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Tommy Tallarico

Intellivision Amico - Tommy Tallarico introduction + Q&A

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You guys should call it "Snafu: Snakes on a plane!"

 

Hahahhaa! I'm actually changing the spelling to SNAFOO. More family friendly if ya know what I mean! :)

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Agreed. That would be a great candidate for an update.

probably couldn't call it Beauty and The Beast again because of the Disney film

how about Horrible Hank Strikes Again! or Terror At The Old Mutton Building! lol

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Tommy, how do you feel about homebrew and people writing their own stuff for the console? Obviously it wouldn't be something you would endorse. You've made your intentions of how you want to market it and sell it very clear, and that's cool. But will you take the same kind of stance against these things as Nintendo, Sony, and MS? I.E. patching out any attempts to run unsigned code?

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Will developers be able to add game specific peripherals to the Amico? (Toys, dance mats, instruments etc..) I'm guessing if you guys did it would be exclusive to the system?

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I'd love to see an 80s Williams, Bally and Atari arcade set. Like all the ones for Nintendo, Xbox and phone apps.

 

Great place to start the nostalgia juices flowing for the non-Intellivison believers.

 

Back in the day we NEVER had the opportunity to play those on our sets.. would love to see that now.

 

Let's face it... Loco-motion, Burgertime, Bump N Jump, and Lock N' Chase were cool, but certainly fell short of the more notable Arcade ports Atari and Coleco fans got to play.

 

Don't even try it with the Atarisoft and Parker Bros. stuff. Too late in the game and hard on the eyes to play.

 

Donkey Kong...😩😩

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Let's face it... Loco-motion, Burgertime, Bump N Jump, and Lock N' Chase were cool, but certainly fell short of the more notable Arcade ports Atari and Coleco fans got to play.

 

 

 

Really??? I thought it was commonly thought that the Intellivision versions of all 3 of those games were definitely better on Intellivision. ESPECIALLY BurgerTime. This is the first I've heard that someone thought the Intellivision versions were worse than Atari & Coleco??

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Will developers be able to add game specific peripherals to the Amico? (Toys, dance mats, instruments etc..) I'm guessing if you guys did it would be exclusive to the system?

 

Yes... through our developer program.

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Tommy, how do you feel about homebrew and people writing their own stuff for the console? Obviously it wouldn't be something you would endorse. You've made your intentions of how you want to market it and sell it very clear, and that's cool. But will you take the same kind of stance against these things as Nintendo, Sony, and MS? I.E. patching out any attempts to run unsigned code?

 

Lots of info coming about that... but not til 2020. :)

 

I LOVE Home Brew on the original console. I hope it continues.

 

We are discussing different ways for people to have the ability to create and share their own games on the Amico. Nothing final yet... but on the drawing board for sure. :)

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Tommy, What was your original train of thought when you bought the INTV brand in the first place? I was really curious of that. Thanks for your time.

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I liked the arcade games that Inty put out, don't get me wrong. Burgertime was a big hit in my house... but by then arcades were full of games like Time Pilot, Looping, Mr.Do... etc. Imagine Berzerk using the Intellivoice. As proven with Carl's version of Donkey Kong Arcade, the Intellivison would have put all others to shame if the time and detail would have been put into the design and programming of their arcade variants.

 

Just saying it would have really helped the Intellivison put a deep foothold into the home "arcade" market if it had viable ports of the top played games in the actual arcades...like Colecovisiob dis.

 

Either way...that was then, this is now. I'm just looking forward to a new console I can easily play that doesn't have overly complicated and dramatic games and are just simple and fun...like the 80s were.

 

Best,

 

JR

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I liked the arcade games that Inty put out, don't get me wrong. Burgertime was a big hit in my house... but by then arcades were full of games like Time Pilot, Looping, Mr.Do... etc. Imagine Berzerk using the Intellivoice. As proven with Carl's version of Donkey Kong Arcade, the Intellivison would have put all others to shame if the time and detail would have been put into the design and programming of their arcade variants.

 

Just saying it would have really helped the Intellivison put a deep foothold into the home "arcade" market if it had viable ports of the top played games in the actual arcades...like Colecovisiob dis.

 

Either way...that was then, this is now. I'm just looking forward to a new console I can easily play that doesn't have overly complicated and dramatic games and are just simple and fun...like the 80s were.

 

Best,

 

JR

I thought you meant it didn't have the huge titles like Space Invaders, Asteroids, Missile Command, Robotron. Galaxian, Ms. Pac-man. Mattel just wasn't prepared to compete for popular licenses. The approach of designing games for home was the right one although lots of their original games were arcade style. Most of the third party arcade games on Intellivision were poor first efforts although Defender from Atarisoft is not bad at all. Edited by mr_me

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I thought you meant it didn't have the huge titles like Space Invaders, Asteroids, Missile Command, Robotron. Galaxian, Ms. Pac-man. Mattel just wasn't prepared to compete for popular licenses. The approach of designing games for home was the right one although lots of their original games were arcade style. Most of the third party arcade games on Intellivision were poor first efforts although Defender from Atarisoft is not bad at all.

 

Yes, that's what I meant. Mattel just didn't have the big names in Arcade games. They just weren't there. By the time some of the Parker Bros and Atarisoft games came out, I had already moved on to a C64 and began to compile all kinds of games on that. Maybe just my personal experience, but I remember when my friends, who many had early VCS and later 2600 models were getting Space Invaders, Defender, Berzerk, PacMan and other titles... I had Space Armada...Space Hawk...Mission X and other Mattel/APh designed ports of the big name arcade games (Night Stalker - awesome twist of Berzerk). It was very disappointing at that time not to have the actual titles. Imagine Gorf and Berzerk using the Intellivoice for support!

 

Then came Donkey Kong... which I still remember saving a ton of money cutting lawns and doing chores... begging my Dad to take me to the Busy Bee Mall (huge flea market) in Massapequea to buy it from a guy that sold all kinds of home video games brand new. Got it! Whoo-hoo... Donkey Kong!! I imagined it was going to be great because I knew how powerful my Inty was compared to the 2600... and I saw how bad it looked on that.. no way I could be let down!! I got it home and what a kick in the balls that was. Wow.

 

So back to B-17 Bomber, Bomb Squad and Dracula. Yes, we had some really awesome games... but past that, Mattel fell way short of the mark on the real core of many pre-teens like me in 1982/83... True Arcade games.

 

Some may argue the point that the Intellivision was more than that, and I will agree... even today Microsurgeon is a game I am always happy to play and find it amazing the design and detail that went into it... my point is as a lover of Arcade games in that time period and owning an Intellivision.. I missed out.

 

best,

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Another good point from IMBerzerk is that the Ararisoft and Parker Brothers cartridges (Qbert is not bad) were too late. Many stores already stopped carrying videogames; I didn't even know they existed. To be honest asteroids, missile command, pacman on the 2600 and donkey kong and zaxxon on colecovision compared poorly to the arcade. The arcade was the place to play video games at the time. Home games were best when they leveraged the strengths of the system and home environment. And that's what they are doing with Amico.

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Another good point from IMBerzerk is that the Ararisoft and Parker Brothers cartridges (Qbert is not bad) were too late. Many stores already stopped carrying videogames

 

In Québec, this was true only for the Intellivision. Most stores were still selling games for the Colecovision and the Atari VCS even in 1985. For example, "Distribution aux consommateurs" (Consumers distributing) dropped the Colecovision and the Atari only with their 1986 catalogue, while it dropped the Intellivision with their 1984 catalogue (yes, I just had fun looking at those old catalogues).

 

I agree the arcades were the place to play video games, but that's like saying movie theaters are the place to watch movies. In reality, the same way people were watching most movies on TV, we were playing arcade games mostly on home consoles. I also agree arcade games on the Colecovision compared poorly to the arcade, but the Colecovision still had best versions. The only exception was, in my opinion, Burgertime for the Intellivision, but contrarily to the Colecovision version, the Intellivision version did not have the same levels as the arcade version and the graphics were also too different. Intellivision's Burgertime was, from a gameplay point of view, probably the best, but it still looked like a cheaper arcade port than for the Colecovision.

 

If I look again at the Distribution aux consommateurs catalogues, the vast majority of games for the Atari and the Colecovision were arcade ports. Most of the original games were not even listed. This makes me wonder if the extremely high popularity of the arcades, and therefore the high popularity of arcade games, was not in part responsible for the demise of the Intellivision.

 

Having said this, the arcades are now a thing of the past. More than that, I agree console video games were the best when they made their own things... which is why I'm a bit worried about the Amico (after being completely sold to the idea). I'm sure Tommy will say that I have nothing to worry about, but up to now it seems to me the focus is a bit too much on those old arcade games. I certainly really like playing those games on MAME (I'm currently building a bartop cabinet that I will give to my niece), I could most probably appreciate a "reimagining" of those arcade games, but the truth is arcade-style games are not really what I'm looking for. I'm far more interested in a reimagining of Utopia or Sea Battle (a four-player version of those would be the best) than a reimagining of Moon Patrol. (And please Tommy, don't hit me for saying this!).

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In Québec, this was true only for the Intellivision. Most stores were still selling games for the Colecovision and the Atari VCS even in 1985. For example, "Distribution aux consommateurs" (Consumers distributing) dropped the Colecovision and the Atari only with their 1986 catalogue, while it dropped the Intellivision with their 1984 catalogue (yes, I just had fun looking at those old catalogues).

 

I agree the arcades were the place to play video games, but that's like saying movie theaters are the place to watch movies. In reality, the same way people were watching most movies on TV, we were playing arcade games mostly on home consoles. I also agree arcade games on the Colecovision compared poorly to the arcade, but the Colecovision still had best versions. The only exception was, in my opinion, Burgertime for the Intellivision, but contrarily to the Colecovision version, the Intellivision version did not have the same levels as the arcade version and the graphics were also too different. Intellivision's Burgertime was, from a gameplay point of view, probably the best, but it still looked like a cheaper arcade port than for the Colecovision.

 

If I look again at the Distribution aux consommateurs catalogues, the vast majority of games for the Atari and the Colecovision were arcade ports. Most of the original games were not even listed. This makes me wonder if the extremely high popularity of the arcades, and therefore the high popularity of arcade games, was not in part responsible for the demise of the Intellivision.

 

Having said this, the arcades are now a thing of the past. More than that, I agree console video games were the best when they made their own things... which is why I'm a bit worried about the Amico (after being completely sold to the idea). I'm sure Tommy will say that I have nothing to worry about, but up to now it seems to me the focus is a bit too much on those old arcade games. I certainly really like playing those games on MAME (I'm currently building a bartop cabinet that I will give to my niece), I could most probably appreciate a "reimagining" of those arcade games, but the truth is arcade-style games are not really what I'm looking for. I'm far more interested in a reimagining of Utopia or Sea Battle (a four-player version of those would be the best) than a reimagining of Moon Patrol. (And please Tommy, don't hit me for saying this!).

But you have to remember that so far the only places we have had game announcements was at the Portland Retro Gaming Expo last year so they tailored their games to reveal to that group and for the 25th anniversary of a franchise. But in his latest interview with Victor Lucus on Electric Playground he stated that their game catalog has a 4 prong approach each representing about 25% of the catalog of games those general categories are Re-imagined Classics, Sports games, Card/Trivia/Board Games/TV Game Shows, Original IPs. Also we have over a year left so I would imagine most of the game information will come out closer to release

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in his latest interview with Victor Lucus on Electric Playground he stated that their game catalog has a 4 prong approach each representing about 25% of the catalog of games those general categories are Re-imagined Classics,

 

Yes, I just watched this interview... and as usual I found it somewhat frustrating because so little is said! LOL

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Lots of info coming about that... but not til 2020. :)

 

I LOVE Home Brew on the original console. I hope it continues.

 

We are discussing different ways for people to have the ability to create and share their own games on the Amico. Nothing final yet... but on the drawing board for sure. :)

 

Ha that's good to hear.. it must be hard to deal with both licensed developers and hobbyists at the same time, but it's been done before.. Sony's Net Yaroze was a good example and experience for me (dev kit, but no GPU direct access, and no distribution) and Microsoft indie live arcade/[email protected] (no dev kit, no hardware access).

 

Having two different programs is a pretty old concept, I think anyway and would require a bit of extra work, Nintendo has been 100% open to indie/hobbyist for the past 5ish years.

I'd say give the hobbyist access to the high level script engines (no hardware access) and the pro's the NDK (similar to xbox's two dev programs)... but these days most "gamedev's" wouldn't know what NDK is, let alone program it.. which is sad :/

Edited by gwald

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Tommy, What was your original train of thought when you bought the INTV brand in the first place? I was really curious of that. Thanks for your time.

 

 

I've loved Intellivision with all my heart since Christmas of 1980. I haven't stopped playing the console in 40 years. I saw a huge gaping hole in the video game industry which sees video games becoming too isolating and family & friends not getting together anymore to play (like we did when I was growing up). I approached Steve Roney (and Emily & Bill) after the passing of our good friend Keith Robinson (to whom we spoke about getting me involved with Intellivision for a few years). I told them my vision and how I was going to do it and they all agreed it was a fantastic idea... and Intellivision Entertainment was born. :)

Edited by Tommy Tallarico
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I'm just looking forward to a new console I can easily play that doesn't have overly complicated and dramatic games and are just simple and fun...like the 80s were.

 

Best,

 

JR

 

Absolutely!! I'll be delivering on that BIG TIME!!! :)

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