Pong was just a training exercise. It trained the entire video game industry.
I’m sure that younger people stare in disbelief when they see the computer game Pong for the first time. “That’s it?” they probably say to themselves. Compared to modern games, or even 1980s games such as PacMan, Pong is one of the most boring games in history. Yet this game not only changed the company Atari, but it created an entire videogame industry.
According to ponggame.org, Atari’s original mandate was to create games for other companies. Along the way, one employee, Allan Alcorn, created Pong as a training exercise. Atari founder Nolan Bushnell made a few tweaks and put the game in a bar. The success of the game at the bar (yes, alcohol was involved in the creation of Pong) convinced Bushnell that Atari should manufacture the game itself, rather than licensing it out.
By the time Pong’s run had ended several years later, Atari had not only sold 35,000 Pong machines, but had also sold 150,000 units to the home market.
Today, the Pong Game is considered to be the game which started the video games industry, as it proved that the video games market can produce significant revenues.
If you want to experience Pong for yourself, go here. Your computer should probably be able to handle the game’s technical demands.