Father of Video Game Industry Shares Legacy with NFTs

16th October 2021

Brilliant drops on MakersPlace seem to be a more common occurrence recently. The NFT platform recently launched their collaboration with Nolan Bushnell, the co-founder of Atari, dubbed the “Father of the Video Game Industry.” The drop was designed with the calibre of the creator in mind, with multiple opportunities for entry available for buyers of all interest levels. 

Photo Courtesy of MakersPlace and Nolan Bushnell

 

The Arcade OG Series dropped on Oct. 12, with the auctions open for approximately 24 hours. In addition, two 1/1 NFTs were made available, both of which feature the iconic games Pong and Computer Space designed and brought to the mass market by Bushnell himself. The NFTs represent animated video artworks capturing the essence of these games and the medium we engaged with them in. 

 

Each of the two main NFTs comes with added utility, the winner of Computer Space | Yellow Arcade will receive a clay model replica of the original piece used in the creation of the Computer Space arcade cabinet bearing Bushnell’s signature.  The winner of Pong | Red Arcade will receive a visit with Nolan Bushnell to the Two Bit Circus in Los Angeles.

 

A clever set of open limited editions were made available on MakersPlace, all of which have ended and sold in respectable quantities. Open limited edition sales do not place a set cap on the number of NFTs minted, but instead, a limited timeframe within which people can mint as many NFTs as they are interested in. 


Photo Courtesy of
MakersPlace and Nolan Bushnell

 

There were three open limited editions, purchasing all of which enabled buyers to claim another NFT for $1 called the Arcade Montage, which also granted an entry for winning an unopened Atari 2600 signed by Bushnell. These were priced at $500 and sold over $250,000 in 24 hours.

 

Finally, the Gameplay Mystery Box was offered at $250. This was the subset of NFTs most akin to the rarities of PFP projects we know and love. The Gameplay Mystery Box was also an open limited edition, but with an extra added twist. The number of NFTs available was technically uncapped, but a timer was initiated when 100 were sold that closed the auction 15 minutes afterwards (with no possibility for extension). Despite this, over 229 Gameplay Mystery Boxes were sold. Within minutes, all of the limited editions were sold out, selling over 800 NFTs.

 

“NFTs are pushing the evolution of atoms to bits, from physical to digital. People have collected atoms in the form of playing cards, collectibles, and art for  many years, and now, as the world becomes increasingly digital, NFTs allow us to collect bits. I am honoured to work with MakersPlace to share some of my initial works: Computer Space and Pong.” 

– Nolan Bushnell

 


Photo Courtesy of
MakersPlace and Nolan Bushnell

 

This was a successful genesis drop by anyone’s standards. Bushnell’s entry into NFTs was received with great enthusiasm because of the icon that he is. He is the unsung hero that brought video games to millions, if not billions of lives, uplifting by co-founding Atari and co-founding Chuck-E-Cheese and inspiring the movement that followed. When Atari started in June 1972, “video games” did not exist. The closest alternative were pinball machines available in bars but not often held by any prestigious institutions due to their loud noise and, by then, unimpressive nature. Space Computer and Pong stood in stark contrast and became instant hits.

 

Space Computer was created in the 1960s with a brilliant design that did not require computers that were then expensive and bulky. Instead, Bushnell and his business partner Ted Dabny used little more than a standard TV that was ingeniously re-engineered to allow for interactive pixels to be played. This marked the beginning of Atari’s history, back when the company was supposed to be called Syzygy before discovering the name was taken.

 

Pong was created in 1972 with Nolan Bushnell as the mastermind and Al Alcorn as its engineer. Bushnell had heard of a similar game before and wanted to put Alcorn’s skills to the test. The game became an instant hit, and Bushnell is credited with scaling up the production that led to Atari being the giant it is today. He did all this with no prior business experience, mentoring, or education. In so doing, he kickstarted the arcade revolution into which so many of us were born.

 

Arcade OG Series on MakersPlace:


Photo Courtesy of
MakersPlace and Nolan Bushnell

 

Bushnell has also become a serial entrepreneur, having founded over 18 other organizations. Bushnell is also credited with being the first and only man to hire Steve Jobs, a topic he’s written a book about. His foray into NFTs is his most recent undertaking and is entirely in line with his pioneering past. To help his entry, he depended on his collaborator Zai Ortiz – the celebrated creative director whose work is highlighted by cutting-edge technology in Hollywood visual effects (Mission Impossible, Iron Man) and interactive game development.

Photo Credit: Nolan Bushnell

 

Bushnell blazed a trail that brought the birth of the $150+ billion video game industry. His NFT offering allows fans to connect with him personally and share in a piece of his legacy. The drop has been successfully facilitated by MakersPlace to allow different opportunities for engagement. Bushnell’s legacy coupled with MakersPlace’s focus on enabling creators and their communities enabled a seamless entry by a legendary public figure into the NFT community. This is a trend set to continue as historic drops happen more often and NFT models continue to be innovated upon.

 

 

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