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The Armchair Historian’s Guide the past are more likely to condemn it.” Historically the concept of using score to track accomplishment in play predates the videogame experience. The concept of assigning a point value to accomplishing objectives, besting our adversaries or to performing tasks with higher efficiency reaches back to the dawn of play. While there are many examples of games outside of the realm of video games that have no direct concept of points, arguable the most popular competitive games frequently use the concept of points as a metric of simple progression in a game. Shigeru Miyamoto’s classic arcade game Donkey Kong taunted players with the simple question “How high can you get?” While some saw this question as purely rhetorical, wise and competitive philosopher gamers could answer this question directly by replying using their numeric score or they could use an indirect score and reply by counting the number of levels1 they had passed. Miyamoto’s Donkey Kong may have been one of the first videogames to so verbosely ask this directly, but it was not the first video game to pose such a question. While the future might be known to the Jean-Lucs among us, it is quite possible that it will also not be counted among the last games to ask.

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The Armchair Historians Guide (Excerpt)  

The Armchair Historian’s Guide is your pocket manifesto for observing, chronicling and even making the digital record books of achievement i...

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