The evolution of Snake: Mobile gaming's backbone
As a schoolkid in the late 80s, Snake was the only game we could access on my school’s wheezing suite of BBC microcomputers. We had no idea it would end up as the world’s most popular mobile phone game -- admittedly because we had no idea what a mobile phone was.
Snake was there at the birth of mobile gaming – 1997 since you ask – when a Nokia engineer called Taneli Armanto coded a new version of the game to embed on the Nokia 6110 handset. By the time he received a special recognition award from industry body the Mobile Entertainment Forum in June 2005, Nokia reckoned the game had been installed on around 350 million handsets.
But the interesting thing about Snake is the way it’s evolved alongside mobile gaming itself, largely due to Nokia running with the idea, and making a succession of sequels to take advantage of new phones’ capabilities. Its most recent version, Snakes Subsonic, was released last year for N-Gage phones.
Yet it’s tempting to ask what happens now, in 2009 and the era of touchscreens, accelerometers, GPS and, yes, iPhones. Will Snake be marginalised, or can it come back with a new and even slinkier incarnation? Click on the next page to find out more about evolution of Snake.
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