Bentley Bear's Crystal Quest (POKEY Included) - Atari 7800



TV Type:  NTSC        PAL      


thumb_1103_7800_CrystalQuest_All_thumb.jpgBentley Bear defeated Berthilda within her Crystal Castle realm, but she vowed to get her revenge on Bentley. After nearly 30 years of planning and scheming, Berthilda was able to steal the five 'Crystals Of Life' that kept the balance of good and evil in check. Now it is up to Bentley to retrieve those jewels and restore the balance of power to the world.

Berthilda has hidden all five Crystals in separate parts of the world and guards them fiercely. As Bentley, you will run into many of your old foes from the Castle days... as well as some new ones. Navigate unforgiving terrain from at least five different environments in your relentless Quest to find the Crystals and defeat Berthilda once and for all.


Your goal in Bentley Bear's Crystal Quest is to retrieve all five Crystals that Berthilda has stolen while avoiding all of the enemies, hazards, and pitfalls that await you in your quest. You begin the game with three turns, and you can earn more along the way. You also have an energy meter, which depletes as you work your way through each level. You lose a life if an enemy touches you, you fall in a well (or off the screen), or if your energy level runs out before you reach the end of a level.

These are the enemies you will encounter in your quest to retrieve your precious jewels. Some of them you will remember from your first encounter, and some are new disciples of Berthilda. These include the Nasty Trees, Skeletons, Gem Eaters, Bee Swarm, Zombie, Coyote, Ghost, Floating Head, and more! Eventually you will have to combat Berthilda herself!

Along the way, you will find objects that will cause harm to Bentley and should avoid them as they reduce Bentley’s energy level by a significant amount, including fire, rocks, Berthilda's Cauldron, and spikes. Fortunately, you'll also encounter many helpful items on your quest, such as white, red, and green jewels, honey pots, and magic hats (which give you temporary invincibility!)

Bentley Bear's Crystal Quest Screenshot Bentley Bear's Crystal Quest Screenshot
Bentley Bear's Crystal Quest Screenshot Bentley Bear's Crystal Quest Screenshot
Bentley Bear's Crystal Quest Screenshot Bentley Bear's Crystal Quest Screenshot


  • Large 144K game!
  • On-board Atari POKEY chip for sound effects and music
  • Explore over 40 worlds!
  • Continue option... but use it wisely!
  • Compatible with ProLines or original CX-40 joysticks
  • Hidden surprises!


Bentley Bear's Crystal Quest uses an on-board Atari POKEY chip for sound effects and music. Unfortunately, the POKEY is a custom chip produced by Atari. This means that the only POKEY chips in existence are those that were manufactured for Atari 8-bit computers (400/800, 800XL, 130XE, etc.), the Atari 5200, certain Atari arcade games, and the two Atari 7800 games Ballblazer and Commando. There are very few sources of new, unused POKEY chips. Many are removed from Ballblazer carts, as they are relatively common. These chips have not been produced in 30 years!

This means that we do not have many POKEY chips. The price of the game reflects the additional expense in adding a POKEY chip to the game (which often requires desoldering them from an existing board). If this item is out of stock (you cannot add it to your shopping cart), we have an alternate option where you can send us a POKEY chip or Ballblazer cart and still obtain a copy of Bentley Bear's Crystal Quest.

Atari POKEY Chip

Additional Information

Bentley Bear's Crystal Quest includes a box, game cartridge, and a full-color, 8-page manual. Bentley Bear's Crystal Quest is available in NTSC and PAL television formats. Please choose above (if you don't make a selection, you will receive the NTSC version by default).

Number of Players 1
Controller Joystick Controller
Cartridge Size 144K
Code and Design Bob DeCrescenzo

Funkmaster V on 12/24/2017 02:22pm
I received this "gem" (see what I did there) a few days before Christmas. and this present proved to be better than both frankincense and myrrh. (Gold is a tough gift to beat).

I'm not a huge platformer fan. Alex Kidd, Rayman, Bonk, Scrapyard Dog, Sonic, and even the seminal Super Mario Brothers all struggle to keep my attention. BUT, I am an Atari 7800 fan, and I can recognize that this game is probably the most polished, complete, largest, and overall highest quality title on the system.

Let's face it. when larger 7800 games near their end boss scenes, graphic quality takes a nosedive. Not the case here. Also, this game has a bevy of secret warps, levels, new monsters and a moderately confusing weapon upgrade system. The boss fights are interesting, the music is mainly catchy old nurse rhyme and public domain tunes, but they sound great, and the controls are interesting but fairly smooth. Most importantly for me: The game is challenging but not cheap.

I do feel like the game is somewhat derivative, but its a master piece platformer in it's own right. I think the idea was "Look what could have been done in 1986". Prettier than Scrapyard Dog, touting more firepower than Super Mario, oozing more charm than Alex Kidd. Bentley Bear, Atari's default hero-mascot, has found himself in a damn good game that I wish 1000's more could enjoy.
Trevor B. on 08/06/2017 12:12pm
I feel fortunate I was able to get the boxed set the day it was first posted here on AtariAge. If only there were more games like this back in the day, the 7800 would have been more popular.

There's nothing I can say that hasn't been already stated here. The gameplay is solid, the graphics are great, the music is great, and it really shows the 7800's capability to keep up with platformer games.

This is a nice spin on the Bentley Bear world, turning the old isometic gameplay into a traditional platformer while maintaining the charm and the characters from the original game. This is certainly a must have.

It is a shame that a Ballblazer cart must be sacrificed and all but I have two of them. This is definitely worth the price of admission.
Tony Marra on 07/28/2017 04:57am
When you hear "Homebrew" what type of game do you normally envision? A tweaked/improved version of an existing game perhaps, or, a port of a game that was never originally released for a system.

As cool as they are, Rarely Does a Homebrew completely redefine the system itself. Bently Bear does just that, transforms the 7800 from the fantastic arcade at home console to a full fledged power house.

Seeing a wonderfully in depth Platformer, scroll by on my 7800, is simply magical. This is a must own for any owner of the 7800.

To see "what could have been" then, come to life today, is a credit, not only to the 7800, but to video game artists, creators, and fans across all systems and eras.
Andrew Reierson on 07/26/2017 08:04pm
Not much I can say that hasn't already been said. It's too bad the CX78 button placement is a little awkward for this game. An Eddladdin Seagull adapter Genesis controller will do the trick, however. The years of anticipation were worth it. I have some minor gripes, but they aren't anything that takes away from my enjoyment of the game. Crystal Quest is amazing! Now, if only it were possible to replace every copy of Scrapyard Dog out there with a copy of Crystal Quest, the world would be a much better place. Thanks to Bob and AtariAge for making this game happen!
Trebor on 07/26/2017 02:06pm
It's one thing to lay claim of what a console is capable of or how good a game can be for the system. It is quite another to achieve what is one of the greatest games ever to be released on the system, for it to be an original, and to rival some of the best platformers of its contemporaries.

Bentley Bear's Crystal Quest is that game. For those who have never played or never even seen the game, the best reference point is to imagine a cross between Super Mario Bros. and Wonder Boy/Hudson Soft's Adventure Island.

Player gets to choose whether the wish to use a compatible 2600 VCS Controller for one button utilization (Jump managed by pressing up), or the standard two button functionality. One button serves as jump the other for Run and Shoot. Button mappings are swappable and all controller configuration option settings are managed by the difficulty switches in front of the console.

The game starts with Bentley leaving his cave venturing into the woods and onto afterward a plethora of other landscapes. Ice stage, water stages, underground, caverns, castles, and more are a part of the various traversed areas.

Beautifully parallax scrolling is seen often in the game. Bentley as well as all other characters in the game is well designed and defined. Obvious nods to the arcade game Crystal Castles is seen throughout. Most important controls are tight and accurate. Bentley move fluidly and jump management is easy to control. Shooting gems is also smooth and overall physics are handled beautifully.

The game is truly something to relish in as there will be no flying through this game, no speed runs easily achieved as enemy pattern and placement is not always the same all the time. So while there may not necessarily be a fixed pattern regarding enemy encounter, what there is in place is different attack (and in some cases defense) patterns to be learned and mastered to best and easiest defeat enemies.

There are ample energy boost courtesy of honey pots, and different jewels that will determine hit strength and number of point damage. The manual goes into details, but there needs to be some thought at times regarding when and even if a certain jewel should be picked up and there is a chance Bentley could actually decrease his hit power depending on previous jewels acquired.

The music is quite excellent. What was originally intended to be the norm for many Atari 7800 games to include a sound chip within the cart, but was never really pursued besides two titles from the original line (Commando and Ballblazer), has been brought to fruition here with POKEY. What may be familiar and then again perhaps not so familiar tunes wonderfully composed and marvelously presented.

There are hidden warps, free lives, and even a secret level. While the game can be completed in about an hour, a substantially less than that utilizing the various warps, others may spend a considerable longer time, especially newcomers.

The game is indeed challenging at spots, but in no capacity unfair. It provides unlimited continues in addition to the aforementioned warps and free lives scattered in spots throughout the game. A true sense of accomplishment after each boss is defeated at the end of each level in part due to each subsequent encounter the Witch is more formidable than the last time. A total of 40 standard rounds plus an additional hidden level provide a total of 48 rounds to be uncovered and conquered.

What seemed like a dream years ago, has become a reality, having one of the finest games to really help demonstrate what the 7800 is capable of it is platforming gaming excellence. The challenge is inviting, and the game magnificently executed. This is not only the game to play it is the game to own. Bentley Bear's Crystal Quest cannot be recommended enough, it's fantastic.
Lucas "Mr. Beefy" Morris on 07/17/2017 12:31pm
Bentley Bear is a breath of fresh air on the 7800. Instead of being an arcade port, it is an original platformer. Bentley in my opinion is comparable to Hudson%u2019s Adventure Island.

Gameplay: I love the game play of BBCQ. It is an awesome platformer! Levels are designed well to provide both fluidity through levels as well as difficulty. Some might find the game play difficult, but it is overly fair. There are no crazy blind jumps and level design gives you opportunities for power-ups to make it easier to get through the levels with enemies that require more than one hit. If platformers are not your thing this game is nice in that you have unlimited continues, but the more you use the less likely you are to get a point bonus at the end of the game. This makes BBCQ interesting in comparison to other platformers, in that you are not only trying to beat the game but it encourages you to push yourself for a higher score.

Sound: This is a POKEY game and the sound is great. There are a bunch of catchy tunes that I found myself humming to during the game and even after I was done playing for the day. The music certainly is fitting for the game.

Graphics: Level designs are great. Each of the worlds look and feel different. Colors are good. The music and level design go well together and make each world charming in its own way. Bentley and all the baddies look great. They were designed well and never once did I find myself disliking any of the designs.

Other Thoughts: About the only %u2018complaint%u2019 I could have against the game is really more a complaint about the limitations of 7800 controllers. This game has a two button option (one to jump, one to shoot/run) and a single button option (button shoot/run, up on joystick jumps). I used the two buttoned Euro pad as I did not find the 7800 joysticks very easy to use. Even the Euro pads provided to be cramp inducing as the run and jump buttons are not as nicely placed as say an NES controller. I%u2019m not sure how much it would change the gameplay, but maybe the 7800 joystick limitations might not matter as much if Bentley was in a constant running state

Playing BBCQ is a blast. It even has many secrets to discover. This made me go back and want to discover everything after one play through. You should be able to complete the game in little over an hour, if you play well. We are lucky to now be able to play a game like this, and it is kind of sad that similar games were not made for the 7800 back in the day. It would have been games like this that could have saved the 7800. I believe this is a must have for the 7800 and hope that we possibly see a sequel in the future.
Shawn on 07/16/2017 04:10pm
The best platformer the 7800 has ever seen.

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