There are some people out there who, if you tell them that it’s “impossible” to do something, will do their best to do it anyway — and often prove that original naysayer completely wrong.
Such was the case with Livewire, a type-in machine code listing for Atari 8-bit that came about when ANALOG magazine’s Tom Hudson overheard someone saying that it would be possible to do a good version of Tempest on the Atari 8-bit. Challenge, as they say, accepted — and overcome with aplomb.
One of the nice things about the Atari Flashback Classics collection is how it includes a bunch of previously unreleased prototypes — some of which are really great.
Tempest for Atari 2600 is unfortunately not exactly one of the great ones — but it’s an interesting one, nonetheless, largely because no-one seems to know who was responsible for it! Originally assumed to be the work of Carla Meninsky, it seems that it was actually produced by someone else after Meninsky left Atari — but no-one knows who! And no-one is in a hurry to come forward and take responsibility, either…
Dave Theurer, creator of the beloved Missile Command, is back once again with another all-time classic: “tube shooter” Tempest.
Tempest featured Atari’s then-new multi-coloured Quadrascan vector graphics display, plus an interesting feature whereby you could start later in the game based on how far you (or the previous player) had managed to progress on the previous credit. This later became a standard fixture in many Atari Games releases.
I’ll level with you, Tempest is one of those games I’ve always respected greatly but never really liked all that much… can spending a bit of time with it this weekend change my mind?