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arcade game

Atari released the arcade game classic Centipede in 1980. Centipede was designed by Ed Logg- the programmer of Asteroids- and Dona Bailey- one of the few female programmers at the time. Bailey's work on Centipede makes her one of the most important women in the history of the video game industry. The popularity of Centipede extended past the usual audiences for video games. It is credited as the game that began to attract woman to video game play. In Centipede, players use a trak-ball to control a cursor at the bottom of a screen filled with colorful mushrooms. From the top of the screen, a centipede zigzags its way through the mushroom field. The centipede changes directions and continues down a row once it reaches the edge of the screen or runs into a mushroom. The more mushrooms on the screen, the faster the centipede's descent. The player must destroy the centipede by shooting it section-by-section. When shot, a section of the centipede turns into a mushroom and the rest of the centipede breaks off into smaller fragments. Other insects- spiders, scorpions, and fleas- act as additional threats and targets for players. Centipede was one of the most popular games of the 1980s. Bailey's use of an unusual pastel color scheme may be one reason for women's attraction to the game. Centipede was ported to a number of Atari home systems, including the VCS and the Atari 5200. It has also been and continues to be ported to a number of other home video game systems, computers, and cell phones.

  • Material: plastic | metal | glass
  • Origin: USA
  • Style: arcade game
  • Object ID: 109.17117
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