Codex Gamicus
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Business[]

  • New companies: Mindscape, Inc., Sierra On-Line.
  • Mattel creates the original five-programmer Intellivision game design team, nicknamed the Blue Sky Rangers by a magazine writer when the company keeps their names secret in a TV Guide interview.
  • The US arcade game market's revenues rise to $7.19 billion in 1980[1] (equivalent to $20.6 billion in 2021).
  • The home video game console market in the US generates $500 million in sales of systems and cartridges[2] (equivalent to $1.44 billion in 2021).

Notable releases[]

Games[]

Arcade
  • February: Namco releases Navarone, Kaitei Takara Sagashi (which was originally developed by K. K. Tokki as a prototype) and SOS.
  • May: Namco releases Pac-Man, its biggest-selling game. One of the most influential games, it had the first gaming mascot character, established the maze chase video games genre, opened gaming to female audiences,[3] and introduced power-ups[4] and cutscenes.[5]
  • June: Namco releases King & Balloon, which was one of the first games to feature speech synthesis.
  • October: Namco releases Tank Battalion.
  • Namco releases King & Balloon,[6] which is the first game to feature synthesized voices. It also featured dual-core processing, using two Z80 microprocessors, the second to drive a DAC for speech.[7]
  • Namco releases Navalone, Kaitei Takara Sagashi, SOS, Tank Battalion, and Rally-X, which is the first game to feature a bonus round.
  • Nintendo releases the Radar Scope arcade game and the Game & Watch handheld LCD game by Gunpei Yokoi.
  • Universal release the arcade game Space Panic, often cited as the first platform game.
  • Stern Electronics (a subsidiary of Universal Research Laboratories) releases the Berzerk arcade game.
  • Warner Communications' Atari releases the Missile Command arcade game, and the Battlezone arcade game (it was later enhanced for the US Army for military training) – albeit relying on specialized vector graphics hardware.
  • Williams Electronics releases the Defender arcade game.
  • Warner Communications' Atari releases the Centipede (by Ed Logg & Dona Bailey) and Warlords arcade games and also the Tempest color vector arcade game.
Computer
  • Rogue is written by Michael Toy, Glenn Wichman, and Ken Arnold, spawning the category of roguelike games.
  • Edu-Ware releases The Prisoner, loosely based upon the 1960s TV series of the same name. Programmed by David Mullich, it became a classic of the Apple II platform.
  • Infocom releases Zork I, the first Zork game and the first Infocom game.

Hardware[]

Arcade
Console
Computer
  • Sinclair Research releases the ZX80 home computer and Acorn Computers release the Atom, the first 'domestic' computers to play games in the United Kingdom.

References[]

Video game releases[]

Name Release Date Category Region(s) Platform(s)
3-D STARTREK 1980 Video Game North America Apple II, Atari 800, TI 99/4
3-D Tic-Tac-Toe 1980 Video Game North America Atari 8-bit
Adventure 1980 Video Game North America Atari 2600
Alien Invaders Plus 1980 Video Game North America Magnavox Odyssey 2
Alpine Skiing 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Asteroids Deluxe 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Astro Fighter 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Astro Invader 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Auto Racing October 3, 1980 Video Game North America Intellivision
Balloon Bomber 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Battlezone 1980 Video Game North America Arcade
Blockout!/Breakdown! 1980 Video Game North America Magnavox Odyssey 2
Boxing (1980) July, 1980 Video Game International Undefined
Carnival (1980) 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Casino Slot Machine 1980 Video Game North America Magnavox Odyssey 2
Championship Soccer 1980 Video Game North America Atari 2600
Checkers September 17, 1980 Video Game North America Intellivision
Chinese Logic 1980 Video Game Europe Magnavox Odyssey 2
Circus Atari 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Cosmic Conflict 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Crazy Balloon 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Crazy Climber 1980 Video Game North America Arcade
Dodge Em 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Dodger Cars 1980 Video Game North America Atari 2600
Dragster 1980 Video Game North America Atari 2600
Dynasty 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Electronic Table Soccer 1980 Video Game North America Magnavox Odyssey 2
Fairchild Channel F Videocart-19 1980 Video Game North America Fairchild Channel F
Fishing Derby 1980 Video Game North America Atari 2600
Golf (1980) 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Gopher 1980 Video Game North America Atari 2600
Heiankyo Alien January, 1980 Video Game Japan Arcade
Heli Fire June, 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Horse Racing October 3, 1980 Video Game North America Intellivision
Kaitei Takara Sagashi 1980 Video Game Japan Arcade
King & Balloon October, 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Las Vegas Blackjack 1980 Video Game Brazil Magnavox Odyssey 2
Las Vegas Poker & Blackjack 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Las Vegas Roulette 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Major League Baseball September 4, 1980 Video Game North America Intellivision
Missile Command July, 1980 Video Game North America Arcade
Mission X 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Monaco GP 1980 Video Game North America Arcade
N-Sub October, 1980 Video Game Japan Arcade
NASL Soccer (Intellivision) September 4, 1980 Video Game North America Intellivision
Navarone 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
NBA Basketball (Intellivision) August 25, 1980 Video Game North America Intellivision
NFL Football (Intellivision) August 27, 1980 Video Game North America Intellivision
NHL Hockey (Intellivision) October 3, 1980 Video Game North America Intellivision
Pac-Man May 22, 1980 Video Game Japan Arcade
Pac-Man 1980 Video Game North America Arcade
Pachinko 1980 Video Game North America Magnavox Odyssey 2
PGA Golf November 5, 1980 Video Game North America Intellivision
Phoenix December, 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Pocket Billiards 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Polaris (arcade game) 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Radar Scope November, 1980 Video Game North America Arcade
Red Baron 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Rip Off 1980 Video Game North America Arcade
Rip-Off 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Sea Battle October 3, 1980 Video Game North America Intellivision
Sheriff 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Showdown in 2100 AD 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Skiing 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Space Battle August 25, 1980 Video Game North America Intellivision
Space Fever 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Space Firebird 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Space Launcher 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Space Panic November, 1980 Video Game International Arcade
Spectar 1980 Video Game North America Arcade
Speedway/Spin-Out/Crypto-Logic 1980 Video Game Brazil Magnavox Odyssey 2
Star Castle 1980 Video Game North America Arcade
Star Trek 3.5 1980 Video Game North America TRS-80, Apple II
Stellar Trek 1980 Video Game North America Apple II
Stratovox August, 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Tank Battalion 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Tennis (Intellivision) December 10, 1980 Video Game North America Intellivision
The Electric Company: Math Fun 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
The Electric Company: Word Fun 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined
Thunderball 1980 Video Game Europe Magnavox Odyssey 2
US Ski Team Skiing December 10, 1980 Video Game North America Intellivision
USCF Chess November 23, 1980 Video Game North America Intellivision
Volleyball (Magnavox Odyssey 2) 1980 Video Game North America Magnavox Odyssey 2
Warlords 1980 Video Game North America Arcade
Zeus World 1980 Video Game Undefined Undefined

Hardware releases[]

Name Release Date Category Region(s)
Computer TV-Game 1980 Dedicated Console Japan
Game & Watch (series) 1980 Handheld Japan