Pong Consoles

In the early days of home gaming, games consoles offered you very simple gaming fare. The name of the game was Pong, and although there were several simple variations, they all equated to almost the same Bat and Ball game, using knobs or simplistic joysticks to control vertical movement of the bats.

Ingersoll Pong Console

Oh, sure, they dressed these games up with fancy names, like Tennis, Squash & Football, but essentially these games were the same, but with different positioning of the bats, scoring areas or walls.

I owned two of these Pong Consoles, and the standard way of changing the games was to flick a switch, which did sometimes cause interesting results as the programs could sometimes combine... but hey, that was the technology of those halcyon days!

Although there's not much that these old consoles can actually "do", there was still significant progress in games that you can see were the seedlings of many modern day games. Of the two Pong Consoles I owned, one was the first colour one, the other was the first to feature a "light gun". The two target games were very simple, just shoot the moving square, however the light gun had one fatal flaw... point it at something white, and you registered a hit every time! Heaven forbid you didn't have the telly tuned in PRECISELY to the right frequency, or the resultant snow storm would result in you never missing, or at least so you thought. Even a brightly-lit room resulted in a 100% shooting record.

Still, thanks to that particular progression of technology, we ended up with gems like Virtua Cop, Time Crisis and other gun-based games that can make you feel like you're really in the high-intensity situations that arise.

Well, we were never going to be faced with advancing armies of deadly white squares, were we?