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roguecinema.com :: View topic - From Bedrooms To Billions
Joined: Jun 05, 2004 Posts: 645 Location: Boise, Idaho
Posted: Mon May 21, 2012 10:41 am Post subject: From Bedrooms To Billions
From Bedrooms To Billions
The UK Video Games Industry had to start somewhere!
A 90 minute feature length documentary film telling the remarkable, true story of the British Video Games Industry between 1979 - 1996 and how the creativity and vision of a relatively small number of individuals allowed the UK to play a key, pioneering role in the shaping of the billion dollar video games industry which today, dominates the modern world’s entertainment landscape.
Nearly three quarters of a century ago video games were created on million dollar mainframes simply to satisfy scientific curiosity, before advances in both technology and game development saw the first arcade machines, home consoles and then home computers start to emerge in the 1970’s.
In the UK of the late 70’s early 80’s these developments helped inspire a generation of individuals and small team enthusiasts, hobbyists, school kids, bedroom coders and entrepreneurs. The early UK games scene was largely fueled by enthusiastic interest as opposed to commercial enterprise, but with advances happening all the time and the games industry constantly evolving that fact was soon to change.
UK developers were learning and inspiring each other, pioneering new programming techniques that stretched available hardware to its limits and allowed for the production of ground breaking games, giving fledgling UK developers, publishers and distributors the chance to cultivate and stimulate an entirely new and emerging fan base.
It wasn’t just the programmers or publishers who found themselves within a rapidly evolving industry, the primitive mail order game days of the late 70’s and early 80’s led to magazine publications across the UK embracing this new trend and the readership it entailed, in a pre-internet Britain, hungry gamers relied on these publications so they could make their decision on which game to play next, these publications often inspired and helped fuel the very UK industry it was writing about. One major magazine publisher was ‘Newsfield Publications’ whose magazines ZAPP! 64, CRASH and AMTIX were written essentially by a collection of school children and young fans whose honest, and uninfluenced reviews could make or break a game when released.
‘From Bedrooms to Billions’ delves into the many elements that make up this incredible, untold British story. Through a series of interviews from those that lived through it, the film will reveal some of the remarkable stories, struggles and successes that saw our video games industry go from quite literally nothing into a major force littered with original thinkers, innovators and eccentric characters.
UK developers worked with, by today’s standards, incredibly basic equipment, devising techniques on the fly, pitching ideas that to most would seem crazy, watching their pride and joy project soar to the top of the charts or sink without trace, bailiffs knocking down doors seeking unpaid bills while programmers climbed out of windows clutching their computers, or developers in buildings with no heating, forced to light fires under their hard drives to thaw them out to finish a project on time.
Nostalgic and gripping this 90 minute feature film documentary promises to fascinate and evoke with its combination of insightful stories and compelling archive, this is a very British story that has never been told before, a story that celebrates the importance of this era and why it has become such a landmark era in the history of British invention, creativity and industry.
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