Microsoft Solitaire turns 30 years old today, and the classic digital card game still attracts over 30 million players each month.
The “Microsoft Solitaire Collection” was first released in 1990 under the name “Microsoft Solitaire” for Windows 3. Microsoft said that at the time, the game had another purpose besides just fun — it helped new computer users familiarize themselves with the functions of the mouse.
Over 35 million players in over 200 countries play Solitaire each month, Microsoft said in a Friday blog post. Nearly 100 million hands are played digitally every day.
After 30 years, Microsoft’s Solitaire has become a pop culture icon and was a frequent plot device in the hit NBC sitcom “The Office.” Characters including Creed Bratton would play versions of the game on their functional desktop computers in the background of scenes.
Bratton told the Huffington Post that on “The Office” set, “you pretty much got used to playing Spider Solitaire,” and said be probably played “a thousand or so games.”
“I got really good at that game” by the end of the show’s final season, Bratton said.
The World Video Game Hall of Fame inducted “Microsoft Solitaire Collection” last year. “Microsoft Solitaire meets all the criteria for the World Video Game Hall of Fame: influence, longevity, geographical reach, and icon-status,” the Hall of Fame wrote at the time of the game’s induction. “Yet it is often overlooked–perhaps because it’s a digital version of a centuries-old game, and because it so common as to seem commonplace.”
Fans of the game took to Twitter Friday to express their gratitude for the single-player game — and, in some cases, disbelief that it’s endured for three decades. Xbox’s Game Pass Twitter account cleverly remarked: “To 30 years of playing with yourself… thank you Microsoft Solitaire.”
To 30 years of playing with yourself. Thank you Microsoft Solitaire
— Xbox Game Pass (@XboxGamePass) May 22, 2020
Absolutely mortified that I'm older than Microsoft Solitaire
— Will Potter (@thequiffisdead) May 22, 2020
I was in front of computer in 1994. We have DOS based 80286 processor PC with only floppy drives.
I was thrilled to play games like Prince of Persia.
In 1995, I used first PC with Win3.1 and Win95.
I still play and love Windows inbuilt games Solitaire and FreeCell in Win10 era.
— Bimlendu Shekhar (मेरा सपना- अखण्ड भारतवर्ष) (@BimlenduShekha2) May 22, 2020
HBD to the ????
— UNO (@realUNOgame) May 22, 2020