This ain't no GamesMaster.
BY TOM EAMES
5 SEPTEMBER 2016
Video games are a surprisingly rare sight on primetime TV. Not since GamesMaster in the 1990s have we had a show that celebrates gaming in quite the same way. We hadVideogame Nation for a bit, but even that was axed.
But Dave is about to launch the latest attempt at making video games work on TV - Dara O Briain's Go 8 Bit. The comedy series challenges celebs to a host of classic and current games, ranging from Space Invaders to Tekken to FIFA.
Speaking to Digital Spy about the series - which launches tonight - Dara told us that he's amazed how video games have been treated by TV over the years, and how it's a lot simpler than coming up with strange new gameshows.
"People are genuinely competitive," he said. "Nobody cares if they win a round of Mock the Week, when really it's just a plot device to get people talking. But this one is genuinely competitive.
"But also TV companies always try and come up with [complicated] games - 'you get the orange ball, and then you have three orange balls, and then you get a red ball and answer a question' - these ridiculous rules.
"We have a gameshow where we just play the same games as people in their houses play with their mates. It turns out that these games are pretty well-tested!
"TV has always treated them as this weird runt cousin, when they're the biggest entertainment industry in the world. For some reason it was considered as this really minority or niche interest."
He also pointed out that TV viewers can easily get behind bizarre sports at the Olympics, so why not games?
"It's a thing that's enormously popular. This shouldn't be counter-intuitive, considering we're all up until 3 in the morning watching sports that we don't understand the rules of or that we don't watch for four years, and are amazingly gripped by them. They're much more obscure than Pac-Man or Sensible Soccer."
Go 8 Bit launches on Dave (September 5)