Editorial: Gaming in 1990

Yes, 1990, the year that the very first McDonalds opened in Moscow and Windows 3.0 was released to the public. Back then there were not as many video games to choose from and instead many video game enthusiasts lived by the age-old wisdom that “You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometime, you’ll find, you get what you need.” No one really knows who came up with that nugget of wisdom, for all mankind knows it could have been a previous Pope. But still, Lusipurr.com as a site would be nothing short of amiss if there was not a series of editorials to inform readers of what gaming was like in the 1990’s, starting off with the year 1990. Some of these editorials will cover highly important games of that year, others may include landmark events pertaining to video games, or even people that could be described as “nifty” that also relate to the field of video games like developers or creators. So sit back, relax, and get ready to explore a past that is near 30 years away from the present Earth.

The original caption for this picture on the staff backend was: Was Mario the first furry?! Just a fun fact.
Mario adorned in his fursuit, is ready to save Princess Peach.

First up, it is time to go over the biggest video game releases of 1990. In February, Nintendo released the critically acclaimed Super Mario Bros. 3 in North America, which went on to sell over 17 million copies. After this, Nintendo published the very first game in the series, Final Fantasy in North America, which went on to have a…mixed series of games in its future like the most recently released Final Fantasy XV. Then, in October, The Secret of Monkey Island was released by LucasArts, yet to this day fans still do not know the true secret of Monkey Island. Last but not least, on December 14th of 1990, Commander Keen in Invasion of the Vorticons was released on the PC, making it one of the first big-name platformers to grace the platform, given that platformers were often placed on home consoles instead. The game was developed by id Software, famous for making games such as Wolfenstein and Doom, but back then they were actually known as Ideas from the Deep. Commander Keen in Invasion of the Vorticons did quite well for the development team, leading to their resignation from their current jobs in order to form the studio gamers know today as id Software, in order to make the games that many know of today as id Software continued to make their mark in video game history.

He plays Monk in the tv show Monk, but the man he plays, Adrian Monk, is not actually a monk. It is just his last name.
Galoob, not be confused with Tony Shalhoub.

Next to the party are the systems that were released in the year 1990, of which there were quite a bit. The most notable of these new consoles being the Super Famicom, which launched with titles such as Super Mario World and F-Zero, marking a new age in video game technology with increased power and mind-blowing visual effects thanks to the specialty chips placed in select Super Famicom games. After this, the Sega Game Gear was released in Japan to compete with the Game Boy, touting itself as being more technically advanced. However, due to a short battery life of only 3 – 5 hours and a less than stellar library, the Game Gear ultimately did not do as well as Sega had hoped. But, the Game Gear did have an exceptionally nifty TV Tuner that could be plugged into the device to allow to it to broadcast television through the added antenna, not only this, but owners could also plug in their own RCA cables, leading to the amusing discovery that an XBox 360 can actually be displayed on a Sega Game Gear. Not a system per say, but a popular attachment nonetheless, the Game Genie was released in 1990 for the Nintendo Entertainment System, ushering in a new generation of filthy cheaters who could not complete video games on their own damn time.

Get it? Because Junction Point Studios teamed up with Blitz Games the same way that Mickey and Oswald teamed up in order to disappoint everyone? Good times.
That really is the power of TWO.

Last up for this week’s editorial is a little snippet about the companies that were started in 1990, and where they are now. Famed developer, Blitz Games, got their start in 1990 and went on to develop such classic titles as Glover, Barbie Horse Adventures: Wild Horse Rescue, and one of the most critically celebrated games of all time, Sneak King. Yes, the very same game that was included in select value meals at Burger King. Needless to say that Blitz Games is no longer an operating company after officially shutting down in 2013, one of the final games they worked on being Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two which also killed Junction Point Studios (that really is the power of two, huh?). Originally called 17-Bit Software, Team17 was born in December of 1990 after a developer known as Team7 wanted to publish a game with 17-Bit Software. The rest is history, as Team17 is now known for the games in the “Worms” franchise as well as their published titles including the well-recieved Overcooked and the less than beloved Yooka-Laylee.

That is just about it for this week’s editorial all about 1990, tune in next week to learn about the year after that (whatever that may be)! Did you learn something new after reading this editorial? Did you know all of these facts and feel relatively underwhelmed? Whatever the case may be, make sure to leave a comment below and let us know what you think!


  1. I find it amazing that someone half my age is now describing what happened in the years of my childhood. Thanks! Actually, I would like to read an article about 2006, ’cause I was paying no attention to gaming that year.

  2. I knew a guy that had the Game Gear’s TV Tuner. The screen resolution seemed so sharp back then (this was 1993).

    Should be a very interesting set of editorials, looking forward to 1991.

  3. @Dancing Matt: No problem! As for 2006, just you wait till the 90’s are all done, then we can dive in team to the year that birthed the dreaded Sonic 06. :P

    @S.T.: I was amazed to find out about the TV Tuner! I was not expecting it to look very good but I was really impressed to see how well it did considering the fact that the device is almost thirty years old and only ran on AA batteries.

  4. The Game Gear actually had a lot of cool add-ons actually. Along with the TV Tuner it also had an adapter to play Master System games on the Game Gear. If you were a fan of Sega’s arcade games, particularly their 80s arcade titles like After Burner, OutRun and Space Harrier, its an excellent little handheld. The thing that really killed it was the 6 AAs it took to power it for a couple of hours.

  5. Wait you weren’t alive in 1990. Having been alive in 1990 and of an age that I wasn’t that much younger than you are now, here is a truth about the past. It was not that much different than it is now. We had phones, cars, computers, big screen TVs, pools, planes, and pretty much everything we have now. Sure the internet was dialup trash but it was around. Every one who wasn’t living under a rock knew what the good games were and what the shit ones were. Internet BBSs were as good as gamefaqs.com. Its like when I hear about the 60’s, a time I wasn’t alive in, I think hippies, and counter culture. But I bet living back then wasn’t all that different than 1990. Oh yeah and the Wizard had just come out, I saw that garbage in the theaters, and my eyes bled.

  6. @RabidKitten: Thanks for the rundown, it’s funny thinking of the 90’s as being so “far” away but still so similar. I am sorry you had to see the Wizard in theaters though. :(

Comments are closed.