Shooting Gallery (Odyssey, 1972)

Shooting Gallery (Odyssey, 1972): Look, bunnies and duckies! (blam! blam!)Shooting Gallery (Odyssey, 1972): Look, bunnies and duckies! (blam! blam!)

Shooting Gallery turns out to be the coolest game from the group of Shooting Gallery games. It uses a different cart (#10), which makes the playfield very different from the other three games (which use cart #9). This configuration gives you two paddles between which you deflect your target. The target, in this case, is a relatively HUGE square. I didn't know the Odyssey could produce such a large, er, "sprite"! (of course, they don't call them sprites yet.)

The idea here is to set the Target Spot oscillating across the screen and behind a row of targets on the overlay (plane, rabbit, duck or ship. ) Shoot it as many times as you can letting it go back and forth ten times before moving it down to the next target set. Player Two acts as an assistant, doing the manipulations of the controllers as well as keeping track of the oscillations. Player One does the shootin'.

So, for the first time, we have an automatically oscillating, console-controlled target. It only goes back and forth, so it isn't "console-controlled" implying "AI" but still, it is moving and another Player doesn't have to do anything to keep it moving -- just get it set up in the appropriate row. To make it more challenging, there is a speed control on the Odyssey which can regulate the movement speed of the Target Spot. Set to maximum, the target can whiz back and forth at tremendous speeds. This makes it pretty darn hard to shoot, but unlike Dogfight!, this isn't due to your co-player being clever -- it's just Odyssey being fast.

I really had fun with this one. I'm not saying that I'll take it out and play it again, like, ever, but it was fun. The whole Shooting Gallery experience sweeps Ultraman. It should be important to note, however, that while I enjoyed each of the Shooting Gallery games, my son enjoyed them much less. He liked the ideas, but found it hard to use the rifle (when he was 7). I give it a full point anyway, but thought it important to note that my son won't have any warm fuzzy feelings of nostalgia for this set of games like some people who might've played it when they were children or, more recently, while a little drunk.

The Score: Ultraman 6, Odyssey 10

Next entry starts the Extra Odyssey Games from 1972.

Comments

davyK
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Joined: 05/21/2006
As is usual with these

As is usual with these Odyssey items posted here - the artwork on the overlays is utterly charming and just screams "1970s".

Mark Vergeer
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Joined: 01/16/2006
Automatically moving targets - WOW!

Love those reviews. Keep 'm coming I say.

But no kidding, you really see an evolution of game mechanics here were the console first does nothing more than displaying a game-board on screen that has to be manipulated by the players much like older board-games - whereas this game introduces an active role for the console. This game probably is a big stepping stone in the games on the old Odyssey?

Xbox 360: Lactobacillus P | Wii: 8151 3435 8469 3138
Armchair arcade Editor | Pixellator | www.markvergeer.nl

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Michael McCourt
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Joined: 01/17/2007
Thanks!
Mark Vergeer wrote:

Love those reviews. Keep 'm coming I say.

I will keep them coming. Sorry for having had the long hiatus. :)

Mark Vergeer wrote:

This game probably is a big stepping stone in the games on the old Odyssey?

I was hoping the very same thing, but, alas, Shooting Gallery is the only game to even use cart #10! As a videogame design stepping stone, though, what I think it does is put forth the idea that eventually, the computer will do more of the work... leaving the co-player free for things like getting the snacks and refilling drinks, which is very important. ;)

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