Monthly Archives: June 2015

June 26, 2015 Pickups

Alright, I haven’t done one of these for awhile. I keep forgetting. I’m just going to condense it down to the weeks pickups.

First of all, for those who missed it, I have finally ordered myself a CIB E.T. fo my 2600 E.T. collection. because what E.T. collector/defender doesn’t have at least one CIB.

Secondly, even though I don’t have an Intellivision, I had to grab these three games for the condition they are in. and maybe they will finally prompt me to seek one out. We have: Advanced Dungeons and Dragons, Pitfall!, and Donkey Kong.


Atari 2600 Friday’s #27 – Astroblast

The Story: You control a laser base and must shoot falling rocks and UFO’s to protect your bases. Once again a shooter for Atari doesn’t provide much story info in either the manual or box.

From the Manual: “Hit as many falling, fast-moving targets as you can. Move your laser base to avoid being hit yourself. Keep shooting as long as your bases last, and try for a great Peak Score!”

From the Box: “*For 1 player at a time – compete with friends for the best Peak Score!

*2 firing modes – 2 speed options.

*Shoot down a variety of fast-moving targets: falling meteors. spinning bombs, guided missiles – even a bomb-dropping UFO!

*he computer keeps score, and gives you more challenging game action the higher you go!

Use either PADDLE or JOYSTICK CONTROLLER(paddle id preferable) to play ASTROBLAST on your Atari Video Game System or Sears Video Arcade System.”

The Game Play: You start with 10 bases and get another when your peak score goes up by 1000. The higher your score goes the more things that fall you have to watch out for and the faster they fall.  Like I said, the manual doesn’t offer much information this time, I guess they didn’t want to write too much for a generic shooter.

Falling objects to watch out for: Rocks, both big and small. Spinners, they cost you a base when they land. Pulsars, they are guided missiles that head towards your base. UFO’s, they show up once your score hits 20,000 and start dropping bombs.

The Controls: Left/Right movement. Red button fires, hold down to auto fire. Apparently the paddle will move your ship faster.

Post Review: Worst shooter I have ever had the experience of trying. Everything was falling so fast I could not stay alive more than a few seconds. I have lasted longer in ‘bullet hell’ type shooter games. First of all, the 10 bases are actually your ship. so that’s wonderful. at least the spinners move slow, but everything else is only on screen about 2 seconds. so dodge fast and watch out. it took me a moment to figure out in the chaos what falling object was what, but when you do you’ll know what to go for. Not every object costs you a base. I believe dying subtracts from the points you would have received for that life, sometimes resulting in zero. Thankfully you can’t have a negative score.

The High Score: either 0 or 925. it showed 0 after every death, but 925 was the highest number it shows after a game ended.

Atari 2600 Friday’s #26 – Sky Jinks

Sorry about missing a week or two there. One Friday was spent Amiibo hunting. and another, with a friend game hunting. So this week we are going to do something a little more unique than ‘insert random shooter here’ from one of my recent pickups.

The Story: The short of it it that it sounds like a Stunt Plane Air Race, with Balloonists in the way due to a psycho of a rival.

From the Manual: “Pre-flight jitters? Dumont got you edgy? Settle down. You’ll do just fine. But, please read this manual before takeoff. It’ll help put your nerves on autopilot, and give you some real pointers on piloting to victory and the coveted Thompson Trophy.”

From the Box: “What a beautiful day for the World Championship of Air Races. But, alas! Your mortal enemy, dastardly Dumont Doolittle, has cunningly arranged for a hot air balloon rally to float directly across your flight path. Don’t let Dumont’s high jinks keep you grounded! Gun your P41 to full throttle. Zoom across the lush, green fields. Careen precariously around pylons. Shave the very tips of trees, and snicker in delight as you dodge those bothersome balloonists. Eat your heart out Doolittle! The Thompson Trophy is within reach – as you soar under the clouds, and up, up into the record books with – Sky Jinks by Activision!”

The Game Play:  You have to fly around the Pylons to the end of the course as fast as possible without crashing. Fly to the right of red pylons and to the left of blue pylons. you get a 3 second penalty for missing a pylon. The number above the timer is how many pylons you have left. The number left at the end of a race is how many pylons you missed. Apparently the fast you go the higher you plane goes affecting the shadow so you can tell how fast you are going. Your plane will also accelerate into curves and wont react immediately when turning. All designed for more realism.

The Controls: Left will bank the plane Left and Right will bank Right. The red button is your throttle. up and down do nothing.

Post Review: The pylons in my play seemed to always alternat red and blue, so you know ahead of time which way to go next. Helpful because some are placed very far apart and you have to go slow to get there and around it without crashing into the pylon. Speaking of which, every crash causes you to spin out a little. Just remember to not go full throttle the whole way and it’s pretty easy to make it to the end with every pylon. From there it will be just practice makes perfect, A simple fun game.

The High Score: 38’33”

This is one of the Atari games where you could beat the score to receive a Patch.

“If you beat a time of 37.0 seconds on Game 1, without missing any pylons, you can join our Activision “Sky Stars.””

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