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:
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.