In this episode, Armando, Carlos and I play Donkey Kong on the Atari 7800 using the hard-to-find Atari 7800 control pad, which was never officially released in the USA. Nintendo games on Atari. It’s really hard to imagine now, playing a Nintendo-exclusive game on another console. Everybody knows how strict Nintendo is on their licensing. Seeing a Nintendo-exclusive game on a different console is crazy. As you’ll see in the episode, Armando and Carlos were surprised by the quality of Donkey Kong on the Atari 7800 and the responsiveness of the Atari 7800 control pad using the short-throw thumbstick. They weren’t expecting an Atari console to push graphics nearly identical to the NES version of Donkey Kong
Waka, waka, waka. Now everybody knows the history and the importance of Pac-Man. Pac-Man gave us fever, but Ms. Pac-Man really stole our hearts. Is that cheesy enough for you? It’s true! So let’s go ahead and take a look at how this version of Ms. Pac-Man stacks up on the Atari Lynx. Well, it’s got some very, very good things about it, and it’s got a couple of things that annoy me. It might just be a personal preference, but I’ll give you my opinion as we go on.
Let’s get this straight: This “Cybermorph vs. Star Fox” debate… it’s not a debate. It’s lazy video game journalism by the worst people in the world. Cybermorph is pretty darn smooth. It plays pretty well. You could see how going from 16-Bit 2-D games into a 3-D open landscape like Cybermorph would be really, really attractive to an older gamer who was done with Mario and Sonic. Then you see Cybermorph in a magazine and go “You know what, this is sexy. I don’t want this kid’s stuff anymore. I want something new.“ We could not have games like Resident Evil, Metal Gear Solid, and Mario 64 without games like Cybermorph. You have to start somewhere. So let’s brew some homemade Kahlua, get Christmas started, and give Cybermorph another chance.
Watch us play Atari 7800 Centipede in Team Play mode using Trak-Ball controllers with a very special guest, my son Mason who’s joining us for the first episode. I think of Centipede as one of the main pillars of Atari. Space Invaders, Asteroids, Defender, Missile Command, Pac-Man, and Centipede were like the big heavy hitters that you’d want to be playing. Seriously, what’s cooler in the World of Atari than using Trak-Balls for Team Play on Centipede? Hmm.. I can’t think of much.
I’ve eagerly awaited the publication of Art of Atari since I first read about author Tim Lapetino’s in-progress book project many years ago. Art of Atari is aesthetically striking in a number of ways. It’s big, heavy, colorful, and exudes the feeling of a quality, professional product. The Deluxe Edition with its cartridge-emulating leather-bound cover and heavy-duty cardboard slipcase is artwork in itself, if you ask me. These were clearly not produced by some fly-by-night publishing house — it’s professional quality through and through. The subject matter necessitated high-quality printing in order to show off color, texture, and other subtleties in the artwork, and the book certainly delivers on that front, using extra-white paper to really make the imagery “pop” off the page. As someone who grew up with Atari (but somehow never owned another console until a PS3), and as someone with an admittedly lacking fantastical imagination, the artwork that accompanied Atari products made an enormous impression on me as a kid. It’s the talented artists and designers under Atari’s employ who deserve the credit for allowing me to dream of ideas and worlds bigger than those generated by glowing phosphor lines on a CRT screen, and Art of Atari does a spectacular job in affording them the recognition and credit they well deserve.
Personally I think that this version of Xenophobe is one of the best, if not the best. You know what? I’m going to say it. It’s the best. You want to know why? It’s got multiplayer. Not only does it have multiplayer, but you can also play as one of the aliens, and you can hunt your friends. Hello? Up to four players. Give me a break. So what do I think of this version of Xenophobe? It’s perfect. It is a perfect arcade game. Not only that, it adds the multiplayer element to it which is unique only for the Atari Lynx. Think about that. Not only is it delivering a perfect arcade translation, it’s also giving you something extra… A little Atari twist. I mean who doesn’t like an Atari twist, right? They’re great! So if you are looking to collect, or if you’re looking to play a great game, this game is a must-have.
What do Patrick Swayze, Road House and Pit-Fighter have in common? Don’t be a jabroni – tune in and find out! Pit-Fighter hit the arcades in 1990. And it had some pretty amazing tech behind it, because this was the second game to use digitized actors as the actual sprites in the game. Pit-Fighter, to me, is a “guilty pleasure” game. I have guilty pleasure movies, Flash Gordon would be one of them. Another one would be Road House. Now, I equate Road House and Pit-Fighter almost on the same plane. Like, I feel like it’s the same universe, and I’ll tell you why. Let’s check out Pit-Fighter right now, as we walk down memory lane and check out our arcade ports on the Lynx Lounge. Get ready for some Pit-Fighter.
This is going to be a big Atari 7800 showcase, so I just wanted to share with you guys this little “unboxing of things to come in the show”. We’re going to take a look at the Best Electronics 7800 Light Gun, the Video 61 7800 Grip-Stick, the 7800 European Controller, a brand new AV Modded Atari 7800, and an Atari 7800 Trak-Ball. I mean, really, let’s be honest, few of you had 7800s. Those who did are very fond of them. But for the most part, in this time period, most everybody was playing Sega Master System, I mean even that’s few and far between, but mostly the world was being run by Nintendo. This equipment here, the Atari 7800, was kind of being left out. So we’re going to give this equipment and these games a new chance to shine. And we’re going to invite guests over and we’re going to have a good time, and we’re gonna rack up the high scores and that’s how we’re gonna do it. This is the loot! I mean, man, this is like Christmas here! I am so excited. I can’t wait to get this show rolling.
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.
Every system needs to have a “killer app” to sell the system. For Atari 2600 it was Space Invaders. For the NES it was Super Mario Bros. To me, Alien vs. Predator was that game for Atari Jaguar. This was the one that put Jaguar on the map. Alien vs. Predator was the reason that I wanted to get an Atari Jaguar. It was like “Atari! It’s back!” Here they are with a 64-Bit system and this amazing game. “They’re going to do it again! They’re going to do what they did in 1979.” Now we know the story, but in my heart I believed that and it was this game that made me want to buy this system.