Electronic Arts reported that customers used computers for games more than one fifth of the time whether or not they purchased them for work at home. OXO, an adaptation of tic-tac-toe for the EDSAC, debuted in 1952. By the end of 1989, however, most publishers moved to at supporting at least 320×200 MCGA, a subset of VGA. VGA gave the PC graphics that outmatched the Commodore Amiga. PC games, also known as computer games or personal computer games, are video games played on a personal computer rather than a dedicated video game console or arcade machine. OXO, an adaptation of tic-tac-toe for the EDSAC, debuted in 1952.
The 1993 release of Doom on the PC was a breakthrough in 3D graphics, and was soon ported to various game consoles in a general shift toward greater realism. Computer games, however, did not disappear. Their defining characteristics include a lack of any centralized controlling authority, a greater degree of user control over the video-gaming hardware and software used and a generally greater capacity in input, processing, and output.
By the late 1970s to early 1980s, games were developed and distributed through hobbyist groups and gaming magazines, such as Creative Computing and later Computer Gaming World. Today, such extras are usually found only in Special Edition versions of games, such as Battlechests from Blizzard. Yamaha began manufacturing FM synth boards for computers in the early-mid-1980s, and by 1985, the NEC and FM-7 computers had built-in FM sound. The first PC sound cards, such as AdLib's Music Synthesizer Card, soon appeared in 1987. Experts were unsure whether it affected 16-bit computer games, but Hawkins in 1990 nonetheless had to deny rumors that Electronic Arts would withdraw from computers and only produce console games. By 1993 ASCII Entertainment reported at a Software Publishing Association conference that the market for console games ($5.9 billion in revenue) was 12 times that of the computer-game market ($430 million). Further improvements to game artwork and audio were made possible with the introduction of FM synthesis sound. As with second-generation video game consoles at the time, early home computer game companies capitalized on successful arcade games at the time with ports or clones of popular arcade games. By 1982, the top-selling games for the Atari 400 were ports of Frogger and Centipede, while the top-selling game for the Texas Instruments TI-99/4A was the Space Invaders clone TI Invaders. That same year, Pac-Man was ported to the Atari 800, while Donkey Kong was licensed for the Coleco Adam. In late 1981, Atari attempted to take legal action against unauthorized clones, particularly Pac-Man clones, despite some of these predating Atari's exclusive rights to the home versions of Namco's game. With the EGA video card, an inexpensive clone was better for games than the Commodore 64 or Apple II, and the Tandy 1000's enhanced graphics, sound, and built-in joystick ports made it the best platform for IBM PC-compatible games before the VGA era. Home computer games became popular following the video game crash of 1983, particularly in Europe, leading to the era of the "bedroom coder". Chris Crawford warned that it was "a data-intensive technology, not a process-intensive one", tempting developers to emphasize the quantity of digital assets like art and music over the quality of gameplay; Computer Gaming World wrote in 1993 that "publishers may be losing their focus".