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Toki 7800: Were Imagitec Design Developing This?

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#1 Lost Dragon

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Posted 05 July 2017 - 09:46 AM

I was astounded when news of 7800 Toki broke, it's up there with the report of 7800 Paperboy being finished, yet never released, for myself...

But to this day, i remain very confused as to WHOM the developer was....

Looking at title screen:


It states:Conversion by:Images Ltd in association with Maximum Effect...

Yet all the documentation Scott Stilphen kindly passed onto me, states it was Imagitec Design here in the UK...

Martin Hooley has never mentioned it in any interview i've read with him, be it dedicated Imagitec Design feature in RetroGamer Magazine or online, yet often mentions 7800 Pitfighter and Rampart....

I've chatted to Atari UK's Bob Katz..in the past, he never mentioned it, but then i never asked about it specifically as at that time i didn't have the attached documentation...

Ditto Farran Thompson..yet he was a playtester.

Imagitec Design were Mirage i believe prior to being renamed, but Images Ltd and Maximum effect are total unlknowns to myself.

I've never seen any Ex-Imagitec Design artist or coder list the game on their C.V

Do we even know who was supposed to have worked on it?

Could Imagitec Design of simply out sourced the game?

I'm not a huge 7800 fan, so have huge gaps in what i do know..so over to the community for help on this one...

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Edited by Lost Dragon, 06 July 2017 - 04:52 AM.

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#2 Justin


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Posted 05 July 2017 - 07:46 PM

This is amazing Lost Dragon. I've been fascinated by the existence of Toki on the 7800, especially because I was around back then and the thought of great new releases being readied in 1993 just as the Jaguar was about to launch is mind boggling to me. It was all I could do to find any 2600 or 7800 games that year.

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#3 btbfilms76


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Posted 05 July 2017 - 11:21 PM

This is an amazing find, congratulation on the great work. 

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#4 atarilbc


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Posted 06 July 2017 - 12:12 AM

Interesting that the fourth of five milestone payments to Imagitec for Toki was remitted in August '91 and the game was terminated that September. Even more interesting is that the game was being actively play tested in '93. Is it possible that Atari resurrected the project with another developer?

Images Ltd. seems to have been a UK developer that was focused on developing titles on the ZX Spectrum for Ocean and U.S. Gold in the late 80s and early 90s.

Edited by atarilbc, 06 July 2017 - 12:24 AM.

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#5 Justin


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Posted 06 July 2017 - 02:46 AM

Even more interesting is that the game was being actively play tested in '93. Is it possible that Atari resurrected the project with another developer?


Yeah, I was thinking the same thing atarilbc. Sure seems like it.

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#6 Lost Dragon

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Posted 06 July 2017 - 06:32 AM

From the documents Scott passed on, it's clear Atari often pitched projects to various developers/invited them in to discuss wether they would be intreseted in developing Title X on format Y....



You can see likes of Beyond games, Alexandria etc invited over to discuss AVP on Jaguar CD, Beyond Games showing an interest in Major Havoc 2000 AFTER Jeff Minter quits....Lore design being sent proposal for Batman Returns etc....


Plus coders literally dissapear taking code with them (Jaguar James Pond 3), Atari aren't happy with person/s coding ask for specific coders (Jaguar Dactyl Joust), coders get in over their heads (Dactyl Joust Jaguar, Rolling Thunder Lynx)..so projects do change hands an awful lot.


Documents give some idea what went down and provide a source of names to track down, but even then it doesn't mean we see definite answers....Lore Design said NDA might mean they couldn't chat about Batman Returns, so that was a dead end (though Steve kindly talked me through the dropped 4 player mode on Lynx Kung Food...).


'Other' investigations based on as of yet files i've not shared are ongoing, people in question surprised to see the docs, but unless they are willing to share info, there's nothing more we will be able to do other than get those documents up online also...but nothing from these will be happening anytime soon.



Bad enough the utter nonsense that's appearing after the finds on Strider II, The Panther, Jaguar: Conan, Magic Carpet, Major Havoc 2000, Tomb Raider , 7800 Paperboy...etc are going live..people attempting to discredit the finds/saying it proves nothing/info was already known (ohh really), demmanding everything be put up NOW NOW NOW!!!!, coders search until they find code or simply copy n paste of material to be passed off as either their findings or not crediting the various communities that shared info freely.


Unseen64+Atarimania had to waste valuable time deleting troll comments from FB/website pages....


So i do almost flip a coin these days before sharing new finds/creating new threads here, as i know outside of here, people are abusing the material.

#7 Lost Dragon

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Posted 06 July 2017 - 06:40 AM

And back onn track....



As this message shows, Atari UK themselves were often seemingly left in the dark by Imagitec Design, not knowing status of projects on 7800 (let alone Jaguar etc).Bob Katz asking basically WTF was going on with 7800 Pitfighter...



The trouble with mainstream press covering likes of Imagitec Design in articles (yes RetroGamer i mean you), is 2 fold...



1)They have LIMITED space..your not going to fit everything into 6 pages and the lost/unreleased games are only going to warrant a few lines at best, however i DO feel they should at least be referenced, even if what became of them isn't known...


There was NOTHING about 7800 Toki in RG's feature.....


2)The second and more tricky aspecty..they have to be seen as a celebration of the company (editor himself told me that) so your going to get the Rose Tinted version of events, IF company wants to discuss it at all.



They are very unlikely to admit they got in way over their heads, got behind, didn't pay coders, artists, kept the publisher in the dark etc etc.


More likely you'll simply hear game was canned as clear no market for it...type answers.



This is why finding and sharing internal documents like these are essential.

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#8 Lost Dragon

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Posted 06 July 2017 - 07:36 AM

And this file MIGHT just give a few ideas why Atari might of given Toki to someone else to develop (and a version of company history for Imagitec they would not want to be presenting to likes of RetroGamer Magazine via a FB interview):



Internal realationships at Imagitec...'strained' :)


Atari not sure Imagitec had the stability they looked for.....

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