Retro Domination Movie Review – World 1-1

“Video Games are really the training book of computer literacy,” Nolan Bushnell.

World 1-1, is typically a term you would hear in any of the Super Mario games featured on Nintendo. However instead of a plump bouncing plumber, we have a 120 minute representation of the history of Atari, directed by Jeanette Garcia and Daryl Rodriguez.

With a slew of special guests, 22 in total, that defined the video game industry, most notably, Nolan Bushnell, co-founder of Atari Inc. and the first person to design Computer Space, the first coin-op arcade machine.

Howard Scott Warshaw, who was the creator of Yars Revenge, Raiders of the Lost Ark and the notorious, E.T. In fact, Howard prefer’s it when you are upfront and straight with him regarding E.T. “I prefer it when people say it’s the worst game of all time, because I also did Yars Revenge, which has been frequently known as the best game of all time, so if E.T. is the worst, then I have the greatest range of any game designer in history.”



David Crane, co-founder of Activision and game designer on many Activision titles, best known for Pitfall on the Atari 2600.




Al Alcorn, designer of the video arcade game, Pong, and who was also involved with Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak presenting their Apple 1 prototype.

Warren Robinett, creator of the Atari 2600 title, Adventure, arguably the first animated RPG video game in history.

These guests are but a taste of what you will encounter during World 1-1.

Both Jeanette and Daryl faithfully represent the facts in an entertaining, well put together, documentary. As they take you on a journey through the wonder of the video game industry, it is easy to see how much care and concise research has been put into the film.

Howard Scott Warshaw’s quirky dialogue left me with the most memorable quotes of the show, when specifically mentioning Atari, Howard’s tagline, “We could do anything we wanted,” amplifies the rock star mentality engineers had in the golden age of gaming.

Throughout the 120 minutes, the show takes the viewer through the conception of video games – the highs, and obviously the lows, before the inevitable North American video game crash of 1983. You will hear expert testimony from the pioneers themselves, as well as funny quotes and stories going back 30 plus years. You may even learn something new, and without giving too much away, you will encounter the creation of Activision and the live through the impact they had on gaming in the early 80’s.

Overall, World 1-1 is a highly enjoyable and educational experience, “Atari was the fastest rising company in the history of American business and it was also the fastest falling company in the history of American business” Howard Scott Warshaw.

World 1-1 Premiere, Roxie, San Francisco 25/10/14

Make sure you watch the credits and stay to the end. Considering this is only the first level, one can only imagine what the next will offer!

Documentary can be pre-ordered from the official website here

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