U-M Plans Video Game Archive
Could one collection ever contain every game ever made?
Web2Carz Contributing Writer
Published: May 20th, 2012
t University of Michigan's North Campus, there's a room filled with more video games than most people would ever be able to play. In Room B474, the U-M Computer and Video Game Archive houses more than 3,000 games for more than 30 systems, and they have lofty goals of amassing even more.
Unlike other archives, though, anyone who wants to can come into the studio and play any game available, whether for research or for fun.
Most of the archive's $12,000 annual budget goes to buying new games.
Dave Carter, a computer engineering librarian at U-M's Art, Architecture & Engineering Library, came up with the idea in 2007, set it into motion, and has been in charge of it since it opened in 2008. His ultimate goal is to fill the archive with every video and computer game ever made.
"It's a goal I can never accomplish," Carter said.
He says that most of the archive's $12,000 annual budget goes to buying new games, though he'll spring for a classic if he sees it on eBay for a good price. Most of the older games are donated.
Sometimes the games are used for an academic purpose, like one student who researched the censorship of Nazi imagery in American and German versions of the same game.
Still, Carter says that most of the archive's visitors are there for recreation, with only about 25 percent coming in for research.
"It's good to get a few hours of refreshment (while studying)," said engineering grad student Anant Lall. "It's amazing the collection of games they have."