Advancing to the Next Level: The Science of Video Games (Part 1)

Photo Credit: Will Wright/Electronic Arts Inc.
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About This Episode

Video games are a ubiquitous component of modern life and pop culture. But is there more to them than entertainment? In Part 1, Neil deGrasse Tyson finds out if video games breed violence and what kids actually learn from shooter games with guests Jeffrey Ryan, author of “Super Mario – How Nintendo Conquered America” and Will Wright, creator of The Sims and Spore. They chat about the evolution of choice and moral dilemma in video games; Moore’s Law of processing speed; and computer game graphics, verisimilitude and the cartoon laws of physics. You’ll also find out why Space Invaders sped up as you played it, what inspired Will Wright to create SimAnt and why co-host Eugene Mirman thinks Happy Days started the U.S./Iran conflict.

NOTE: All-Access subscribers can listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: Advancing to the Next Level: The Science of Video Games (Part 1).


Samples of video game music here and here.

In This Episode

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