How well do you know your video game history?


As I’ve mentioned, I’ve been invited to be a guest writer for a new site for nerds called Geek Street Station. Grandma Geek will be my pseudonym. I’ll let you know when the site goes live. I’m rather excited that I get to school some young’uns on the fact that they did not invent the term ‘geek.’


Anyway, I wrote one article for them in a quiz form. It was so much fun, I thought I’d make another for my website. I learned a lot while doing the research, and found it pretty cool. Hope you like it too. I would LOVE to hear if you got them all right.



How well do you know your video game history? Take this quiz to find out. You won’t need pen and paper. Just keep a mental tally (you can only reach six). No worries about data mining. The test is fully contained here. So, don’t look at the paragraph following each question, until you’re ready for the answer.


Here we go…


Question 1)

What was the first two player video game?

  1. Pong
  2. Computer Space
  3. Spacewar!

You’re thinking to yourself, this is so easy. Who doesn’t know this one? Well, you’d be right if you chose 3) Spacewar! Give yourself a point if you knew a group of MIT students were bored and programmed a game so they could play the earliest digital version of “Bang! You’re dead!” Extra point if you knew it was in 1961.


Question 2)

What was the first coin-operated video game?

  1. Galaxy Game
  2. Computer Space
  3. Spacewar!

Well, of course, that has to Spacewar! Right? Wrong. Give yourself a point if you knew that 1) Galaxy Game was the first. But only by three months. In September of 1971 the first coin-operated video game was installed at Stanford University, California. Three months later, in November 1971, 1500 (one thousand five hundred) units of the second coin-operated game, Computer Space had been manufactured and was available for commercial use. Which leads us to Q3.


Question 3)

Two guys get the credit for the creation of Computer Space. They were…

  1. Nolan and Dabney
  2. Jobs and Wozniak
  3. Gates and Jobs


A trick question if ever there was one. If you said 1) Nolan and Dabney you get your point. Since Nolan went on to become Atari, you might also be asking yourself, “What happened to Dabney?” A lot of people my age wonder that same thing about Roebuck.


Question 4)

Which firm released the first computer hardware system that went on to support the first two player video game?

  1. Apple
  2. DEC
  3. Magnavox

One really wants to say Apple. If for no other reason than to honor Jobs. Unfortunately, one would be wrong. Give yourself a point if you said 2) DEC (Digital Equipment Corporation). Their Programmed Data Processor-1 (PDP-1) was first sold in 1960. Yeah, the year your grandma was born. The platform went on to be used to build the first two player video game. Which brings us to the final question.


Question 5)

In what year was the first online game played?

  1. 1963
  2. 1983
  3. 1993


Quick background. The internet, even in its archaic form, was actually around in 1963. It didn’t offer today’s Google or anything, but one could still exchange information while at UCLA with someone at Stanford. But, ’63 is the wrong answer. Give yourself a point if you chose 2) 1983. SuperSet a software firm, created a text-based game called Snipes, which featured the first true network play. The rest, as they say…


Tally up the points, boys and girls. Here’s the final scorecard.


0          Baby Geek. Aww… Ain’t you cute?

1          Wannabe Geek. Well, at least you know what a geek is. Sorta.

2          Geek in Training. Keep going. The world needs more geeks.

3          Second Class Geek. You go ahead and hold your head high.

4          Impressive Geek. Tell me true. Did Google help?

5          General Geek. Sir! Pleasure to have you read my little quiz. Sir!

And if you got that extra point you are, officially…

5          Geek Extraordinaire. The rest of the geek world bows to your knowledge.


If you’ve enjoyed this article, check out “History of Online Games”



List Verse – 15 Firsts In Video Game History






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