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Video Game Hall of Fame: All 24 Inductees Ranked - Part I (24-13)

ANALYST
Top 5 / Top 10
Timeless

Courtesy of The Strong, Rochester, New York
Courtesy of The Strong, Rochester, New York

Throughout history (yeah, this is going to be one of those kinds of articles - strap in), every time mankind has developed a new tool, they've found a way to play with it as well. Computers are no exception.

The concept of video games can be traced back to the 1950s when computers started using video monitors as opposed to teletype print-outs (for our younger readers, teletype is... well.. you know what, go look it up, we have an article to write.)

After 70 years - and especially after becoming as successful as it has - video games deserve a Hall of Fame of some kind.

And it does - inside the Strong museum located in Rochester, NY, and interactive museum "devoted to the history and exploration of play." The museum also houses the National Toy Hall of Fame, so it kind of has a handle on this whole "play" thing.

Earlier this Spring, the Video Game Hall of Fame - who's inductees are picked by both a public vote and an "International Selection Advisory Committee composed of journalists, scholars, and other individuals familiar with the history of video games and their role in society" - announced the arrival of four new games.

We'll get to them later, but we felt this was an opportune time to look at the entire roster of games in the Hall and rank them. Because that's what we do on the Internet.

Our list is primarily ordered based on the game's influence on the entire gaming world. It's not a pick of what games are "better" or "more popular", but simply how much impact each of them had on the game industry as a whole.

Of course, you may not agree with all (or any) of our picks, which is fine- you're allowed. We encourage you to share your picks in the comments below.

Also - and it has to be said because someone will forget - only inductees of the Video Game Hall of Fame are on this list. So, if you're wondering why the such-and-such game isn't on this list, it's because they're not in the Video Game Hall of Fame.

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Or, they are and I forgot about them. Which sounds like something I'd do, to be fair, but I'm pretty sure I got them all. I counted the list, like, three times.

So, with that in mind - we've ranked the 24 Inductees in the World Video Game Hall of Fame by their influence on the world of games. Starting with...


#24 The Oregon Trail (inducted in 2016)


If you went to elementary or junior high school in the US anytime between the 1980s until, well, now, you should be pretty familiar with The Oregon Trail. The game, which was designed to teach students about the migration into the American West in the 19th century.

While the game's accuracy (or lack thereof) of the American pioneer experience, and it's standing as one of the earliest pieces of "edutainment" software, certainly were grounds for a Hall of Fame induction, that's not the only reason.

Released at a time when both personal computers and gaming systems were rare among households (even at its peak, the Atari 2600 only sold 8 million units -nothing to sneeze at but hardly the majority of American homes), The Oregon Trail's usage in schools introduced students to both computing and gaming, inspiring whole generations to create their own games.

The Oregon Trail may not have been influential in the actual design of games, but it certainly got young kids around the world to start making them.

Provided they didn't die of dysentery.

From the American frontier to the final frontier...

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