2013/11/13: Fairchild Channel F: Alien Invasion, Galactic Space Wars, Tic-Tac-Toe/Shooting Gallery/Doodle

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2013/11/13: Fairchild Channel F: Alien Invasion, Galactic Space Wars, Tic-Tac-Toe/Shooting Gallery/Doodle

Postby VideoGameCritic » November 13th, 2013, 7:57 pm

You guys are in for a treat.  Not only did I post three spanking new Fairchild Channel F reviews, but I posted a console review as well!  Comments are welcome.

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2013/11/13: Fairchild Channel F: Alien Invasion, Galactic Space Wars, Tic-Tac-Toe/Shooting Gallery/Doodle

Postby scotland171 » November 13th, 2013, 8:58 pm

Fairchild review...Dave, you are the man. 

Going to put on some "Play that funky music" or some Laverne and Shirley (schlemiel, schlimazel, Hasenpfeffer Incorporated). Pardon the long reply, but hitting the reviews one by one.

Since you do compare Genesis and SNES, it seems reasonable to compare the Odyssey 2 to the Fairchild.  Just for the record, I am on Team Odyssey 2, although several other 2nd gen consoles get more play time (mostly the 2600 library), and I do not own a Fairchild.

For Alien Invasion, I am chagrined it got a vastly better rating than the Odyssey 2's Alien Invaders Plus.  Sad face.  Of course, the game was done in 1981, which is a bit later than I would have thought, and the O2 game looks like a whole other generation from the Fairchild, but you gigged the O2 for it.  Also, the O2 game is challenging, but this one you sounded bored with.  Which aliens are 'large', cause they all look jumbo size.  And did you just compare the game (even in a minor feature) to Sonic the Hedgehog!  Dude...first Sonic is buddy buddy with arch enemy Mario, now you kick him when he is down by comparing his background to a Fairchild game.   Hang your head in shame, Sonic.

Galactic Space Wars got a slightly higher score than the Odyssey 2's Cosmic Conflict.  Now I admit that Cosmic Conflict lacks challenge, but graphically its in another universe of quality to Galactic Space Wars. And Cosmic Conflict came out well before Galactic Space Wars (and avoided having the words, "Star" "Wars" or "Space" in its title like legions of other games of the age). It does seem like Galactic Space Wars has a better scoring system with the enemy getting points too.  Also, although we had this in the forums before, the lunar lander 'minigame' is like a multicart, and I would have liked it to have a separate score, screenshot and review (to compare to the abysmal 1 dimensional Odyssey 2 Out of this World game.  I love my Odyssey, but man, they could make some stinkers)

For the Tic Tac Toe game, I would rather have seen a screenshot and more text given to the shooting gallery game.  Since Pong era games had decent light gun games with a simple moving white spot, this sounds intriguing -- like a horizontal breakout game trying to hit a moving target?  Sounds neat. Also there is a typo when you get to describing the doodle part "It's a pointless in 2013" should be "While pointless in 2013, during the ...".  I don't think its pointless even now, just...pedestrian, mundane, dull, or trivial, but not pointless as it does demonstrate what could be done back when Americans thought The Love Boat was a really great idea.

For the console review, that it beat the 2600 to market is pretty important.  Without this competition, Bushnell may not have sold to Warner for capital, although there was the Odyssey 2 and the Coleco Telstar Arcade and its triangular ROM cartridge (what ever happened to that idea). In the brief on the home page, you say it had 'programmable ROM cartridges' which can be misleading - they are not EPROM carts. I think you were tough on giving it just a C for console design.  For the time, any one of the Brady Bunch would have thought it was far out, with all that wood grain and smoky plastic.  For the unique controllers, you write they are 8 way (better than Atari!) and that they turn slightly left and right.  I am confused here; do you mean they tilt?  All in all, you seem to rate the console as pretty much on par with the Odyssey 2...another sad face.  I don't own a Fairchild, but I really hope that the Odyssey 2 has a much better library, and better manuals, and KC Munchkin as a renegade mascot.




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2013/11/13: Fairchild Channel F: Alien Invasion, Galactic Space Wars, Tic-Tac-Toe/Shooting Gallery/Doodle

Postby Rev1 » November 13th, 2013, 11:55 pm

I love console reviews. This one was solid. The controls on this console look really interesting and even though the console itself looks like something I wouldn't like, the controllers look highly original and fun to use. I think it is safe to say why I have never seen a single Fairchild F game in a used game shop. The game reviews were also solid. I found the Tic Tac Toe game hilarious. I don't understand how controls for that game should have been so difficult, but I guess it was late 70's. Good reviews.

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2013/11/13: Fairchild Channel F: Alien Invasion, Galactic Space Wars, Tic-Tac-Toe/Shooting Gallery/Doodle

Postby Sut1 » November 14th, 2013, 5:39 am

I'm sure Alien Invasion has a variation in which you can fire 2 bullets ? Will have to check when I get home.
Also regarding Tic-Tac-Toe I'm surprised you didn't mention the insult you get should you lose 'You lose turkey' is probably the first example of a video game mocking the player.

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2013/11/13: Fairchild Channel F: Alien Invasion, Galactic Space Wars, Tic-Tac-Toe/Shooting Gallery/Doodle

Postby crimefighter1 » November 14th, 2013, 10:04 pm

Alien Invasion should have a money bag - this one was only available by mail when it was sold and it was the last commercially released Channel F game.

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2013/11/13: Fairchild Channel F: Alien Invasion, Galactic Space Wars, Tic-Tac-Toe/Shooting Gallery/Doodle

Postby VideoGameCritic » November 14th, 2013, 11:45 pm

[QUOTE=crimefighter]Alien Invasion should have a money bag - this one was only available by mail when it was sold and it was the last commercially released Channel F game.[/QUOTE]

Thanks for informing me about this!  I had no idea since I'm using a multicart.  I will add the icon.  

-VGC

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2013/11/13: Fairchild Channel F: Alien Invasion, Galactic Space Wars, Tic-Tac-Toe/Shooting Gallery/Doodle

Postby crimefighter1 » November 15th, 2013, 11:27 pm

Though the "least rare" is an R4 for the Channel F - AI is an R8, if you get around to Casino Poker that also is an expensive R8 title that was mail-order only.

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2013/11/13: Fairchild Channel F: Alien Invasion, Galactic Space Wars, Tic-Tac-Toe/Shooting Gallery/Doodle

Postby e5frog1 » November 16th, 2013, 2:32 am

Hi there.
Publisher of Pac-Man (and co-programmer) as well as Multi-Cart here.


Nice to see people interested in the system.
I'm not sure dear Mr. Videogamecritic have been reading the instructions which are available at my site http://channelf.se
There's instructions in ascii for all American carts from 1-26 and then some.
http://channelf.se/gallery/index.html

Click R for full instructions, r for short label instructions.

IMHO a lot of the Channel F games aren't playable unless you know how to set up the controls and you have a back story to start you imagination where a blue block turns into a cat etc...

Galactic Space Wars:
Aliens don't pop up occasionally by themselves, they show when you have reached their coordinates.
There's no yellow in the Channel F palette, with NTSC the "light" green background color may look yellowish if tint is setup wrong.

Alien Invasion:
There actually is an easter egg in this, Brad Reid who programmed it displays REID - SELTH on screen (which can be seen on the Multi-Cart box back - as soon as I get all shipped). Then there's also a duck (well, a clump of red pixels that with some imagination can be interpreted as a duck) instead of the triangular looking saucer. I imagine most things were intentionally changed not to be too close to the original game. Sean Riddle scanned through this game very thoroughly after Brad Reid mentioned to me there were Easter Eggs in his games (also #20, Video Whizball which was the result after a "game idea" contest).

"In Alien Invasion, start game #5 and let a blue guy die without firing any shots. With the green guy, shoot just the lowest enemy in each column. Then let all the remaining green and blue guys die without firing any more shots. Now start another game 5 and the author's name will appear at the top of the screen. Let the blue guy die without firing any shots. Play the green guy, and check out the mystery UFO that randomly flies over."

I'm guessing audio was kept limited to support also the system I although the system II machines were more capable, in Hangman there's at least some sound options, something that could have been used on other games as well.

Shooter games like this one are probably easier to play with the Jet-Stick (Called Video Command in the Atari version).



Finally, you should have your Multi-Cart upgraded to get the full Pac-Man with intermissions.


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2013/11/13: Fairchild Channel F: Alien Invasion, Galactic Space Wars, Tic-Tac-Toe/Shooting Gallery/Doodle

Postby Sut1 » November 16th, 2013, 6:18 am

Good to see you here Fredric.

When is the new multi-cart going to be available as I would be interested ?


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