Video Games Released in 1981

Last Updated on: August 9th, 2021

Video Games Released in 19811981 in Review:

1981 was a transformative year in the video game industry, marked by the release of several iconic games and the continued growth of the industry. Here are some key events that took place in the video game industry in 1981:

  1. Donkey Kong: Nintendo’s “Donkey Kong” was released in 1981 and quickly became one of the most popular arcade games of all time. The game introduced several important gameplay mechanics, including multiple levels and power-ups.
  2. The rise of arcades: Arcades continued to be a major force in the video game industry in 1981, with games like “Donkey Kong,” “Frogger,” and “Ms. Pac-Man” drawing huge crowds.
  3. Home consoles: The popularity of home consoles continued to grow in 1981, with the release of the ColecoVision and the Atari 5200. Both consoles featured improved graphics and sound over their predecessors.
  4. PC gaming: The IBM PC was released in 1981, marking the beginning of the era of PC gaming. Early PC games included “Wizardry” and “Ultima.”
  5. Galaga: “Galaga” was released in 1981 and quickly became one of the most popular arcade games of all time. The game introduced several new gameplay mechanics, including “dual fighter” mode and the ability to capture enemy ships.
  6. The video game crash: Despite the industry’s growth, 1981 also saw the beginning of the video game crash, which would last until 1983. The crash was caused by a combination of factors, including oversaturation of the market and the poor quality of some games.

Overall, 1981 was a year of significant change and growth in the video game industry, with several iconic games and new technologies paving the way for the future of gaming. However, the industry also faced some challenges, including the beginning of the video game crash.

Video Games Released in 1981:

Here is our enormous collection of video games released in 1981 and detailed information on each. As always, new games are added to this collection regularly.

Click on a game listing to find out much more about it.

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