Video games represent a relatively new form of electronic media—one that has existed for only about twenty-five years. More than other forms of media such as radio, television, and film, video games are rapidly evolving. New technologies make the games increasingly realistic and engaging. This is a particularly important point to take into account when looking at them from an educational perspective. This entry looks at their history, their military application, and their impact on young people.

Historical Background

Just how rapidly video games have evolved in recent years can best be understood by examining their history. Magnavox's Odyssey, the first home video game system sold to the public, was introduced in May 1972. Atari's Pong (a simple electronic tennis game) appeared in arcades the following November. ...

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