RVA Tech on Tap

In honor of the RVATech on Tap event this week at The Circuit barcade on 4/19 at 5pm, we would like to present some fun facts and stories about classic video games. By fun we mean stuff we should’ve known during the 80’s while wearing parachute pants filled with quarters.  

  • Centipede was released in 1980 by Atari. When playing the game most players assumed you were in a spaceship fighting giant insects. Atari later published a comic book that revealed you were actually an elf with a magic wand battling forest creatures.
  • It’s widely believed the worst video game ever made was E.T., The Extra-Terrestrial by Atari. It was so bad Atari buried the unsold game copies in a landfill in New Mexico. These games were later recovered in 2014 during a well-documented dig.
  • Defender was originally designed as a Space Invaders clone. Williams thought the game was too derivative so redesigned it to its complex controls layout. Eugene Jarvis, the head developer, designed the controls to mimic the controls of Space Invaders with your left hand while mirroring the controls of Asteroids with your right. The game was a slow starter when released some believe due to its control layout. It became one of the highest grossing games earning over one billion dollars.
  • Battletoads II was due out on September 12-14th in 2007. It was not hotly anticipated as the game was known to be very, very bad. Internet message boards banded together to troll Gamestop stores by calling stores to repeatedly ask “Do you have Battletoads?!” We can say because we’ve seen it that The Circuit definitely has Battletoads.
  • When each iteration of Guitar Hero and Rock Band was released the bands showcased in the game would note a large uptick in the featured song's sales. This led to many new and younger fans of bands like Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Kiss, and Rush. These increases would often top 200-300%.

Now that you’ve read some tech history anecdotes to insert into a conversation between games and craft beers come on out and have some fun with us!  And – to prove we’re old school and have real video game cred, check out the HoloLens experience we premiered at last year’s Tech Summit in DC.

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