David Crane is probably most well-known for his classic (and genre-defining) platformer for Activision, Pitfall!
But the prolific programmer worked on a bunch of things for Atari before jumping ship to a company that was more than happy to credit its developers for their hard work. One such example was the Atari 2600 version of Canyon Bomber.
To call this a port is a bit unfair; it actually offers quite a bit more than the arcade version does in terms of ways to play — including the closest we’ll get to a home port of Destroyer!
As we’ve previously seen with Canyon Bomber, sometimes all you need to make an addictive, enjoyable game is a simple concept… and perhaps some gimmicky controls.
Such is the case with Destroyer, a game that featured some satisfyingly clunky physical controls on its original arcade release, which are obviously lost somewhat in this home translation. Interestingly, this never got a home port of its own prior to the release in Atari Flashback Classics; it was instead incorporated into the Atari 2600 port of Canyon Bomber, which was developed by David “Pitfall” Crane.
It’s a simple idea, but an effective one… and one that really does not like being captured at 30fps, so if you can’t see the depth charges for part of this video… uh, sorry! Such are the limitations of my hardware!