Video games have come a long way from being a niche hobby. Over the years, the digital gaming industry has become a massive entertainment business that’s produced a plethora of blockbuster titles. As it currently stands, the industry earns a global revenue exceeding $101 billion, with over 1.2 billion gamers playing at any given time.
Gamers during the 1970s probably never imagined the business would grow by such leaps and bounds, back when Magnavox set things in motion when it released its first video game console. Since that time, we’ve seen a huge evolution in technology that lead to some big sellers, and sadly quite a few stinkers along the way.
Recently, e-shopper website Ebates put together an infographic examining this in closer detail. Bear in mind the list is by no means coming from a definitive authority, though it does highlight some notable titles which warrant the recognition.
Ebates also outlined interesting details on one of Nintendo's most iconic franchises: Super Mario Bros. which has been a widely acclaimed title since its initial debut on the NES.
Ebates notes that Super Mario Bros. is the top gaming franchise of all time, setting seven Guinness World Records. Since its launch in 1985 the game has been a hit; here’s how it performed over the years (in units sold):
- 1985: 55.75 Million (Super Mario Brothers)
- 1988: 17 Million (Super Mario Brothers 3)
- 1990: 20.6 Million (Super Mario World)
- 2009: 29.32 Million (New Super Mario Brothers WII)
Looking further down the chart, it's interesting to see the infographic considered Shenmue and its sequel to be "flops". It was the precursor to the open-world gameplay that eventually became a huge phenomenon from the eventual release of Grand Theft Auto. Unfortunately, it didn't take off as much as its successors had.
- ET: The Extra-Terrestrial (1982)
- Battlecruiser 3000AD (1996)
- Shenmue and Shenmue II (1999)
- APB: All Points Bulletin (2010)