I’m psyched! Today, the National Center for the History of Electronic Games is announcing that we’ve acquired the Videotopia Collection. The 114 arcade games in this group include pioneers like Computer Space and Pong, crowd-pleasers like Space Invaders and Galaga, icons like Donkey Kong and Pac-Man, rarities like Tank and Time Traveler, racing simulation games like Sega’s Super GT, and landmark titles like Breakout and Tron. This unique group of arcade games represents the heyday of arcades in all its beeping, blinking glory.
Now that the museum owns the collection, we can extend the run of the Videotopia exhibit at Strong National Museum of Play through January 3rd, 2010! And we can continue displaying representative games from the collection on a rotating basis indefinitely.
Professionally I’m excited because this acquisition ensures that NCHEG will permanently preserve this revolutionary period in video game history. We’re grateful to the folks at the Electronics Conservancy who had the vision to build this collection initially when they created the Videotopia traveling exhibit. Since that exhibit came to Strong, tens of thousands of people have been reunited with old games they loved or introduced to them for the first time. Now these important machines will have a permanent home at NCHEG.
Personally I’m thrilled as well. Like so many people of my generation, I fell in love with arcade games the moment I saw them. But in my small town of 3,000 people, the local pizza place had the only game in town—literally. First it was Space Invaders, then later the pizzeria owners replaced it with Galaxian. My gaming opportunities were few. But not now. I have some tokens that are burning holes in my pockets, and now that we’ve acquired the Videotopia Collection I can’t wait to make up some lost play time.
By Jon-Paul Dyson, Director, International Center for the History of Electronic Games and Vice President for Exhibits