Virtual Atari - Play Over 550 Atari 2600 VCS Games in Your Browser

Bill Loguidice's picture

Bill Martens of Virtual Apple (Apple II and IIgs) fame sent word that his latest project, Virtual Atari, is now open. There are currently over 550 Atari 2600 VCS games on the site, all running in the JStella emulator in Java. Another great site to add to the master browser emulator list!

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clok1966
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Joined: 01/21/2009
I grew up with a 2600 and

I grew up with a 2600 and (for the time) had alot of games (60 some, dont sound like much now, but this was before the bust when they still costed more then a few bucks each). I can remeber there really wasnt any game (at that time) i didnt like. I mastered them all. Can remeber sending screenshots of the Activision games to get the patchs. Buying games from Atari Age (magazine) like Rubic Cube. Still got um all in boxes in my closet. I can remeber playing LASER BLAST for hours and hours http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rDUAiM34llM it was basicly just perfect timing (hey, just like guitar hero!) to score big. lately i have played a few of the old 2600 games as I set Stella up on my emu machine. WOW, suprising how those games look after not playing any in ...err... almost 20 years (eek!). Not many hold my attention for more then a few seconds. But some STAMPEDE and RIVER RAID where kinda fun. I was horribly addicted to YARS REVENGE (love the story on how that game came to be) back in the day, and still kinda enjoyed it. I guess I'm just suprised at what I loved in the past looks so bland and boring now. LASER BLAST, how did i play that for hours? YARS REVENGE? INDY 500 (ice racing was a blast!)... I must admit it is cool to see sombody put um on a website.

Bill Loguidice
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Joined: 12/31/1969
I think Laser Blast was

I think Laser Blast was probably the first game I ever rolled the score over on, clok1966. Not much of a game as it is pattern based, but good memories.

Indy 500 is kind of cool, but the driving controllers are a must (of course, there's no other way to play it). It's a shame the driving controllers (same as the paddle controllers but with 360 degree rotation) weren't better supported (or supported at all). Sadly, Sprintmaster, released in 1988, which is essentially a super enhanced version of Indy 500, only used the joystick. Post crash, Atari stopped supporting things like paddles and other peripherals (though they had limited support for the Atari XEGS light gun).

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Bill Loguidice, Managing Director | Armchair Arcade, Inc.
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clok1966
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Joined: 01/21/2009
Ya that was my point, Laser

Ya that was my point, Laser blast.. Im really suprised it was a game. When you started playing it you maybe moved a round a bit (reverse space invaders) to avoid the shots. But it soon turned into a hard right on joystick with timed buttons to shoot the ships, over and over and over :) Not that many other games are not the same thing but time hadnt been kind to some of them. But did it even have different color ships or ground as levels went up? I dont think so. I think how many hours I spent playin it (laser blast) and loved every minute of it, but now its very dated, even by 2600 standards IMHO. I know Its hard to be objective and understand the games of the past when we have had 20+ years to compare it to. I dont think graphics make the game by a long shot (adventure was quite fun I alwasy thought, even played it a bit when i was messing with Stella, still has that rush when the dragon is chasing you). I cant imagin programing back then with the resorces they had, ideas must have been hard to come by. Another game I played for hours, Star Voyager a FP space shooter. Very crude today but back then I hadnt seen anything like it and it was fantastic.

I ramble to much. My whole point was, when you check this out, how do you find the old games? Do you play some a few minutes, few seconds? longer? My parents bought one of this nintendo knock of 128 in one systems so when my sisters kids came over they could play, but they had almost zero interest in it (they had a PS2 at the time).. me I played it for a hour or so checking all the games. Played Athena for abut 30 minutes (loved that game on the Nes).

Bill Loguidice
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Joined: 12/31/1969
I'm not a good one to answer

I'm not a good one to answer on game play time, classic or modern. I'm often satisfied with a few minutes here or there, because that's what my schedule allows. Even the game I'm playing for Episode 2 of Armchair Arcade TV I'm only trying to play to the end to get footage of it, otherwise I already satisfied my desire to play one of my favorite games of all time in the little time that I've put into it. I certainly still enjoy and occasionally play Atari 2600 games, but yeah, times, me, games, etc., have changed, and I'd be far less apt to give something like "Laser Blast" more than a few minutes of nostalgia play these days, versus in my youth when I took a certain joy in the pattern-based play and wanting to roll the score over. I'm much more interested in playing games I've never played before (classic or modern) than necessarily putting a lot of time into something I've already spent lots of time with (of course there are always exceptions), and then only putting time into those games that I find are actually good. I don't have tolerance for bad games anymore since I live in the proverbial videogame land of plenty and my time is more precious than it was in my youth.

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Bill Loguidice, Managing Director | Armchair Arcade, Inc.
[About Me]

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