Jump to content

8-bit Games That Were Re-Written for 5200


RickR
 Share

Recommended Posts

On 9/20/2020 at 1:59 PM, RickR said:

XEGS is fine...BUT...it came out in 1987!  By that time, we're talking about 8 year old technology.  And they were competing against the 7800!  WTF Atari??

PS - I have one too.  I got it used.  I had no idea such a thing even existed until probably 2010.  I like it, but it seems like another horrible design decision by Atari.

hi guys,

 

 i love the XEGS, its really the only modern looking 8-bit. mistakes were made in the design which i pointed out to them. it came with a freddie chip, so it could do 128k right out of the box. but there was a shortage of ram back then, at least cheap enough for jack, so they went with 64k instead.

plus the detachable keyboard was a dream back then, i utilize that today even. with a 10" keyboard extender cable, you can inventory or print far away from the CPU part of the XEGS.

atari that i am aware of, never marketed a extender cable.

also if you take the keyboard apart you will see its actually a 65XE/130XE keyboard.

atari could have utilized the start, select, option, and reset capabilities into the detachable keyboard really making a powerful machine.

a slight tweaking to the O.S. would mostly have taken care of that.

 

 looking at midi maze and xenophobe combined with hardware done properly, and it was every bit as competitive with the hardware at the time.

 

 

 

there was also supposed to be a 720k 3.5 inch disk drive with a powerful DOS, but that was shelved also.

right out of the gate sales were brisk, then no games. no drives, no dos, the rest is history.

 

lance

www.atarisales.com

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'd never really seen the 8-bit version of Xenophobe before. It is basically the same as the 7800 version but with slightly more detail added to the background and a lot less color. And I'm more surprised how it still basically sounds the same as well minus the begin and end level tune. I know the colors are more limited vs the 7800, but it could have sounded far better and had more options given the larger memory and storage medium available to the 8-bit line?

Edited by CrossBow
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)
9 minutes ago, CrossBow said:

I'd never really seen the 8-bit version of Xenophobe before. It is basically the same as the 7800 version but with slightly more detail added to the background and a lot less color. And I'm more surprised how it still basically sounds the same as well minus the begin and end level tune. I know the colors are more limited vs the 7800, but it could have sounded far better and had more options given the larger memory and storage medium available to the 8-bit line?

This reminds me of some of the early 8-bit versions of 2600 games.  Imagic was probably the worst at this.  They'd convert the 2600 version with no enhancements (sounds/graphics/gameplay) at all!  WHY?  Demon Attack is a good example.  8-bit Demon Attack looks and sounds exactly like 2600 Demon Attack.  You telling me they couldn't even add the boss level from the Intellivsion version?  What were they thinking?

 

Edited by RickR
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just now, RickR said:

This reminds me of some of the early 8-bit versions of 2600 games.  Imagic was probably the worst at this.

Can't forget how lazy Activision was on their 5200 ports? Pitfall! II being the standout, but many of their ports didn't look or sound that different from the 2600 versions either. 

I wonder if Imagic, and Activision did this on purpose so as to keep the games essentially being consistent in look and play regardless of platform? 

But I'm sure that if both of those companies had enhanced their game ports on the 5200 and 8-bit line better, that it would have possibly helped more 5200s get sold?

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 minutes ago, CrossBow said:

Can't forget how lazy Activision was on their 5200 ports? Pitfall! II being the standout, but many of their ports didn't look or sound that different from the 2600 versions either. 

I wonder if Imagic, and Activision did this on purpose so as to keep the games essentially being consistent in look and play regardless of platform? 

But I'm sure that if both of those companies had enhanced their game ports on the 5200 and 8-bit line better, that it would have possibly helped more 5200s get sold?

 

For sure.  It's frustrating because other computers got much better versions.  For example, C64 Demon Attack is more like the Intv version.  TI-99 Demon Attack is a masterpiece and unique. 

Probably what they should have done is include "classic" and "enhanced" versions on the same cart.  Now that would have been outstanding. 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I wouldn’t say “lazy”. But Activision’s 5200 games were certainly a lot less technically impressive than they were on the 2600.

Think of it like this: the 2600 wasn’t *supposed* to be able to pull off the complex nature that many of Activision’s games had. The 2600 was built with only two player sprites (solid color), two missiles, a ball, a super blocky and symmetrical background, etc. Therefore, a game like Kaboom or Pitfall required incredible knowledge of the VCS and its quirks to make look as good as it did, or even run at all. The 5200 and 8 bit ports, while still rather good looking in most cases, only look primitive because of how far Activision’s crew was able to push the aging 2600. In a vacuum, the 5200/8bit versions would look just fine IMO.

However, there is the other issue of Activision not changing anything from the gameplay (in many cases) to do something the 2600 couldn’t do even in the best of hands. Demon Attack on Intv and Tandy are great examples of taking advantage of the more powerful hardware to get more out of the system. Activision simply didn’t do that for their games most of the time on the 5200, which was really a missed opportunity. But really, do you need them? Activision’s games were already so good!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 minutes ago, RickR said:

The answer to this in 1983 was YES.  Why would I buy 5200 Pitfall if I already owned 2600 Pitfall?  If they'd have enhanced it, there would be repeat customers.

I wasn’t really considering that aspect. I was thinking more along the lines of new people buying the games for the very first time. Though what you’re saying does make a lot of sense. Like how people would buy new arcade ports so they’d have more things closer to the arcade version compared to their older ports on less capable hardware. Activision’s games were made for home so the only way to get repeat customers would be to add stuff that wasn’t there before.

Interesting. Thanks for enlightening me and for the new perspective on this.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You're right that the games were fun as-is, but it was the era of wanting new and better.  That's why the 5200 pack-in of "Super Breakout" was so lame.  As for the Activision games, even for new customers, they would have balked at a game that was available on the old system.  Why did I just spend $300?  In some cases, the games were worse due to the different controller. 

The 5200 should have come with Pac-Man right from the start.  Because it was a mind blower game....so much better than on any prior system.  That's the only way the could have competed with the ColecoVision with Donkey Kong. 

I still need to get back to this thread, but the 5200 still languishes in the attic.  Sorry.  We are finally coming clear of the pandemic and maybe I'll get my bonus room gaming area back. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 6/9/2021 at 9:37 AM, CrossBow said:

I'd never really seen the 8-bit version of Xenophobe before. It is basically the same as the 7800 version but with slightly more detail added to the background and a lot less color. And I'm more surprised how it still basically sounds the same as well minus the begin and end level tune. I know the colors are more limited vs the 7800, but it could have sounded far better and had more options given the larger memory and storage medium available to the 8-bit line?

If done correctly, the A8 can handle more colors than the 7800.  You would, however, need to squeeze every ounce of the processors out of your code and make use of all the RAM available in the machine.  GTIA and ANTIC were never fully pushed to their limits.  I believe the only few games that pushed those two were 5200 games with Sinistar (never published) being one of them.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...