As electronic games have matured they have begun to attract more mature audiences. Initially these games were primarily toys for boys. The growth area in the game industry is no longer adolescent males. It is mature adults, both men and women. Many of the most popular board games have been adapted to electronic game formats. Where youngsters hooked game consoles to TV sets, adults are playing games on their PCs, often against other players across the Internet. Grandparents are playing electronic games with grandchildren. They are also joining game clubs to play electronic games on the Internet with other senior citizens in another state or half a world away. Many of the top game companies are betting that older adults are the new growth market for the game industry.
Claude Shannon believed that computers could be programmed to play chess. In a sense he was right. He certainly never imagined chess players reaching across cyberspace as they exercise chess strategies on computerized game boards. Nor could he have imagined video poker, Internet casinos and all of the other popular electronic games people of all ages are playing. Electronic games aren't just for kids anymore.
Right behind Nintendo came Game Boy, a hand-held game console. Game consoles enjoyed a resurgence of popularity during the 1990s. A new, even more sophisticated generation of electronic games was introduced by 2001. These consoles included Playstation2 and Xbox. Electronic games continued to become more complex with more action and more graphics.
Electronic games, today, have achieved art form status. They are sort of a wonderful combination of board games and comic books all rolled up into one medium with spectacular graphics and compelling audio. Curiously enough, most electronic games are similar to board games. They have one of two central themes. The first is racing and the other is capturing area or opponents. Perhaps it is because of these similarities that electronic games have begun to capture a wider audience.