Game history

Updated: 03/10/2024 by Computer Hope
Baldur's Gate 3 game in city.

Listed below are the important events in history relating to games, including release dates for many popular and historic games, consoles, and related products.


To see who invented the first computer game, see: When was the first computer game released?


Thomas T. Goldsmith Jr. and Estle Ray Mann filed patent #2,455,992, describing one of the first computer games played on a CRT (cathode ray tube) on January 25, 1947.



Alexander Sandy Douglas created the first graphical computer game of Tic-Tac-Toe on an EDSAC known as "OXO."


William Higinbotham created the first video game called: Tennis for Two.


Steve Russell created "SpaceWar!," and released it in February 1962. SpaceWar! was considered the first game intended for computers.


Ralph Baer created "Chase," the first video game that could be played on a television.


Ralph Baer filed for a US patent on August 21, 1969, that describes playing games on a television and would later be a part of the Magnavox Odyssey.


Nolan Bushnell and Ted Dabney created the first arcade game called "Computer Space."


The first video game console, the Magnavox Odyssey, was demonstrated on May 24, 1972, and later released by Magnavox and sold for $100.00 USD.

Pong game played on Atari.

Atari released Pong, the first commercial video game, on November 29, 1972.


The first car game, Gran Trak 10, was released by Atari in May 1974.


In 1975, software developer Will Crowther wrote Colossal Cave Adventure, the first text adventure game.


The first fighting game, Heavyweight Champ, was released in 1976.


Atari released the Atari 2600 (originally called the Atari VCS) on September 11, 1977. It was credited as the first game system to utilize ROM cartridges to store game code, instead of having games built into the gaming system.

Marc Blank and Dave Lebling began developing the influential text adventure game called Zork.


Roy Trubshaw and Richard Bartle created the first MUD.

Space Invaders was released as an arcade video game in Japan in June 1978 and later in North America in 1979. Its popularity grew quickly, with over 100,000 machines sold and installed in arcades across Japan by the end of 1978. The success of Space Invaders earned it a spot as a pop culture icon, inspiring ports to multiple computer platforms and gaming consoles, several sequels, and many re-released.


Atari became the first company to register a Copyright for two computer games: "Asteroids" and "Lunar Lander" on June 17, 1980.

Namco's Pac-Man

Namco released Pac-Man as an arcade game in Japan on May 22, 1980, and later in the United States in October 1980. Pac-Man is considered one of the highest revenue generating video games of all time, bringing in over $2.5 billion as of the 1990s. Its popularity spawned over 30 licensed spin-offs on multiple gaming systems and computer platforms.


Ultima I: The First Age of Darkness was released for the PC in 1981 by Origin Systems. The game's popularity resulted in nine sequels being released for the primary series between 1981 and 1999. Several additional series and spin-offs were also released for the PC and other platforms. The Ultima III sequel also influenced other role-playing games like Excalibur and Dragon Quest.

Jeff Dailey, a 19-year old, became the first person to die from computer gaming after dying from a heart attack after posting a score of 16,660 on Berzerk.

Castle Wolfenstein was developed and released by Muse Software for the Apple II in 1981. It was later released for the 8-bit Atari system and the Commodore 64. Its popularity inspired Wolfenstein 3D, a DOS-based first-person shooter video game.

Donkey Kong was released by Namco and Nintendo as an Arcade video game on July 9, 1981, becoming one of the best-selling arcade games of the early 1980s. Its popularity resulted in 15 sequels over the next 30 years and multiple ports to other gaming consoles and computer platforms, including the Commodore 64 and Atari.


On January 18, 1982, Time Magazine was released with its first cover dedicated to video games titled "Video Games Are Blitzing the World."

The first Microsoft Flight Simulator game was released for the PC in 1982. Microsoft Flight Simulator started a very successful series of flight simulator games, running nearly 25 years (three years longer than the Windows operating system series). It is one of the longest-running PC game series ever, awarding it a Guinness world record: Gamer's Edition 2008 entry for "Longest Running Flight Sim Series."

The Vectrex video game console was released in 1982.


The first game in the King's Quest series was released by Sierra Entertainment in July 1983. It was originally designed to be played on the PCjr, an IBM home computer model. It was later released for the Apple II, Sega Master System, and MS-DOS computers. Multiple sequels were released between 1984 and 1998.

The Famicom (family computer), also known as the NES (Nintendo Entertainment System), was the first console gaming system released by Nintendo, launched in Japan on July 15, 1983. It was the best-selling game console in Japan by the end of 1984. Production discontinued in 1995, with 61.9 million units sold worldwide.

Sega released its first home console, the SG-1000, in Japan on July 15, 1983.


The MUD known as MAD became the first global MUD and ran across BITNET.

The game Tetris was released in the USSR on June 6, 1984. The game became a classic video game available on nearly every computer platform and gaming console. IGN ranks the game 2nd on its list of the top 100 video games of all time.


Super Mario Brothers for the NES console system was released on September 13, 1985. Packaged with the NES console and also sold separately, over 40 million copies of the game were sold as of 1999. Its success resulted in multiple sequels being developed, including Super Mario Bros. 2 in 1986 and Super Mario Bros. 3 in 1988.

Sega released the Sega Master System video game console in Japan in October 1985 and in North America in 1986.


The Legend of Zelda for the NES was released on February 21, 1986. The first game in the very successful franchise of games, it's the fourth best selling game ever for the NES. In total, the Legend of Zelda franchise, a total of 16 games for the Nintendo series of game consoles, sold over 67 million copies worldwide.


Leisure Suit Larry was released for the PC on July 5, 1987. The game was geared towards a more mature audience, because it centers around a character that attempts to seduce attractive women. The game's popularity and success resulted in seven games being released between 1987 and 1996, despite its questionable content and objectives.

The first Final Fantasy role-playing video game was released on December 18, 1987, by Square Enix. Originally released for the Nintendo gaming console, a sequel was later released for the PC and PlayStation 2 in 2002. The Final Fantasy game franchise became very successful and popular, selling over 100 million copies between the original and all sequels. Its success earned it seven records in the Guinness World Records Gamer's Edition 2008.


Sega released the Sega Genesis (or Mega Drive in Japan) in Japan on October 29, 1988, and later in North America on August 14, 1989. By 2010, at least 20.4 million units were sold globally.


SimCity game box cover art

SimCity was released by Maxis on October 3, 1989. By December 1990, the game won 21 awards. It was also ranked as the fourth best PC game ever by PC World in 2009 and eleventh by IGN in 2009. In 2007, at a German technology and games trade show, it was credited as one of the sixteen most influential games ever.


Wing Commander was released by Origin Systems as a PC DOS-based game on September 26, 1990. Wing Commander was ranked as the seventh-best PC game ever by Computer Gaming World in 1996, and Maximum PC listed it in 2011 as one of 16 games that should be remade.

The Secret of Monkey Island was released in October 1990 by LucasArts. Designed as a point-and-click graphic adventure game, it was well-received by the gaming community and critics. The game was featured several times in IGN's Video Game Hall of Fame and in 1996, ranked as the 19th best game of all time by Computer Gaming World. Three additional sequels were released, each receiving excellent reviews and rankings. A remake of the game was also released in 2009 for the iPhone.

Microsoft's Solitaire, the first highly successful casual game on the personal computer, was released in 1990. Since its release, it has drawn approximately 400 million gamers.

Sega released the Game Gear on October 6, 1990, its first handheld video game system. The device was later released in North America and Europe on April 26, 1991.

The first Commander Keen game, "Mooned on Mars," was released on December 14, 1990.


Scorched Earth was released for the computer as a DOS-based game in 1991. Officially released as version 1.0 in 1991, version 1.0b was technically the game's Beta before version 1.0. Due to its popularity, the game had many clones since its release, including Atomic Tanks, xscorch, and Scorched 3D.

Monkey Island 2: LeChuck's Revenge was released in December 1991 by LucasArts. As a sequel to the original game, The Secret of Monkey Island, the game received very high ratings, including 96% from Computer and Video Games. It was ranked 74th on the list of best games of all time by Computer Gaming World in 1996.

Sid Meier's Civilization, commonly called Civilization or Civ, was released in late 1991 by MicroProse. In November 1996, Computer Gaming World named Civ as the best game of all time. In 2000, IGN placed the game 4th on its top PC games ever, and in 2012, Time magazine included the game in its list of the 100 greatest video games of all time.


Wolfenstein 3D was released by id Software on May 5, 1992. It was originally released for the PC and later was ported to computer platforms and gaming consoles. Wolfenstein 3D was one of the major reasons for the popularity and success of the run-and-gun or FPS type of first-person shooter video game.


The Incredible Machine was released for the PC and Mac, providing players with many puzzles to solve using various items. The object of the puzzles ranges from getting a ball into a basket, shooting off a rocket, or popping a balloon. Multiple versions of the game were released over the next 17 years, including versions for the iPad and iPhone.

LucasArts released Star Wars: X-Wing in February 1993. Star Wars: X-Wing was the first game released by LucasArts that centered around the Star Wars series. It was the best selling game in 1993, and Computer Gaming World named it "Simulation of the Year". It was also awarded the Origins Award for "Best Fantasy or Science Fiction Computer Game of 1993."

Broderbund released the computer game Myst on September 24, 1993, and later was honored for being a popular, well known, and highly-sold IBM compatible and Apple Macintosh title.

On September 27, 1993, Time Magazine released its magazine with the cover dedicated to video games with the title "Attack of the Video Games."

Trilobyte was one of the first successful companies to release a full multimedia game in 1993 called The 7th Guest.

Doom game box art

The PC game DOOM by id Software was released as shareware on December 10, 1993. The company encouraged people to distribute it freely to others, and about 10 million people played it in the first two years of its release. Its success resulted in multiple sequels and a 44th top video game of all time ranking by IGN. Today, DOOM is considered a turning point for first-person shooters and computer games in general.


The first Elder Scrolls game, titled "The Elder Scrolls: Arena," was released in March 1994 by Bethesda Softworks. Initially, the release was nearly a disaster, including late release and misleading packaging. Despite this and sour reviews by critics, the game continued to sell and earned recognition as a cult hit. Matt Barton, a game historian, says, "the game set a new standard for this type of CRPG."

LucasArts released Star Wars: TIE Fighter in July 1994. As a sequel to the Star Wars: X-Wing game, it featured improvements over its predecessor and earned multiple awards, including "Best Game of the Year" by Strategy Plus. It also entered the Computer Gaming World and IGN Hall of Fame. PC Gamer ranked it #1 in its list of the 50 Greatest Games of All Time in May 1997. IGN also ranked #3 in its list of the top 25 PC games ever in 2007 and #2 in 2009.

WarCraft was released in November 1994 and was the start of a very successful franchise of games for Blizzard Entertainment. The popularity of the game and its story fueled the release of several sequels, including WarCraft 2, WarCraft 3, and World of Warcraft. It also inspired several books, toys, and a trading card game.

Sega released the Sega Saturn in Japan on November 22, 1994. It was later released for North America and Europe in 1995.

PlayStation logo

Sony released the PlayStation console gaming system in Japan on December 3, 1994, and later in North America on September 9, 1995. The PlayStation system was the first gaming system to sell over 100 million units, selling over 102 million units within ten years of being released.


Electronic Entertainment Expo

The first E3 was held in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Command & Conquer was released by Westwood Studios on August 31, 1995, and was one of the earliest real-time strategy games. It was released for multiple platforms, including the PC, Mac, PlayStation, Nintendo 64, and Sega Saturn. Its popularity and success were the reason for the general popularity of the real-time strategy game genre. The Command & Conquer series was awarded six world records in the Guinness Book of World Records: Gamer's Edition 2008, including "Biggest Selling RTS Series."

Microsoft Fury 3 was released on August 31, 1995.

The Need for Speed was released for the PC on August 31, 1995, by Electronic Arts. Need for Speed started a very successful franchise of NFS (Need for Speed) games, with 19 games released for the PC as of October 30, 2012. NFS games were also available on gaming consoles like PlayStation and Xbox. Some games were even available for the iOS and Android mobile platforms.


The game Duke Nukem 3D was released on January 29, 1996. It was considered one of the most important video games ever due to its continued popularity even today and for its influence on modern video games.

The ABUSE game was released in March 1996.

Quake game box

id Software released Quake, the successor to their Doom game series, on June 22, 1996. Offering full real-time 3D rendering and 3D acceleration through OpenGL, Quake gained popularity among first-person shooter fans, especially with the online multiplayer gaming modes.

The first Tomb Raider game was released on October 25, 1996, by Eidos. The main character, Lara Croft, was inducted into the Walk of Game and recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records as the "Most Successful Human Virtual Game Heroine." The Tomb Raider game series was popular enough to influence the release of two movies that grossed over $430 million worldwide.

Diablo game box

Blizzard Entertainment released Diablo for the macOS on November 30, 1996, and the PC on December 31, 1996. Its popularity and excellent gameplay earned it the Game of the Year award from GameSpot. As of April 3, 2013, Diablo sits in the #1 spot on GameSpot's list of all PC games by score, with a 9.6 out of 10.


The game Blood was released on May 31, 1997.

The MMORPG (massively multiplayer role-playing game) UO (Ultima Online) was released on September 24, 1997.

Grand Theft Auto

Grand Theft Auto was released for the PC on October 21, 1997, by DMA Design. The game launched a popular and highly successful franchise totaling 14 games across multiple platforms as of April 2010. These platforms include the PC, PlayStation, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Xbox, Xbox 360, iOS, and Android. As of September 2011, over 114 million copies of various Grand Theft Auto games were sold.

Age of Empires was released on October 15, 1997, by Ensemble Studios. The game became popular, selling over 20 million copies worldwide. Its success resulted in the release of several sequels, a spin-off game series titled Age of Mythology, and a port to the Nintendo DS. It also influenced other real-time strategy games like Rise of Nations and Star Wars: Galactic Battlegrounds.

The Curse of Monkey Island was released on October 31, 1997 by LucasArts. Like its predecessors, The Secret of Monkey Island and Monkey Island 2: LeChuck's Revenge, the game received great reviews and high ratings. It was also nominated in the first annual Interactive Achievement Awards for Computer Adventure Game of the Year and Outstanding Achievement in Art/Graphics.

Id Software released the much anticipated Quake II game on December 9, 1997. Considered by many to be the most popular game in 1998, over one million copies were sold by 2007. Some mods were available for download to Quake II players, including a learning bot system that learned as they went and increased gameplay difficulty.


StarCraft game box

StarCraft was released by Blizzard Entertainment for the PC on March 31, 1998, and for the Mac in 1999. Selling over 11 million copies by 2009, the game was an important step in developing real-time strategy games, raising the bar for the gaming industry.

Unreal was developed by Epic MegaGames and released on May 22, 1998, by GT Interactive. The game was credited with helping to popularize the Unreal graphics engine, which is still used today with DirectX and OpenGL for graphics rendering.

Valve Corporation released Half-Life, a popular FPS game, on November 19, 1998. As of July 2007, over 20 million copies of all Half-Life series games were sold worldwide.

Sega released the Dreamcast console in Japan on November 27, 1998. It was later released for North America and Europe in 1999.

Baldur's Gate was released by Interplay Entertainment on November 30, 1998. The first in several role-playing games, it sold over 2 million copies worldwide as of 2008. It was credited with helping to revive the RPG genre, and PC Gamer is quoted as saying the game "sets new standards for those to come."


The popular MMORPG (massively multiplayer role-playing game) EQ (EverQuest) was released on March 16, 1999. The game launched one of the most successful MMORPG series, which includes 19 expansions as of November 2012. The game had over 450,000 subscribers by September 25, 2003.

The original Team Fortress (Team Fortress Classic) was released in April 1999.

Counter-Strike was developed as a mod for Half-Life game and released as a mod on June 19, 1999. Valve Corporation purchased Counter-Strike rights and released it as a store-bought game on November 8, 2000. The game grew popular quickly and developed into a franchise of games, selling over 27 million copies as of August 2011.

Age of Empires II was released on September 30, 1999 by Ensemble Studios. Successor to the original Age of Empires game, it received high ratings from nearly all the major gaming magazines and critics, including a 92% from GameRankings and Metacritic. In 2007, IGN ranked it the 10th best computer game of all time.

Grand Theft Auto 2 was released in October 1999 by DMA Design.

GameSpy was founded in October 1999.

Activision acquired worldwide publishing rights to release Alundra 2 in 1999, the highly anticipated sequel to the acclaimed PlayStation game console title Alundra.

Unreal Tournament, also called UT99, was released for the PC on November 30, 1999, and featured deathmatch, capture the flag, and last man standing gameplay modes. It was praised for its great graphics, gameplay, and multiplayer gaming features.


The Sims

Electronic Arts released The Sims on February 4, 2000. The game became one of the best-selling PC games in history, selling over 16 million copies worldwide. The game's success earned it five records in the Guinness World Records: Gamer's Edition 2008.

Sony released the PlayStation 2 console gaming system, also known as the PS2, in Japan on March 4, 2000, and North America on October 25, 2000. As of March 31, 2012, about 155 million units were sold globally, making it the best selling game console system of all time. The PlayStation 2 also had the largest game library available, with 3,857 games.

Deus Ex was released on June 26, 2000, by Eidos Interactive. Despite a few game flaws, the game ranks highly on many game lists, including Top 25 PC Games of All Time and 100 Greatest Games of All Time. It also ranked #1 on PC Gamer's 100 Best PC Games in February 2011. Over one million game copies were sold worldwide by April 23, 2009.

Microsoft released the Brute Force game for the PC in 2000 and later released it for the Xbox in 2003.

Blizzard Entertainment released Diablo 2 for the PC on June 29, 2000, and the Mac on July 26, 2000. The game sold over a million copies in its first two weeks and won several awards, including many Game of the Year awards.

Counter-Strike was released on November 8, 2000.

Escape from Monkey Island was released on November 8, 2000 by LucasArts. The fourth game in the Monkey Island game series, it was the last adventure game to be released by LucasArts. At the 2000 E3 Game Critics Awards, it was named the Best Action/Adventure Game. While it received less favorable reviews than the previous three games in the series, it was still popular in the gaming community.


Bejeweled was released on May 30, 2001, by PopCap Games as an Internet browser-based game. It was later released for other platforms, like Xbox, Palm OS, iOS, Windows Phone, and Facebook. As of March 2008, over 75 million copies of the game were sold, and it's been downloaded over 150 million times.

Max Payne, a third-person shooter video game, was released for the PC on July 23, 2001, by Gathering of Developers. The game had excellent reception and received multiple awards for Best PC Game, Best Game 2001, Best Graphics in a Game, Best Computer Game of the Year, Editor's Choice, and others. Two sequels were released in 2003 and 2012, and in total, the game series sold more than 7.5 million copies worldwide.

Grand Theft Auto III was released for the PS2 and Xbox on October 23, 2001, by Rockstar North.

Xbox logo

Microsoft released the original Xbox game console on November 15, 2001. By May 1996, over 24 million consoles were sold worldwide, with 16 million in North America alone.

Bungie released the game Halo for the Xbox gaming system on November 15, 2001, launching the start of a multi-billion dollar video game franchise. The Halo series experienced unprecedented success, including multiple game sequels and expansion to other markets, like books, toys, clothing, television, and web video series. It was hailed as one of the best first-person shooter games for video game consoles.


MLG (Major League Gaming) was established in 2002.

The first Medal of Honor game for the computer, titled "Medal of Honor: Allied Assault," was released on January 22, 2002, by EA Games. It is the third release in the Medal of Honor game series and the first of three released for the PC and Mac. The game received a 91% rating from GameRankings and a 91/100 from Metacritic.

Battlefield 1942 was released by Electronic Arts on September 10, 2002. Battlefield 1942 began a very successful franchise, spanning 25 different Battlefield games and expansions, and sold over 50 million copies of all those games combined.

Unreal Tournament 2003, also called UT2003, was released on October 1, 2002, by Epic Games and Atari, Inc. Over one million downloads were made, setting a record for most downloads of a game demo. The popularity of the game and its superior game engine resulted in the game engine being licensed for use in other games, including Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six games and Splinter Cell.

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City was released for the PS2 and Xbox on October 29, 2002, by Rockstar North.


Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell was released for the PC on February 19, 2003, by Ubisoft and was well received in the gaming community. Its popularity helped drive the release of five more games in the series as of 2010, with a sixth slated for release in 2013. As of June 2010, over 22 million copies of the game series were sold worldwide.

The game Second Life was released on June 23, 2003, by Linden Research, Inc. Designed as a virtual world, players can interact with the virtual environment and other players through an avatar. At its height in 2008, the game had over 88,000 concurrent players online. In 2009, the game's total economy was about $567 million.

Steam logo

Valve Corporation introduced Steam on September 12, 2003. As of December 2012, nearly 200 games were available for download and play, and Steam had about 54 million active user accounts.

The first game in the Call of Duty series was released on October 29, 2003. The game's popularity pushes Infinity Ward to release sequels in three story arcs: World War II, Modern Warfare, and Black Ops. Within eight years, the series of games sold over 100 million copies worldwide and boasts 40 million active players.

Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic was released for the computer on November 19, 2003, by LucasArts. It was named Game of the Year by IGN, Computer Gaming World, PC Gamer, Game Developers Choice Awards and G4. It was also ranked #3 on IGN's list of the Best Games of the Decade (2000-2009). It was also recognized as "one of the most influential works of the Star Wars Expanded Universe" by the Los Angeles Times.


Counter-Strike: Condition Zero was released in March 2004.

GameSpy and IGN merged on March 4, 2004.

Far Cry was released by Ubisoft on March 23, 2004. It sold about 730,000 copies worldwide in the first four months after its release, helping launch a successful series for the PC and game consoles.

Bethesda obtained rights to the Fallout game series and announced on July 12, 2004, they were working on Fallout 3.

Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas was released on October 26, 2004, by Rockstar North.

Half-Life 2 was released by Valve Corporation on November 16, 2004. Successor to the original Half-Life game, over 12 million copies were sold by February 2011. The game won 39 "Game of the Year" awards and was named "Game of the Decade" by several magazine publishers and at the 2012 Spike Video Game Awards.

Counter-Strike: Source was released in November 2004.

World of Warcraft logo

Blizzard's World of Warcraft game, the most popular and successful MMORPG, was released on November 23, 2004. As of April 2008, 62% of all MMORPG game subscriptions worldwide were tied to World of Warcraft. At its peak in October 2010, the game had over 12 million subscribers worldwide.


Guild Wars was released by NCsoft on April 26, 2005. Guild Wars does not require a subscription to play, but instead, players purchase episodes, providing unlimited online play for that episode. By April 2009, NCsoft reported that about six million game copies were sold worldwide.

Microsoft Xbox 360

Microsoft released the Xbox 360, the second generation of its popular game console, on November 22, 2005. Over 70 million consoles were sold worldwide by September 30, 2012.


Sony released the PlayStation 3 console gaming system, also known as the PS3, in Japan on November 11, 2006, and released in North America and Europe shortly after. As of November 4, 2012, about 70 million units were sold globally.

Garry's Mod was made available on Steam on November 29, 2006.

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories, a PlayStation Portable exclusive version of GTA released in 2006, by Rockstar North.

Nintendo Wii remote

Nintendo released the Wii gaming console system in North America on November 19, 2006, and in Japan on December 2, 2006. As of December 31, 2012, over 99 million units were sold globally. The Wii was the first gaming system to allow games from previous systems to be downloaded and played on it.


Crysis was released for the PC on November 13, 2007, published by Electronic Arts. The game received excellent ratings, including a 98% rating by PC Gamer magazine, making it one of the highest-rated games ever in that magazine. By May 2010, over 3 million copies were sold worldwide, making it one of the best selling PC games ever. Crysis was also one of the most pirated games in 2007, as reported by TorrentFreak.

Portal was released by Valve Corporation on October 9, 2007. Available through Valve's Steam and as a standalone product, the game won many awards, including Game of the Year, Best Puzzle Game for PC (personal computer), and Most Innovative Design. Time magazine included the game in its list of 100 greatest video games of all time in November 2012. Wired also recognized Portal as one of the most influential games of the 21st century.

On October 10, 2007, Valve released TF2 (Team Fortress 2).


Grand Theft Auto IV for the PS3 and Xbox 360 were released on April 29, 2008, by Rockstar North.

Electronic Arts and Demiurge Studios released Mass Effect for the PC on May 28, 2008. It ranked #3 on the chart for Windows PC games at release, scoring a 92% rating from PC Zone and 91% from PC Gamer US. The game was also released for the Xbox 360 and was named "Game of the Year" by The New York Times.


The Minecraft game was released for Android OS devices on October 7, 2011, for iOS devices on November 17, 2011, and for PCs on November 18, 2011. As of January 22, 2103, over 20 million game copies were sold.

Borderlands was released for the PC on October 26, 2009, and for the Mac on December 3, 2010. A role-playing FPS game, Borderlands was a near instant hit, selling over two million copies by December 2009, and as of August 2011, over 4.5 million copies were sold. IGN included the game in its Top 100 Modern Video Games in late 2011.


StarCraft 2 was released by Blizzard Entertainment on July 27, 2010, twelve years after the release of its popular and successful predecessor, StarCraft. The game sold over 3 million copies in the first month of release, becoming the fastest selling real-time strategy game ever at the time.

On September 7, 2010, a "Toybox" feature was added to Garry's Mod for players to utilize the Amazon S3 to download content from third-party sources, including weapons, maps, and props.


Trion Worlds entered the MMORPG market by releasing Rift on March 1, 2011. As of August 2011, it was reported that one million users played the game and received many awards, including "Best New Online Game" at the 2011 Game Developers Conference. IGN recognized the game as the "Best PC Persistent World/MMO Game of 2011".

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, commonly called Skyrim, was released by Bethesda Softworks in November 2011. During the first few weeks of release, over 7 million game copies were shipped to retailers. It was also the fastest selling game on Valve Corporation's Steam platform, with a reported 5 million users logging in to play the game as of January 2, 2012.

SWTOR (Star Wars: The Old Republic) was released by Electronic Arts and LucasArts on December 20, 2011. Within three days of release, the game had about one million subscribers, making it the "fastest-growing MMO ever." Subscription numbers declined months after, and the game switched to a free-to-play model. In February 2012, MSNBC named SWTOR the Game of the Year.


Blizzard Entertainment released Diablo 3 for the PC and Mac on May 15, 2012, setting another record by selling 3.5 million copies in the first 24 hours of release. The third game in the Diablo series added a much-anticipated auction house, allowing players to sell gear, items, and gold to other players for in-game gold and real currency.

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) was released in August 2012.


On Feb. 21, 2013, GameSpy announced that because of a business decision, Ziff Davis (owner of IGN) decided to stop any development of GameSpy and shutting down the GameSpy network.

Grand Theft Auto V was released for the PS3 and Xbox 360 on September 17, 2013, by Rockstar North.


Hearthstone was released by Blizzard on March 11, 2014.

In April 2014, Glu, the new owner of the GameSpy servers, announced it would shut down the remaining operational GameSpy servers on May 31, 2014. The shut down caused a lot of older games like Battlefield 2, Crysis, Star Wars: Battlefront, and many games on Nintendo to lose online play.


The game Overwatch was released by Blizzard on May 24, 2016.


PUBG Corporation released PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds for PC on December 20, 2017.


Among Us was released.


Overwatch 2 was released as F2P (free-to-play) and as early access on October 4, 2022, without the PvE (player vs. Environment) mode and a reduction of team players (now 5v5, not 6v6).

The ninth expansion pack for World of Warcraft, Dragonflight, was released on November 28, 2022.


On May 16, 2023, Blizzard announced it would not be canceling the PvE (player vs. environment) mode planned for Overwatch 2 and that only elements of the mode would appear in later seasons.

Blizzard released Diablo IV for all platforms on June 6, 2023.

Baldur's Gate 3 was released for the PC on August 3, 2023.

Bethesda released Starfield on September 6, 2023.

Game Q&A - Computer History