ⓘ 1985 in video gaming
- The sixth Arcade Awards are held, for games released during 1983-1984, with Star Wars winning best arcade game, Space Shuttle best console game, Ultima III: Exodus best computer game, and Zaxxon best standalone game.
- August, the final issue of Electronic Games magazine is published.
- For the third Golden Joystick Awards held in 1986, The Way of the Exploding Fist takes Game of the Year for 1985.
- New companies: Bethesda, Cinemaware. Codemasters, Square Co., Titus, Westwood Studios
- David Mullich and several other laid-off employees from Edu-Ware form Electric Transit, the first company to join Electronic Arts new affiliated publisher program.
- Defunct: Adventure International, Bug-Byte, Edu-Ware, RDI Video Systems
2.1. Notable releases Games
- September 20, Namco releases Motos.
- May, Konami releases Gradius in Japan called Nemesis elsewhere.
- May, Capcom releases Commando, a vertically-scrolling on-foot shooter which inspires many games with similar themes and gameplay.
- March, Tehkan releases Gridiron Fight, an American football sports game featuring the use of dual trackball controls.
- January, Konami releases Yie Ar Kung-Fu, which lays the foundations for modern fighting games.
- May, Namco releases Metro-Cross.
- July, Namco releases Baraduke Alien Sector in the US.
- September 19, Capcom releases Ghosts n Goblins, originally titled Makaimura in Japan. It was one of the most popular arcade games of the year, and went on to spawn a series of later games.
- April, Atari Games releases Paperboy with a controller modeled after bicycle handlebars,
- October, Atari Games releases Gauntlet. Based on the lesser known Atari 8-bit game Dandy, Gauntlet is highly profitable, letting players insert additional quarters for more health.
- December, Namco releases Sky Kid, a side-scrolling shooter allowing two players simultaneously.
- Tehkan releases Tehkan World Cup, which lays the foundations for association football/soccer games with an above view of the field.
- July: Sega releases Hang-On by Yu Suzuki and AM2. It is the first of Segas Super Scaler games. Its motorbike cabinet is controlled using the body, starting a "Taikan" trend of motion controlled hydraulic cabinets in arcades some two decades before motion controls become popular on video game consoles.
- October: Sega releases Space Harrier by Yu Suzuki and AM2. It further develops the pseudo-3D sprite-scaling graphics of Hang-On and uses an analog flight stick for movement.
- September 9, Namco releases Battle City for the Famicom which is based on their older 1980 arcade game of Tank Battalion.
- October 18, Nintendo releases Duck Hunt for the Famicom.
- September 13, Nintendo releases Super Mario Bros., which eventually sells 40 million copies, making it the best-selling video game of all time until 2008. It introduces Princess Peach who was originally known as "Princess Toadstool", Toad and Bowser to the Mario series, as well as common enemies and powerups including Goombas, Koopas, Super Mushrooms which were originally known as "Magic Mushrooms", Fire Flowers and Starmen. It popularizes the side-scrolling platformer format.
- October 27, Nihon Falcom releases Dragon Slayer II: Xanadu, a foundation for the action role-playing game genre, combining real-time action combat with character statistics, gameplay elements such as a Karma morality meter, and proto-Metroidvania style exploration.
- T&E Soft releases Hydlide II: Shine of Darkness, an early action role-playing game that also features an alignment morality meter.
- September 16, Origin Systems releases Ultima IV: Quest of the Avatar, which popularizes the use of dynamic morality systems in computer role-playing games.
- Electronic Arts releases Racing Destruction Set for the Commodore 64 and Atari 8-bit family.
- Bubble Bus Software releases action-adventure game Starquake.
- The Learning Company releases The Oregon Trail on the Apple II.
- Novagen releases 3D wireframe game Mercenary for the Atari 8-bit family.
- April, Game Arts releases Thexder.
- Elite Systems UK releases Roller Coaster, a platformer.
- Broderbund releases Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?, the first game in the Carmen Sandiego series.
- Tau Ceti is published in the UK.
2.2. Notable releases Hardware
- Namco begins development on the Namco System 21 around this time, as the first arcade board dedicated to 3D polygon graphics.
- July, Sega releases the Sega Space Harrier arcade hardware also known as Sega Hang-On, the first of Segas "Super Scaler" arcade system boards that allow pseudo-3D sprite-scaling at high frame rates. It displays 6144 colors on screen, out of a 32.768 color palette.
- July 23, Commodore releases the Amiga 1000 personal computer, the first in the Amiga family. It was not widely available until 1986.
- Atari replaces previous models in the Atari 8-bit family with the 65XE and 130XE, the latter of which has 128K bank-switched RAM.
- Discontinued: Coleco Adam, Commodore VIC-20
- January, Commodore releases their final 8-bit computer, the Commodore 128.
- June, Atari Corporation releases the 520ST, the first personal computer with a bit-mapped, color GUI.
- October 20, the Sega Mark III home video game console is launched in Japan.
- Telegames releases the Dina, a ColecoVision clone.
- October 18, the Nintendo Entertainment System NES home video game console, the export version of the Famicom, is launched for a limited test market in the United States, along with the R.O.B. Robotic Operating Buddy peripheral.
- INTV Corporation releases the INTV III console.
- July 26, Nintendo releases the Family Computer Robot, a peripheral for their Family Computer Famicom home video game console, in Japan.
- ColecoVision is discontinued.