Classy Documentary Charts the Early History of Video Games

Playing the Revolution is an upcoming documentary series by Italian outfit Junk Food, which chronicles "the Spacewar! milestone to the rise of the 16-bit era".

It's not some cheap retrospective. This is an in-depth series, each episode an hour long, and is full of interviews with some of the most important founding fathers of the entire medium of video games, like "the father of video games" Ralph Baer and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak.

You can see the series' trailer above, with more clips available as previews on the group's Vimeo page.

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DISCUSSION

There's a fantastic book by Steven Levy called "Hackers: Heroes of the Computer Revolution" (1984) which features a lengthy section on the rise of computer games. If you're at all interested in why the personal computer exists today, it's well worth a read. And I have to say, it's kind of cool learning how all of these different things came together. "Spacewar" was just made by some hackers goofing around at MIT in 1961, screwing with computers the size of entire rooms, which they weren't even supposed to be touching. It was all just about doing something cool, new, and interesting with programming.