Monthly Archives: September 2015

Atari 2600 Friday’s #38 – Sky Diver

I’m a little disappointed this one is so simple, But we have to get games like this out of the way eventually so here goes….

The Story: There is literally no story given here. I guess they decided Sky Divers didn’t need any kind of story or description. Well, this is a 2 player game, so feel free to make up any exciting story you want with your friend as to why your are competing.

From the Manual: Nothing written in the manual. There’s a first time for that.

From the Box: Once again, this is one of those games where the back of the box is pretty blank.

The Game Play: Your entire goal is to land the Sky Diver on the drop zone. This appears to b 2 player only, no single player at all. I played this once with Obsessive Compulsive Gamer. You fight against the wind and each other to land on the target and score the most points. There is a wind sock at the bottom of the screen that tells you which direction the wind is blowing. You have 9 jumps to score the most points.

The Controls: Red Button releases Diver from Plane. Pull Back on Joystick to open the parachute. Left/Right to steer against the wind.

Post Review: A fun competitive multiplayer game. It could have done with an AI to face off against solo, but it’s good non the less. I don’t think anyone will have any trouble finding a player two. So harken back to the days of splitscreen multiplayer, and have some fun.


Atari 2600 Friday’s #37 – Centipede

The Fortune Cookie has been doling out classics lately, and I’m okay with that because we need to cover those eventually anyways.

The Story: An elv name oliver found a magic wand and now uses it to save the elves garden from deadly pests.

From the Manual: “Once upon a time in a misty, enchanted forest, there lived a colony of good elves. These elves had a major problem, though. There prized mushroom garden was infested with pests–a giant Centipede, a
poison-spreading scorpion, a mischief-making spider, and a pesky flea. The good elves tried everything they could to rid their garden of these bugs. But nothing worked. One day, an elf named Oliver was hacking away at a poisoned mushroom in the garden. Suddenly, he saw an unusual stick gleaming in the dirt. Just as Oliver picked up the stick, a spider jumped out from behind a mushroom and rushed at him. When Oliver waved his hands wildly to try to scare the spider away, sparks flew from his stick and the spider disappeared! “How did that happen?” Oliver wondered out load. “Could this be a magic wand?” Soon Oliver had another chance to try the wand. When the scorpion
scurried across a row of mushroom, poisoning every mushroom it touched, Oliver pointed the wand at the scorpion and shouted, “Be gone!” Instantly, the scorpion disappeared and the poisoned mushrooms were
transformed back into normal mushrooms. “This is great! This is the tool we need to clean up our mushroom
garden!” Oliver shouted ecstatically. With his new found magic wand, Oliver hid behind a mushroom. “OK, you great big Centipede,” he said. “Come out wherever you are. I’m ready for you now!””

From the Box: “Watch out! Here comes the slithering Centipede, the poisonous scorpion, a mischievous spider, and pesky flea! Aim your magic wand and shoot sparks to stop these pests in their tracks.”

The Game Play: For anyone who has never played a variation of Centipede before, it is basically a shooter. The centipede zig-zags its way down the screen, changing direction every time it runs into the screen edge or a ‘mushroom’. You can move up and down in this one, but only about a quarter of the way up the screen. The centipede in this version has 9 segments, and every time you shoot a segment it gets detached from the centipede and left behind as a mushroom. In the first wave it is a head with 8 body segments, in each wave after it has additional heads until wave 9 where it is all heads. Each head will move on it’s own after being detached. Occasionally a spider will jump around the screen, a flea will drop straight down leaving mushrooms, or a scorpion will rush across poisoning mushrooms. When a mushroom is poisoned, it will make the centipede go crazy and rush you. You start with 3 ‘wands’ and get another every 10,000 points to a maximum of 7 wands, you also lose one every time you are ‘bitten’ by one of the pests reaching you.

The Controls: Up/Down/Left/Right movement.  Red button to shoot.

Post Review: My cart may not be clean, but there was no idea while I was playing. Decent version of a classic game. It shows it’sage compared to modern versions, but still very much worth playing.

The High Score: 17590

Let us also note, that Centipede is one of the few Atari 2600 games that was shipped with a small comic. Centipede, Yars Revenge, and the Swordquest Games to my knowledge. You can read Centipede here.

Atari 2600 Friday’s #36 – Dig Dug

Are we digging to China? So I missed last week I got a sore throat, and after a day of that I had a severe headache and running nose and a cough which has persisted to even now. I pretty much did nothing but sleep through my last weekend and need this weekly enjoyment to relax a little. So lets dig to China in a game I love to play on any kind of console.

The Story: You are a Miner of the quest for buried treasures. Treasures in the form of Vegetables. But watch out, all manner of underground monster wants to eat you.

From the Manual: “You are Dig Dug, the underground miner. With your jet-powered shovel, you create intricate, subterranean mazes. Ever on the watch for vegetable prizes, you must also look out for the fierce Fygar(tm) and mean Pooka(tm) that lurk underground. Their touch kills| Worse, these two meanies can transform into spooky ghosts that will appear out of nowhere and haunt you to death. Use your Joystick Controller to dig through the earth in this one-player game. Your objective: Destroy the meanies who lurk below and uproot the prized produce. Destroy meanies by using the fire button on your controller to pump them up until they burst or by drooping boulders on them. To get the valuable vegetable, dig to it as soon as it appears and cover it completely by moving Dig Dug over it. Each round is completed when you destroy all the meanies or when the last one escapes. The game ends when you lose all your lives.”

From the Box: “Create your own maze as you tunnel fearlessly through the earth. Your goal: Reap tasty vegetables worth healthy points. Your enemies: ghosts who want to bury you alive, fierce fire-breathing dragons, and mean ballooon-like bullies! Can you dig it? Here’s the exciting home version of the celebrated coin-op original!”

The Game Play: You dig tunnels through the earth to get where you want to go. You move in the direction you move the joystick. You dig automatically as you move. To defeat an enemy press the red button to pump them full of air. If you dig under a rock, watch out because it will fall and crush anything under it. When there is only 1 enemy left, it will run for the top left of the screen to escape. Either this or killing all enemies ends the round and begins a new round. You start with 5 lives and can earn new ones, the first at 20,000 points and then another for each additional 50,000 points, up to a maximum of 8 lives. Keep in mind that the game will periodically speed up.

The Controls: Up/Down/Left/Right movement.  Red button to attack.

Post Review: I don’t have much to say here. I love Dig Dug, it’s easy, fun, and you can just play for extended periods of time on one game. I should note that one thing to watch out for is enemies that are on top of each other. and that you get more points for killing enemies further down the screen.

The High Score: 36130

Arcade Block for August

Curious whats in the August Arcade Block? I already like this one more than July. Lets take a look at the detail card.

Looks like a lot of cool stuff. The main item seems to be the Mortal Kombat Plush. Exciting, but I’ve never played or gotten into Mortal Kombat. The same can be said for Counter Strike which I have at least tried, I’m just not a Multiplayer kind of guy. I do like the Retro NES Styling of the Counter Strike Shirt even as subtle as it is.

Here is an item I am excited about. A Scott Pilgrim Video Game Soundtrack. I love Scott Pilgrim, and I love the Video Game associated with it. This is going straight into my car when I go out later today.

And another exciting item. A Fallout Pennant. This is quite exciting to me as I await the Fallout 4 loot crate. I have both the PC Anthology and 4 preordered.

And the last two items. Not as interesting, but still cool. I wristband I can only assume is also Scott Pilgrim related (feel free to correct me if I am wrong), due to what looks like a Sex Bob-omb logo and the Scott Pilgrim Live Action Movie font. There is also a preview of a  Retro Gaming Magazine honoring Metal Gear.

I can’t wait to see what is in next months Arcade Block which seems like it’s going to be Zelda Themed according to an enclosed advertisement in this months Block.

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