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The Beginnings of 8-bit Video Game Programming: A Nostalgic Review

A talk by Dr. Lakaemper
Wann 03.11.2014
von 16:15 bis 18:00
Wo Turing Hörsaal Uni Würzburg
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The talk will look back on the evolution of video games, and give insight into tools and techniques of game programming on the 8 bit home computers that started it all. The talk consists of 3 parts:

1. History of Video Games

From a little toy built to amuse visitors in a lab to a multi billion industry, that partially dictates hardware development and merges with serious civil and military applications: the last 50 years have seen a dramatic progress in game related hard- and software.

2. Programming Games on 8-bit Home Computers in the 1980s

These were the machines that started it all: Sinclair Spectrum, Commodore C64, and their 16bit followers Commodore Amiga and Atari ST. Nearly all major game concepts were created on these machines. Enabling their limited hardware capabilities to create motion on the screen, demanded for creative ideas and programming concepts. This part of the talk will share insights into the creation of graphics, sound, and AI from games on these computers, and how to get
pixels to move with only 48kB of RAM.

3. Programming Then and Now

From deep knowledge about hardware, utilizing each single bit and CPU pin, to game engines and scene graphs: game programming shifted its focus massively. This part of the talk will compare the setting a game programmer finds him/herself in, between the 80s and now, giving some examples of current game engine programming and the tools at hand for programmers today.

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