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Space Raiders for Arcadia 2001 High Score Club: Season 1, Round 5

Arcadia 2001 High Score Club Defender Space Raiders Horizontal Shooter

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#1 ballyalley OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Nov 19, 2017 6:46 PM

Season 1, Round 5 of the Arcadia  2001/MPT-03 High Score Club will last about two weeks.  This round ends on Sunday, December 3, 2017 at 10pm MST (aka Monday, 2am GMT).  The game being played this round is Space Raiders, a game released in 1982 for the Emerson Arcadia 2001.  Space Raiders is a side-scrolling game, a bit like Defender … except there is no one to defend except yourself.

 

Here is a screenshot of Space Raiders being played on an NTSC Emerson Arcadia console:

 

Space Raiders (Arcadia 2001)(Screenshot).jpg

 

Here is a two minute YouTube video of Space Raiders being played by "Rickstilwell1 - TheGameCollector."  The quality isn't great (the screen is completely crooked), but this is the only video of Space Raiders that I could find that is being played on real hardware.  He published this on Dec 22, 2008:

 

 

Here is the box for Space Raiders:

 

Space_Raiders_Emerson_Arcadia_2001_Box_Scan_01-Front (Cropped).jpg

 

Here is the cartridge for Space Raiders:

 

Space_Raiders_Emerson_Arcadia_2001_Cart_Scan_01_-_Front (Cropped).jpg

 

Here are the overlays for Space Raiders:

 

Space_Raiders_Emerson_Arcadia_2001_Keypad_Overlays (Cropped).jpg

 

Here is the manual's cover:

 

Space_Raiders_Emerson_Arcadia_2001_Manual_01_-_Front_Cover (Cropped).jpg

 

Space Raiders - Quick-Play Rules

 

Play Space Raiders for high score on real hardware (PAL, NTSC, and any Arcadia family systems) or use the WinArcadia or MAME emulator.  Space Raiders has no gameplay options.  Just shoot the baddies (mutants and flying saucers), bomb the missile-launching bases and make sure to refuel from time to time.

 

Visit the Emerson Arcadia 2001 Central website for cartridge images and Arcadia emulators:

 

https://amigan.yatho.com/

 

Here is a direct link to the Arcadia 2001 ROM images ("SpaceRaiders.bin " is the filename for Space Raiders):

 

https://amigan.yatho.com/games.rar

Post pictures of your high scores here.  Use the left-hand controller to play the game.  The fire button, or any of the middle-column buttons on the gamepad, shoots your laser gun.  The right column buttons drops your bombs.  You can "freeze" (pause) the game by pressing the left-hand column of keys.  You can "un-freeze" the game by pressing the right-hand column.

Space Raiders - General Overview

 

I'm using Ward Shrake's "Director's Cut" of his Arcadia 2001 section of the Digital Press Collector's Guide 7 (published in August 2002) for most of the information that is in this section.

 

Space Raiders - Emerson

Confirmed. 4k cart. 1982. #1016 (5). This is the legalized version of a "Defender" clone. One player game. Left side controller. Long cartridge. Game by "UA Limited". Emerson family label art shows a small triangular space ship and a helicopter… both are flying in outer space. They were apparently attacking some sort of space ship or station. These crafts were veiled hints to consumers that the game included game play elements from the arcade games "Defender" and "Scramble"… which was how they legalized it.

 

Space Raiders - Hanimex

Confirmed. 4k. #MC1029 (26).    See the FAQ for a U.K.-based magazine article which talked about early plans to make a version of the arcade game "Defender". ("Computer and Video Games," June 1982).   The ROM code includes about 16 bytes of what appears to be the original assembly code at the tail end of the memory map. (See "American Football".)   LANDMARK: This is the legalized version of "Space Squadron," which was a more obvious clone of "Defender". When game makers began to fear  lawsuits for copyright infringement, they watered the similarities down by adding some features of "Scramble" into the game play.

 

High quality scans of Space Raiders box, manual, and cartridge are here:

 

https://archive.org/...rsonArcadia2001

 

Since I'm short on time this week, I'm not going to include the manual.   The game does play very simply: just shoot everything!  Maybe I'll include the manual in another post in a week or so.

 

Scoring

 

Each Mutant Destroyed                 - 5 points

Each flying saucer destroyed          - 20 points

Each Missile Launching base paralyzed - 10 points

 

Space Raiders Gameplay Options

 

This game has no gameplay options for this game.

Space Raiders (Scoring)

We are playing for the highest score.  10 points are awarded for first place, 9 for second, 8 for third, etc.

 

Space Raiders (Bonus Points):

There are quite a few ways to earn bonus points this round:

 

Space Raiders - Video Review - (1 Point) - I didn't find any proper reviews of this game.  I tried to get some video of it, but as was the case with Funky Fish, because the background screen is black, my camera kept going in and out of focus.  I'd really like to see some quality video of this game being played on actual hardware.

 

Space Raiders - Documenting Bugs - (1 Point) - As we've been discovering for ourselves, Arcadia games can be flaky.  If anyone find any problems, and documents them, then you'll earn one bonus point.  Just in case there are dozens of bugs, you can only earn one bonus point no matter how matter bugs are found.

 

Space Raiders - Backstory - (1 Point) - Funky Fish had a backstory, but Space Raiders gives us nothing.  Write a background that may have been included with the game in 1982 and you'll get a bonus point.

 

Summary

 

Space Raiders is a scrolling game.  The Arcadia hardware doesn't seem to designed to scroll very well, so it's neat to see a game like this place on this platform.  The premise seems simple: shoot and refuel.  I think that this game may be fun; we'll all find out together.

 

As always, as you play Space Raiders, please post pictures of your scores as the round progresses.  Not only does this help you not forget to play the game, but it gives other player's a challenge to try to beat your score.

 

If you've not played in a round before now, then now's the time to join in!  Have a fun fifth round, everyone!

 

(Don't forget, I'll be posting the final scores for round 4, Funky Fish, in about a week.)

 

Adam



#2 ballyalley OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Nov 27, 2017 2:33 PM

Here are the game instructions for Space Raiders.  I hope some people join in and begin playing this round's game soon.

 

Space Raiders

for Emerson Arcadia 2001

Video Game Instructions

Cart No. 5 - Part No. 1016

Object of the Game

 

The object of the game is to score as many points as possible.

 

Points are achieved when the Spacefighter destroys the mutants, flying saucers and missile launching bases.

 

Each Mutant destroyed                   5 points

Each Flying Saucer destroyed           20 points

Each Missile Launching Base paralyzed  10 points

 

The player controls the motion of the Spacefighter up and down as well as left and right by using the control disc/joystick (see FIG. 3). When controlling the Spacefighter in sideward motion, an accelerating sound can be heard and a propelling flame will appear at the end of Spacefighter.

Space Raiders - Figure 3.jpg

There is a digital energy meter on the upper middle portion of the screen. It starts at 50 and counts down for every Spacefighter. Five Spacefighters are provided for each game. The number of the Spacefighers left appears on top of the screen next to the energy meter. If Spacefighter runs out of energy and can not be re-energized and when the energy meter drops to zero, it will explode. When all your Spacefighters are destroyed, the game is over.

 

The Spacefighter can be destroyed by the mutants, flying saucers and energy bombs from flying saucers and missiles and bombs from the missile launcher bases. If colliding with them, however, it may shoot them down by using the laser gun.

 

To re-energize, the Spacefighter has to paralyze the missile protected energy station which sometimes appears at the bottom of screen (see FIG. 4). By bombing the two missile launching bases they will turn into deep blue color that means they are being PARALYZED. The Spacefighter then may land onto the energy station for re-energizing but still watching out for bombs from flying saucers. After re-energized, the Spacefighter has to fetch another or the same energy station which will appear after certain distance. Sometimes it will not appear on the screen until the Spacefighter travels certain distance in one direction. When all your Spacefighters are destroyed, the game is over.

Space Raiders - Figure 4.jpg

Playing the Game

After pressing the "START" button, numbers should appear inside the blue colored bar. THIS IS A SINGLE PLAYER GAME, USE ONLY THE LEFT HAND CONTROLLER FOR GAME.

 

The Spacefighter will appear after depressing any "FIRE" key on keyboard or squeezing any Action Switch located at the side of the hand controller.

 

To move the Spacefighter, press control disc (or move joystick) towards the desired direction (see FIG. 3)

 

To fire the laser gun, press any "FIRE" key on keyboard or squeeze either Action Switch at the side of hand controller, shots from laser gun will be directed to left or right according to the direction of Spacefighter.

 

To bomb the missile launching bases, press any "DROP BOMB" key on keyboard. The paralyzing bombs can destroy missile bases only. They cannot destroy mutants, flying saucers or energy bombs.

 

For re-energizing, the Spacefighter has to be maneuver to the peak of the "PARALYZED" energy station (see FIG. 5) and stop there until re-energizing is finished or as long as possible before being attacked by flying saucers. Each Spacefighter can be re-energized as many times as possible from the energy stations, however energy level will not resume to its original level. For re-energizing, the energy level can reach back only up to 40 at the first station, for second station it will be up to 30, and for the third station onward, maximum energy level for the Spacefighter can only be up to 20 after fully re-energized.

Space Raiders - Figure 5.jpg

Scoring will be obtained by destroyed mutants, flying saucers and paralyzing missile launching bases. Scoring will be calculated by the computer and recorded at the upper left corner of screen inside the blue colored bar.

 

Press "FIRE" key or squeeze action button whenever the Spacefighter is being destroyed. The total number of Spacefighters left is shown just beside the energy level meter.

 

When the game is over, the color of screen will change to brightness and the blue colored bar changes into red. If the scoring is highest, it will be transferred automatically to the upper right corner inside the color bar until another higher score is being achieved.

 

To maintain highest score on the screen, merely press "START" button for the next game. Do not depress "RESET", otherwise highest score will be wiped out.


 



#3 Tempest OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Nov 27, 2017 6:34 PM

2,885

 

This game is kind of buggy.  The collision detection is off and the fueling mechanic is off since there were several times I was on my fifth or sixth station and my fuel went back up to 40.   I also ran into a bug where the flying saucer's bullet stayed stationary on the screen until it decided to blow up after a while.  In the end, this game has potential but is not a lot of fun.

 

star.jpg



#4 ballyalley OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Nov 28, 2017 10:13 AM

 

 

[Space Raiders] is kind of buggy.  [...] In the end, this game has potential but is not a lot of fun.

 

I wonder why we're finding so many bugs in these Arcadia games.  Was it simply a rush-job to get these games out the door?

 

I can't remember ever hearing from anyone who owned an Arcadia 2001 system back when they came out (although I have heard of original MPT-03 owners).  Did they feel the system was buggy?

 

Adam



#5 Tempest OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Nov 28, 2017 10:37 AM

Poor coding, unfamiliar hardware (seriously, what else used that Signetics processor?), and rush jobs like you said, I'm sure.  I doubt UA had a ton of money to throw at this system so they just hired whatever local person could bang it out the fastest.  



#6 ballyalley OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Nov 28, 2017 6:48 PM

I've been trying to make a video of Space Raiders, but it isn't working out very well for me.  However, it has given me the opportunity to play the game some more.  My current high score is:

 

Space Raiders - 2,195 (NTSC Arcadia 2001, Real Hardware)

 

Space Raiders (Arcadia 2001)(2195)(Adam)(Cropped).jpg

 

The more I play Space Raiders, the more I like see that it's not like Defender.  Hell, it's not even really a scrolling game.  The best way that I've found to play it to try to stay in the center of the screen and move up and down shooting left and right at the baddies while avoiding the shots from the flying saucer.  You'll notice that the mutants and flying saucers don't move up and down; they only move left or right.  For this reason, this game reminds me of a game on the Atari 2600 where you shoot down tunnels from the center of the screen... but I can't remember the name of that game.  I thought it was a Spectravision game, but I just checked AtariAge and none of those games seems like the one I'm thinking about.

 

I'm not finding too many bugs in this game.  There are certainly some collision detection issues, and sometimes the enemies pop-up seemingly out of nowhere, but most of that isn't an issue, as you can work around it to some extent.  Also, sometimes the flying saucers shots get "stuck" and stop moving.  They do eventually disappear.  Maybe they are space mines.

 

Adam



#7 Tempest OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Nov 29, 2017 10:38 AM

I've been trying to make a video of Space Raiders, but it isn't working out very well for me.  However, it has given me the opportunity to play the game some more.  My current high score is:

 

Space Raiders - 2,195 (NTSC Arcadia 2001, Real Hardware)

 

attachicon.gifSpace Raiders (Arcadia 2001)(2195)(Adam)(Cropped).jpg

 

The more I play Space Raiders, the more I like see that it's not like Defender.  Hell, it's not even really a scrolling game.  The best way that I've found to play it to try to stay in the center of the screen and move up and down shooting left and right at the baddies while avoiding the shots from the flying saucer.  You'll notice that the mutants and flying saucers don't move up and down; they only move left or right.  For this reason, this game reminds me of a game on the Atari 2600 where you shoot down tunnels from the center of the screen... but I can't remember the name of that game.  I thought it was a Spectravision game, but I just checked AtariAge and none of those games seems like the one I'm thinking about.

 

I'm not finding too many bugs in this game.  There are certainly some collision detection issues, and sometimes the enemies pop-up seemingly out of nowhere, but most of that isn't an issue, as you can work around it to some extent.  Also, sometimes the flying saucers shots get "stuck" and stop moving.  They do eventually disappear.  Maybe they are space mines.

 

Adam

 

Yeah that's the strategy I was using.  I mostly died to enemies appearing on me out of thin air or taking my hands off the controller to drop bombs.

 

I just wish the controllers weren't so thin.  They hurt your hands after a while.  I'd kill for a beefier controller like the Colecovision had.

 

Turmoil is the game you're thinking of BTW.



#8 ballyalley OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Nov 29, 2017 11:27 AM

I mostly died to enemies appearing on me out of thin air or taking my hands off the controller to drop bombs.


Yes, dropping the bombs does make the game more difficult.  Luckily, you can bomb the missile launching bases at your leisure and then collect the power from them later.  At least, that worked for me.
 

I just wish the controllers weren't so thin.  They hurt your hands after a while.  I'd kill for a beefier controller like the Colecovision had.


The Intellivision's and Arcadia's controllers, which are both very similar, hurt my hands too.  I wouldn't say that the Colecovision's controller is much better.  I still think that the best one-button  joystick to ship with an system is the 2600's original controller: the CX-40.  I've never used the earlier CX-10, but I've heard that they're even better.  The best two-or-more button joystick controller is... the X-Arcade.  That's not a classic controller though.  Hmm... I'm not sure that I ever liked the multi-button controllers for any classic system from the 70s or 80s.  Certainly the NES and Genesis controllers are my favorite joypads.
 

Turmoil is the game you're thinking of BTW.

 

Yes, that's it!  For those not familiar with it, here's a screenshot of the game:

 

s_Turmoil_3.png

 

Here is a YouTube video of Turmoil being played:

 

 

I did end up getting to record some video of Space Raiders yesterday, but the colors are off.  I'm hoping to be able to fix that by Sunday to post a short video review, or at least gameplay from a real system.

 

Adam

 

 

 



#9 Darrin9999 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Nov 30, 2017 9:18 AM

1615

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#10 ballyalley OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Dec 3, 2017 11:40 AM

James posted a high score on the Arcadia Yahoo group.  I wouldn't normally repost a score here, but his score gives us all something to aim for:

 

Space Raiders - 4,160 (Real Hardware, PAL Arcadia console)

 

Space Raiders (Arcadia 2001)(4160)(James Jacobs)(Cropped).jpg

 

I've been playing this game for a little bit each day, and I can't even come beat my previous score.

 

Adam



#11 BassGuitari OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 4, 2017 11:47 AM

I should have taken some pics of my score on this game when I had my Arcadia out a month or so back. Pretty sure I cleared 5,000, or came awfully close.

I find that the best playing strategy for Space Raiders is as follows:
1.) Locate and disable the missile launcher/refueler base
2.) Position your ship so the base is in the center of the screen and stay directly above it (or nearby), so that you can simply descend on top of it to refuel as needed
3.) Just move straight up and down and pick off whatever you can hit--there's no need to ever leave the screen
4.) Never completely refuel, as this decreases your max fuel level--instead, pull off at 38 or 39 (or 28 or 29 if your max is lower)
5.) When the UFO appears near the upper part of the screen, use that opportunity to refuel--its shots can't reach you

Doing this, you can play pretty much until you screw up enough times to end your game. :P (Also, FWIW, I like using the keypad instead of the buttons since it's easier to switch between laser fire and bombs, but that's a personal preference.)

 

Trying to play this game the way it's actually supposed to be played--like a Defender game--is much more challenging, although not necessarily for the right reasons (namely, really squirrelly lateral control).



#12 Tempest OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 4, 2017 5:24 PM

Is there a way we can and keep the current scores more up to date?  When all the sudden there's a new first place posted within hours of the deadline that doesn't give people enough time to try again.  I just obliterated that score but I just realized that the round had ended.  I guess it doesn't help if they're also being posted in the newsgroup.



#13 ballyalley OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 4, 2017 6:58 PM

Is there a way we can and keep the current scores more up to date?

 
I'm not sure what you mean by keeping the scores more up to date.  Are you referring to the score of 4,160 being posted the day before the deadline of last night (Sunday) at 10pm?  I don't have the time to keep a running score of the scores posted in both places.  I wish that I did have that time-- as it would be cool.  It would also be nice to be able to post the scores in just one place, but I've learned from experience that more people participate if they have more places to post scores.
 

When all the sudden there's a new first place posted within hours of the deadline that doesn't give people enough time to try again. I just obliterated that score but I just realized that the round had ended.

I sympathize with getting higher scores after a deadline ends.  That can be frustrating.  If you're worried about your score being beat, then maybe you can keep posting scores through-out the round?  I don't think that there is an easy solution here-- but I'm willing to listen to any ideas that are proposed and put forward.

 

I wanted to create a review video and write a background story for Space Raiders, but didn't have time to do that this round  My friend did help me on Thursday night to figure out how to get my camera to have fixed-focus.  Now I can create better looking videos when I point my camera at the screen.  The dark background that a game has (hopefully) shouldn't affect me making a video anymore.

 

I'll post the final scores results of this round either tonight or tomorrow.  Brian has provided me with high quality scans of Brain Quiz.  I'll be looking those BMP images over tomorrow and converting them to OCR'ed pdf and jpgs tomorrow.  I'm not sure how round 6 will work yet, as I don't think that there is "proper" scoring for the three games in Brain Quiz: Master Mind, Maxit, and Hangman.

 

Adam



#14 ballyalley OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 4, 2017 7:00 PM

I should have taken some pics of my score on this game when I had my Arcadia out a month or so back. Pretty sure I cleared 5,000, or came awfully close.

 

Scores for games played during the current high score club round must be played during the current round.

 

You Space Raiders gameplay tips are exactly how I play the game!

 

Adam



#15 Tempest OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 4, 2017 9:26 PM

So are you posting the scores more often on the newsgroup? I can check there then.

#16 ballyalley OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Dec 4, 2017 10:06 PM

So are you posting the scores more often on the newsgroup? I can check there then.

 

I don't keep track of scores mid-way through the rounds on either AtariAge or the Arcadia forums.  There aren't enough people playing to make this feasible to me.

 

Adam



#17 Tempest OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Dec 5, 2017 9:31 AM

 

I don't keep track of scores mid-way through the rounds on either AtariAge or the Arcadia forums.  There aren't enough people playing to make this feasible to me.

 

Adam

 

Ah ok, I didn't realize that.



#18 ballyalley OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Dec 5, 2017 2:52 PM

Season 1, Round 5 of the Arcadia 2001/MPT-03 High Score Club ended on Sunday, December 3, 2017 at 10pm MST.  Four people played Space Raiders in this round.  Space Raiders, which I expected to be like a Defender/Scramble game plays much more like a single-screen shooter rather than a horizontal scrolling game.  The screen can "scroll" left or right, but the game seems to play best when you use the scrolling to minimum effect.

 

My friend played with me last week, but we forgot to record his score.  Oh, and where were the Canon family this round?  Were you all too afraid to face this round's challenge?!?

 

Space Raiders Scores

 

10 pts - James Jacobs - 4,160

 9 pts - Tempest      - 2,885

 8 pts - Ballyalley   - 2,195

 7 pts - Darrin9999   - 1,615

 

Several people earned bonus points.  Here are this round's final standing:

 

Space Raiders Scores (Final Table)

 

1st - James Jacobs   10 + 0 + 1 + 0 = 11 Points -@-

2nd - Tempest         9 + 0 + 1 + 0 = 10 Points -@-

3rd - Ballyalley      8 + 0 + 1 + 0 =  9 Points -@-

4th - Darrin9999      7 + 0 + 0 + 0 =  7 Points ---

 

! - Space Raiders - Video Review      - (1 Point) [No points awarded]

@ - Space Raiders - Documenting Bugs  - (1 Point)

# - Space Raiders - Backstory         - (1 Point) [No points awarded]

 

This round's overall winner is James.   Please check your final score. ;-)

 

I wanted to do a video review of Space Raiders, but I couldn't get my camera to focus properly on the screen because of the black background.  Eventually my friend helped me out by showing me how to lock the camera's focus.  By that time, it was toward the end of the week and I didn't have the time to make the video review.  I enjoyed this game enough that I plan to revisit it and make a video review in the near-future.

 

Final Thoughts on Space Raiders

 

Although Space Raiders has a generic title and also has semi-generic gameplay, the game itself is fun.  I'd suggest that if you have an Arcadia system that you pick this game up if you have the chance.  It's certainly not perfect… but I've yet to come across any perfect Arcadia games.   Heck, I'm not sure we've come across any bug-free Arcadia games yet.

 

Next Round's Game: Brain Quiz

 

The main game for Round 6 of Arcadia 2001/MPT-03 High Score Club is Brain Quiz.   This 4KB cartridge released in 1982 contains three educational/math-type games: Mindbreaker (Mastermind), Maxit (oddly compelling!), and Hangman.  This game was released in the U.S., so you'll be able to play it without a multicart.  In some countries this game was called by such alternate names as Intelligenz-Übung, Math/Logic, and Mathematiques Logiques.

 

Come and join us in round 6 where you'll be able to exercise your brain.  No, really.  Come on and give, at least, the game Maxit a try; I quite enjoyed it.  It's probably based on some 1970s-era game.  If you know what that game is called, then let me know.  You can post your scores here:

 

http://atariage.com/...eason-1-round-6

 

Since Brain Quiz, for the most part, doesn't have scores that seem to work in this high score club, round six is mostly a participation round.

 

Thanks for playing in round 5, everyone!  I really feel like Space Raiders is one of the better games for the Arcadia family of systems.  It would have been cool if UA Ltd. had ported this game to the Atari 2600 so that more people could give it a whirl.

 

Adam


Edited by ballyalley, Tue Dec 5, 2017 2:55 PM.






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