Google has decided to celebrate the classic arcade game Breakout by Atari, which debuted on May 13, 1976, recreating it as an “Easter egg” in its image search. Just type “atari breakout” in Google’s image search for the results to be transformed in the game Breakout.
The game Breakout was designed by Nolan Bushnell, founder of Atari, as the evolution of Pong, a milestone in the world of videogames created in 1972 that had considerable success. Al Alcorn, who developed Pong, asked another Atari employee to work on the project to design the hardware for the new game as easy, meaning as cheap, as possible. This employee was Steve Jobs, who involved his friend Steve Wozniak, then an employee of Hewlett-Packard, in the project. Yes, they are the two Apple founders.
Wozniak’s design turned out to be even too clever because it was too compact, becoming too difficult to produce in the factory so Atari engineers were forced to work on it to create a hardware that used more chips but easier to produce for the factory.
Breakout had very simple rules because you had just to hit the bricks of a wall with a ball to hit with a bar the player had to move left and right to intercept the ball. The game was a success for Atari and over the years it was reproduced on the various company’s consoles and then a number of variants were created that were more or less complex.
Obviously, versions for various types of computers were also created starting with the IBM PC consolidating its success. Today it’s also possible to play it on mobile devices because despite its age versions for mobile operating systems were also created.
Google often creates games of various kinds to celebrate some anniversary and this time its programmers have seen fit to entertain us with yet another version of Breakout. Of course, if you want you can go directly to the page on Atari website to play a web version of Breakout and other classic Atari arcades. Any excuse is good for us to waste a few more hours of work. 😀