Compared to other sports, very few darts video games have been released over the years. But some notable darts games do exist. Here is a flighty history of the most prominent ones.
The first notable darts video game was developed by the most dominant software publisher in the UK at the time, Mastertronic. 180 was released in 1986 for the Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC, and the Atari 8-bit family. It was also released for MSX in 1987. You get to compete in a 501 darts tournament, with standard rules, against eight computer-controlled opponents: Sure Shot Sidney, Del Boy Desmond, Limp Wrist Larry, Mega Mick, Devious Dave, Beer Belly Bill, Tactical Tel, and Jammy Jim. You begin playing in the quarter finals of the tournament and then advance to the final, as long as you are good enough.
Alternatively, you can play 180 against another human player. 180 might not feature any real darts players and tournaments, but nearly 25 years on, it is still a joy to play. Of course, if you like to keep up-to-date on all the latest real-world darts players, matches, and odds, you may prefer to check out the sports betting options online.
In 1987, the same year as the MSX release of 180, the Commodore 64 game Indoor Sports was released in the US by Mindscape. The game was then converted to many other platforms. In Europe, it was published by Databyte, Tynesoft, and Advance Software. You can choose from four indoor games to play: bowling, table tennis, air hockey, and darts. According to the American magazine Computer Gaming World, the bowling game is badly executed, but the other games are better and darts is the best.
The next notable darts game release was in 1991, when Seta Corporation developed Magic Darts. Despite having some great features, like single-player and multiplayer modes, Magic Darts was not the best darts game in the world. But at least game developers were still producing games containing the overlooked sport of darts. Up to four players can play three weights of darts as one of ten characters in Magic Darts.
This sequel to Kinetic Sports, published by Microsoft Studios in 2011, saw six new sports added to the game, including darts. Other sports in Kinect Sports: Season Two include golf, tennis, baseball, skiing, and American football. The games are played by using Microsoft’s Kinetic device, which enables you to control the game via speech recognition and gestures that mimic playing the sport in real life. For example, you make the movement of throwing a real dart to throw a dart at the board.
In 2006, twenty years after the video game 108 was released, darts fans were finally able to play a video game that was centred around the modern-day world of darts. Initially released for PlayStation 2 and PC, the first PDC World Championship Darts game features ten professional players, including Phil Taylor, Raymond van Barneveld, John Part, Dennis Priestly, and Colin Lloyd. Five official PDC tournaments are included in the game: the PDC World Darts Championship, the PDC World Grand Prix, the Las Vegas Desert Classic, the PDC UK Open, and the Holland Open.
PDC World Championship Darts attempts to recreate playing darts in real life, and it contains numerous modes of play, including exhibition matches between one or two players and a career mode. Furthermore, you have the option to create your own character. Three sequels to PDC World Championship Darts were developed, all of which are just as good as the original. But seeing as there has not been a new darts game since 2010’s PDC World Championship Darts Pro Tour, it is about high time that a new darts video game came onto the market.