Why you won’t find Com­puter Space at Game Masters


Not ev­ery game Bod­man wanted to in­clude made it into the ex­hi­bi­tion. One he par­tic­u­larly wished to track down was Com­puter Space. Cre­ated by Nolan Bush­nell and Ted Dab­ney in 1971, Com­puter Space is ac­knowl­edged as the first ever com­mer­cially sold ar­cade game. It is a sim­ple mul­ti­di­rec­tional shooter in which the player con­trols a rocket ship and needs to nav­i­gate a dense as­ter­oid field while fight­ing a pair of fly­ing saucers. But it sold modestly, and its place in his­tory has been eclipsed by the far more popular Pong. “It would have been great to get a copy of it,” Bod­man says, “but they’re be­com­ing very ex­pen­sive.”

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