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(MMGM)   The Great Atari Landfill Expedition, intended to dig up thousands of copies of the worst video game ever made, will begin on April 26. This would be a good time to leave New Mexico. Actually, it's always a good time to leave New Mexico   (mmgn.com) divider line 389
    More: Followup, Atari, Atari video game burial, ROM cartridge, Zak Penn, landfills  
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12042 clicks; posted to Main » on 14 Apr 2014 at 9:47 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-04-14 11:27:24 AM  
I played the heck out of Star Raiders, River Raid, and worked so darn hard to get that perfect Pitfall score, so I could take a picture of the screen and mail it in to Activision to be a part of the Pitfall Harry club.

Then I got my Commodore 64......
 
2014-04-14 11:27:38 AM  
I feel left out every time this comes up. I was barely born when this game came out, and it's such a part of the history of shiattiness.

That's it, I'm going. I'm helping with the dig. Do I need my own shovel?
 
2014-04-14 11:27:52 AM  
upload.wikimedia.org

Run... Run far away.
 
2014-04-14 11:28:09 AM  
TheDirtyNacho:
There were some impressive pieces of hacking that went into those games.  I can't fault the programmers, IIRC the guy that wrote ET had about 2 weeks to do it.

There really were.  With bank switching they could get way more data crammed in there than originally designed for.  Pretty sure the NES used that as well.  Go back and play the original super Mario then play 3, hard to believe they both ran on the same hardware.
 
2014-04-14 11:30:37 AM  

UNC_Samurai: gilatrout: The fewer people like subby in NM, the better.

I have several friends that went to St. John's in Santa Fe. Based on everything they've told me, subby needs to troll smarter.


My parents got wind in the early 1990s that a buddy and mine were going to Mexico for spring break.  So my mother got my dad to plan a trip that included Santa Fe, on our way to Aspen to ski.

Santa Fe still stands out as one of the most poseurish/new age/hipster/fake places I have ever been.
 
2014-04-14 11:30:37 AM  

peterthx: clkeagle: Isn't there another landfill somewhere with all the Pac-Man cartridges? If I remember right - by the time Pac-Man was about to hit shelves, they were already set to ship Ms. Pac-Man (which is a great 2600 game). So they did the same thing as ET - dumped all the secondary shipments instead of letting them go to retail.

2600 Pac-Man shipped in early 1982. Ms. Pac-Man in early 1983 (roughly a year later).
The Ms. Pac-Man port was actually decent for the 2600.


Fair enough. I'm probably just mixing up parts of the ET and Pac-Man histories.
 
2014-04-14 11:31:07 AM  

Slaves2Darkness: Meh, everybody goes on and on about the great Video Game Crash, but it really only affected over extended companies. It didn't really affect PC title developers and a short while later along came the NES


It shifted the majority and dominance of video game development to Japan, killed a lot of publishers and developers in the US, and certainly hurt PC title developers who were also making console games.  People go on about it because it completely changed the landscape of video game development and publishing.
 
2014-04-14 11:31:09 AM  
Even though the 2600 version of Pac Man was a disappointing turd of a game, I still ended up mastering it and could flip the score--1,000,000 points IIRC.  Even played it on an old B&W TV.  Yes, my childhood was that dull...
 
2014-04-14 11:31:26 AM  

clkeagle: corn-bread: On another note, anyone remember a 2600 game that was in space?  Like you had a couple fleets and you had to fly around and destroy an invading alien force?  I seem to recall the cool thing about it was that you could position and move your ships, but then when combat started the view shifted to first person from the fighters.

Anyone remember that, or am I having a bad 80's flashback??

Sounds like Star Raiders to me.



Wow.  You know what, I believe that was it!
Thanks!
 
2014-04-14 11:31:52 AM  
www.atariage.com

Played the shait out of this as a kid.  Dragonstomper not shown.
 
2014-04-14 11:32:17 AM  

MycroftHolmes: CruJones: I feel like playing Combat and bouncing some white shells off walls and killing your tank.


Combat was awesome, considering it was the 'free' game that game with the console. Invisible bouncing tanks!
 
2014-04-14 11:33:48 AM  

incrdbil: I played the heck out of Star Raiders, River Raid, and worked so darn hard to get that perfect Pitfall score, so I could take a picture of the screen and mail it in to Activision to be a part of the Pitfall Harry club.

Then I got my Commodore 64......


River Raid was one of the best games produced by a third party manufacturer back then.  We played the hell out of that game back in the summer of '85.  Of course, that was *after* we'd been playing ball and riding bikes outside all day.

Back then, video games were strictly to be played when it was too dark to be outside (or we didn't want to mess around in the dark); the weather outside was bad (snow, rain); or you were sick.  And those rules weren't laid down by the parents.
 
2014-04-14 11:34:39 AM  

rillettes: ZenMechanic: My late friend, Emru Townsend wrote an article for PC World back in 2006 on this subject.   http://www.pcworld.com/article/127579/article.html?page=2

Worth a read.


Wow, 1 degree of separation. Emru & I worked together at the same newsweekly (he was the technology reporter), and he helped me get my start in tech writing.
His passing broke my heart.


He was a high school friend of mine and he passed away about two weeks before my father did.  It was not a good November, 2008.
 
2014-04-14 11:35:40 AM  

kling_klang_bed: *squinting my eyes, making sure this isn't from I-Mockery*

Oh, there's worse games out there. I vaguely remember playing the ET game as a kid, but Legend Of Kage and any of the Ultima games are even worse, IMHO.


TAKE THAT BACK!!!

encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com
 
2014-04-14 11:36:34 AM  
Was it worse than Back to the Future 3 or Boy and His Blob for NES?
 
2014-04-14 11:37:19 AM  

MooseUpNorth: The trick was to exit a pit towards the right, or left, or down.


So the game was so bad, that the way to get out of a hole was to keep digging?
 
2014-04-14 11:37:25 AM  

Atomic Jonb: IIRC, Raiders of the Lost Ark had a really bad Atari game also.

And yes, let ET stay buried.


I actually enjoyed the challenge of the Indiana Jones game and beat it multiple times unlike E.T. which was pure suck.
 
2014-04-14 11:38:14 AM  
Speaking of obscure games, am I the only one here who played this?:

www.titaniumstudios.com

Dungeons of Draggoth on my TRS-80, good times!
 
2014-04-14 11:39:12 AM  
Little CSB-

When I was younger, I played the ET game a bit as it was one of the games that was handy.  At one point, I did something and instead of the flower coming back to life, it turned into a Yar from Yar's Revenge and flew off the screen.  I was mystified.  I could never replicate it no matter how hard I tried (I was about 10 at the time).  After years of consideration, I figured I just imagined it.  Every once in a while when the internet would mention this game, I would do a search, but to no avail.  It became a phantom of my childhood.  Until about 8 months ago.

Turns out that was an easter egg in the game that no one ever reported on and there were instructions of how to make it happen again.

I feel like that chapter of my life can close now.
 
2014-04-14 11:41:44 AM  

Fart_Machine: [www.atariage.com image 500x375]

Played the shait out of this as a kid.  Dragonstomper not shown.


I thought I was the only one who had that!
 
2014-04-14 11:43:24 AM  

Slaves2Darkness: Meh, everybody goes on and on about the great Video Game Crash, but it really only affected over extended companies. It didn't really affect PC title developers and a short while later along came the NES.


"Overextended companies" undersells it.  Pretty much every major Western hardware maker and game developer was ruined by it, and with the exception of a Mortal Kombat, an NBA Jam, and a run of transcendent computer games over the nineties, the entire balance of power in the video game industry shifted to the Japanese for nearly two decades.

Lumbar Puncture: It shifted the majority and dominance of video game development to Japan, killed a lot of publishers and developers in the US, and certainly hurt PC title developers who were also making console games.  People go on about it because it completely changed the landscape of video game development and publishing.


Oh.  I see I was beaten to the punch.  Very well.
 
2014-04-14 11:43:27 AM  
Anyone know of a good comprehensive site that lists Atari 2600 developer eater eggs?  There were so man urban legends at the time that I and my friends were working towards.

Off the top of my head:

-Hit one million points in Missile Command and unlock some message. (almost got this one)
-Donkey Kong had the missing 3rd level if you broke 100k points or something
 
2014-04-14 11:45:18 AM  
Maybe they'll find the hidden dot and gold key

24.media.tumblr.com
 
2014-04-14 11:46:22 AM  
jst3p: kling_klang_bed: *squinting my eyes, making sure this isn't from I-Mockery*

Oh, there's worse games out there. I vaguely remember playing the ET game as a kid, but Legend Of Kage and any of the Ultima games are even worse, IMHO.

TAKE THAT BACK!!!

[encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com image 284x177]


Nope! Those games to me are as fun as an aneurysm! Almost as boring as those old text versions of D&D. Almost.
 
2014-04-14 11:47:09 AM  

Sybarite: They're digging in the wrong place!

[24.media.tumblr.com image 850x358]


hippobytes.com

/FTFY
 
2014-04-14 11:47:29 AM  

H31N0US: AxL sANe: Mmmmm - Green Chilis.

I'll always love Mew Mexico because they put green chilis on everything....

[www.nmgastronome.com image 444x261]

5 Star in Taos?


My brother used to manage the Five Star in Albuquerque.

BTW, we spell it "chile".
 
2014-04-14 11:49:29 AM  

Uzzah: HypnozombieX: I think it was the only Objective based Atari game I played. Everything else just went on and on running up a score.

You never played Adventure?

[upload.wikimedia.org image 480x315]


On my old 286.

/ Yeah I'm oldish.
// I had  vic 20 with a tape drive as well.
 
2014-04-14 11:50:15 AM  

theorellior: Tyrone Slothrop: Plus it cost so much to make (due to licensing) that they would have had to sell more cartridges than there were consoles to break even. The whole thing was a major fiasco.

Something of an object lesson on the hubris and overreach that comes at the peak of a bubble or fad.


Yeah, good thing modern video game budgets are so small and sensible.  Wouldn't want that whole crash to happen again....
 
2014-04-14 11:50:40 AM  

BalugaJoe: Atomic Jonb: IIRC, Raiders of the Lost Ark had a really bad Atari game also.

And yes, let ET stay buried.

It was impossible to win.


Neither of them were impossible to win.
 
2014-04-14 11:51:58 AM  

Frantic Freddie: H31N0US: AxL sANe: Mmmmm - Green Chilis.

I'll always love Mew Mexico because they put green chilis on everything....

[www.nmgastronome.com image 444x261]

5 Star in Taos?

My brother used to manage the Five Star in Albuquerque.

BTW, we spell it "chile".


My brother used to manage the Five Star in Taos.
 
2014-04-14 11:52:59 AM  

WelldeadLink: MooseUpNorth: The trick was to exit a pit towards the right, or left, or down.

So the game was so bad, that the way to get out of a hole was to keep digging?


Yes. That's exactly what you do.
 
2014-04-14 11:55:49 AM  

incrdbil: I played the heck out of Star Raiders, River Raid, and worked so darn hard to get that perfect Pitfall score, so I could take a picture of the screen and mail it in to Activision to be a part of the Pitfall Harry club.


I wasn't that good at Pitfall, but I did get a perfect score (at least I'm as sure as I can be that it was a perfect score) in Pitfall II.
 
2014-04-14 11:55:54 AM  

Atomic Jonb: IIRC, Raiders of the Lost Ark had a really bad Atari game also.

And yes, let ET stay buried.


I liked Raiders of the Lost Ark.  Didn't care for ET and Pac Man was such a letdown it's not even funny.
 
2014-04-14 11:55:55 AM  
 
2014-04-14 11:57:21 AM  

jst3p: Speaking of obscure games, am I the only one here who played this?:



Dungeons of Draggoth on my TRS-80, good times!


OH MY GOD!!!! I forgot all about that on the trash-80.
 
2014-04-14 12:01:08 PM  

MooseUpNorth: BalugaJoe: Atomic Jonb: IIRC, Raiders of the Lost Ark had a really bad Atari game also.

And yes, let ET stay buried.

It was impossible to win.

Neither of them were impossible to win.


I beat ET (and if you beat it once then you could beat it all the time).  I never played Raiders of the Lost Ark
 
2014-04-14 12:01:48 PM  
it ain't called "The Land Of Entrapment" for nothin' subby.  If these guys wanna REALLY do something in NM for the Preservation Of Computer History they oughtta get a Historical Marker for MITS in 'querque...
images.pcworld.com
 
2014-04-14 12:02:34 PM  
FTFA: "It'll take place on April 26, with a fill documentary expected to air on Xbox One later in the year."

Will both XBONE users be watching?
 
2014-04-14 12:08:50 PM  

corn-bread: On another note, anyone remember a 2600 game that was in space?  Like you had a couple fleets and you had to fly around and destroy an invading alien force?  I seem to recall the cool thing about it was that you could position and move your ships, but then when combat started the view shifted to first person from the fighters.

Anyone remember that, or am I having a bad 80's flashback??


Space Attack?


/that game was awesome
 
2014-04-14 12:09:18 PM  

sendtodave: Rapmaster2000: I was so fired up for ET the video game.  I don't think we played it for more than an hour.  It sucked that bad.  Atari's Pac-Man port was garbage too.

Me too.  I wanted desperately to like it.

I kept thinking that I was missing something, doing something wrong.  Then I realized the game just sucked that much.


I remember not really understanding what I was supposed to do in between falling into holes over and over again.  "Oh, I'm in a hole again".  That's my enduring memory of the game.
 
2014-04-14 12:10:07 PM  

MooseUpNorth: /   ET was _not_ the worst game ever made. Extreme Paintbrawl and that crap big rig simulator from some years back still share that dishonor.


Not true. SierraOnline's Dark Crystal was the worst game ever made.

/Jen doesn't know what a Jen is
//Funnily enough, also coded in only a month
 
2014-04-14 12:12:13 PM  
Both the ET game and Raiders were coded by the same guy.
 
2014-04-14 12:12:34 PM  

gweilo8888: MooseUpNorth: /   ET was _not_ the worst game ever made. Extreme Paintbrawl and that crap big rig simulator from some years back still share that dishonor.

Not true. SierraOnline's Dark Crystal was the worst game ever made.

/Jen doesn't know what a Jen is
//Funnily enough, also coded in only a month


Imma let you finish, but a video game where you are a rock star running from love crazed groupies was the worst game of all time!

videogamecritic.com
 
2014-04-14 12:13:18 PM  
I know it isn't Atari but Superman 64 has to be the worst game ever made.

I just got physically ill thinking about it.
 
2014-04-14 12:14:16 PM  

gilatrout: The fewer people like subby in NM, the better.

[www.naturephotoworks.com image 300x210]


Shhh. So far we've heard from ABQ and Alamogordo. Let them speak and represent the whole state.
 
2014-04-14 12:14:43 PM  

kling_klang_bed: *squinting my eyes, making sure this isn't from I-Mockery*

Oh, there's worse games out there. I vaguely remember playing the ET game as a kid, but Legend Of Kage and any of the Ultima games are even worse, IMHO.


You hush your whore mouth. Ultima was bad ass, especially the original on a MAC II.
 
2014-04-14 12:15:10 PM  
Actually..i kinda liked it.

/still has working first-gen Atari 2600
//ET game too
 
2014-04-14 12:16:50 PM  
tuhWait for it....

I have lived all over this grat country.  Both coasts, big cities, huge cities, small towns, teeeeeeeeeeny tiny towns.  All over.   I have never had such a love/hate relationship with a state before.

It's incredibly beautiful, the weather is almost always freaking amazing, most people here are decent hard working folks.  However....there is just this underlying poison it seems that i just cant describe.  Its a small percentage of people that seem to just make this a miserable place. I have never seen a more racist place in my life.  The work ethic is laughable.

Meh.   Ive only been here 10 yrs, i could be the crazy one.

Cool half story eh?  Not really.

*crawls back into the darkness*
 
2014-04-14 12:16:59 PM  

Burr: Yeah, good thing modern video game budgets are so small and sensible. Wouldn't want that whole crash to happen again....


If people ever managed to learn from the mistakes of their predecessors, crashes would still happen but they would be from external shocks not from hubris and overreach.
 
2014-04-14 12:17:40 PM  
I owned this game.
It was terrible.

I wish I still had it so I could show the children how terrible it was.
 
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