History Of Video Game Consoles Essay Help

The topic of how video games have evolved over the years is massive. There have been millions of games created in the 50 years since creation of 1962’s Spacewar!, the first true video game. So the best way to approach this topic briefly is to select a genre and survey the main trends. This essay will focus on games in the adventure/roleplaying genre in which players take the role of one or more heroes on a quest of some sort.

The earliest adventure video games were, in a sense, not video at all. Instead they used text to create worlds for the player to explore. The first of these was Adventure, designed by Will Crowther and enhanced by Don Woods. The player read text descriptions of a cave and typed in simple noun-verb commands (“go north” “take lantern”, etc.) to navigate through the cave and interact with its denizens. Text-based games worked around the limited RAM (random-access memory) in early computers by focusing on story and setting at the expense of graphics.

The earliest adventure video games were, in a sense, not video at all.

A major evolution in the adventure genre (or step back, as text-game purists might claim) was the translation of the text-adventure to a visual format. In 1980 the Atari 2600 released its own Adventure. Adventure included the exploration, loot gathering, and simple monster fighting of the early text adventures. Given the limitations on computer processing power, however, the main character had to be represented as a colored square. Objects and monsters, swords and dragons, were all represented by crude pixelated graphics. Still, the use of a joystick and a visual environment gave players the ability to explore more widely and in real time rather than in the turn-based format of text adventures.

[New games] took advantage of gaming hardware’s increasing capabilities.

With the advent of computers and consoles that could render video, adventure games, and all other video games, began to develop in similar ways. First, they took advantage of gaming hardware’s increasing capabilities. The Atari 2600 had no hard drive to store programs, virtually no RAM, and ROM (read-only memory) game cartridges with only two to four kilobytes of memory. Graphics could only be displayed at a resolution of approximately 160 by 228 pixels in 128 colors. Modern PCs have hard drives measuring in gigabytes, onboard RAM averaging four gigabytes (one gigabyte is approximately a trillion kilobytes). Perhaps more important, modern gaming PCs have dedicated chips for rendering video, allowing for graphics verging on photorealism.

Second, controllers gradually developed into the modern forms. The classic Atari joystick had a directional control and a single button. The NES (Nintendo Entertainment System) controller had a four-way directional pad and two buttons: more inputs meant potentially more actions one could take in a game. Current consoles such as the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 have controllers with a directional pad, one or more thumb-sized joysticks, and a series of triggers and buttons that can be combined to create a large number of different player inputs. In the PC gaming realm, the development of the mouse and keyboard combination allowed for an even greater number of player inputs.

Players of the adventure genre came to demand more sophisticated stories and moral choices.

These and other changes affected adventure games in unique ways, as well. The original text and Atari Adventure games had bare-bones stories. As the art of game design developed and the representational abilities of computers increased, players of the adventure genre came to demand more sophisticated stories and moral choices.

One of the better-known games to focus on moral elements was Bioware’s Star Wars-based roleplaying game (or RPG, a hybrid of adventure and combat games) Knights of the Old Republic. In this game players could choose to follow the “light” or “dark” side by making choices that helped or hurt in-game characters. In contrast, Bethesda’s popular Elder Scrolls RPG series, the most recent of which is Skyrim, focused on consequences to actions rather than an overarching morality system. The game’s designers created a sandbox-like environment where players could even avoid the main story altogether and focus instead on exploring the simulated world.

Video game history has not been a straight line towards larger, more complicated, more graphics-heavy games.

However, video game history has not been a straight line towards larger, more complicated, more graphics-heavy games. Text-based adventure games have not disappeared. For instance, the company Infocom developed and released text-based adventures throughout the 1980s. They actively compared their games to the crude graphics available on consoles and computers at the time: “We draw our graphics from the limitless imagery of your imagination—a technology so powerful that it makes any picture that’s ever come out of a screen look like graffiti in comparison.” When commercial sales of text-based adventures trailed off in the 1990s, fans of the format began developing text-based games themselves and distributing them for free.

Any essay that you write should be well-written, accurate, and interesting to your audience. That begins with finding a great topic for your essay. Check out our list of the best essay topic ideas. You should be able to write a great essay about gaming with one of these topics. If you struggle with it, you can always buy essay about video games.

Topics on Social Issues

The topic of video games comes up quite frequently when various social topics are being discussed. If you are taking classes such as sociology, public health, political science, or journalism, your essay might focus on the many social issues relating to video games. Writing essays on violence in games is always an option, but there are others as well. Here are a few topic ideas:

Persuasive Essays Related to Social Issues

  • Do Violent Games Cause Behavior Problems?
  • Convince readers, in an essay about violence in games, that the average person will not be affected in a negative way.
  • Should video game ratings systems be more stringent?
  • Are parents ultimately responsible for what their kids play?
  • As a society, do we unfairly blame video games when we should be focusing on personal responsibility?

Narrative Essays on Video Games And Their Impact on Society

  • Write about a video game that you played as a child that was too violent for you
  • Have you ever been addicted to online gaming? What was that like.
  • Talk about an incident of harassment that you witnessed when playing online video games.
  • Write essays on violence in gaming and the impact of that in early dating relationships

Expository Essays on The Social Impact of Video Gaming

  • Write a short essay on the impact of video gaming on health and wellness
  • Compose a research paper that addresses the effects of allowing young children to do violent video games
  • Write a case study about a young adult who has never been exposed to video games vs. one who has been

General Essay Ideas That Relate to Social Issues

  • What should be done about sexism in gaming?
  • How can the gaming industry become more inclusive as a whole?
  • Why is sex and violence such a common theme in video games?
  • Does early exposure to video games impact the ability of children to self-regulate?
  • What are the biggest social problems related to gaming?

Video Game Essay Topics New Technology

If you are an avid gamer, you probably keep up with the latest technologies, reading specialized magazines, and eagerly await the latest and greatest releases. You may have even been part of beta testing new things or involved in open source gaming projects. Most importantly, you likely have lots of knowledge and opinions on gaming technology. Check out these essay ideas:

Persuasive Essays on Gaming Technology

  • Will virtual reality impact video game technology or is it simply a fad?
  • Which release is causing the most buzz?
  • Streaming will replace consoles, yes or no?

Expository Essay Ideas on Gaming Technology

  • Pick an up and coming technology and explain how it works
  • Explain the history and development behind an upcoming technological advancement in video tech
  • Discuss the trend of gamers as designers

Other Video Technology Essay Ideas

  • Write a compare contrast essay on virtual reality in gaming vs. augmented reality
  • Write a review of a new gaming system that you have recently tried out.

Topics About Educational Games

Persuasive Essays on Video Games in Education

  • Should children spend more time focusing on lectures and hands on work than gaming?
  • Argue which educational video game parents of toddlers should choose
  • Video games have no place in education. Argue a side
  • Is gaming a possible solution when dealing with disengaged students?

Expository Essay Ideas For Gaming in Education

  • Explain how gaming is used in special education
  • Describe the features that make a game educational vs. entertainment
  • Research and explain the process educators use to integrate gaming into the classroom

Other Educational Essay Ideas

  • Review the most popular educational games that have been released this year
  • Write a paper about the differences between educational games today vs. 10 or 20 years ago
  • Write a case study about a school that incorporated gaming into their classrooms    

Essay Topics For Passionate Gamers

If you don’t find anything that interests you above, don’t fret. You can still improve your writing skills while expressing your passions for gaming. If you have an interest in gaming, you have many options when it comes to writing essays. This is especially true when it comes to classes where you have a bit more flexibility in your writing assignments. Check out these topic ideas:

  • Write a descriptive essay about the first gaming experience you have had
  • What are your predictions about the future of console gaming
  • What is the funniest thing that happened to you in an online gaming experience
  • What 10 worst things that impact the world of video gaming be opinionated!
  • Compare and contrast the first release of a video game with the most current
  • If you could invent a video game, what would it look like
  • Write a review of the most popular game available today


Remember that you must balance your passion for the topic of gaming with good writing skills and factual knowledge. However, there is always an option of buy essay from a different online source or a writer. You will still have to research, cite your sources, and do the other work that goes into writing a good paper. As always, if you need help with a gaming essay remember that we are available to help as we are top essay writing service. Happy gaming!

Posted by: Natalie

Natalie Andersen
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