Last night I pulled out my family's Atari 800, so that we can play some M.U.L.E. and Dog Daze over the holidays (it's a kind of holiday tradition -- we've been very fortunate with how well the machine has held up over the last 34 years). Unfortunately, I ran into an issue last night.
Would anyone on this forum be able to help ID the problem based on my description below? I'm trying to figure out the extent or cause of the problem.
The machine boots up initially just fine, and will go to a DOS command screen (if the disk starts there), or to a "Game List" screen (not sure if that's what it's called), if it starts there. It will even begin loading a game ok ("beep beep beep", etc.). BUT -- as soon as it starts the game's graphics and/or sound for half a second, the screen freaks out -- lots of ghost images plastered around the screen, off-set graphic text, partially loaded images, etc., and it freezes. I tried hitting start, just to see if it can continue even w/weird graphics, and that's a no go. I also tried this with a dozen different disks & games, and it was all pretty much the same.
Given that the problem seems to begin when there is more memory intensive stuff going on, I am guessing (unfortunately) this is a memory chip or CPU issue. But I know very little about the insides of an Atari 800 -- as I say, we've been blessed with 30+ years of a (mostly) functioning machine.
Any guesses on the issue here? I can post more info if that helps, too, just let me know.
Thanks in advance for your help! I hate to be a newbie on a forum just asking for help w/o any help to offer others, and with much more limited knowledge. So thank you for your patience! Looking forward to learning.