Space Invaders © 1978 Midway Mfg. Co.
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|Space Invaders by Midway was released in October 1978 in the USA.|
The Space Invaders phenomenon stunned many conservative adults of the time who were convinced that video-games soured the minds of their youngsters. Residents of Mesquite, Texas, pushed the issue all the way to the Supreme Court in their efforts to ban the illicit machines from their Bible-belt community. A number of reported incidents of juvenile crime began to surface shortly after the game's release, adding to its 'controversy'. A girl was caught stealing $5,000 from her parents and gangs of youths were reported to have robbed grocery stores just so they would have money to play the game.
Of the reported 350,000 units produced world wide, about 65,000 units were produced in the U.S. alone.
Technology journalist Jason Whittaker credited the game's success to ending the video game crash of 1977, which had earlier been caused by Pong clones flooding the market, and beginning the golden age of video arcade games. According to The Observer, the home console versions were popular and encouraged users to learn programming; many who later became industry leaders.
Space Invaders inspired a catchy hit song by 'Uncle Vic' called 'Space Invaders' released over the spring to summer-time period of 1980. The Pretenders also released an instrumental song called 'Space Invaders' on their debut album in 1980.
A Space Invaders unit appears in the 1980 movie 'Midnight Madness', in the 1982 movie 'Jekyll & Hyde... Together Again', in the 1982 movie 'Fast Times at Ridgemont High', in the 1983 movie 'Joysticks', in the 1984 movie 'The Iceman', in the 1991 movie 'Terminator 2 - Judgment Day', and in the 1998 sitcom 'That 70's Show'; Season 4, Episode 8 (Donna's Story).
An upright unit of the Midway release of Space Invaders appears in the ZZ Top music video, 'Legs'.
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