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Game On!

Barbican to host greatest (games) show on Earth

Come to London and play games — what better offer can there be that's still legal and costs less than £15?

Starting tomorrow, the Barbican in the City of London is the venue for what's billed as the world's largest ever exhibition of the history of computer gaming, Game On.

PC Advisor dropped down there today to take a look and, from what we can see, it's a corker. Then again, at £11 for adults, £8 concessions and £5 for children (under 15s), it should be.

Curator Lucien King is a reluctant hero of the exhibition, having spent years in preparation after departing games developer RockStar, which made the successful Grand Theft Auto series.

But King knows his stuff. He's been in the industry for years and has assembled a range of machines and software from as far back as the heady days of the very first computer game, Spacewar! on the rustic, room-sized PDP-1 back in 1962.

The exhibition journeys from the PDP-1, via classics such as Atari's Pong console, the Nintendos and Segas of 1984 through to the very latest systems, such as Sony's PS2, Microsoft's Xbox and Nintendo's Gamecube.

But this isn't just about playing around. A major component of the exhibition, which will properly spread its wings when it migrates to Scotland in September, is to find out and expand on what games have contributed to popular culture and vice versa, and where they'll go in the future.

Game On is organised in conjunction with the National Museums of Scotland, making it a properly countrywide endeavour.

This weekend PC Advisor will be running a interview feature with Lucien King about the show and the future of gaming.

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