The Art of Video Games: Utopia” Exhibition Video

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  • NARRATOR: “Utopia” was the first real simulation game, or “god game,” for a home video game console, placing the player in control if the entire game world. Players developed islands with buildings, boats, and farms while avoiding pirates and natural disasters.

    Designer Don Daglow developed the concept for the game during his days as a middle school teacher. To help his students understand geography, he used electrical tape to outline a massive map of the world on the school’s cafeteria floor. Students played as different nations by standing on the relevant areas of the map.

    “Utopia’s” unique gameplay and realistic scenarios established a basis for simulation games that can still be seen today.

    Utopia Intellivision Productions, Inc.

    This video is one of 80 displayed in The Art of Video Games exhibition at the Smithsonian American Art Museum.