Wednesday, 01 August, 2001

Spacewar!

The first video game was conceived and written by MIT students on the PDP-1 back in 1961 and 1962.  Spacewar was a two-player game in which players tried to shoot each other's ships.  The link will take you to a Java rendition of the game.  The Java program is a PDP-1 emulator.  It's running a version of the Spacewar program that was compiled by a PDP-1 assembler written in PERL.  See the Readme link on the Spacewar site for more information.

I found the Java version difficult to play because it kept missing keystrokes.  It did bring back memories of the old arcade game that I put way too many quarters into back in the late 1970's.  That game was called Space Wars, by a company called Cinematronics (not to be confused with the other Cinematronics, my former employer and creator of the Space Cadet Pinball game that Microsoft shipped with the Windows 95 Plus Pack and now ships with Windows 2000).