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WTD: Feedback for Plumb Luck and Tubes for Atari 7800


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Episode 44 of The Atari 7800 Homebrew Podcast will be focusing on two yet-to-be-released homebrews, Plumb Luck and Tubes. You can find the podcast on iTunes/Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Google Play, the website http://homebrew78.fab4it.com, or use this feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/homebrew78. The ROMs are attached to this message.


What are your thoughts? Share 'em here! You can also e-mail text or audio to homebrew78 -at- fab4it -dot- com. I'm looking at Wedneday, September 19, 11:59pm CDT as the deadline for this one.


Comments are welcome any time, including after the deadline; any feedback from after the deadline will simply be addressed during a later episode.




Supernatural, perhaps...baloney, perhaps not.

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I remember playing Tubes when Bruce Tomlin first showed it off in the Fall of 2004. It's a simple looking game for the 7800 but kind of fun to pick up and play. For the longest time there was hardly any 7800 homebrew development going on at all. The 2600 homebrew community was on fire with amazing new releases during 1999-2004, but hardly anything for the 7800. I remember Senso DX from Heaven of Taquart being the only 7800 homebrew that I was aware of, it was a Simon game that was in its early stages and looked rudimentary but had a nice title screen. Then suddenly people started figuring out how to program the 7800 properly and boom, boom, boom, some great homebrews started to "drop" like Beef Drop, b*nQ, and many others. Tubes came around this time and I was thrilled to see a new 7800 game available, and more importantly I was happy that more and more people were trying their hand at developing something for the 7800 which I knew could really benefit from a vibrant homebrew community.


I like Tubes. I've confused it before with Shunting Puzzle which was a really well done demo for ColecoVision by PkK on AtariAge (Willie! did a review of Shunting Puzzle for ColecoVision here) Tubes looks and feels a little more like something I would expect to see on ColecoVision too, and I tend to see it more as a really well done demo along the lines of Shunting Puzzle too. Tubes was really something special though and Bruce Tomlin should be proud of his work. I have a big soft spot for puzzle and strategy games, especially on 8 and 16-bit systems. The 7800 could have done really well with more Tetris-style puzzle games and I wish Atari had continued down this path and extended the shelf life of the 7800 a bit more with some cool puzzle games.


Speaking of puzzle games, I haven't done much with PlumbLuck but the tiled pattern reminds me a lot of Chip's Challenge, possibly my all-time favorite puzzle game! I may be in a minority in this but I can't get enough of Chip's Challenge on Atari Lynx, I think it's brilliant. I used to play that game all night during the summer as a kid. No cheats, no codes, just playing straight through. Seeing that tile layout on PlumbLuck makes me really want to see Chip's Challenge come to the 7800. Imagine if Atari had done that in 1989? PlumbLuck seems like a fun puzzle game though. Like Tubes it's simple but fun.

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