International Center for the History of Electronic Games – Rochester, New York - Atlas Obscura

International Center for the History of Electronic Games

Comprehensive gaming collection of over 30,000 electronic games and consoles. 

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The International Center for the History of Electronic Games (ICHEG) is located at The Strong National Museum of Play, the only museum in the world solely dedicated to exploring the history of play and its broader impact on society.

As the electronic gaming division, ICHEG explores the ways in which electronic games have changed throughout history, and how they have shaped players’ interactions with one another.

The permanent collection includes an extensive range of over 30,000 games and consoles, from the early years of the Atari models to today’s Nintendo Wii. Included in the collection are over 20,000 individual video game titles, 5,000 children’s educational games, 100 different handheld models, and a large collection of electronic toys, such as Tamagotchi and Webkinz. The collection also includes more than 30,000 artifacts and papers related to the history of video games.

Many of the consoles on display are available to play, such as the first coin-operated arcade game, Computer Space, which became popular in the 1970s. Other rare collector’s items on display include a Nintendo World Championships 1990 gray cartridge, and the original papers and prototypes of the Magnavox Odyssey, the first home video game system.