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Everything posted by Atari2008

  1. While we're on the topic of wish lists I would like to see a completed Frogger (and maybe a Frogger 2 down the line), other arcade classics like Popeye and Zaxxon. And although any aren't coming to mind, I'd like to see more side scrolling platformers like Scrapyard Dog, not sure if any can be easily ported.
  2. I was wondering the same question. I'm glad to see that the homebrew scene has picked up, although from the current selection the only ones that match my tastes are Bonq and Pac-Man Collection. Is Frogger going to be completed this year? What other homebrew games are on the horizon? I feel the 7800 is an under-utilized platform given the library of games that were released for it, I'm curious to see what amazing things programmers could do today with the 7800, just like the cool homebrews that we've seen on the 2600.
  3. Cool, good to know. Like to have all my research on while I save up for my 5200.
  4. I wanted to know how durable and safe the 4-port TV switchbox is. I'll admit, I have images of that Angry Video Game Nerd video dancing in my head, when he tries to hook up the switchbox to the TV and a spark fly out. Does that really happen or was that just some special effect? I find it bizarre that the power supply hooks up to the switchbox although I can see Atari's logic in wanting to reduce wire clutter. I'm decided between a 2-port and 4-port 5200 so I just wanted to make sure the switchbox doesn't give people headaches. Also, some 2-port 5200's don't play all the games? Thanks!
  5. Also, I think Atari could've made the 7800 their centerpiece system. I understand that the 2600 was their top selling system, but reintroducing it as the 2600jr and then continuing to support it at the same time as the 7800 were mistakes. Also releasing the XEGS was another terrible drain of resources and attention, and I would imagine it confused the public....I mean 3 Atari systems? It's as if Atari was ambivalent about the 7800 and went back and forth between the 2600 and XEGS, they should've had faith in the 7800 and pushed it as their main and only platform. Also, the more NES-style games like Midnight Mutants and Scrapyard Dog should've came out much sooner. I mean Scrapyard Dog came out in 1990, all 3 of the Super Mario Bros. series had already been released by then! Too little too late. True although I think they could have spent more than they actually did. There certainly was a lot of profit taking from the 7800 ...
  6. It's interesting that Atari kept rehashing many of the same titles that were available on the 2600 and 5200 for the 7800, instead of pushing it in different directions. Plus, many of those same games and more innovative titles were available on the NES. Atari did have a great library of classic games but they over-relied on it. It's true the Colecovision had more inventive titles that pushed the limits (like Smurfs which can be considered a primitive Super Mario Bros), while the 7800 had the same tired games. I mean how many different versions of Joust, Mario Bros., and Ms. Pacman can you play? The 7800 could've been much more competitive had Atari pushed it to the max. Most of the library leaves one feeling that the system still has a lot of untapped potential. I mean only one side-scrolling platformer? The NES made that one of the most popular genres of the time. Just from the perspective of variety, rehashing the same titles would make people who already owned a 2600 and/or 5200 less inclined to pick up a 7800 to play enhanced versions of the same games. Still with the 7800 homebrew scene picking up, maybe we'll see what the 7800 is really capable of. It would also be interesting to see what other types of games the 5200 is capable of as well. You should read this article. Follows with exactly what you're saying. Yeah - that is something that has always bugged me. When Atari made the 7800, they were essentially grumbling about three pain points in their life. 1. The Colecovision 2. Parents who complained that the 5200 couldn't play 2600 games 3. The dropping prices of home computers. The initial lineup of games and licenses to product games reflects this. Then the NES comes out of nowhere in 1985 and totally redefines the kinds of video games the public wants to play. Jack dusts off the 7800 and throws it to market with the old games repacked in cheap labels in 1986. In 1987-8, with the fiercest competitor imaginable eating up the market, what does he do? Spends nothing on advertising. Tosses licenses to market, often hastily developed with cheap developers. Worst of all - he divides his limited resources by having the XEGS and 2600jr at the same time. Finally, in 1989, he realizes he can't continue this way. He pares back the XEGS. He starts releasing bigger games and getting better licenses. By 1989 though, the 16-bit consoles (Genesis and TG-16 are on market) and forcing the 7800 off shelves. Nice.
  7. Atari2008

    Top Games

    Thanks for the lists everyone! From the look of things, it sounds like I can't go wrong with classic arcade titles and the homebrews at the AA store. Can't wait to play Pac-Man...it sounds like it gets rave reviews all over this forum.
  8. I had never thought about the Colecovision exclusive titles but it seems like the CV had some more unique titles than the 5200. The 5200 had great Atari titles and arcade ports but the CV also had games that seemed to push new ground. One example I could think of is Smurfs, although it hasn't aged well in my view, it must've been revolutionary in 1982, and was unique to the CV (granted there was a 2600 version but it was much more slimmed down). Then there was Turbo, although not a unique title, it did have that steering wheel which looks cool. I think if the CV had a few more original games (like Gremlins) in the library earlier on it would've sold more. Especially because 2600 owners wouldnt feel like they were getting another system to play the same games. Also, it seems a shame given the 5200's incredible hardware that Atari didnt push it further. The 5200's smooth scrolling for example would've been an advantage for a side scrolling adventure game (although I know there were hardly any of those at the time) but maybe had it lived on...
  9. Atari2008

    Top Games

    Hey everyone, My 7800 is currently being repaired, and soon I'll be ready to play it after a 10-12 year hiatus...I know it's been a while, but my Sega Genesis and Super Nintendo started getting more and more attention at the time. I owned a few games at the time: Pole Position 2, Donkey Kong, Donkey Kong Jr, Scrapyard Dog, and Karateka (ugh!). I've been reading about (and playing on emulator) many of the lackluster titles in the library, so I want to just focus in on the games that are most fun to play. So what are some of people's favorites? What are the killer games in the 7800 library? Also, I've ordered Pac-Man Collection since I've read so much about it plus the thought of a new 7800 game is cool. I'm a huge fan of the original Mario Bros. game and used to play the NES port a lot back in the day...how does it fare on the 7800?
  10. This is a great guide! Makes me want to buy one...
  11. I don't know what prices 5200's have gone for before I started looking but all of the auctions I've seen on eBay have ended up selling for either $40 and usually more and that's with few games and many sold "as is." Looks like the 5200 is a pretty popular system these days...
  12. Hey, thanks for the input! I've actually decided to save up and get the system from 4Jays since it'll be guaranteed to work, unlike those listed on eBay 98% of which are sold "as is" with all the sellers claiming for one reason or another unable to test the system. And I do like the idea that the 5200's from 4Jays already come with 1 rebuilt controller so I can just start gaming as soon as I receive the system. I'm really excited about being able to play 5200 games on the real hardware at some point, I've been using the Atari800Win emulator and the 5200 games are awesome! I've enjoyed its versions of Pac-Man (wow! way better than the 2600's with intermissions!), Mario Bros (the details and animations are amusing), and am hooked on Gremlins at the moment. Cool system, with a library like that, I think I can deal with the controllers. On the size...yea I measured my entertainment center to make sure it would fit! LOL
  13. Thank you for the link - the Atari Museum is real interesting! Given how the industry was unraveling and Atari was dealing with its own decline, the move toward the 7800 as opposed to tweaking the 5200 seems a bit more understandable, and wow how cool would that 2600/7800 adaptor for the 5200 have been? That would've made the 5200 the only Atari console compatible with all 3 of their systems. My question initially grew out of the observation -- and this is coming as a 7800 owner since i've never owned a 5200 -- that although graphically superior, the 7800 fell short of the 5200 in a few areas. Namely the sound...I've been playing a few 5200 games via emulation and even read about how their baseball game had synthesized voices...clearly the 5200 was ahead of the curve, and the 7800's sound is more comparable to the 2600. I can't speak mcuh about the 5200 since I've never played with one, only from what I've heard, but it seems to me that having the start and pause buttons on the controller was much more convenient and advanced than having them on the console as the 7800 did. Also, it seems from the quality of the games and even the advertising that still Atari put more effort behind the 5200 during its time, than they did the 7800 when it was finally released. Also, I just thought it was interesting that after the crash, Atari still supported the 2600 but the 5200 just seemed to have fallen off the face of the earth.
  14. Atari2008

    Dust Covers

    Best Electronics has started producing some, although no Atari logo on them: http://www.best-electronics-ca.com/7800.htm
  15. I've been reading how Atari had some plans in the pipeline for the 5200 before the crash...the 5200jr and the controller with a auto-centering joystick. But it seems like at the same time they were polling gamers on their ideal system and designed the 7800 to right the wrongs of the 5200. I don't understand why Atari wouldn't have just gone through with the modifications to the 5200 -- the smaller size and better controllers -- as opposed to creating an entirely new system. Why was that?
  16. Hey everyone, I'm looking to purchase a 5200 and have been weighing my options. Although I've been scanning the eBay auctions a lot of them are a bit risky with 5200's being sold "as is" or the seller unable to test or the ones that seem functional with huge lots of games that raise the price. I found a shop that sells 5200's with 2 non-working controllers for $30 plus shipping...is this a fair deal? They also carry systems with 2 working controllers and that's $50 plus shipping but requires them to test out several controllers before finding 2 that work. I did have my eyes on the 5200 from 4Jays since it comes with one rebuilt controller and 3 games but the total cost would be $101 (shipping included) which is beyond my price range at the moment. Is eBay still the best bet for an affordably priced 5200? Am I overlooking some other place? Also, one estimate I read on rebuilding controllers was $24-$40 to have it done for you...is it relatively easy for a novice to rebuild on one's own? Thanks!
  17. I must say, you're really getting me interested in actually playing a real 5200. I've started tracking some of the sales on eBay...I see functioning 5200's appear to be in some kind of demand. I think I am missing something with the emulation because I don't think the emulators even run properly on my computer. I usually get all sorts of strange color issues when I try to do full screen (with Atari800winplus) and with the kat emulator I can do full screen but the audio is all messed up. Plus I don't get to experience the controllers with emulation. So I'll be tracking some 5200's on eBay...looking forward to joining the club. And I've owned a 7800, nothing against the system but it never really clicked with me, felt like an NES-lite and the games didn't seem as fun and inspired as those available on the 5200.
  18. It seems like getting a 5200 with working controllers is a bit of a challenge. On eBay many of the auctions say "one controller not working" or "controllers not working" and the ones I'm completely avoiding are ones with the console not working or sold "as is." It looks like another option would be to get controllers rebuilt at Old School Gamer or Best Electronics.
  19. Sounds like a great deal! It actually leads me to my next question, is the 2-port version rarer than the 4-port? I've restricted my searches to the 2-port only since I don't want to deal with the proprietary switchbox, but I've noticed that the majority of 5200's on eBay are the 4-port model. Also, since the 4-port model's power supply connects to the switchbox, not the console, have there been reliability or safety issues with that?
  20. Going to try out some of those games on the emu, at least the ones that will work anyway. In the meantime, I'm browsing eBay for 5200's. What is a reasonable price to pay for a working 5200? Not looking to pay too much...
  21. I think there is something to be said for real hardware vs. emu. I think that might be part of the reason why the 2600 holds my attention longer because I'm actually comparing a 5200 emu to a real 2600. It must be something with the user interface -- playing on an actual 2600 joystick vs. playing a 5200 game on my keyboard. I guess the only way to be sure would be to buy the system and try it out on the actual hardware. It's funny, I've actually been doing the things mentioned -- reading reviews online, looking at screenshots, and playing emu. Maybe they just don't capture the system.
  22. Thank you everyone for your feedback. I've been playing a few of the 5200 titles on emulator, and while I generally like the graphics and the gameplay I'm not necessarily blown away. Maybe I had put too much expectation into it since it was the Atari console I was least familiar with. I do enjoy Pac-Man and like the fact that it has the intermissions, and I like the animation in Mario Bros., I find it very detailed. However many of the games fail to hold my attention, and I keep comparing them to their 2600 counterparts, which although graphically inferior offer similar gameplay, and for some reason I take the 2600's limitations into account and am more patient with it. Plus the library seems rather small, and I haven't been able to find many unique titles (not available on other Atari systems). Not trying to dog the system being that it's just on emulation, but none of the games seem to be really holding my attention. Am I missing something? Some killer game? Thanks!
  23. Thank you everyone for your responses, you've gotten me quite excited about playing some 5200 games. I'm downloading a 5200 emulator tonight and trying some of the games mentioned on this thread so I can get a feel for the system. Of course I know I won't have the full experience on emulation alone since I won't get to test out the controllers or see the gigantic console but I think it'll be a good intro and help me determin if the 5200 is right for me. I did some research on Wico controllers and see that there are some listed on eBay...so does the Wico need an adaptor (like the redemption) to plug into the system or do they plug into the system directly? Also do many of the games use the keypad? Since it keeps being mentioned just out of curiosity does anyone have the exact dimensions of the console? Does it have a brick-sized power supply like the Colecovision too? I have to concur that the Intellivision and Colecovision controllers suck, I've owned both systems. The Intellivision's made me miss the joystick and the side fire buttons were a bit too tough to press. The CV was a bit better except for the weird knob at the end of the joystick and the fact that it just felt cheap. I was afraid I was going to break it or the console with much use. That's another question I had, how durable is the 5200? I found the CV to be one of the least durable systems I've owned, while the 2600 and 7800 proved to be tough. Thanks again! Looking forward to testing out some games.
  24. Hey everyone, This is my first post so I'm excited. I've been a fan of the 2600 for quite some time although it was before my time and I had a 7800 a few years back, although my fondness for that machine hasn't lasted. I've been doing research into the 5200 lately since it's the one Atari machine that I never thought to look into since it was hardly mentioned compared to the other two. I've read varying things on the 5200...the infamous controllers, the size of the system...and most seem to end with the conclusion of getting an Atari 800 computer instead. So, I'm curious...what ways have people gotten around the controller issue? The malfunctioning and non-centering seems most scary to me. I know there are options like the Wico stick and adaptors...which ones do people prefer? Are they readily available? Also, are the games between the 5200 and Atari 800 so similar that it's just best to go for the computer? Or does the 5200 have any unique gems or interpretation of games? Also, whats the 5200 homebrew scene like? Thanks!
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