Tag Archives: Atari 2600

Atari A to Z Flashback: Radar Lock

It is a ballsy developer who tries to recreate the After Burner experience on a machine as humble as the Atari 2600. But Doug Neubauer was nothing if not ballsy.

Radar Lock made use of the same engine he had developed for Star Raiders follow-up Solaris, but transplanted the action from the black void of space to the blue skies of Earth. Radar Lock also ditched the strategic adventure aspect of Solaris in favour of something a little more arcadey, and is a well-regarded game from the latter years of the 2600.

Check it out in the video below — including my repeated failed attempts to understand what the manual is quite clearly telling me — and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more!

Atari A to Z

Yars’ Revenge: This Game Has Bugs

Yars’ Revenge is, it’s fair to say, one of the most well-known and respected Atari 2600 games out there.

Indeed, back in the day it was one of the platform’s best-selling games, being one of several examples from the 1981-1982 period that actually broke a million copies sold. This was, as you might imagine, a pretty big deal back in the early days of video gaming.

It’s enjoyed enduring popularity over the years for good reason. So with it being part of the Atari Collection 2 cartridge for the Evercade retro gaming system, let’s take a closer look at what it’s all about.

Continue reading Yars’ Revenge: This Game Has Bugs

Atari A to Z Flashback: Race

Of all the genres that have been with us since the earliest days of the medium, racing games have probably been through the most significant changes.

There’s still an undeniable appeal to classic single-screen top-down affairs, though, particularly when they control as elegantly as Race (aka Indy 500) for Atari 2600 does. Originally making use of a custom “Driving Controller” and today mapping excellently to the analogue sticks on our standard joypads, Race remains a fine way to while away a few minutes, whether you’re by yourself or in the company of a friend.

Check out the solo experience in the video below, and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more.

Atari A to Z

Atari A to Z Flashback: Quadrun

It’s fun times four with Quadrun, which is one of the rarer Atari 2600 games thanks to its original status as a mail order-only game for Atari Club members.

It’s a shame this didn’t get a wider release, because it’s an intriguing, unusual, experimental and rather fun game once you get your head around its core mechanics, which see you moving around four distinct quadrants of a playfield to dispatch enemies and rescue “Runts” from the dreaded electric toaster grids.

Check it out in the video below, and please subscribe on YouTube for more.

Atari A to Z

Atari A to Z Flashback: Pong Sports

Are you ready for the Video Olympics? Because that’s what we’re playing today!

Yes, today’s game from Atari Flashback Classicsknown as both Pong Sports and Video Olympics depending on where you bought it and from whom, offers an array of rough approximations of sports based on Pong mechanics. It’s a simple set of games and there’s almost nothing here if you’re a solo player, but if you’ve got a friend or three to play with there’s a lot of fun to be had here.

Enjoy the competition between me and my wife in the video below, and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more.

Atari A to Z

Atari A to Z Flashback: Outlaw

It’s time for the original deathmatch! Outlaw was one of the first games available for the Atari 2600, and it remains a beloved competitive multiplayer game today.

Unlike its stablemate Combat, Outlaw actually also offers a single-player mode. Okay, it’s not a particularly good single-player mode, but at least you can get in a bit of target practice by yourself — something which you definitely couldn’t do in Combat. And, of course, the two-player funtimes still hold up brilliantly today.

Check it out in the video below, and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more!

Atari A to Z

Evercade A to Z: Solaris

With how long the Atari 2600 stuck around — and its position in the early days of the games business — it’s no surprise that games from its latter days bear little to no resemblance to its launch titles.

There are few games in which this is more apparent than Solaris, the official follow-up to Star Raiders on the 2600. But not the sequel to Star Raiders on the Atari 8-bit; that was just called Star Raiders II. Also, just to confuse matters, both Star Raiders II and Solaris were originally intended to be licensed games based on the movie The Last Starfighter, but for one (mostly Tramiel-shaped) reason or another, neither ever happened.

Fortunately, we can still enjoy Solaris for ourselves today. Check out my writeup for more thoughts, enjoy the video below and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more!

Atari A to Z Flashback: Off the Wall

As we’ve previously seen a few times on this series, the Atari 2600 managed to stick around for an astonishingly long time, particularly considering how quickly gaming technology was evolving in the early days.

From about 1986 onwards, Atari decided to try and give the platform a “second wind” by releasing a variety of new games for it. Some of these were developed by Nolan Bushnell’s studio Axlon — and a good example is today’s game, Off the Wall. It’s a take on Breakout with lovely colourful graphics, a few interesting twists on the standard block-breaking gameplay, and a bunch of cool power-ups to collect.

Check it out in the video below, and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more.

Atari A to Z

Atari A to Z Flashback: Motorodeo

The Atari 2600 had such a long lifespan that there is a huge difference between games that came out in its early days and those which appeared in its twilight years.

Motorodeo is one of the last games to be officially released for the platform, and it’s an ambitious affair, to be sure. It’s got a rough approximation of physics, it’s got scrolling levels — it’s even got split-screen multiplayer, which was an unusual sight on the 2600.

Some might argue it’s trying to do a little too much for the ageing platform, but it’s certainly a valiant effort if nothing else. Check it out in the video below, and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more.

Atari A to Z

Atari A to Z Flashback: Missile Command

It’s time for another one of those games that shows up on Atari Flashback Classics several times! This time around, it’s Missile Command putting in its second appearance.

The 2600 version of Missile Command is actually a really solid port of the game, albeit lacking some of the features like the satellites and planes. Most importantly, though, it plays well, looks authentic and is monstrously addictive.

Check it out in the video below, and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more!

Atari A to Z