Page last updated at 11:46 GMT, Wednesday, 23 September 2009 12:46 UK

Call for French retro game museum

Home Pong console
Atari's Home Pong console was released in 1975

A group of French video game enthusiasts are lobbying authorities to set up a dedicated museum of retro-gaming in the country.

The group, called MO5, say the new museum should be interactive, allowing users to play the old game systems.

The proposed "National Institute of Digital Sciences" would have an original working version Pong, one of the earliest games released in 1972.

However, the group acknowledged it would take time to actually happen.

A spokesman for the group, Philippe Dubois, told BBC News that video games are there to be played, not just looked at.

"We have a collection of more than 30,000 parts and 1500 different game machines - ranging from arcades to home consoles - which continues to grow.

"In France we have a rich culture of arts, painting, literature and cinema, but we are in danger of losing our inheritance of video game history," he added.

Retro collection

The group say they have been in touch with the French National Library, Paris' biggest science museum - the Cite des Sciences - and have contacted the office of Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet, the French minister responsible for the digital economy to try and gain support for the proposal.

Founded in 2003, MO5 now has a building on the outskirts of Paris to house their retro collection, but say that only a dedicated museum or national institute would safeguard the future of the collection.

A similar move is underway in the UK, with an online retro gaming group looking to set up The Retro Computer and Console Museum somewhere in Leicestershire.

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