Here I’ll take a brief look at a specific intersection of education and gaming. There were many educational networks that sprang up in the 1960s and I’ll be showcasing some of them in future posts. These networks were a key enabler of the “people’s computing” that I’ve talked about already. This post will cover a very specific example that will serve to highlight the general tenor of the timeframe.
Author: Jeff Nyman
ROCKET and Lunar Landers
The particular game I’ll focus on here led to a whole slew of very similar variants and was based on one of the most amazing endeavors undertaken by the human race. The variants all came to be known as variants around titles like “Lunar Lander” or “Moon Lander” but the original was called, quite simply, “ROCKET.”
Talking with ELIZA
In between the two iterations of The Sumerian Game (in 1964 and 1966), an interesting early ludic experience became known. This was not really a game, but it certainly was a simulation. There are some interesting aspects to ELIZA that you could argue should have prefigured a bit of what came later — such as the text adventure — although it’s not actually clear that it did.
Scholars and Game Studies
Having written up one post on a historic ludonarrative experience, which was my post on The Sumerian Game, I now want to take a step back and look a little bit at how various scholars in the digital humanities, particularly in the game studies area, tend to look at these concepts.
Play Like a Sumerian
In terms of the education-technology-gaming intersection mentioned in the previous post, we can step into the early 1960s and look at a game that, for quite a long time, was obscured, if not entirely absent, from a lot of game history. This game shared an interesting context with a wider education initiative that was going on at the same time.
People’s Computing: A Gaming Inroad
As I embarked on some of my initial research, I found an interesting starting point around where computers and education intersected. This intersection provided a very fertile ground for the development of computer games.
Starting a Ludic History
This blog is called Ludic Historian. But what does that actually mean? Great question! In this first post, let me break that title down a little bit and give a feel for what the blog will be all about.