One day an airship came to visit Zippy's happy, little, peaceful land. Curious, Zippy took a peak inside and was overwhelmed with all sorts of gadgets and things that he had never seen before. After a long while of exploring, Zippy found a nice place inside to take a nap. After his nap, he left the ship but found that he was in a whole other land! The ship must have taken off to this new place while he was sleeping. But before he could think of what to do to get back to his home, he noticed someone exiting the ship, riding a smaller air vehicle. This mustached man looked strange to him, but his appearance was the least of Zippy's worries as he noticed that on the vehicle were the five power gems from his home! He must have stolen them! Those gems can be dangerous in the wrong hands! Now it's up to Zippy to get them back and return them to their rightful place.
Run around at high speed with Zippy the Porcupine through 16 different stages! Collect the rings and pop the enemies with your spin jump. Getting hurt by an enemy will cause you to lose all your rings, but you can get some of them back popping the same one. Find the bonuses as you move along, including the springboard at the top of the levels that will take you to a bonus ring collection stage. Collecting 100 rings will earn you an extra life. Finish a level by flipping the sign by running by it at the end of a stage.
Zippy the Porcupine features 16 levels in 4 different zones, an overworld selection map, 5 individual boss battles, gem collecting, and ending sequences, all packed into a 64K cartridge!
Zippy the Porcupine includes 64K game cartridge and sixteen-page, full-color manual. Zippy the Porcupine is available in NTSC and PAL60 television formats, please specify above.
Get a Zippy the Porcupine Box!
If you'd like a boxed copy of Zippy the Porcupine, please select "Box Upgrade: Yes" at the top of the page before adding Zippy the Porcupine to your cart. Our boxes are professionally printed and include a box insert to hold your Zippy the Porcupine cartridge in place. We want you to play our games, so we have not sealed or shrinkwrapped the boxes in any way, allowing you easy access to the game cartridge and manual.
These boxes are the same size as boxes Atari produced for their games "back in the day". They look great sitting on a shelf with your other boxed homebrew games, or alongside games from the classic Atari library. We only have a limited number of boxes for each game, and there is no guarantee they will become available again once our supplies are exhausted. Click on the images to the right to see larger photos of the box.
|Number of Players||1|
|Artwork and Manual||Chris Spry|
Zippy The Porcupine, is platformer that borrows heavily from the Sonic the Hedgehog franchise. With a game such as this you're likely coming from one of two places- you're either a person who has played the original Sonic the Hedgehog game from Sega and wonder how it translates into an Atari 2600 game, or you're a person who has yet to be exposed to the franchise but want the opportunity for your first go to be on the 2600. Regardless of where you're coming from, Zippy proves to be an entertaining game for both parties as it pays homage to Sonic while being an enjoyable game to play.
The main story sees Professor Dodo stealing 5 gems from Zippy's home, and it's up to Zippy to traverse through various environments to retrieve them. Gameplay wise the controls are responsive and given that it's played just one button along with a directional pad/joystick, the programmer (Chris Spry) has managed to successfully incorporate various actions for Zippy to perform within the limited control scheme.
Due to the limited capabilities of the Atari 2600, Chris has exceeded expectations with not only the content he has managed to incorporate, but with his ingenuity. The largest official 2600 cartridge to be released had 32kb of built in ram. Zippy on the other hand, is the first game to double that to 64kb. By increasing the cartridge size, Zippy feels and plays like a game you would otherwise find on more advanced consoles. For instance, the game comes with 4 Zones (levels) to explore, each containing 4 stages. Each Zone has its own theme music, unique enemies to avoid/defeat, items to pick up and secret/bonus stages to find.
What's also a nice touch is the fact that you'll almost never play the same game twice- whenever you start a new game, Zippy has to initially explore a Zone based on Dodo's location on an Overworld Selection Map. So in one instance, Dodo may be hovering over 'Hill Zone' and thus your starting point is there. If it's Game Over and you restart the game or reset your Atari however, Mr. Dodo will likely be found hovering over an alternate Zone on the map, thus changing your starting point. This randomness ensures some variety in the sequence of locations you explore, which is a welcome addition.
Graphically, the characters and backgrounds are well represented and you're able to identify what things are on screen. Zippy even has an 'impatient toe tap' animation when he's not being moved by the player. The music, is taken from first Sonic game and has been faithfully recreated to fit the needs of the Atari 2600.
The game isn't perfect however, as there are minor issues with bugs here and there. A couple times I've had my character stuck/frozen within elements of the background, unable to move or free him unless the game is restarted. There's also been instances when item pickups are on screen but if you walk away until its no longer in view then return to its location, they're no longer there. These are minor issues since they don't happen frequently, but they are issues nonetheless.
Overall, there is a lot to like about this game and the player will spend good amount of time with this title. The level design ensures a fun and challenging playthrough, the graphics and music will impress anyone who's played an Atari 2600 game before, and the gameplay is reminiscent of Sonic The Hedgehog, so fans of the franchise will feel right at home. For those whom have never played a Sonic title, Zippy as a standalone game is a fantastic platformer that brings memorable content to a system that one would never expect to see. Spry has done a wonderful job with every aspect of the game including the manual which is professionally done and worth reading. This is a recommended purchase to anyone that wants a solid, enjoyable title to play on their 2600 or Atari 7800 (since the latter is backwards compatible). I look forward to Spry's future projects, as he's shown himself to be a very capable game designer.
My initial reaction to this was similar to how I initially regarded Princess Rescue. Sure it is amazing somebody would even attempt the seemingly impossible task of porting a game from a much more technologically advanced console to the 2600, but does the finished product actually stand on its own? I may like Princess Rescue, but only so much as I regard it as a noble attempt to honor a completely unrelated game for the NES.
So why did I buy a cart of the finished Zippy? The reason is simple: the game is so large that, even if a ROM of the complete game sees release, I won't be able to play it on my Harmony cart.
And, boy, am I glad I did.
The finished Zippy is nothing short of amazing. As I said before, I may not be a fan of a certain Sega game but I like how Zippy plays better. The controls turn out to be pretty intuitive even though you are restricted to one button. The worlds (albeit blocky) are vast and each has many surprises.
I have so far made it to all four of the initial boss levels but have yet to beat one. And each of those is surprisingly unique from the others. I may not have beaten a boss yet, but I keep coming back for more and have played this cart almost exclusively since it arrived.
And if that it isn't high praise, I don't know what is. A must buy.