Gaming's Greatest Icons

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Kentilla
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Re: Gaming's Greatest Icons

Post by Kentilla » Fri Jul 04, 2014 4:13 pm

Rob Hubbard - the man scored the soundtrack to my childhood.

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Re: Gaming's Greatest Icons

Post by markopoloman » Fri Jul 04, 2014 11:47 pm

Kentilla wrote:Rob Hubbard - the man scored the soundtrack to my childhood.
Yes, agreed! I don't think a day goes by without me humming something Hubbard did!
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Re: Gaming's Greatest Icons

Post by samhain81 » Sat Jul 05, 2014 9:58 am

Yuzo Koshiro - I can't think of a 16-bit tune from my childhood without thinking of Koshiro.

Koshiro was my childhood

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djslope
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Re: Gaming's Greatest Icons

Post by djslope » Wed Jul 09, 2014 10:48 am

I would love to see Philip and Andrew Oliver AKA the oliver twins included as I think the Dizzy games really pushed puzzle platforming forward

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Pinhead7
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Re: Gaming's Greatest Icons

Post by Pinhead7 » Sun Jul 13, 2014 1:44 pm

OK, mine would have to be

Shigeru Miyamoto
Matthew Smith
Rob Hubbard
Chris Abbott
Steve Wozniak
Philip and Andrew Oliver
David Darling
David Crane
Jeff Minter

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TheDude18
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Re: Gaming's Greatest Icons

Post by TheDude18 » Mon Jul 14, 2014 1:46 pm

Shaun Southern - He could make the C16 punch way above its weight with some fantastic games. I tip my hat off to someone who could create so much with so little. His games shaped my future as a Computer game fan.
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davyK
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Re: Gaming's Greatest Icons

Post by davyK » Sun Jul 20, 2014 10:43 pm

Nolan Bushnell. Argue all you like about Baer and Higginbotham. Bushnell started it if you are talking iconic.
Shigeru Miyamoto. Genius who restarted it. Probably more influential than anyone re game design.
John Carmack. 3D environments for better or worse are now a major part of gaming, and Carmack is the main man in this area.
Eugene Jarvis. Pioneering, influential shooting game genius.
Jeff Minter The definitive auteristic, indie gamer.

added this after reading subsequent posts
Alexei Pajitnov Discovered (no other word for it ) Tetris which will be played by people forever. Old Sov block wrangling drama re its licensing etc add to the legend.
Last edited by davyK on Tue Aug 26, 2014 9:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Gaming's Greatest Icons

Post by TheAlex » Tue Jul 22, 2014 8:52 pm

Shigeru Miyamoto without question.

As a younger child with an Amstrad CPC I always used to get excited when I saw "The Darling Brothers" or "The Oliver Twins" on a game cover. Even leaving aside The Oliver Twins' Dizzy, Operation Gunship was awesome, Skiing was great as were some of the other simulator games - Grand Prix 2, and BMX Simulator I or II - the first simultaneous 4 player game on the Amstrad I think. Codemasters were one of the best for a long time.

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Re: Gaming's Greatest Icons

Post by IronMaidenRule » Wed Jul 30, 2014 10:34 am

Jon Hare

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Spector
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Re: Gaming's Greatest Icons

Post by Spector » Wed Jul 30, 2014 6:59 pm

I think the use of the term "icon" is wrong, because videogames have never been about personalities; you've got the classic movie icons like Bogart (anti-hero), Cagney (the gangster you love), Edward G Robinson (the gangster you love to hate) etc etc. These guys all represent a part of us in some way or another. The same goes for rock music (John Lennon, Jim Morrison, Bob Dylan and so on), and that's why we put posters of them up on our walls. Nobody's going to put a poster of Shigeru Miyamoto up on their wall, are they?

Not only that, figures like Jack Tramiel shouldn't be anywhere near a list like this. I know he died recently, God rest his soul, but this is a guy who (according to Steven Kent's excellent The Ultimate History Of Videogames) was known for dreadful business practice that involved purposely paying company debts so late he sent benefactors out of business before buying them up and forgiving his own debts. There's also strong evidence this "icon" was involved in one of the biggest financial scandals in Canadian history. The guy's a nipple.

There aren't any icons in gaming- at least not behind the scenes- but the people who should be remembered are those behind its best moments like Jeff Minter, Matthew Smith, Alexey Pajitnov or whoever, not the owners of the companies that made the platforms they weaved their magic on.
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Re: Gaming's Greatest Icons

Post by Antiriad2097 » Thu Jul 31, 2014 4:58 am

Spector wrote:I think the use of the term "icon" is wrong, because videogames have never been about personalities...
the people who should be remembered are those behind its best moments like Jeff Minter, Matthew Smith, Alexey Pajitnov or whoever, not the owners of the companies that made the platforms they weaved their magic on.
But those people are icons. How many C64 games were bought because they had a Hubbard soundtrack or were Minter's latest? They may not be as common as music or film stars, but there are at least a few distinct personalities behind the keyboard.

And does it matter if those who brought game machines to the fore were cutthroat? Not every movie or music star is an angel, some of them are downright horrible individuals.
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Spector
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Re: Gaming's Greatest Icons

Post by Spector » Thu Jul 31, 2014 3:35 pm

It's not the same thing though, because unlike music and movies, videogames are basically impersonal and asexual; they don't reflect the human condition or say anything about us as people in any meaningful way, let's be honest about that. That's why attempts to make 'icons' out of the developers behind them are doomed to failure. The programmer of Superman for the Atari VCS, John Dunn, best summed this up in his reply to the "are games art?" question:

"No, I consider it craft, not art. Certainly there are artistic touches, and in modern video games there is of course a great deal of artwork. But a video game - any programming project, really - is more dependent on the attention to detail that we usually associate with craftsmanship, than the raw creative insight we associate with artistry."

That lack of artistry- and the 'raw creative insight' which comes with it- is for me the root of the buying public's lack of interest in people behind videogames.
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Re: Gaming's Greatest Icons

Post by Antiriad2097 » Thu Jul 31, 2014 4:50 pm

But the question isn't an artistic one. There are icons of sport or business that have no artistic merit, but are held as the shining examples in their field, elevated from just being skilful to icon status.
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stevenhowlett
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Re: Gaming's Greatest Icons

Post by stevenhowlett » Sat Aug 02, 2014 10:33 am

My choices of Gaming Icons: Leaders and Designers would be:

Ralph Baer:
He first developed a means of putting video game consoles into the hands of the consumer. Persuading 350,000 Americans to buy Odyssey's was an achievement in itself.

Hiroshi Yamauchi
When the gaming industry were losing their shirts following the great 1983 video game crash, this guy took a pause and thought about what the gaming world really wanted. In a way, Hiroshi was video gaming's "Noah moment".

Sir Clive Sinclair:
Responsible introducing millions of British children to the art of programming, many of who went on to have successful carers in game development.

John Carmack
For many years gaming was safe, cute and kid oriented. Doom exploded onto an unsuspecting industry and provided a gritty, 3D gaming experience that mature fans could enjoy.
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Re: Gaming's Greatest Icons

Post by dwitefry » Fri Dec 05, 2014 10:42 pm

Spector wrote:(according to Steven Kent's excellent The Ultimate History Of Videogames)
i think the full title should be The Ultimate History of Atari and Nintendo Videogames in America. I don't feel that you need to be an art form to have 'icons', I hate do the 'oooh i have a dictionary definition' thing but apparently an icon is just "A person or thing regarded as a representative symbol or as worthy of veneration" so really you can have it in anything right?

Anyway, Ralph Baer should definitely be in the list, Gunpei Yokoi (for the Game Boy at least), I also vote for the great YAK because...well Jeff Minter's awesome, but Y'know, for better reasons than that too.

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