Posted: 16th December 2021
For young reporter this year our team have been researching gaming, and feeling retro with stories about the Nintendo Gameboy and the 1970s.
How does gaming affect us?
Gaming, one of our biggest industries, worth $171billion in 2020, is growing every day in popularity. From indie games to triple A games, new games seem to be released every day. Over the recent lockdown video games have impacted the lives of young people in many ways such as helping them meet new friends or learning new skills.
The industry has evolved majorly in a short span of time, from the first commercial game in 1971 (Computer Space). From the simple arcade games to the complex triple A games with very realistic graphics. Some games have even been used in schools to teach pupils new skills such as chemistry or history skills.
Games such as Indie games are games made by smaller developers (e.g Minecraft which was originally an indie game before being bought by Microsoft) with much less time and money then large gaming companies who spend millions to create a game that will earn them the most money. Call of Duty, Black Ops was the most popular and profitable game of 2020, reaching over $3 billion in revenue.
With lockdown, video gaming has been a good way to connect with people across the world and to make new friends (e.g VRchat or Animal Crossing). People who previously had no contact with their friends because of self-isolation can now easily voice chat. Entire communities can revolve around one game and the discussion of its lore.
With the rise of these communities, like Team Fortress 2, Minecraft, or Clash of Clans, people have been socializing more, going to conventions and chatting with people who like the same things as them.
‘I mainly play mobile games such as Clash of Clans, which has been around since 2013, where you build castles and attack other users. Gaming has affected me in a positive way and has made me more social, though it might have a negative effect on other people such as people getting bullied or inappropriate language’ - Mackenzie Ray Taylor. Mr Fyfe said he “owned an Xbox” and Lauren Fawcett said, ‘I really enjoy gaming’ Deion said, ‘Gaming has helped me solve puzzles easier!’ so we think there are clear benefits to being a gamer in this generation!
Ruby Allen 8IK
The Gameboy is Nintendo’s longest running console in production for an impressive 14 years, but how did it last this long? And how did it survive a bomb?
The Gameboy was first released on the 21st of April 1989, costing £74 pounds (but with inflation it would be around £188 these days.)
The most popular Gameboy game actually came bundled with it -Tetris - which sold 35 million units worldwide.
The hand-held console was not very advanced, having a small green and grey screen. Also, NES and SNES games were rereleased for it with notable downgrades including animations and graphics, but the attraction was you could play it anywhere (like games on mobile phones today).
Although the battery was very impressive, having around 10 to 30 hours of power, this most likely had to do with the lacklustre spec of the Gameboy not draining a lot of power.
There were many consoles in the Gameboy family, including the classic Gameboy, The Gameboy Pocket and the Gameboy Advanced in 2003 with a foldable version.
During the gulf war spanning from 1990 to 1991 Stephan Scoggins brought a Gameboy to Iraq to play between duties. Unfortunately, a bomb hit his barracks, causing a massive fire. Although he did find the Gameboy, it had a melted and the d-pad was clearly burnt but surprisingly it switched on! Luckily, he was sent a replacement and now it sits in Nintendo in the New York Rockefeller centre as a testament to the endurance of the Gameboy!
Mckenzie Ray Talyor, Y14 said, “I loved the Gameboy Colour and I remember I played Scooby Doo on it all the time.” Miss Bowden said, “my brother loved his game boy - and I liked Tetris, it was so addictive!” Mrs Gault said, “it appeals to everyone.”
So the reason for its popularity were its wide appeal, long battery life and the fact that it was nearly indestructible!
Deion Farara 8IK
We thought that looking back at the 1970s, prices would be very cheap (compared to today in 2021) but we were highly surprised by some of the other prices we found out about. Staggeringly, a house would sell for around £3,000 and the average house price was £4,057. Also, in 1970 a Lego set was £5.65 unlike today where it is £50 - £100 and can be up to £600. A loaf of bread used to cost 9p. Today in 2021 it costs £1.37. The price of fuel in the 70s was 83p to 84p per litre whereas now in 2021 it costs £1.49 per litre.
“Prices have definitely gone up, I remember a time when I was able to fill up the petrol with £5 and buy sweets with the remainder of the money!” Isabelle Wylie
However, the prices of electrical goods were a completely different story. The first microwave was sold in the UK for £3,664 around the same as a house at the time! In 1978, the VHS video recorder was around £599, which is very expensive but it meant people never had to miss their favourite TV programme again.
Prices have also recently increased due to the pandemic, global demand, shipping costs as well as a shortage of workers. These are all reasons why prices have gone up but we hope this does not continue.
Even with those prices we still think it would be great to go back to the 1970s!
Matthew McGrath and Joseph Wylie 10CK
Parkhall Integrated College Vision Statement