The first computer game I played wasn’t even a game.
My family’s first computer was an Apple IIGS. I was five or six years old at the time. I remember going into the computer store with my mom, dad and little sister. It was sparse, just a few beige-colored monitors and CPU’s on gray desks. No fancy brochures or presentations to entertain us like the car dealerships, but the salesperson, obviously realizing he was going to be talking to my parents at length, set me and my sister up at one of the spare computers.
The computer was running the Apple IIGS system demo. It was a basic graphical application that taught the user how to interact with the computer using the mouse and keyboard through a variety of activities your “hero” faced as he explored a dark cave. You had to click on bats, navigate using the mouse, and other basic tasks. We spent the rest of the time playing the demo over and over again, and when we finally walked out of the store with a new Apple IIGS, I continued to play it ad nauseam at home.
My parents later upgraded our gaming experience to Reader Rabbit, Oregon Trail, Carmen Sandiego, and Treasure Mountain.
Still, the Apple IIGS system tutorial holds a special place in my heart!