The Secret History of Mac Gaming is published through crowdfunding publisher Unbound and was released well over a year ago now. I’ve never owned a Mac, but I’ve had a real interest in this forgotten gem of a computer so I was eager to get hold of this book and read about a computer that was serially ignored by the outside world and maybe still is in the retro scene of today.
Author Richard Moss is most commonly known for his contributions to gaming publications like Ars Technica, Edge and Eurogamer simply wanted to create a book that showed that the Mac was important to video game history. It’s easy to forget about how influential this computer was but Mac gaming led to much that is now taken for granted by PC gamers, including mouse-driven input, multi-window interfaces, and even online play. The Mac birthed two of the biggest franchises in video game history, Myst and Halo, and it hosted numerous “firsts” for the medium. It allowed anyone to create games and playful software with ease using programs like World Builder, HyperCard, and SuperCard.
An excerpt from the book in the words of Richard Moss
This is the story of the people who believed the Mac was neither the serious machine that Apple’s marketing decreed nor the toy that the computer snobs so disparagingly labelled it, but rather as a dream machine that could cross between worlds. A machine that had the capacity to teach, inform, inspire and delight any user whatever their background and occupation, and a machine that had changed the world.
The book has 416 pages and is available as a PDF or in hardback form only, printed on 120 gsm fine art paper which to smells great too. Essentially the book draws on archive materials as well as 60+ interviews with key figures from Mac gaming’s past, including: Alex Seropian (Bungie), Charlie Jackson (Silicon Beach Software), Ian and Colin Lynch Smith (Freeverse), Patrick Buckland (Crystal Quest) and many more. The book has many images of game box art, screenshots and much more besides, however, this book shines because of the written historical content, it tells a story about a machine we must not forget and how it really did make its mark on the gaming history.
Retro head and key holder of RVG.