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This is one of those filler episodes that tell you what happened during all the previous episodes of the season, like that really lame episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation at the end of Season II where instead of actually writing a plot they just put Ryker in a coma and had him flash-backing the entire episode. What's worse is that, not only is this a flash back episode it's a two-parter!!! For those of you who are new (as if any of you are new) this blog is about going back in time and slowly, oh so slowly, plodding through history one game at a time as they were released. That's what it's about. What's actually involved is a lot of very expensive time travel, seedy hotels, cold meals and bad 70s hair. We started in 1972 with the Magnavox Odyssey. (EDIT 2021: Below were links to all the Odyssey entries however now (in 2021) they are no longer links. Which makes this entry even more of a waste of brain space and eye fluids. End EDIT) With the main console: Table Tennis Tennis Football Hockey Ski Submarine Cat and Mouse Haunted House Analogic Roulette States Simon Says And the "Register your Odyssey and Get a Free Game" game, Percepts With the Shooting Gallery add-on: Prehistoric Safari Shootout! Dogfight Shooting Gallery And finally, the Six Extra Games from 1972: Fun Zoo Baseball Invasion Wipeout Volleyball Handball 1973 was easy to get through as there were only four games, though they weren't exactly the least expensive. W.I.N Interplanetary Voyage Brain Wave Basketball 1974 went by with no new videogames released. Everyone just think about that a little bit. Yes, so many people complained about it that they were able to force the President at the time, President Nixon, to resign in disgrace. Many people don't know that. You can impress them with your knowledge. 1975 was the year PONG came home to the masses. I still haven't actually played a PONG unit. It's still on the list. Sears Telegames PONG by Atari Magnavox Odyssey 100 Magnavox Odyssey 200 (no entry for this.) 1976 was the year of the dedicated PONG clones with an innovative bright spot at the end. Magnavox Odyssey 300 Magnavox Odyssey 400 National Semiconductor Adversary + (I liked the controllers) Fairchild Tennis and Hockey Fairchild Tic-Tac-Toe + / Shooting Gallery / Doodle / Quadradoodle + Fairchild Desert Fox / Shooting Gallery Fairchild Video Blackjack ! In 1977 and 1978, things start gettin' busy which I'll do in the next entry.
Okay, one last "gone before" entry. 1977 was when things started rolling, with the introduction of the Atari VCS, but 1978 was when things started rocking. Five programmable videogame consoles available that year. Atari VCS Fairchild Channel F (formerly VES) Bally Professional Arcade The Magnavox Odyssey^2 APF MP1000 Atari VCS 1978 Basketball Braingames Breakout Codebreaker Flag Capture Hangman Home Run Hunt & Score Outlaw Slot Racers Space War Fairchild Channel F 1978 #15 Memory Match #16 Dodge It #17 Video Pinball #18 Hangman #19 Checkers #20 Video Whizball Bally Professional Arcade 1978 Gunfight / Checkmate / Scribblin / Calculator (built ins) 280Zzzap / Dodgem Clowns / Brickyard Elementary Math / Bingo Math Football Sea Wolf Letter Math / Spell & Score / Crosswords Panzer Attack / Red Baron Tornado Baseball / Tennis / Hockey / Handball Magnavox Odyssey^2 1978 Armored Encounter / Subchase Baseball Bowling / Basketball Computer Golf Cosmic Conflict Football Las Vegas BlackJack Matchmaker / Buzzword / Logix Math-A-Magic / Echo Speedway / Spin-out / Crypto-Logic APF MP1000 1978 Backgammon Baseball Blackjack Bowling / Micro Match Boxing Brickdown / Shooting Gallery Casino 1: Roulette / Keno / Slots Catena Hangman / Tic-Tac-Toe / Doodle Pinball / Dungeon Hunt / Blockout Rocket Patrol UFO / Sea Monster / Break it Down / Rebuild / Shoot
Okay, it's another "clip show" entry. See, part of the goal was to play everything in a long unbroken chain so the gradual evolution of these things could be observed. However, it ain't unbroken, so I'm refreshing my memory. This is just a refresh of 1977 with (EDIT 2021: without) links to the original articles. 1977 Miscellaneous Dedicated Stunt Cycle (a.k.a. Motocross) Video Pinball (a.k.a. Pinball Breakaway) Ultra PONG Doubles (a.k.a. PONG Sports IV) Coleco Combat Weird and Miscellaneous Coleco Telstar Arcade Okay, I don't know if Telstar Arcade should be considered a programmable system or not. Four carts were put out for it, but they were all carts with a different "pong on a chip" type arrangement in in each one. In other words, as I understand it, the "program" was hardcoded onto the chip and not sitting in a "rom" space. It could be that it wouldn't have to stay that way, later cartridges could have produced the same effect with actual programs stored in rom, but I don't think that ever happened. Can anyone with a better stocked brain confirm my reasoning for me? (EDIT 2021: Eric Ball pointed out that it the Coleco Telstar Arcade is more of a programmable system than, say, the Magnavox Odyssey is. In 2021, it's hard to find the Telstar Arcade for a price I'm willing to pay, so I guess I'll never play it, which, at my now more advanced age, I'm okay with. After thinking about it, it now feels like Telstar Arcade was more like a specialized controller set with video output. One could plug special carts into it and use the different controllers with the games in the carts. End EDIT) RCA Studio II Bowling / Freeway / Patterns / Doodles / Math (These were the built-ins) Space War (TV Arcade I) Fun with Numbers (TV Arcade II) Tennis / Squash (TV Arcade III) Baseball (TV Arcade IV) Speedway / Tag (TV Arcade Series) Gunfighter / Moonship Battle (TV Arcade Series) Blackjack (TV Casino Series) Biorhythm (TV Mystic Series) TV School House I Math Fun (a.k.a. TV School House II) Fairchild VES #4 Spitfire #5 Space War #6 Math Quiz I #7 Math Quiz II (#5, #6 and #7 are all the same entry) #8 Magic Number (NIM, Mindreader) #9 Drag Race #10 Maze (Cat & Mouse, Blindman's Bluff, Jailbreak, Trailblazer) #11 Backgammon / Acey-Ducey (#10 and #11 are the same entry) #12 Baseball / #13 Robot War / Torpedo Alley (#12 and #13 are the same entry) #14 Sonar Search Atari Video Computer System !!! Combat (a.k.a. Tank Plus) (Combat is the same entry that introduces the VCS) ! Indy 500 (a.k.a. Race) Video Olympics (a.k.a. Pong Sports) (Yay! Four Players!) !! Surround (a.k.a. Chase) ! Air-Sea Battle (a.k.a. Target Fun) Basic Math (a.k.a. Fun With Numbers) Blackjack(Same entry as BlackJack) Star Ship (a.k.a. Outer Space) Street Racer (a.k.a. Speedway II) (Yay! Four Players!)