entertainment such as a PC, Mobile, Console you can upgrade the software on them and change what you want to play on them as there is such a wide market for them in this day and age. Also they are more favoured than an Arcade or a TV because they are much more portable, it’s not difficult at all to use a PC or a Mobile to play games when you are out and about, although you cannot use an Xbox per say, you can play hand held consoles on the go. You could not bring a TV or an arcade machine with you on long journeys to amuse yourself as they are much too big and heavy and require mains electric all the time they do not hold their own battery life like Laptops, Mobiles and hand held consoles do.





With the Wi-Fi introduction it allowed games such as Xbox to play online and download them from stores on the internet, also you can now connect multiple devices to internet at any one time, where you used to only be able to use the internet on one computer. Also Wi-Fi is now portable which allows people to play online games on PC’s and Mobiles on the go. It is often available in public places too, such as restaurants or shopping centres. Another boom is the touch screen technology which has recently been introduced to the gaming industry. Apple for instance has brought out the famous ‘Temple Run’ for the apple IPhone, IPod and IPad, this game required touch screen for the player to swipe across the screen with their fingers in order to make the character on the game avoid obstacles and gain a high score. Also most smart TV’ s also use the new touch screen technology as they are touch screen too.



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