Tag Archives: edutainment

Typo Attack

Want to practice your typing skills? There were a bunch of different ways to do that back in the Atari 8-bit era, with one of the most fun being Typo Attack.

Typo Attack is one of several success stories that stemmed from the Atari Program Exchange, where independent, amateur developers could submit their work to Atari, who would publish and distribute it and pay the creators royalties. In several cases, the creators of APX titles went on to become full-time Atari employees — or, at the very least, their games became “official” releases.

Typo Attack is an example of the latter. Enjoy the video below, and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more!

Donald Duck’s Playground

Growing up, I always had a certain resistance to explicitly educational games; I would much rather have been blasting aliens than doing maths problems.

However, if you were to cunningly disguise those educational components as a Sierra adventure game I would, of course, be well and truly on board. The folly of youth.

Enter Donald Duck’s Playground, then, second of the Disney/Sierra crossovers to be put together by Al “Leisure Suit Larry” Lowe, and proof if proof were needed that Sierra’s AGI engine wasn’t quite suitable for every type of game…

Interval

Ever since the early days of computing, programmers have been finding ways to develop educational software for a variety of purposes.

One such programmer was Douglas Crockford, who was a particular fan of experimenting with the Atari 8-bit’s sound capabilities. One such experiment led to the creation of Interval, a piece of software designed to help you train your aural skills — whether you’re a musician, a teacher or simply someone with an interest in musical theory.

This is actually a really solid program that can still be of use to music teachers in the 21st Century — though quite how many still have an Atari 8-bit in their teaching space I have no idea…

Winnie the Pooh in the Hundred Acre Wood

Nostalgia is a funny old thing. Since starting this project, I’ve found myself really appreciating some of the games that, for one reason or another, had an impact on me growing up. Not necessarily the best games, but those which have some sort of meaning to me.

One of my favourite examples to date is today’s game: Winnie the Pooh in the Hundred Acre Wood, an early title from Sierra during their partnership with Disney. As well as being a game I loved playing with my family as a child and possibly one of the most charming, kid-friendly adventures of all time, it’s an interesting game from a historical perspective, too, since it’s one of the earliest titles Al Lowe put out.

Al Lowe, if you’re unfamiliar with your Sierra history, is the man who would later give us the Leisure Suit Larry series, a mainstay of Sierra’s portfolio alongside King’s Quest, Space Quest and Police Quest for many years… but a little different in subject matter to what we have here!