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The Professor

PLAY ATARI TODAY!

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I love the 7800.  I was in college when it came out, and never really heard of it until I started collecting about 10 years ago.  Great system, bad joysticks...just a shame it wasn't released earlier, or even instead of the 5200.  Ironically, I have an NES gamepad converted to work on the 7800, which makes the system 100 times better. 

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My two favorite 5200 games:  Berzerk and Realsports Baseball.  Baseball actually makes good use of those godawful joysticks.  Oooh, and Centipede.  That's another great one.  Don't have the trackball,  I have heard good things about it though. 

Atari made a trak-ball for the 2600/8-bit that has an analog mode.  8-bit Missile Command is supported in analog mode, and it is amazing. 

 

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I love the 7800.  I was in college when it came out, and never really heard of it until I started collecting about 10 years ago.  Great system, bad joysticks...just a shame it wasn't released earlier, or even instead of the 5200.  Ironically, I have an NES gamepad converted to work on the 7800, which makes the system 100 times better. 

 

 

RickR - I agree 100%!! This is one of those things that will always be debated in endless circles of "what if". Everything you said is right on, man. A lot of people have never even heard of the system. The joysticks weren't the worst ever but they were bad, which is inexcusable as Atari supposedly designed them as an "answer" to bad joysticks. Most of the tech in the 5200 should have come out in 1980 as a console to replace the 2600, and then the 7800 should have hit sooner. So many failures of the early consoles can be attributed to their controllers. Seems like nobody really figured it out until the NES. Maybe that's heresy in an Atari forum but I speak the truth.

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Yeah, I don't understand why Atari people don't give the NES credit for it's gamepad.  It's spectacular.  A huge leap forward in good design.  It's kind of funny how Intellivision almost got it right.  If they'd just flipped the controller 90 degrees and put the buttons on the front....

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Since I'm too sick to drive 90 miles to Fresno this morning for my Commodore Club meeting (me and my friend still bring Atari stuff into the meetings, too...but I do love me some Commodore stuff, too!), I guess I'll take some measurements and try to work on my "retro" game room today.  Man, I need to find "Miner 2049'er" and toss that in my 5200, when I get it all set back up.  Does anyone else remember how popular that game was, back in '82 or '83?  It was a HUGE deal, front of magazines, sold out everywhere, etc!  Yes, of course it looks "dated", now, but it's still a very fun platformer.  Too bad the sequel is pretty much impossible to get.  That will surely keep me from creating a complete 5200 collection. :(

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That is the same trackball I have, what is the switch?  What games does it work with on what switch?

There is only one that I know of that works on the "trak-ball" mode, but it is awesome.  Missile Command on the 8-bit computers.  You press ctrl-t to get the game in the right mode.  And then it's just fantastic -- just like the arcade. 

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I'm packing up most of my Atari collection due to changing family circumstances and priorities. An example of each system will remain unboxed and hooked up but the games are going into storage bins. This makes them a bit less accessible but with SD multicarts and Skunkboard its not a big deal for most games.

 

I decided to have some friends over before packing it all up. It was jokingly called "Dad's Day of Atari" as we're all family guys between 35 and 40. We played 2600, 7800, Lynx and Jaguar. My 5200 was on hand but didn't get any love. Maybe next time. :)

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