More Power, More Players

Doom video game poster

As video game popularity exploded, the release of new games became highly anticipated events. This movie-like promotional poster for Doom was both advertising and a collectible souvenir.

More Power, More Players

The lucrative game market caught the attention of established companies such as Sony and Microsoft in the 1990s. Sniffing an opportunity, they began producing computer game programs, home consoles, and handhelds.

Complex graphics became a major selling point. And as powerful home computers became affordable, many companies developed games for PCs first, adapting them later for consoles. The Internet—linking networked players—further expanded video games’ audience and reach.

Something for Everyone

As the game market grew in the 1990s, so did the variety of games. More choices brought more diverse players, further expanding the potential audience.

With video games established as mainstream entertainment, they increasingly cross-pollinated other popular media. Games spawned books and films, while TV shows, films, and comics in turn inspired games.

Lara Croft: Tomb Raider movie poster

Lara Croft is one of the most popular characters in the history of gaming. Tomb Raider led to two feature films, a series of novels and comic books, and theme park rides.

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Super Mario Brothers movie poster

The popularity of the Super Mario Brothers propelled them into other arenas, including a late 1980s TV show starring Capt. Lou Albano. In 1993, Bob Hoskins starred as Mario, with John Leguizamo as Luigi and Dennis Hopper as King Koopa in a film version of Super Mario Brothers,. The film was nominated for two Saturn awards.

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Doom movie poster

The success of the Doom video games led to a major motion picture starring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Karl Urban.

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Double Dragon movie poster

The popular Double Dragon franchise was turned into a live-action film in 1994. The film made less than three million dollars and was not considered a success.

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Pokemon: The First Movie poster

This adaptation of the popular Japanese game series Pocket Monsters (Pokemon) became an international success. It grossed more than $100 million and inspired a series of animated sequels.

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