Computer games are a hit with all generations of people. Before the invention of computer games, there were the video consoles like Sega, Dreamcast, Gameboy and others.
The video consoles were only a hit with the younger generation. Due to the poor quality, DOS like graphics, they could not spread among all of age groups. Programmers were limited by the lack of storage space. The utilization of DVD-ROMs by computer game developers opened a whole lot of ideas to the game developers.
Computer Games are no longer limited to a tiny amount of storage space, which prevents the usage of high quality graphics. The fan following that the latest computer games generate is tremendous. The graphics from the time of Wolfenstein has improved by leaps and bounds. Right now, there is Halo 3 for Xbox 360; which will shortly be available for the PC platform. The game is packed with high definition graphics, improved AI, a superior lighting engine, new artillery, characters, and confrontation.
Earlier, in the computer motherboard there was a VGA slot which was limited to 4x speed. The newer PCI express slots replaced it. The PCI express slots could support up to 16x speed. The single PCI express graphics card has been replaced by the SLI system that boasted of dual graphic cards with identical specification.
The utilization of DVD-ROMs by computer game developers has enabled concepts like Pixel Shader, Hardware Texture & Lighting technology, Vertex Shader and Stream Processors that greatly enhance the quality of what we see. The Microsoft Corporation has bundled Direct X 10 along with its Windows Vista, the next generation operating system. It is expected to support the next generation of graphics and sound.
Game developers are nowadays not limited to making games for CDs only. The scripting for the object oriented programming or OOP has greatly been modified to suit the hardware that is coming out to meet the needs of a hardcore gamer.
Three-dimensional games are of immensely better quality than the likes of say Unreal Tournament, 2002. Unreal Tournament revolutionized the First Person Shooter genre with its Unreal Game Engine. It supported a lot of system configuration, yet produced high quality graphics on lower end machines. The size of the game was just over 600 MB. The new Unreal Tournament 3, which has hit the market at the end of the year 2007, is sized over 4 GB, with installation being double.
Nowadays the utilization of DVD-ROMs by computer game developers has dumped the CDs for game packaging. Single layer DVD has become an industry standard. However, game developers are putting their games on dual size or double-layered DVDs. The high performance game engines are taking a lot of space to perform. They are bundled with lot of things in additional to tools that run the game. The developers now have the luxury to spread their creativity without having to think about output storage systems.
Another industry standard construction is the half-life and the quake game engines. Half-life was the first FPS game, which took the market by storm with its superior game play and then incredible graphics. It went on to become the game of the year. Quake also revolutionized the team game along with its counterpart the Unreal Engine.
The game engines are taking the multi threading technology of the processors to the max. The games, which are sized almost a DVD, eats up at least double the size in the hard disk. Earlier a 700 MB game took around 500 MB to 1400 MB of Hard Disk space for installation. Now a 2 DVD game can eat up a whole partition of the hard disk.