First official UK videogame archive to launch this month

The National Videogame Archive will preserve the history of an industry now worth an estimated £22bn

Are you a fan of Halo 3, World of Warcraft, Oblivion or Metal Gear Solid? What about classics like Super Mario Bros, the Zelda series or even Tetris and Space Invaders?

You'll be pleased to hear that boffins are finally recognising the part games have to play in our culture and want to preserve it: academics at Nottingham Trent University and the National Media Museum in Bradford are building an archive dedicated to games, from the humble beginnings of 1972's Pong to recent 3D blockbusters.

With popular new releases already resembling (and in some cases outperforming) Hollywood movies, gaming buffs are keen to avoid the mistakes of their film industry counterparts where historically significant pieces of material have been lost forever. The new National Videogame Archive will be housed at the National Media Museum and will be managed in collaboration with Nottingham Trent University's Centre for Contemporary Play. Sounds like quite a laugh, but remember the Centre draws on a range of disciplines including psychology, cultural studies, art and computer science. On top of the stash of consoles and cartridges, the archive'll gather items from across the industry like advertising, mag reviews (hey, that's what we do!) and artwork.

The National Videogame Archive will be launched at this year's GameCity 3 festival, running from 30 October to 1 November (oo, spooky Halloween weekend) in Nottingham. Look out for reviews of sci-fi and fantasy games every month in SFX - next issue (in store from 22 October) features Fallout 3, Fracture and Dead Space. Hop onto our forum to discuss classic and new games.

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