Abstract- Archiving of Computer Games

The growing attention on computer games is great and more than justified, but for all the efforts to understand the games and to push them forward, attention on and access to the huge tradition of the works themselves is still necessary. Because a central archive or library hasn't been developed yet, the challenge of preserving the games and making them accessible for us and future generations will be a major challenge in the near future. This question gains even more interest if one keeps in mind that the answers are not only of great importance to the gamer community, but are of interest to society as a whole as well. Museums and libraries also have an increasing amount of digital born artefacts to handle.

The lecture raises the question of how this aim of a longterm preservation could be achieved. We are focusing mainly on the technical aspects of this task. Two major schools can be identified: While some archivists want to preserve (or rebuild) the original hardware, others opt on software emulation. Both methods have pros and cons. Through dialog with experts from both schools, this symposium will take up this challenge and will try to find an optimal solution for games archives.