In 1989 I was busy concentrating on defeating the likes of Cobra Triangle, Shadowgate, and Romance of the Three Kingdom on my NES. I admit that while I had not banished my beloved Atari 2600 console and titles to the closet, I had moved them to the back of the gaming shelf under the TV. Had I known about Secret Quest for the Atari 2600 however I truly believe it would have been brought back out and sat beside the NES!
Secret Quest holds the distinction of being the last 2600 title released in the U.S. and was touted as being programmed by none other than Atari Co-founder Nolan Bushnell!
The problem with that statement…was that he didn’t program it. Steve DeFrisco had that honor with Nolan as Producer and Designer. In this case Nolan asked Steve to come up with a title similar to the Legend of Zelda for the 2600. To do this the cartridge used a SARA superchip allowing it to have 256 extra bytes of RAM, so that Secret Quest was a 16K title. It also had a pass-code feature!
Welcome to the Retroist Atari 2600 Podcast. Today’s episode is a milestone in Retroist Podcast history, The 100th episode. Hard to believe, but here it is. To celebrate number 100, we are covering a subject near and dear to my heart, the Atari 2600 (VCS). We talk about how it was made, some of the folks involved, its rise and fall, the games and much much more.
An absolute heartfelt round of applause to IGN’s Video Channel over on YouTube for posting these tantalizing bits of the documentary by Howard Scott Warshaw, the designer of Yar’s Revenge, Raiders of the Lost Ark, and of course E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial for the Atari 2600. Once Upon Atari takes us back to the “Glory Days” of the company through interviews with those programmers and visionaries that had a hand in crafting the foundation of the video games we all love playing today.
You can purchase the DVD over on Howard’s website, by following his link above. Each “episode” on the DVD is about 30 minutes long of which there are four and they’ve cut the price of this documentary to $29.99! When I receive my own copy I’ll be sure to give a more thorough review but just those little snippets on YouTube have me begging for more.
A huge thanks to Atari Age for the great pic up top!
Do you have the mental fortitude to help E.T. find his way home? If so, you could have won an Atari 5200 back in 1983. This contest is great in that it is not just a “maze”. You need to carefully read the instruction and then proceed through the maze, picking up each piece of the phone, and the Reese’s Pieces along the way. The person with the highest number of Reese’s Pieces and all 3 pieces of the phone was crowned Lord High ET-ist, picked up in a spaceship and brought to the magical Atari factory where they will lunch with Nolan Bushnell and have high tea with Bentley Bear from Crystal Castles.