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Boston Athletes and Video Game Covers: The Complete History

By meerna Jul11,2024
Boston Athletes and Video Game Covers: The Complete History

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS – JUNE 17: Jayson Tatum #0 of the Boston Celtics reacts after playing in the second quarter of Game 5 of the 2024 NBA Finals against the Dallas Mavericks at TD Garden on June 17, 2024 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

Boston athletes and video game covers go way back. Probably further back than you imagine.

They essentially go back to the very beginning of video game history. The rise of home console systems coincided with the rise of Larry Bird as a Boston Celtics superstar, making it a logical choice to put No. 33’s face on the latest game covers.

And it wasn’t like that Just about putting Bird’s face on the box. Bird was game. He and “Dr. J” Julius Erving and later Michael Jordan helped sell the earliest basketball video games to consumers in the early 1980s. More than 40 years later, Boston athletes have graced the covers of video games more than a dozen times. It’s hard to get into, but you can tell Boston sports teams have had some success in recent years.

Let’s take a look at the history of Boston athletes on video game covers, starting with the one that started it all…

“One on One: Dr. J vs. Larry Bird” (1983)

This Go crazy franchise usually gets credit for boosting Electronic Arts’ popularity in sports games, but this simple basketball game starring two of the game’s biggest stars was the real breakthrough. In fact, “One on One: Dr. J vs. Larry Bird” was a breakthrough for sports video games as a whole.

Originally released in 1983 on the primitive Apple II computer, Dr. J vs. Larry Bird was an immediate hit and was later released on early video game consoles such as the Atari and ColecoVision. EA founder Trip Hawkins told Vice in a 2017 interview that the game gave him and his company the confidence to continue developing sports games.

Fast forward to 2024, and EA Sports is still a gaming giant. But interestingly, they’ve given up the top of the basketball mountain to 2K Sports. See more of them below.

By meerna

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