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Barbie Fashion Designer joins Super Mario Bros and Pong in Video Game Hall of Fame

The iconic 90s fashion game was inducted alongside The Last of Us and Wii Sports

Much like the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, video games have their own venerated hall of fame honor, residing at the National Museum of Play in New York. Each year, a number of games are selected to join the most elite of important and culturally significant games in the hall of fame, and this year, Barbie Fashion Designer is one of them.

Barbie Fashion Designer is a 1996 PC game that was aimed squarely at young girls at a time where most video games were marketed at boys. The game allowed players to create designs that could then be printed on special fabric and turned into clothes for actual Barbie dolls.

The National Museum of Play explains its rationale for the inclusion of Barbie Fashion Designer in a lengthy blog post, but the gist of it is that the game was massively successful in getting young girls in the 90s using computers and playing games. It sold over 500,000 copies in its first two months on sale, eventually making hundreds of millions of dollars for Mattel and kicking off a long-running series of Barbie games aimed at young girls, ultimately inspiring a whole industry of girl-focused video games.

Three other games were inducted into the World Video Game Hall of Fame alongside Barbie Fashion Designer: Computer Space, one of the earliest commercial video game arcade machines, The Last of Us, and Wii Sports.

The Last of Us was included primarily for its cultural impact, particularly in advancing story-driven games in the blockbuster game space. Wii Sports on the other hand was included for kicking off the “casual revolution” and drawing in millions of people who otherwise didn’t or wouldn’t play games.

Barbie Fashion Designer, The Last of Us, and Wii Sports join games like Pong, Super Mario Bros, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, and The Sims in the World Video Game Hall of Fame, but some pretty big games are still missing from the list. To date, there are no Call of Duty games in the hall of fame, despite their undoubtedly massive cultural impact. Quake was also under consideration for this year’s inclusion, but unfortunately didn’t make the cut.