Six New Atari 2600 VCS Cartridges Released! Includes 3D and Amiga Joyboard support...

Bill Loguidice's picture

The six games for the Atari 2600 VCS are: 3D Ghost Attack!, 3D Genesis, 3D Havoc, Atom Smasher, Depth Charge, and S.A.C. Alert. The 3D games are the first and only 3D games for the platform (they come with paper glasses), Depth Charge was originally designed to be the first head-to-head game where each player has their own console and TV, and S.A.C. Alert was meant to be used with the Amiga Joyboard, the horrible joystick platform you stood on and whose only game actually released was the skiing game, Mogul Maniac. Keep in mind that these six games from the early 1980s are all in various states of completion and Video Soft is rather vague about how playable each one is. Prices range from $30 to $50 plus shipping and handling (if you buy the full $230 set, shipping is free), and each of the six games is limited to a production run of 100 copies, which includes a cartridge, manual and box. Apparently after a particular game sells out, the ROM will be made available to everyone. I'll leave it to this snippet from the Video Soft Website to provide a bit more detail:

These are from game developer Video Soft, and all (with the exception of one) were intended to be sold to Amiga. The games were mentioned in company press releases at CES shows from the early 1980s, but never displayed, and were thought to have been just one of the many vaporware titles that never materialized. So it was quite a surprise to learn that not only did most of the titles announced exist in prototype form, but were developed enough to be playable - half of which appear to be complete!

What's even better than that? Well, how about the chance to own a copy of them! After nearly 30 years, the games are at long last being made available! Thanks to the efforts of a few, dedicated Atari fans, the prototypes were archived, new artwork was created, and cartridges were produced, under agreement with Video Soft founder Jerry Lawson. Each cartridge includes both a box and manual, and production is limited to 100 numbered copies of each title. As each title is sold out, the ROM file for it will be released with the condition it is not to be sold by anyone, in any form). We feel this arrangement should please everyone, from the casual gamer to the hardcore collector.

Honestly, it's all very cool, but for what they're charging, even I would need some more details before plunking down this kind of money, and I'm a huge supporter of initiatives like this. I suspect most, if not all games will sell out fairly quickly though and become hot items in the future on eBay, so your own idea about their relative value may vary. On the plus side, as was mentioned, as these sell out, we'll at least have access to the ROMs, which is a really great offer to make any way you break it down.

Comments

Bill Loguidice
Bill Loguidice's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/31/1969
After my query about the

After my query about the completeness of each title, here's the response:
The games I'd consider complete are Genesis, Atom Smasher, and S.A.C. Alert. They could have used a few more days or weeks of polish, but are more complete in comparison to a lot of 3rd-party titles from back then (and I'm not even considering the Mythicon games ).

Depth Charge is complete for basically being half of a game. The half that exists is similar to Sea Wolf. The missing half would have been similar to Atari's Depth Charge or Sega's Sub-Scan. It would have been cool to see it completed, but unlike a market crash 'victim' like Atom Smasher, a change in company plans sunk Depth Charge before it was finished.

The Ghost Attack cart utilizes a menu program that was originally created for the Amiga Power-Play carts, and modified to run the 3 Ghost Attack prototypes separately. The first level is fully playable and after playing for a few minutes, it will auto-run the 2nd level. The collision-detection wasn't completed for this part, so there's no way to reach the 3rd part w/o running it from the menu. The 3rd part is playable but there's no ending (but some music for it is in the code).

Havoc is close to being complete, but after reaching the end (it cycles back to the 2nd screen where it runs forever).

With regards to the 3-D games, don't expect Avatar-like quality here the 3rd part of Ghost Attack and the 2nd screen in Havoc come close to pulling it off, but personally I think the resolution is too low with the games to pull off the effect convincingly. At least 2 other companies (one being Activision) either worked on or planned on releasing 3-D games, and didn't.

The packaging is similar to what was done with Tim Duarte's Mean Santa game last year. I plan on adding more information (text, photos, and possibly video) for each title in the next few weeks. Btw, the prices reflect the cost of making the games, and not the 'completeness' of them.

n/a
Bill Loguidice
Bill Loguidice's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/31/1969
Scroll to the bottom and I

Scroll to the bottom and I think you'll see why there is some dissatisfaction with the quality of the packaging given the price of the games: http://www.digitpress.com/library/videosoft/videosoft.htm

Definitely not up to usual homebrew standards, particularly for unfinished games!

n/a

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.