High Score: Behind the History of Computer Games (Netflix Documentary)

netflix they’ve filmed so many documents lately that you can’t even watch them anymore. Today we are going to focus on one of them, which might appeal to the readers of TVFreak and our next magazine Svět hardware. His name is High score s deals with the history of computer games, the emergence of the first game consoles, various types of games and the people around them. Will it be worth it?

The series has a total of 6 episodes and each of them deals with a different issue in about 40-45 minutes. Usually we find interviews with some important personalities of the time, which are also interspersed with people who failed in their projects. It’s all topped off with period-style animations, which are often quite appropriate, but sometimes there’s quite a bit of jumping between individual stories. However, be prepared for the fact that you may need to read the subtitles from time to time if you don’t speak Japanese. Most groundbreaking projects come from Japan, so it’s no wonder that it’s Japanese designers who are often interviewed here. And it’s also about your age, how many games you’ve experienced first-hand, and that will affect your impression of the documentary.

Pac man

For example. the first part deals with arcade games (eg Space Invaders), slot machines and the problems of the three programmers who modified these slot machines, who, of course, did not like Atari, who sued them. We’ll also touch on the big annoyance of the ET game, which was created in collaboration with Steven Spielberg himself.

mario

The second part shows us the rise of Nintendo and gaming consoles, when gaming moved from gaming to the home environment. Nonetheless, much of the game is devoted to the Nintendo World Championship and thus bites the emergence of programming, to which the fifth part is later devoted more. Mario is not to be missed, he also entered Nintendo Power magazine and held the position of Nintendo Game Counselor.

High score

I was looking forward to the third part, which was dedicated to the RPG, but that was probably the biggest disappointment. Although he portrayed the legendary Ultima and the Final Fantasy series, he spent a lot of unnecessary time on the GayBlade game, which hardly anyone had ever heard of. In this way, Netflix tried to make the High Score politically correct enough, and it was far from the only part where the question of sexuality or race went so far in a series whose main theme was games. computers.

High score

On the contrary, the fourth part, which evoked the war of the consoles between Sega and Nintendo, was more interesting. Here we go back to when the new Sega and Hedgehog Sonic consoles were created, look at its design, how Americans helped the Japanese break into the United States, and see Electronic Arts rise to prominence with Madden NFL , with whom she worked. John Madden.

Sega versus Nintendo

The fifth part is not for the mild-mannered, this one is very gory. This is where we go behind the scenes of Street Fighter II and Mortal Kombat fighting games, including the controversies these games have sparked in society. It was also put into context with the game Night Trap, which was an interactive video game, but maybe it was again given an unnecessarily large space. At the same time, in connection with multiplayer in Street Fighter, this part will also introduce us to modern programming and enlighten us on the fact that becoming a professional player is not a completely simple thing.

High score

The best work is probably the last. In this case, it’s less fragmented than the previous ones, a bit more focused on a single game, which surprisingly doesn’t detract from the story. The game is Doom and the interview was provided by John Romero (unfortunately we won’t meet Carmack here). He tells us how boldly they brought the game back, how they worked on it, we also learn a little about the transition from 2D graphics to 3D graphics (for example, about the Star Fox and Wolfenstein 3D games).

John Romero and John Carmack

As already mentioned, the subjective evaluation of the series will certainly influence your year of birth and the experiences of the subject. If you’ve experienced them before PC, you’ll be right at home here, but you’ll probably regret that you haven’t had a lot of interesting games, you’ll probably miss some things and on the contrary, you may find it bothersome that some things are not important for the main theme of the series was too much emphasis. If you’re younger and haven’t experienced these games, then this will probably be a historic trip, but not a nostalgic one. And nostalgia can add a bit.

Rating: 65%

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