2019/7/24: Atari 2600: Dragster, Alien's Return (Europe)

Let me know what you think about my reviews.
User avatar
VideoGameCritic
Site Admin
Posts: 12861
Joined: April 1st, 2015, 7:23 pm

2019/7/24: Atari 2600: Dragster, Alien's Return (Europe)

Postby VideoGameCritic » July 24th, 2019, 9:33 pm

Everybody loves new Atari 2600 reviews, am I right?

Dragster is a re-review, with the original being a very slight version written 20 years ago. The grade changed from C to C-, but don't get the impression I don't have love for this oldie. It's just very short.

Alien's Return is an obscure import I reviewed on my Harmony Cart (it was translated to NTSC at some point).

Let's see some feedback.

User avatar
Retro STrife
Posts: 1246
Joined: August 3rd, 2015, 7:40 pm

Re: 2019/7/24: Atari 2600: Dragster, Alien's Return (Europe)

Postby Retro STrife » July 25th, 2019, 10:10 am

Two nice reviews. Dragster is a fun read - loved the line about the reset button being the primary button to play the game! Meanwhile, Alien's Return is a review I've been looking forward to for a long time. I own the PAL cartridge, but it doesn't work well on my NTSC systems and TVs, so I was very curious if I was missing out. But looks like I'll survive if I never get to play it.

With Alien's Return though, the game itself is secondary when compared to the legendary box art and the E.T. connection. Alien's Return is very obscure and no one thinks it's a good game -- yet, it still interests collectors enough to sell in the $15-$25 range when it pops up on ebay. The main draw is the fact that it was released with amazingly weird cover art in most regions and, in a few regions, even went by the name "E.T. Go Home", suggesting that it was connected to movie. For collectors of obscure games, it's one of the more fun games to own on the Atari 2600, just for the laughs.

There's some good discussion about the game on the forum here in this prior thread: https://videogamecritic.com/forums/view ... 61&t=17545

And here's the "E.T. Go Home" cover art:
Image

One point I made in that prior thread that I can't help but say again:
"Has there ever been better cover art than that fake ET game? I'm being genuinely honest that it's my favorite cover art of all time, and the only reason I bought the game a few years ago. I mean, I know it's not beautiful like some other Atari cover art, but it's so ridiculous that it's absolutely captivating. I can't look away. Here's an E.T. lookalike, leading a colorful ragtag band of animated objects, including a piece of toast that is way too happy, all topped off with that amazing nonsensical 'E.T. go come' banner. It's the greatest thing I've ever seen in my life."

Anyway.... the point of all this rambling is to say: the cover art and E.T. connection makes the game a lot more interesting and is probably the most significant part of it to gamers, so much so that I think it would be cool to see some mention of it in the review (and maybe even a photo of the cover art). The review isn't quite the same without it.

MSR1701
Posts: 102
Joined: April 29th, 2019, 7:53 am

Re: 2019/7/24: Atari 2600: Dragster, Alien's Return (Europe)

Postby MSR1701 » July 25th, 2019, 12:44 pm

Funny about the ET connection and the Pac-Man maze style; I was reading an article in Retro Gamer on the development of the (infamous) Atari ET game where the programmer was showing the prototype to Steven Spielberg, the latter asking why it wasn't a Pac-Man style game. (the Programmer told him that because of how Bold ET the movie was, it deserved a Bold game that was not derivative.)

Fun little bit of history.

Voor
Posts: 797
Joined: April 14th, 2015, 8:08 pm

Re: 2019/7/24: Atari 2600: Dragster, Alien's Return (Europe)

Postby Voor » July 25th, 2019, 6:06 pm

Dragster has a fascinating speedrunning/world record history shrouded in controversy. Which is hilarious for a 7 second game. Lol. Check out this video

https://youtu.be/9vuVYo4TXns

User avatar
VideoGameCritic
Site Admin
Posts: 12861
Joined: April 1st, 2015, 7:23 pm

Re: 2019/7/24: Atari 2600: Dragster, Alien's Return (Europe)

Postby VideoGameCritic » July 25th, 2019, 6:52 pm

Dragster has inspired me to create a "short game" icon, probably in the form of a stopwatch.
Unfortunately I'm no artist so I don't know how to make one.
If anybody can provide me with a 32x32 image that looks good on a black background, I'd appreciate it!

crimefighter
Posts: 59
Joined: April 18th, 2015, 12:08 pm

Re: 2019/7/24: Atari 2600: Dragster, Alien's Return (Europe)

Postby crimefighter » July 25th, 2019, 7:03 pm

Here ya go.
stopwatch.png
stopwatch.png (2.2 KiB) Viewed 343 times

User avatar
VideoGameCritic
Site Admin
Posts: 12861
Joined: April 1st, 2015, 7:23 pm

Re: 2019/7/24: Atari 2600: Dragster, Alien's Return (Europe)

Postby VideoGameCritic » July 25th, 2019, 7:22 pm

Thanks man! If anyone can tweak this to make the buttons on the edges more visible that would be great!

User avatar
VideoGameCritic
Site Admin
Posts: 12861
Joined: April 1st, 2015, 7:23 pm

Re: 2019/7/24: Atari 2600: Dragster, Alien's Return (Europe)

Postby VideoGameCritic » July 25th, 2019, 7:26 pm

So I went ahead and added TWO new icons to the Dragster review - one for "short game" and one for "two-player split screen".

I'll start another thread in the general area so we can talk about polishing these up and applying them to other games.

crimefighter
Posts: 59
Joined: April 18th, 2015, 12:08 pm

Re: 2019/7/24: Atari 2600: Dragster, Alien's Return (Europe)

Postby crimefighter » July 25th, 2019, 9:56 pm

stopwatch.png
stopwatch.png (2.13 KiB) Viewed 317 times
There.

mbd36
Posts: 275
Joined: April 18th, 2015, 10:32 am

Re: 2019/7/24: Atari 2600: Dragster, Alien's Return (Europe)

Postby mbd36 » July 27th, 2019, 3:11 pm

Voor wrote:Dragster has a fascinating speedrunning/world record history shrouded in controversy. Which is hilarious for a 7 second game. Lol. Check out this video

https://youtu.be/9vuVYo4TXns


I was about to say. The speedrunning controversy over this game is probably more interesting than the game itself.


Return to “Review Feedback”