Mattel Football

Posted by admin on May 16th, 2008

Football was released in 1977 and it was labeled either Football or Football I depending on the date the game was released. This was the second game released by Mattel (Auto Race was the first) and sold through Sears. After less than 100,000 were made, Sears (using a computer model based on initial sales figures) determined that the games would not be big sellers, and most of the production for Football and Auto Race was stopped. Sears was definitely proven wrong. Within six months, it became obvious to that their prediction was false, and production was started up again and reached record levels.

Mattel FootballThe game was played by using direction keys to run a blinking red dot through a maze of defensive dots. A kickoff would result in a chirping version of the “Charge!” melody. A simple game and quite prehistoric when compared to the handheld games of today, the Football game was for football and football only. As for sound, it was dominated by bleeps and blips and it ran on a single 9V battery.

The game had two levels of play: Pro 1 and Pro 2. The graphics were all red lit dots and the player was the brightest of the six. The object was to get across the screen without getting tackled by the five remaining dots – a simple concept, but not easily accomplished.

Though its lack of true passing and inability to let the player run backwards limited the games overall realistic feel, it offered a compelling challenge to a generation quickly becoming fascinated with electronic entertainment. In fact, the game was re-issued by Mattel in 2000 thanks to its overwhelming popularity in the ‘70s.

The MuMoH physical collection includes an actual working model from 1977.

References:
http://www.handheldmuseum.com/Mattel/FB.htm
http://www.bigredtoybox.com/articles/fbindex.shtml
http://crave.cnet.com/8301-1_105-9913124-1.html
http://www.thocp.net/software/games/golden_age.htm


The Game Boy

Posted by admin on May 16th, 2008

The Game Boy was the first cartridge-based gaming system to allow up to four players to be linked through serial ports on their own systems for multi-player fun. The compact video game system manufactured by Nintendo was released in 1989 in the U.S. and Japan. The Game Boy was the brainchild of Gunpei Yokoi, former creator of the UltraHand, an expanding arm toy made and sold in 1970.

The Game Boy ran on a CPU with integrated sound generation and allowed users to pop in different cartridges, known as Game Paks, to play a variety of different games. Yokoi designed the Game Boy to be a small, inexpensive entertainment device in which the cartridge would provide the data, logic and rules of the game to the processor.

Originally sold with the puzzle game Tetris, Game Boy soon developed many games for their system, including sports, action and fantasy games, available for around $15 a pop. The most popular Game Boy games include: Tetris, Zelda, Mario Brothers and, more recently, Pokemon. The system itself cost around $90 in 1989 and ran in four shades of “gray” which appeared as green to dark green.

Eventually, Game Boy developed the Game Boy Color, making games viewable in additional colors, and in 1995, the company produced a rainbow of colored cases for their systems. Since then, Game Boy has released several versions of their original system, including the Game Boy Advanced and Game Boy Evolution.

Other Game Boy-related products include the Game Boy Camera which was released in 1998 with the Game Boy printer, which allowed users to print black and white, low resolution photographs.

The MuMoH physical collection includes an early 1990s version of the Game Boy.

References:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Game_Boy
http://www.vidgame.net/NINTENDO/GB.html