Later games combined textual commands with basic graphics, as seen in the SSI Gold Box games such as Pool of Radiance, or Bard's Tale for example. From the mid-90s onwards, PC games lost mass-market traction to console games before enjoying a resurgence in the mid-2000s through digital distribution. The uncoordinated nature of the PC game market and its lack of physical media make precisely assessing its size difficult. The first generation of computer games were often text adventures or interactive fiction, in which the player communicated with the computer by entering commands through a keyboard. The first generation of computer games were often text adventures or interactive fiction, in which the player communicated with the computer by entering commands through a keyboard. 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.
Without question, Nintendo's success has eroded software sales. 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. Consumers began purchasing DOS computers for the home in large numbers.
Id Software went on to develop Wolfenstein 3D in 1992, which helped to popularize the genre, kick-starting a genre that would become one of the highest-selling in modern times. The game was originally distributed through the shareware distribution model, allowing players to try a limited part of the game for free but requiring payment to play the rest, and represented one of the first uses of texture mapping graphics in a popular game, along with Ultima Underworld. 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. There's been a much greater falling off of disk sales than anyone anticipated." A third attributed the end of growth in sales of the Commodore 64 to the console, and Trip Hawkins called Nintendo "the last hurrah of the 8-bit world". Although both Apple and IBM tried to avoid customers associating their products with "game machine"s, the latter acknowledged that VGA, audio, and joystick options for its PS/1 computer were popular. In 1991, id Software produced an early first-person shooter, Hovertank 3D, which was the company's first in their line of highly influential games in the genre. 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. By 1990 DOS comprised 65% of the computer-game market, with the Amiga at 10%; all other computers, including the Apple Macintosh, were below 10% and declining. 51% of IBM or compatible had 386 or faster CPUs. By 1992 DOS games such as Links supported Super VGA graphics. While leading Sega and Nintendo console systems kept their CPU speed at 3–7 MHz, the 486 PC processor ran much faster, allowing it to perform many more calculations per second. 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. Computer games, however, did not disappear.