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terça-feira, 28 de outubro de 2008

Game Designers & Programmer’s Review Presents: -English Version

Game Designers & Programmer’s Review Presents: Carol Shaw. -Available in English: Gift of:REINALDO FERREIRA( A.K.A. GAME MASTER) for friends of: ATARI AGE FÓRUM.

Important Note: This same article that originally published in Portuguese in Moby Games (,52278/ ) and Wikipedia( see: [1] ) . Avoiding problems with copyright, I Reinaldo Ferreira (AKA Game Master) author of this work, I am publishing the original note for these purposes.
This article was translated into English by myself, as a present to the Board of Atari Age, but it is recorded that it was done by myself in Brazil and all the duties Sutor who are registered to:GERAÇÃO GAME® & Equipe de Amigos ® e módulos® and: GAME MASTER - MASTER GAMES® Brazilian Blog.

Reinaldo Ferreira (AKA Game Master) - Sao Paulo, Brazil 28 October 2008.


When I had the idea of incorporating the: Game Designers & Programmer's Review in our work here at the Blog. I'd like to open with a different name but that was not virtually unknown and at the same time contributed a memorable in the world of videogames and games. But not only wanted to show the work, but the person behind its work, as also aim to incorporate the vision of the human subject. The first name that came to my mind was: Carol Shaw, the first game designer and programmer in the world of videogames. Then tried to conduct my usual search for data and information.

But noted that information on Carol Shaw are very scarce and obscure. And even appealing to other resources, not even the birth date of the scheduled Games is revealed in institutions where he graduated and where he served companies (not know for sure if that goes back that theory that some women prefer to hide their age). Even today most current photos or other information about your career or personal life are available for research.

Is not part of my style, working with information inconclusive, insignificant or reduced. After all this work focuses on, show all kinds of information in its more detailed possible, but at that little meeting, try to mount a job where people can at least know the basics about: Carol Shaw.

The start of a career and History:

Carol B. Shaw began her career at: Tandem Computers company founded in 1974 by a group of engineers from Hewlett-Packard: James Treybig, Mike Green, Jim Katzman, and Jack Loustaunou. We do not know for sure when and how long Carol Shaw worked in this company and it was a computer programmer. But we know that in 1978 she has worked at Atari and then started in the same year the process of scheduling: 3D Tic Tac Toe (Based on the board game Qubic of Parker Brothers sold during the 60's), which was officially launched in 1979 to console Atari VCS 2600.

Also in 1978, according to polls, and few reports we have on the career of Carol Shaw at Atari, although this time it would create a game of sport, which only years later, would be known as: Polo (a traditional British game cavalcade that mingled cricket and also traditional in this Country, a noble game disputed in the UK by royalty) a promotional game for: Ralph Lauren's Polo Cologne (we'll see more details later).

An interesting fact about 3D Tic Tac Toe from Carol Shaw or even Qubic launched by Parker Brothers in the 60's, is that the traditional "Game of the Old"(Jogo da velha in Brazil) also enters the history of video games as one of the first games of video game in history. At the University of Cambridge (England) in 1952. The student then engineering A.S. Douglas was preparing a doctoral thesis on the interaction between humans and computers. The experiment was just a dispute between a person and a computer using the "Game of the Old." Of course, this time the computers and the interface of the game were quite primitive when compared to the Atari video games of the season. But the highlight for the game and programming, Carol Shaw is on behalf of the entire engine of the game, at a time when the 3D simulation of video games, it was something impossible.

It was a somewhat timid start, but it showed how Carol Shaw as the game had to offer. We do not know for sure if Carol Shaw left the Tandem Computers to work on Atari or if served in the two companies, but we know that she worked in 3D Tic Tac Toe by Atari. Although this is a proven fact, we are led to believe that even Carol Shaw had a connection with the Tandem for some time (including your return is mentioned will have left the company after Actvision), as can confer on the images below, we can observe two donations they made to the Computer History Museum:

Above and the Center (click to enlarge): Donation of shirt Promotion of Tandem Computers of the year 1980 the Computer History Museum (All rights reserved).

Above and the Center (click to enlarge): Donation of shirt Promotion of Tandem Computers of the year 1981 the Computer History Museum (All rights reserved).

The following year (1980) just before migrating to Activision (Founded by David Crane on 1 October 1979) Carol Shaw still has one final game for Atari that was: Video Checkers (or better known here in Brazil as:Damas). Carol Shaw wanted to create a game of action for the Atari, but as she had been successful in creating a board game, he was entrusted with the task of creating Video Checkers. Video Checkers, the game of checkers was a simple game board, but that pleases many, other than that already involves chess moves and a schedule a little more complex.
As the nerves among the developers of games for Atari at that time went way high, was not surprising that Carol Shaw left the Atari and was for Actvision in 1980.

But it was in 1982 that Carol Shaw would gain the proper recognition for the development and scheduling of River Raid. One of the reasons for which many developers of Atari leaving the company and migrate to Activision, was that Nolan Bushnell did not recognize or even mention the name of the team of programmers and production of their games in: Box, a manuals and label them. Carol Shaw won in River Raid an identity between the developers and their work and efforts were finally recognized.

But even the co-workers recognized the talent and professionalism of Carol Shaw. David Lubar (which some time later with a team and with the supervision of Carol Shaw would develop the continuation of River Raid) said:

"Carol Shaw I met her when I was working for Activision. Her algorithm for creating the landscape in River Raid is one of the most elegant pieces of programming I ever saw."

David Lubar refers to engine used in River Raid's game, one of the secrets of the genius of Carol Shaw used in the game. River Raid uses a creative feature in programming called: Pseduo-Random Number Generator, explaining: it was the engine algorithm used in the repetition of scenes of progressive and river scenery in River Raid.

Another note on River Raid: The game is notorious for providing a huge amount of fixed, not random, repeating ground despite the limitations of memory available on your hardware platforms. The program of the game really does not store the sequences of enemies and other objects, the terrain is generated dynamically during the game and algorithm using a linear displacement of feedback with a record of top seeds for fixed. The highest number of a random system was used for the generation of AI of the enemy to make the game less predictable.

Note: Carol Shaw only oversaw the creation of River Raid II.The engine used in it, would be based on the same engine for its creation. There is an unofficial version of River Raid III (also called Super River Raid in Brazil) but was created in Taiwan.

Above and the Center (click to enlarge): Page end of the game's manual: River Raid of Actvision for the Atari VCS 2600. Where Carol Shaw talks about the game River Raid and some tips on it. He was also part of a promotion, in which the highest scores and record the game, earned an emblem (Badge) from River Raid.

Above and to the Center: Details Label and the front of the cartridge: River Raid of Actvision for Atari VCS 2600 - Recognition and Reputation of the work of Carol Shaw.


River Raid was especially popular in Germany because he was the first game of videogame to be placed on the Index in: Bundesprüfstelle für jugendgefährdende Schriften (Federal Department of Writings Harmful to Young -Jugendgefährdende, today: Bundesprüfstelle für Medien (The Federal Department for Media Harmful to Young) , Along with little-known German version of the game: Speed Racer for the Commodore 64.

In the explanatory memorandum for indexing in December 19 of 1984 reads: "The children are intended to delve into in a role as an uncompromising fighter and agent of annihilation (...). This game provides an education for children in paramilitaristic ( ...). With older children, playing (...) leads to feel physical pain, anger, aggression, thoughts erratic (...) and headaches. "(BPjS-Aktuell Heft 2 / 84).

River Raid remained pegged as harmful to minors until 2002. when a publisher, successfully pressed the agency for the removal of indexation for the launch of then: Activision Anthology for the PlayStation 2. This shows us how was the thinking in two distinct eras in the history of River Raid in 1984 and years later, when thanks to popular pressure and signs of new times, River Raid was then considered "free for all audiences" through "Unterhaltungssoftware Selbstkontrolle"


In 1983 Carol Shaw is married to: Ralph C. Merkle, Scientist and Nanotechnology formed by universities:
BA, University of California at Berkeley (1974) MS, University of California at Berkeley (1977) PhD Electrical Engineering, Stanford University (1979) It was the scientist and researcher of: Xerox PARC (1988-99) and currently Professor in: Georgia Institute of Technology (2003 -).

Ralph C. Mekrle, Scientist,Nanotechnology and Husband of Carol Shaw.

An interesting fact about the formation of Academic Carol Shaw that caught my attention was that she slém to be formed by: MS Computer Science and she also was a graduate of distinction in: Phi Betta Kappa University. An institution of repute and distinction, which formed personalities and American presidents such as Bill Clinton and others. In the records searched is not any information about the date of birth of Carol Shaw, or similar information on the links of companies where he served. If wanted to know more about Carol Shaw and Ralph C. Merkle (remembering that Ralph Merkle, has several very informative and testing work on nanotechnology available on the Internet):


Ralph C. Merkle:
Carol Shaw:

A brief passage by the Intellivision's console:

In the same year in 1983, Carol Shaw has another game by Activision, but not for the Atari VCS 2600, and yes to the console of Mattel: Intellivision. The game called: Happy Trials, tells the story of a delegate in the Old West that has to recover the money stolen from a bandit, named Black Bart. The game is a blend of puzzle-action, where the main goal is to rearrange a scene divided into parts and assemble so the paths (very similar to a big maze, and move the character and collect the bags of money stolen. After this game Carol Shaw finally left the development of new games. She was also 5 years later in the process of developing the continuation of their success River Raid (River Raid II) alongside David Lubar and your Team. According to unconfirmed information, accurate, saying that she returned to Tandem Computers. But what is known with certainty, is that she lives in California with her husband and retired from the scheduling of games, getting only a few reserved shares in consulting remake of the old hits that she produced.

Polo - The prototype of a game of Carol Shaw that few people knew:

The story behind this prototype is quite interesting because it may be the first game until then never before created. In 1978 the Warner Communications, which was one of the companies that sponsored the Atari and Ralph Lauren's Polo Cologne, would then be Carol Shaw charge of the design of a game that would prommover to: Ralph Lauren's Polo Cologne. It is still unknown as a form of the game would be used exactly in this promotion, but one of the hypotheses is that it could be destribuidos to customers and member. Supposedly several prototypes and handwritten instructions were sent to Bloomingdale's in New York, but nothing on the promotion or the official launch of the game Polo came to realize in fact.

Polo is an interesting game that imitates a gameplay similar to football only in that style: one-against-one. For those unfamiliar with the sport, Polo poussi a gameplay in which a knight on a horse tries to hit the ball to a sort of "goal" of the enemy camp using a long stick, very similar to the cricket bat. The gameplay is very simple, just each player runs to the ball and hit for the next opponent with the putter.
Polo also has an interesting feature, in which the player can program and customize the size of the goal and speed of the ball.

Another interesting fact of Polo, is that many of the consoles Brazilians, have launched no officials versions of the game in your consoles (Like: SuperGame,Milmar,Dactar and etc.) even if he is a prototype and has not been officially released into the system. I would be officially launched Polo 1996, but in 2002 he was finally released into the system.

Photo Gallery Finals and notes:

We were unable to latest pictures will not be dated to the year 1996. If someone has a photographic material later, all contributions and additions are very welcome, but do not forget to send the source and the name of who took the photos:

Note I:
Carol Shaw, was present at the party when the 20 years the console Atari VCS 2600 held at the home of Nolan Bushell said this, which was to be a woman working in a profession where the season had a strong male domination: "I really do not like make a distinction - Other people tend to make such a distinction for me. I just like to be one of the creators (designers). When I started at Atari, I think they thought I would make games for girls, something of interior decoration the genre that really did not exist games for girls. But everything that I really liked was just playing games. "

Note II:
Carol Shaw was not the only family in planning and designer of games, his brother Steve Shaw, also was responsible and was part of the creation of some games and graphics tools for the Amiga computer.

Carol Shaw.
By: Game Master.

About 90% of the citations on Carol Shaw throughout my research, always started saying:She was the first woman will develop games, at a time when the profession was dominated by men. We can not deny that this is part of its history, and it holds for you, this honor and merit. But she made clear (see the end notes) that his career goal was not measuring forces with the developers or incorporate a sense feminist (typical of the season) in the world of videogames. She was game, why I wanted to develop games and was part of their profession.

Maybe that's why the Atari Generation, maintains a reputation as personal and human experience dealing with the videogame consoles and games. Historically the fact of Actvision have broken a paradigm and an injustice, about the merits and claims of programmers, this work is just another addendum, and serves as a historical reference for everything that happened in that period, in which Carol Shaw was also part .

But it shows us that we must not only be emphasized as a woman in a profession or have their work recognized to ensure their place in the history of video games, we need also the dedication and professionalism during their work, no matter its duration.

Tried not only focus River Raid, but tried to show all acts of Carol Shaw in their games. River Raid is a classic and a unanimity among players, that is true. But Carol Shaw has also developed games excepecionals each with its charm and its merits, which are also part of his brilliant career as a programmer.

But my obvious disappointment at not being able gather more detailed data about the life of Carol Shaw. I want to show more of the person, not just for their work. But before any addition or update is incorporated in this work, which the players of Brazil, may be learning and knowing a little of its history. And always bearing in mind that video games and games are made by people, by its players and also by its developers.

GAME MASTER - MASTER GAMES ® is part of the Community:GERAÇÃO GAME® & Equipe de Amigos ® e módulos®- all rights reserved - 2008. GAME MASTER - MASTER GAMES ® the first and so far the only blog to use Evaluation System Buddy Poke custom.

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