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Star Wars: Which is the best title from Parker Bros.?

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Think you're gonna find a unanimous TESB vote from most of us. The Arcade Game second, Death Star Battle third and Jedi Arena last.

 

Oh and Ewok Adventure is kinda cool for what it is. Would probably place it between Death Star and Arcade in the playability dept.

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Think you're gonna find a unanimous TESB vote from most of us. The Arcade Game second, Death Star Battle third and Jedi Arena last.

Pretty much this. Arcade Game would be #1 for me except "pilot" controls do not translate to the manipulation of cursors and aiming reticules. Like, at all. It's still a pretty good game if you're willing to take the time to get the hang of it but I think Empire is the best and most playable overall.

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I'm going to say Empire Strikes Back as #1 on the 2600.

 

Jedi Arena as #2 as long as you have someone playing against you; playing against the CPU isn't as fun.

 

When the guys finish adding Trak-Ball support to Star Wars the Arcade Game, I'll re-assess this list.

 

 

I'd love if ESB or Jedi Arena were available for the 5200.

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I was just discussing this topic with my wife for this same reason today.

 

The way things are, I would agree about putting "The Empire Strikes Back" first, just because it is about as complete a package of a Star Wars game as is offered on the 2600. Hoth, parallax scrolling, AT-ATs, "Defender" gameplay,and that theme tune. I'm sending my Star Wars loving friend a refurbed Vader and a set of games to get him started as a holiday surprise. This was the only one of the Star Wars games that I felt I absolutely had to include.

 

"The Arcade Game" would actually be my first choice if it weren't for the funky controls that someone upthread mentioned. Other than that, it's a fun port and makes a great 2nd place choice.

 

I'm in the minority, and would put "Jedi Arena" third of the four games. I love paddle games, and while it's "Sar Wars"-ness isn't overwhelming, the game is still fun despite some weird flaws. And agreed, way more fun with a partner than the CPU.

 

"Death Star Battle" leaves me pretty cold. For what it's worth, I could see how somebody would prefer this to "Jedi Arena" or "The Arcade Game" I suppose, but it just isn't for me. The weird split screen issue, graphics that don't quite justify the split screen, and weird interaction with enemy ships just makes this one that I rarely pop in. Despite my dream of being Lando.

Edited by mikey.shake

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I like Jedi arena a lot, I think it's very underrated as it's a very original game, best played with a human of course.

Arcade game, besides the fact it hasn't been distributed in pal countries (as far as I know), I think it's a very good conversion but it's not as fun as others can be.

Empire strikes back is the one I go for the most often, on the hardest variation (16). It's fast paced and nervous, and technically perfect.

If you dare to read french or use google translate, I wrote a post about that a couple of months ago : https://cambouisdelatari.wordpress.com/2015/09/07/les-jeux-star-wars-sur-atari-2600/

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For me personally, I like TESB the best(played a ton as a kid). The Arcade conversion is pretty good as well ,and I got used to the weird controls over time. I never got into playing Death Star Battle too much, so it is third for me. I hated Jedi arena, and never could get others to even want to play it with me.

Ewok adventure is interesting, but have not spent too much time playing that one either. I got it as a repro many moons ago.

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Empire Strikes Back, hands down for me. It was one of the few games I owned as a kid so it got a lot of play time. I was actually just playing it this past weekend and scored around 4000 or so points before my thumb cramped up and the Walkers over-ran me. The parallax scrolling is great, the control is perfect (that acceleration/deceleration is spot on), and the sound effects are fantastic, from the blaster shots to the smart bombs to the colliding against the ground, and those occasional metallic-sounding explosions. The theme music that plays signaling your temporary invincibility always brings relief after you've exhausted your available repairs and your ship is weakened and yellow. For such simple game play it's really rich in presentation.

 

I usually like playing with a rapid-fire adapter. Your thumb doesn't suffer and you can continue to rack up points on a walker as it is blowing up, sometimes triggering a second explosion that (I think) gets you even more points.

 

Star Wars The Arcade Game is a really good port and it comes in a very close second but I don't find myself playing that one as much.

 

Death Star Battle has some cool sound effects but that's about all I can compliment that game on. It's just a bit too abstract for me. Chipping away at the Death Star like a game of Breakout to get to its center just seemed a little weak to me.

 

As for the other SW games, I haven't played them enough to form an opinion.

Edited by Emehr

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I never played Jedi Arena. Here are my rankings, best to worst:

 

1. TESB. Easily the best SW game of that era. It has good control and enough options to keep it interesting.

2. Death Star Battle - it has some nice ideas. I like the hyperwarp effect on 2600 more than what was attempted on the 5200 version. You have a shooter w/breakout style gameplay. However, the game could have used another month of development because it is too repetitive. I never really understood why you can touch some ships with the Millenium Falcon yet not get destroyed. Maybe if the ships on the lower screen came out in formation, it'd have more of a true shooter feel.

3. Star Wars Arcade. I was impressed at 2600 Star Wars Arcade, that they even got the towers and trench to work! But it isn't that fun, the controls are touch and its stripped down too much. (The 5200 version isn't really much better either - hard to control).

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I never played Jedi Arena. Here are my rankings, best to worst:

 

1. TESB. Easily the best SW game of that era. It has good control and enough options to keep it interesting.

2. Death Star Battle - it has some nice ideas. I like the hyperwarp effect on 2600 more than what was attempted on the 5200 version. You have a shooter w/breakout style gameplay. However, the game could have used another month of development because it is too repetitive. I never really understood why you can touch some ships with the Millenium Falcon yet not get destroyed. Maybe if the ships on the lower screen came out in formation, it'd have more of a true shooter feel.

3. Star Wars Arcade. I was impressed at 2600 Star Wars Arcade, that they even got the towers and trench to work! But it isn't that fun, the controls are touch and its stripped down too much. (The 5200 version isn't really much better either - hard to control).

 

Things might've turned out differently for Star Was the Arcade Game had the crash not happened. Dan Kramer was intent upon creating a 5200 Yoke [and a 5200 Steering Wheel]. Whether or not Atari Inc would've negotiated with Parker Bros to re-lease the title with Yoke Support, I don't have an answer for it. I just know Dan had managerial support for the Yoke and Steering Wheel projects until he didn't.

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Give it another chance on variation 16 if you like high challenge, you won't have the time to get bored ;)

 

Agreed. I found it dull too, but I always played on game 1. Doh! I tried other variations with the smart bombs and it was much more fun. Plus you need to play with a strategy, not just shooting 1 then the other. So shoot to first walker to slow it down, then destroy the following ones. Then go blow up the first. Then quickly try to fly west and slow down the next lead walker. Good thing they allow you to repair your speeder, and give you Force invincibility, both of which add to the game's fun and playability.

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Star Wars the Arcade game was the best as far as I'm concerned. The controls had a small learning curve, but once I got used to it, I could easily take out the tie fighters with no problem.

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ESB is a top 10 game for me on this system, and I think many have captured the reasons why. I really haven't spent much time playing any of the others to really rank them.

 

Without smart bombs, the game is waay too boring. My favorite ESB variation is 13. I like being able to fly between the legs, and 13 is enough of a challenge for me. Also, if you play in B&W, the speeder still blinks in color when the invincibility hits and the end game explosion is also in color. I noticed this first on my arcade cabinet using Stella. I find the B&W helps put me into more of an authentic mood as I play as it gets rid of the rainbow walkers.

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The Empire Strikes Back is a good game, and more so if you have a rapid fire plug on your joystick. Easily number one. Robot camels, baby. A classic of simple design.

 

My number 2 would be RotJ Death Star Battle because of the unique sound effects.

 

Star Wars The Arcade Game is a distant third for me. I loooooove the real arcade game but this port is two-dimensional and the music is flat.

 

Jedi Arena, well, the package looks nice and the sound effects are okay. Too bad about the game, though.

 

Ewok Adventure is a better game than Jedi Arena. Bummer we didn't get the battle over the Sarlaac "game II" title, I would have liked that. Return of the Jedi didn't get the games it deserved, so I've been having fun with the Battlefront modes on Endor.

 

Honorable mentions: Solaris (late Atari game) and Starmaster (streamlined Star Raiders from Activision). Too bad those didn't get branded with Star Wars.

 

Hey, what would be involved in getting these games rereleased as extras somewhere? Parker is owned by Hasbro, right? So it would take Disney and Hasbro signing a deal? They would not need to get the permission of Atari, right?

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The Empire Strikes Back is a good game, and more so if you have a rapid fire plug on your joystick. Easily number one. Robot camels, baby. A classic of simple design.

 

My number 2 would be RotJ Death Star Battle because of the unique sound effects.

 

Star Wars The Arcade Game is a distant third for me. I loooooove the real arcade game but this port is two-dimensional and the music is flat.

 

Jedi Arena, well, the package looks nice and the sound effects are okay. Too bad about the game, though.

 

Ewok Adventure is a better game than Jedi Arena. Bummer we didn't get the battle over the Sarlaac "game II" title, I would have liked that. Return of the Jedi didn't get the games it deserved, so I've been having fun with the Battlefront modes on Endor.

 

 

 

Your list is pretty much the same as mine, but I would still put Jedi Arena over Ewok Adventure.

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Star Wars the Arcade game was the best as far as I'm concerned. The controls had a small learning curve, but once I got used to it, I could easily take out the tie fighters with no problem.

I'm working on a trak ball conversion that will hopefully feel a lot better to control.
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