Masters of the Universe: The Power of He-Man

This M Network adaptation of the classic He-Man cartoon plays much better on the Intellivision, but that does not mean the Atari 2600 version is not without its charms. One of those charms hits you right up front, when the game greets you with a surprisingly cool morphing sequence. It is sort of like the one in the cartoon (remember it is the Atari 2600 people), and if that wasn’t a big enough bonus, you will also be rewarded with more He-Man art if you defeat Skeletor at the end of each round.

The game is split into two parts. The first part has you riding around on He-Man’s Rocket sled trying to get to Skeletor’s castle. While you make your way horizontally across the screen, Skeletor’s henchman try and shoot you down. But you are not without the tools to take them out. You can shoot down their missiles and drop bombs on them. The graphics are adequate during this scene and the sound is pretty well designed.

Once you have arrived at the castle you need to nab Skeletor. You do this by moving between two moving walls or force-fields (I cannot tell), while using your shield to deflect Skeletor’s shots. Reach Skeletor and you get the He-Man reward screen and start all over again, but this time the background color has changed. The graphics are pretty sparse during this phase and if you get good, you will fly through this stage without much delay.

While not a ‘classic’, He-Man is a solid title for the Atari 2600, that will keep you occupied for an hour or so. If you are a fan of Masters of the Universe, you can extend that to 2 or 3 hours (wow you really are a fan – Ed). I give this game 3 out of 5 stars.

Gameplay Video

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Garry Vander Voort

Editor/Podcaster at Retroist
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