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So does everyone hate "Star Ship" then?

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I never had a problem with Star Ship probably because it was one of the first few games we got for our Atari. In retrospect, I think my parents were just cheap and were digging through the bargain bin at Pacific Stereo. I remember our first five games as being:

 

1. Combat (obviously)

2. Circus Atari (still my favorite of all-time)

3. Human Cannonball (bargain bin)

4. Street Racer (bargain bin)

5. Star Ship (bargain bin - I am beginning to notice a pattern)

 

-phitter

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Ok .. It's fall 1977. You have the first two games for the Atari VCS or the Sears Video Arcade ... Combat (Tank Plus) and Air-Sea Battle (Target Fun). Atari and Sears promise more games soon. Two weeks pass and you call the store and learn that another game has arrived. So you talk your parents into driving across town on a school night to get the latest release game and shell out $20. What is it? Outer Space / Star Ship. You read the instruction booklet all the way home. The first game sounds cool .. the second game .. Lunar Lander? That's gotta be a graphical version of the text game found on minicomputers! Get home plug it in and .. what? Shoot a goofy robot alien? Well let's try Lunar Lander? What .. this is nothing more than a cosmic version of cat and mouse!

 

Of the first 8 launch titles .. Outer Space / Star Ship was the least played in our household. Of the original 20 carts that we had .. Outer Space was ignored. it looked tired even in 1977. My thought is that it was programmed for release in 1976 and dumped on the market when the VCS was delayed for a year.

 

People seem to think that it was great back in 1977 .. 1979 .. well it was lame back then too!

 

Rob Mitchell, Atlanta, GA

Edited by Rob Mitchell

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Worse than Basic Math?

 

Basic Math doesn't count! :P Now only if Basic Math could have been made to work with the keyboard controllers.

 

Rob Mitchell, Atlanta, GA

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I purchased Starship with my own money from a local drug store (Thrifty's) as a kid. I thought it was well worth the moeny I paid

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Goofy sound effects date from the 1960s .. Game still sucks .. Atari withdrew it from the catalog within 2 years.

 

Goofy sound effects sums it up! I actually thought I had a defective cartridge the first few times I played it.

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As I've said before in this ancient thread, I enjoy this game quite a bit. It's got that quirky charm found in several early VCS titles (Miniature Golf, Volleyball/Basketball on Video Olympics).

 

Heh, my earlier (years-old) posts in this thread are amusing. I typed like an 11-year-old on speed!

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Yeah I just called about Star Ship for the 2600 and it's "17 Video Games" installed on it.

 

Can someone here divide what the games are from 1-17

 

Like example:

Game 1 =1-4

 

Game 2 = 5-9

 

etc... ?

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I was going to weigh in on this thread until I paged back to the beginning, and saw that I already did so, SIXTEEN YEARS AGO

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On 4/23/2003 at 12:54 PM, Spector said:

I've looked at the reviews on the net and it seems to be the worst game ever according to them.

Well yeah it's the internet and the internet is fullashit. So..

 

Anyhow, Star Ship was one of the games I used for my astronaut training program. Along with Asteroids, Lunar Lander, Star Raiders, Space Battle, and likely several others.

 

I'd tally up the scores/times and print out a certificate on PrintShop on my Apple II. To get the advanced certificate you had to answer 50 something questions about rockets and space and planets. I conducted that via a rather straightforward Applesoft BASIC program. I was generous with the scoring and part of the test was to see if you had the persistence to make it through. My gradeschool buddies loved it!

 

Too bad we don't play like that today.

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On 4/24/2003 at 3:00 PM, moycon said:

I like the funky background "space" sounds.

Used to have it playing in the background when I gave my "planetarium lectures". Sometimes I'd put it on quietlly and fall asleep.

 

On 4/24/2003 at 3:00 PM, moycon said:

I'll agree that for an early attempt at 3-D at a time when nobody knew what they were doing...Its a valiant attempt.

And in that context it can be nicely appreciated. It came out at a time when I had few cartridges and every cart was welcome. Each gaming session we'd rotate through everything I had, 10, maybe 20 games.

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On 7/3/2019 at 7:28 PM, Flojomojo said:

I was going to weigh in on this thread until I paged back to the beginning, and saw that I already did so, SIXTEEN YEARS AGO

LOL, been there.  Wait, when did you post this again?

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1 hour ago, Keatah said:

Well yeah it's the internet and the internet is fullashit. So..

 

Anyhow, Star Ship was one of the games I used for my astronaut training program. Along with Asteroids, Lunar Lander, Star Raiders, Space Battle, and likely several others.

 

I'd tally up the scores/times and print out a certificate on PrintShop on my Apple II. To get the advanced certificate you had to answer 50 something questions about rockets and space and planets. I conducted that via a rather straightforward Applesoft BASIC program. I was generous with the scoring and part of the test was to see if you had the persistence to make it through. My gradeschool buddies loved it!

 

Too bad we don't play like that today.

 

Yes!  Back in the day the games were so goddamn primitive that you had to use your imagination to fill in the blanks.  Those amazing painted box cover lies didn't help, either, they looked like the final action sequence of a bitchin' space movie and then you plug in the cartridge and... a few LEGO bricks sliding around.  Hmmm....

 

But I liked Star Ship/Outer Space as a kid.  Didn't love it, but then I really liked Surround, too, hahahaha.  I was a kid in the '70s so I remember the first wave of shitty black & white arcade games (and a few decent ones)

 

 

and the mechanical games

 

 

and thinking "so what" about the whole genre (I spent a lot of time back then playing baseball and football with my friends instead, or playing with LEGOs).  It wasn't until later in grade school/high school that I overheard some friends talking about going after school to go play something called Galaxian (this was around 1980) that I noticed what I'd been missing and decided to get back into it.  And the games really took off at that time, very quickly Galaxian looked simple.  Great time to be alive if you like video games, sad time to watch so much allowance fed into those things, hahaha.

 

I always wondered why Atari bothered making Star Ship, it seemed so primitive even compared to other early 2600 games (I always felt so lonely playing that game, like space was an endless void with the occasional ship to shoot at).  It wasn't until recently (like a few years ago) while attending an arcade game expo (California Extreme?  Arcade Expo?) that I stumbled across the old Atari arcade game Starship 1 and thought "Wait, I remember this from when I was a kid..." and then as soon as I started playing it I thought "Holy shit, this is where that old 2600 game came from!"

 

 

 

Compared to the arcade version, the 2600 game isn't that bad at all.  And I finally had an answer for why one of those ships in the 2600 version had a vague Star Trek look to it, it's because the arcade version had a more obvious design to copy from.

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I think to like Star Ship you need to look at it with an understanding of the time in which it was released.  Yes it's super primitive, but as others have pointed out, so was everything else at the time.  If you were limited to a handful of launch titles, then Star Ship isn't too bad. But once other titles started coming out it quickly lost its luster.  That's probably why Atari stopped producing it early on (along with Miniature Golf). 

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On 7/7/2019 at 11:54 AM, Tempest said:

I think to like Star Ship you need to look at it with an understanding of the time in which it was released.  Yes it's super primitive, but as others have pointed out, so was everything else at the time.  If you were limited to a handful of launch titles, then Star Ship isn't too bad. But once other titles started coming out it quickly lost its luster.  That's probably why Atari stopped producing it early on (along with Miniature Golf). 

 

I dunno...I first discovered the game in a little game shop in the early 2000s, after I already had a few dozen other titles in my collection (mostly comprised of "greatest hits" since they were obviously the easiest to find), and I fell in love with it almost immediately--after I figured out it uses the second joystick, that is! 😄

 

I found it charming, I guess. Just about as retro as retro gets. And I liked the variety that the difficulty switches and the Warp Drive and Lunar Lander games offered, even if they amounted to throw-aways. And it really rounded out the genre selection of that first couple handfuls of titles that started coming out in the late '70s. And still fun for "just one more game...!" here and there. :)

 

 

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I don't like the game because I don't like when the things get way too close to me. It freaks me out.

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On ‎9‎/‎23‎/‎2006 at 5:01 PM, kirin jensen said:

I've always liked it more than Star Raiders on the 2600.

I definitely agree! I like the basic controls of Star Ship (move and shoot) than Star Raiders with a bunch of controls and options (hyper warp, shields, photons, etc., etc., etc.). Star Raiders seems like a fun game, but I'm not that much of a multitasker! :P 

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