Gaming Crazes

We look at some of the games crazes that have come and gone since World War II. From the table games and crazes of post war America through Craps, Space Invaders, Mario, Street Fighter II and GTA we look at the evolution of entertainment.

Since WWII there have been a number of games that have caught the attention of fun hungry fans over the decades. In this article we take a look at some of the biggest crazes to amaze and amuse the generations of players throughout these ages.

Craps

With Las Vegas riding high and the opulence of the American post war period, Craps became a run-away hit in the casinos of the Sin City and the backstreets of many big city districts. Only needing a couple of dice and a little chalk, players would roll to establish the point then keep on rolling again to ride high before landing the fateful seven. Still a big hit today with casino you can find a good online craps for beginners guide at the Titanbet Casino, which features a top version of this classic game from Playtech.

Ouija Boards


Originally created in the 1920s the Ouija Board was a controversial game. It took a time to take off but Ouija Boards outsold the legendary Monopoly in the 1960s as a generation lost in space tried to contact a whole other world. These popular supernatural telephony devices that allowed you to try to speak with the dead raised a whole great deal of controversy, intrigue and outrage that no doubt helped stick a couple of extra zeroes on the sales figures. Parker Bros met the occult and made a pile of cash in the process.

Space Invaders

One of the first ever arcade games, Space Invaders involved the control of a small spaceship tasked with blasting down ever increasing waves of alien invaders in an attempt to save earth. Legend has it that the original machine was so cash hungry and popular that the Federal Reserve had to mint more coins to keep up with the demand for this blasting beauty. The inspiration behind a generation of horizontal shooters that is still being revitalised by the Japanese market, this was a true epoch defining game.

Mario

Following the crash of the original computer game fad spawned by games like Space Invaders, Pac-Man and Frogger, which was eventually slayed by a string of sub-par Atari 2600 titles culminating in the land fill legend ET, the gaming industry was as good as dead. That was until the cunning guile of Shigeru Miyamoto at Nintendo bought forth a game entirely based on Jump-Man from their arcade smash title Donkey Kong. The only thing they needed was a new name for Jump-Man and in classic style they settled on Mario and the rest is history.

Street Fighter II


The original Street Fighter game had many of the mechanics of the later 1990s smash title, but lacked the slick delivery, easy of movement and high frame rate sprites. When this title launched in the arcades it seemed to offer players less bang for their money than other popular platformers and shoot-em ups, but this didn’t stop players from running to it in their droves. The chance to best your friends using combinations of light and hard hits together with special moves was simply too addictive. Unsurprisingly this title went on to become one of the killer apps that featured on the SNES, bringing as many people to the box as the legendary Super Mario World.

Grand Theft Auto – Vice City


The fourth game in the Grand Theft Auto series, this was the title that took the franchise from simply big to world-beatingly massive. Armed with a Hawaiian shirt, a soundtrack simply dripping with 80s hits that spawned a Dance music revolution and a storyline that appeared to rip out the best pieces of Scarface, Magnum PI and Miami Vice this was one of the must play titles on the X-Box. Many purists still argue that it’s the greatest title in the series, offering the best blend of action with a good sized playing arena and enough tricks to stop the player becoming simply overawed.

Angry Birds

After hitting a high technological ceiling with games like Assassin’s Creed and Drake’s Angry Birds took a step backwards, offering players a simple power up and blast mechanism that you could use to take down the world of the greedy pigs threatening your world. A world-wide sensational that’s spawned a large number of sequels and marketing lines, this game is proof that playability is king in a world that can become a little fixated on the exponentially increasing processing power on offer.

What’s next in the world of games? With the Xbox now looking like one of the world leading platforms we can only wonder as to what medium the games of the future might utilise. Augmented reality, true 3D-worlds and immersive headsets are all on their way and who can tell how the most talented designers will use these new technologies.