A Brief History About the Origination Online Action Games
The origin of the online action game – including, by default, some Batman games – is to be found in the origins of every modern gaming experience: the arcade. At the height of its popularity in the 80s, when almost no one had a home computer worth using to play games, the first arcades bleeped and hi-scored their way into gaming history with titles like Pac-Man (still routinely voted one of the best games ever made); Mario Bros; and Street Fighter.
There were originally only two viewpoints, and three directions, for gamers to enjoy: a side view, or a bird’s eye view; and left to right, forward and backward, or up and down for the directions of play. Understanding this is the key to understanding the development of the action game.
Action games like modern Batman games were, first, either static fighting games or platform games with some violence thrown in. A static fighting game is typified by Street Fighter titles, which ruled the combat game style until Mortal Kombat upped the ante in the early 1990s.
Platform style action games included Shotokan and Bad Dudes vs Dragon Ninja; and combined the punching, jumping and kicking elements of the combat arcade platform with the up and down and side to side world of platform games like Mario or Donkey Kong. At this point, the concept of the action game began to blossom, allowing backstory and puzzle solving elements into the mix.
To get to modem action games like the online Batman games, though, there was still some way to go. The first steps along these lines were taken memorably by Mario 64, still the greatest game ever made for a console, and the first to have a truly 360 degree environment in which to play. Suddenly all the different directional types – forward and backward (from POV racing games); side to side (from platform games); and up and down (from Pac Man style games) were combined in one virtual universe, in which players controlled a character who could go anywhere and try anything.
Doom and Goldeneye (to name but two) had already perfected the POV element of a modern action game. Adding the 360 degree universe premiered with Mario 64, game designers were able to create titles where players really felt a part of the action.
The internet, meanwhile, was already allowing online gamers to connect with each other – first in deathmatch style gaming, as personified by the original Doom titles. In keeping with tradition, game designers lost no time in designing more epic, more complicated and frankly more terrifying environments for players to compete in: though nothing could have prepared anyone for the complexity of the environments to come, once download speeds matched up with the processing powers of consoles and computers.
Modern Batman games and other online action games can (with the right equipment) be powered to such a degree that seamless play in congested battlefields is not only possible but expected. There is, though, a divide coming – until mobile devices catch up with processors, online gaming will be forced to choose between gameplay and speed.
Olivia is a freelance writer based in Prestatyn who to watch batman games online. She is a big fan of Cartoon Program and has recently been trying out the awesome games online too.