Is Rygar a game that you need to pick up for your Atari Lynx? Absolutely. Rygar is a great, great game. It’s almost a perfect arcade port. It’s beautiful to look at. And it’s very, very fun and addicting to play. The graphics are great. They’re very close to the arcade, they don’t look anything like the NES version. They’re not glitchy, they’re solid, and it’s a joy to look at. Lots of different cool landscapes, you have the sunset in the background. I mean it’s a really, really lush, beautiful looking game. I highly recommend that you get ahold of this bad boy right here.
Today we’re looking at arcade ports for the Atari Lynx. And umm.. what time is it? Umm, hmm.. I don’t know, it’s the ’90s so there’s always time for some KLAX. Am I right? I mean that’s what I always told myself in 1990. Time for some KLAX! Now if you want to talk about a solid arcade port, to a portable system no less, I would say that KLAX is right up there. It’s a hall of fame as far as arcade ports go. The gameplay is simple, yet addictive. There’s a lot of different objectives within the game. The tiles are coming down this conveyer belt and you’ve got to stack them up. You can stack a bunch of them up on your little pallet, and then decide how you want to disperse them below.
Robotron: 2084 is a 1982 classic! It was very similar in aspects to Berzerk, but it controlled much better. It’s a twin-stick shooter, your left hand is controlling where your guy is going, and your right hand is controlling where your guy is shooting. You can be running backwards and firing off a hailstorm of bullets, blowing up these robots! You kinda have to turn off your brain off, and just get in that zone where you can run and shoot in two different directions. But once you start getting into it, man.. it’s really addicting.
Paperboy on Atari Lynx is completely filled to the brim with charm. It’s like living a cartoon fantasy. The music and sound effects are just iconic. Basically you are a paperboy delivering papers. You have a certain number of houses that you have to deliver your papers to. There are houses that don’t want your paper, but you get points whenever you vandalize their houses. All of the other things that are happening that are very very time specific. You’ve got guys breakdancing that you can throw your paper at and mess them up, there’s dudes fighting on the street, there’s people breaking into houses, there’s kids on big wheels, the grim reaper will chase you, you’ve gotta make it across the street without getting squashed. There’s just so much fun stuff happening in this game.
RoadBlasters had everything. It had speed, it had adrenalin, it had weapons. You could blow up cars. It had amazing control. That’s the thing, as good as it looked, as good as it sounded, it played even better. One of the best Atari Lynx games hands down. RoadBlasters was an arcade game that came out in 1987. Race as fast as you can, you try to pick up the little fuel orbs, and you just blow everything up. Let’s take a look at RoadBlasters in today’s episode of Lynx Lounge!
Blue Lightning for the Atari Lynx is reviewed by Brian Thomas Barnhart in this episode of Lynx Lounge. If you were going to show off your Lynx to all your friends that had a Game Boy or something like that, and you really wanted to make them jealous, well of course you’d show them California Games because that was the pack-in. But, if you wanted to show them a game that would just shut them up, stop them in their tracks, and just go “holy moly” and just obviously be completely jealous of you, Blue Lightning was the game that you showed them because it, today in my opinion, is still cool.
The summer after 6th Grade was especially adventurous. I spent every day with my best friend Jon who lived across the lake from me. We stayed up late all summer long playing video games and making public access shows and game reviews on my video camera. At the start of summer I fell head over heels for a girl named Lauren from school. Lauren was cute, with long dark hair and intensely deep eyes. At the same time this was happening, my best friend Jon had also fallen for the love of his life, a redheaded girl named Cecilia who rode his bus. At twelve years old all we could think about were Lauren and Cecilia, and they became the topic of many epic conversations had that summer. Our days were spent at the pool, playing California Games and talking about girls.
California Games and the Atari Lynx arrived at the end of the ’80s in this crazy moment when beach culture was immensely popular. Movies, TV shows and music gravitated to sunny settings, surfboards, and gnarly neon colors. Saved By The Bell’s “Bayside High”, those bodacious bros Bill & Ted (who coincidentally have an Atari Lynx game of their own) and even the Golden Girls, all contributed to popularizing beach culture during the late 1980s and early 1990s. Atari Lynx proved to be different. It was robust, advanced, smart and edgy. It had better graphics, better sound, a backlit screen, it was in color, and it threw the low expectations of groupthink back in the face of the followers. It was rebellious. When I became aware of the Lynx and how impressive it was, I set out on a mission to get one in time for summer. On weekends I would go to Sears or Toys ‘Я’ Us and just stare at the Lynx behind showcase glass.
This is the first of a four-part anthology chronicling my lifetime of adventures with California Games and the Atari Lynx. It’s being published in four chapters over the course of the Summer. I hope you will enjoy this first chapter, a review of the game. California Games was released with the Lynx as its pack-in title in September, 1989. It features four different “extreme games” that can be selected from the title screen – BMX, Surfing, Halfpipe and Footbag – each with a fast-paced arcade feel, allowing just 1 minute and 30 seconds to swing tricks and successfully finish with a new high score.
“Great eras live forever.” We built this website with that in our hearts. When we remember Atari, often times we remember much more than games. We remember the music, the movies, the feel of the moment we lived in. We’ve created a video to express our love to something that cannot be put in words. It’s our homage to that moment, an overture that attempts to capture everything we love most about Atari and the era it defined. We love Atari, and we hope you do too.