The Strong National Museum of Play revealed the fifteen finalists for its inaugural World Video Game Hall of Fame today, after announcing the initiative back in February. The selections range from gaming's earliest arcade icons — like Pong, Pac-Man and Space Invaders — to modern megahits like Angry Birds and Minecraft. Here's the full list:
The Legend of Zelda
The Oregon Trail
Sonic the Hedgehog
Super Mario Bros.
World of Warcraft
The Strong is already well known for its International Center for the History of Electronic Games, which is dedicated to video game preservation. The museum is also home to the National Toy Hall of Fame. The World Video Game Hall of Fame is designed to "recognize individual electronic games of all types — arcade, console, computer, handheld, and mobile — that have enjoyed popularity over a sustained period and have exerted influence on the video game industry or on popular culture and society in general," according to a press release from The Strong.
Games will be considered for entry into the World Video Game Hall of Fame based on four criteria: icon-status (that the game is recognized and remembered), longevity (that the game has enjoyed sustained popularity), geographical reach (that the game is known around the world) and influence (that the game has had an impact on subsequent games, other forms of entertainment, or pop culture and society).
The final winners will be chosen by a selection committee of "journalists, scholars, and other individuals familiar with the history of video games and their role in society" (disclosure: I'm a part of the 2015 selection committee) and will be announced during a ceremony at the museum on Thursday, June 4, at 10:30am.
I know how I voted, and I know what the Strong's reader polling puts in the lead, but I'm curious what you, the Polygon reader, think about the nominees.