The Role of Gaming in our Fascination with Space


Last year marked the 40-year anniversary of what is arguably the most popular and famous video game of all time. Space Invaders is a game that defined a generation, and even more importantly, set the tone for thousands of games to follow. The flashing lights, overblown music and crab-type monsters might look a little full of 70s kitsch, but it is important to remember its contribution as the grandfather of all space games.

Today, it’s not just the technology that has improved. Gaming itself has become a mainstream leisure activity pursued by adults and kids alike. In other words, those same teenagers who were in the arcades in 1978 when Space Invaders came out still enjoy gaming today. Let’s see what out-of-this-world things they are getting up to today with a look at three very different but equally influential space-themed games that we can play in 2019.

The War of the Worlds

There are some space-themed classics that are even older than Space Invaders, and the novel that catapulted HG Wells to fame in the 1890s is perhaps the best example. There have been numerous retellings and interpretations over the years, the latest of which is a stunning 3D slots game. From the moment that launched in CA, gamers used the site not only to find the sites offering the best gaming deals but also the ones offering the best games. What makes this one stand out is that as well as including all the classic ingredients from the Wells book, it also pay tribute to previous interpretations, including the famous Orson Welles radio broadcast and the classic Jeff Wayne album.

Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime

Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime belongs to the new breed of social games that people can play together, even when they are far apart. Players take control of different functions within a spacecraft, and by a process of coordination and cooperation, can boldly go and explore the universe in much the same way as the crew of the USS Enterprise have been doing since the first Star Trek TV series in the 1960s. That, at least, is the theory. There are a number of missions to complete, but those are almost of secondary importance. This is one of those games where the journey is more important than the destination.

Dual Universe

This game is a little different, as it is still in the development phase, but it is worthy of mention because it perfectly demonstrates just how far gaming has come over the past 40 years. This civilization-building game takes the “city builder” concept to incredible new levels, and also throws in the social gaming features of games like Farmville. Players who have never met in real life can interact, trade and, of course, go to intergalactic war. It’s an ambitious project, with a fully editable universe that will become whatever the players choose to make it. The game is still at the alpha testing stage at present, but is definitely one to watch over the coming months.


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