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The Atari 2600 Game By Game Podcast

Video Games

The 2600 Game By Game Podcast will delve into the history, gameplay, and personal stories of every game made for the Atari 2600.


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The 2600 Game By Game Podcast will delve into the history, gameplay, and personal stories of every game made for the Atari 2600.




Pitfall II by Activision

AB-035, Pitfall II: The Lost Caverns!  1 Happy New Year! If I can still say that when it's almost Groundhog Day. I hit a snag right out of the gate, which seems to be typical now. But, Pitfall II by Activision is finally available, and it's a doozy. The part about the game and its history etc. is twice as long as it usually is, I had a lot of fun researching this game. And of course, playing it. It's one of my favorites. I hope that you enjoy the episode. Coming up next is the super rare game Gamma Attack, by a tiny company called Gammation. Not as much history on this one, but what I've seen so far is very interesting. if you have any thoughts on this game, or even if you have a copy, I would love to hear about it. Please send them to me at by February 7th. Thanks so much for your patience, and thank you as always for listening. Pitfall 2 on Random Terrain Pitfall 2 on Atari Protos David Crane interview by Scott Stilphen DPC Chip patent Explanation of DPC chip by David Crane on Atari Compendium Atari Compendium article about "Super Chips," including the DPC chip UK Activision Fun Club Newsletter Summer 1984 from Atari Compendium Pitfall 2 patch Pitfall 2 patch accompanying letter Get MattBuc's repro Pitfall 2 patch here! Pitfall! Masked Menace Mess Pitfall! Raiders of the Lost Shark Pitfall 2 The Lost Caverns on KLOV Pitfall 2 Arcade playthrough by Old Classic Retrogaming Super Pitfall 30th Anniversary Edition NES patch Chris and Adam's Pitfall articles on Orphaned Games


Mean Santa by Tim Duarte and John K Harvey

Boy oh boy, it's been a rough year. This episode featuring Mean Santa by Tim Duarte and John K. Harvey almost didn't come out for Christmas. I am truly very sorry about how this year has gone, I need to change a lot of behaviors in the coming year. Regardless of what holiday (if any) you celebrate, I hope it is was a joyous and peaceful time. I am grateful to and for all of you and I do not deserve you. I will see you in 2023 where we will start the year with Pitfall II by Activision. Thank you for listening. The Mean Santa Journey on Experienca Odyssey ROM and Source Code for Free on Atari Age 2600 Connection Issue 100 thread 2600 Connection Mean Santa Sales Announcement on the Wayback Machine Original YouTube video of game footage, posted August 10 2009 Tim Duarte's web page John K. Harvey's web page via Wayback Machine Order Mean Santa from Tim Duarte Willie! plays Mean Santa on the Odyssey 2


Merry Christmas 2022

It's been a bad year for me and podcasting, I'm sorry I haven't put that much out this year. I also have not been looking forward to Christmas, but today with the help of a friend, I got a boost of Christmas spirit! I'm going to try and extend it through next year the best I can. Thank you for sticking with me for so long. I love you all and I wish you the happiest of holiday seasons. Thank you for listening 💗💚


Gauntlet by Answer Software

Welcome to the show! In this episode I will tell you what I know about Gauntlet by Answer Software. Other than how to play, it's not much; although I am very confident in telling you that this is NOT a port of the Atari arcade game Gauntlet. I can also tell you that despite what you read on the internet, the arcade Gauntlet was partially inspired by the 8 bit computer game Dandy, written by John Palevich. It was not inspired by Atari's console game Dark Chambers, which came out 3 years after Gauntlet. Dark Chambers was also inspired by Dandy. With that pedantry out of the way, I do hope you enjoy the episode. Coming up next is the last game for the year, Mean Santa, a homebrew game designed by Tim Duarte (founder of the 2600 Connection newsletter), and programmed by John K Harvey. The rom has been released for free, and you can get it here if you'd like to try it out. If you'd like to send feedback containing your thoughts on the game and not how to play it, which I cover every episode, please send them to me at by November 28th. I will post an updated list of upcoming games to your right (if you're not on a phone) very soon. To all who celebrate American Thanksgiving, I wish you a safe and healthy-ish holiday. I am very thankful for all of you, and I thank you for listening. You can donate to my Extra Life campaign until December 31st! Gauntlet on Atari Age Gauntlet on Random Terrain Answer Software catalog on Atarimania April 1983 Video Game Update newsletter on Atari Compendium Al Backiel's writeup on the PGP-1 on Digital Press Gauntlet thread on Atari Age


Master Builder by Spectravideo

I am back this week to discuss a Spectravideo game, after 7 years! This game is called Master Builder, and I really hope you enjoy the episode. Coming up next will be Gauntlet by Answer Software. If you have thoughts on Gauntlet, you can send them to me at Please just tell me your thoughts, I'll take care of the rest. The last game for the year is Mean Santa by John Harvey and Tim Duarte. If you have feedback for Mean Santa, I'll need it by November 28th. Finally, if you have any video game Christmas memories (it doesn't need to be Atari 2600, but please keep it to video games), I will be doing another Christmas show this year, provided I get enough submissions. Please get those to me by December 16th. Tune in to YouTube this weekend at 8 pm on November 4 and 5 to watch me play games badly for Extra Life. I don't know why you would want to watch that, but I'm glad you do. Thank you as always for your kindness, and for listening. Donate to my Extra Life campaign here! Master Builder on Random Terrain Columbia Video Game Club thread on Atari Age Columbia Video Game Club magazines on Digital Press Ace Moon Gaming channel plays Master Builder, very well


Cookie Monster Munch by Atari

Long time no see! Today's episode is about the Atari and Children's Computer Workshop collaboration, Cookie Monster Munch. I loved Cookie Monster when I was a kid (I still do), and I also love cookies, but most cookies actually stay in my mouth, unlike some other monsters I could name. I hope that you enjoy the episode and that it was worth waiting for. Next up will be the very rare Master Builder by Spectravideo. Apparently my episodes covering Spectravideo games are also pretty rare. If you have feedback for Master Builder that does not include its history or how to play it, please send it along to by October 31st. On November 4th and 5th, I will once again be participating in Extra Life, to benefit the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Hopefully I will have my streaming ability together by then. If you would like to donate to the kids, please see the link below. Thank you once again for your patience, and for listening. Donate to my Extra Life campaign Cookie Monster Munch on Atari Protos Cookie Monster Munch on Random Terrain Gary Stark's web site Gary Stark's YouTube page UPI article on CMM by Kenneth Clark, Feb 1983 Sharon Lerner on MuppetWiki Joystick conversions of Cookie Monster Munch and Big Bird's Egg Catch by Omegamatrix


AVCStec Challenge by Simon Quernhorst and Paul Slocum

I say this too much, but I thank you for being patient with me as I navigate through my lovely depression. This long overdue episode features the homebrew game AVCStec Challenge by Simon Quernhorst and Paul Slocum. It's based on the very difficult (to me) Aztec Challenge by Paul Norman, for the Commodore 64. I hope that you enjoy the episode. Next up is Cookie Monster Munch by Atari and the Children's Computer Workshop. Please send any feedback on this or any previous game to by August 16th. Tell me your thoughts and/or memories of Cookie Monster Munch, I'll take care of the history and gameplay. Take care of yourselves and I thank you so much for listening. Simon Quernhorst's web site A-VCS-tec Challenge development page Announcement thread on Atari Age AA Title in Development page on Wayback Machine AA Project of the Month thread AA Late Development thread Secret screen on Atari Age Simon Quernhorst interview on Good Deal Games Paul Slocum's web site Tree Wave web site And/Or Gallery web site Buy the game on Packrat Video Games Buy the game on Atari Age Atari 50th: The Anniversary Celebration Atari Mania (the game) Yars Recharged Limited Run Adventure and Missile Command (both sold out) Atari 2600 Lego Set New Howard Scott Warshaw interview by W. Amirul Adlan


Frogs and Flies by M Network

On this episode we take a look at the M Network game Frogs and Flies, which was based on the Intellivision game Frog Bog. We also cover programmer extraordinaire Dave Rolfe for the first time, and we even read one of his interesting essays. I hope you enjoy it! Coming up next is A-VCS-tec Challenge, by Simon Quernhorst with music by Paul Slocum. If you would like to try this game out, you can get the rom at Simon's web page. Please send me your feedback for A-VCS-tec Challenge by May 30th, to Thanks so much for listening! Van Mai story on Video Game History Foundation Frogs and Flies on Random Terrain Frogs and Flies on Blue Sky Rangers Intellivision Frog Bog on Blue Sky Rangers Frogs by Gremlin on KLOV Willie! plays Frogs on Arcade USA Dave Rolfe's website on Wayback Machine Dave Rolfe interview by Valter Prette Dave Rolfe interview by Scott Stilphen Dave Rolfe interview by Michael Thomasson Star Fire on KLOV Fire One! on KLOV Kreepy Krawlers on KLOV Star Fire 2 prototype on KLOV


Laser Gates by Imagic

Hello my friends, thank you once again for your patience for this new episode featuring Laser Gates by Imagic. A fun time was had by almost all! Coming up next is Frogs and Flies by M Network. If you have any feedback for Frogs and Flies, please send it to by end of the day on May 17th. I should be able to get it out on time despite this episode being late. Upcoming games include A-VCS-tec Challenge by Simon Quernhorst and Paul Slocum; Cookie Monster Munch by Atari; Master Builder by Spectravideo, and Gauntlet by Answer Software. Thanks so much for listening! Atari XP preorders Limited Run Atari preorders (only 1000 of each will be made, I said 1500 in the show because I can no longer read) Laser Gates on Random Terrain Laser Gates (Innerspace) on Atari Protos Innerspace on Atarimania My email interview with Dan Oliver Is Laser Gates Inner Space? Atari Age thread Dan Oliver's Waterbug Design site on Wayback Machine Just Kidding Imagic segment, 1983 Laser Gates review by Phil Wiswell Jan 1 1984


Sesame Street Cartridges Contest Winners!

Hello my friends, I was not feeling well last night so I went back to bed. The Laser Gates episode won't be out today, but I wanted to let you know the winners of the contest that my buddy Richard so kindly sponsored. Please give a listen to see if you won a set of Sesame Street carts, and congrats to the winners. Thanks to everyone who entered, and I thank you all for listening.


Private Eye by Activision

In this episode I look at the Activision game Private Eye, by Bob Whitehead. I hadn't put any time into this game before, and I couldn't put enough time into it for the podcast, but I did enjoy it and hope to come back to it. Next up will be Laser Gates by Imagic. If you have feedback for the game that you'd like to hear on the show, please send it to by May 2nd. Thank you all very much for your kind words about my return, it means a lot to me. i appreciate you all hanging in there. and as always, thank you for listening. Sesame Street games contest! Private Eye on Random Terrain Interview with Bob Whitehead by Scott Stilphen Private Eye patch Rawson Stovall review Feb 10 1984 Michael Blanchet review Oct 24 1984 Private Eye maps by Stan on Electric Frankfurter


Oscar's Trash Race by Atari

Welcome back to the podcast everyone! I hope you all are well, and I very much appreciate all the kind words and patience. Today we start the 5 digit Atari part numbers with Oscar's Trash Race, a product of Atari and the Children's Computer Workshop, a tiny little division of Sesame Street. This is the first in a series, so there's lots to talk about. I hope that you enjoy it. Coming up in 2 weeks is Private Eye by Activision. If you have feedback for Private Eye that does not include the Hall and Oates song, please send it to me at by April 18th. Please make sure you listen to the end of the podcast for a very special Sesame Street game related contest, sponsored by friend of the podcast Richard Grounds. Thanks Richard! I'll post a separate entry for the contest in a few days, but you can send your entry as soon as you hear the episode. Once again, thank you for your patience, your kindness, and of course, for listening. Extra special thanks to my beautiful wife Sarah for getting this ball rolling again. 💖 Oscar's Trash Race on Random Terrain Oscar's Trash Race on Atari Protos Oscar's Trash Race on Atarimania Children's Computer Workshop on Muppet Wiki CGE 2012 Atari Programmers panel Preston Stuart interview, Electronic Fun with Computers and Games March 1983, page 40 Atari Age "Loaner Cartridge" thread, shows perhaps final version of Oscar AA OTR 10-20-82 WIP thread OMGWTFBBQ AA OTR 3-30-83 WIP thread 1983 CES Atari 2600 Video OTR Prototype pictures on Atari Compendium Unreleased static screen version pictures on Atari Compendium Posts from Guy Hutchinson's Big Bird Bridge blog about Sesame Place: The Computer Gallery Games at the Computer Gallery Computer Gallery game photos Computer Campus Detail from Computer Gallery computers Closeup of Computer Gallery age logo Sesame Place (Images of Modern America) by Guy Hutchinson on Amazon


Christmas 2021

I'm sorry this is so late, time got away from me this year. Sarah and I wish you peace, health, and happiness this holiday season. I love each and every one of you and I am eternally grateful to you all. A better group of friends I could not have asked for. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, have a safe and happy 2022. We will see you very soon. As always, thank you so much for listening. Photo courtesy of Dan Beicke (R)


Demolition Herby by Telesys

Hello there, thanks for joining me today to talk about the final released Telesys game, Demolition Herby. There's also a few interesting tidbits about the end of Telesys, as well as a few prototypes that we'll cover in a future show. I hope that you enjoy it. Coming up next, the first of many Sesame Street character games from Atari, Oscar's Trash Race. If you have any feedback for the Grouch, please send it to by November 14th. My Extra Life stream is coming up this weekend, Friday and Saturday from 8PM to 8AM EST. Fingers crossed. if you'd like to donate, you can do that here. Thank you so much! As always, I thank you very much for listening. Demolition Herby on Random Terrain Telesys Prototype thread on Atari Age Short Is'Action entry on GDRI Impossible Game article by Leonard Herman Telesys article March 16 1983, Arizona Republic The Store (Kandyman Sales) Atari ad, July 16 1983 Wichita Eagle


Frankenstein's Monster by Data Age

Happy Halloweeeeeeeeeeen almost! We end Spooky Season on the podcast with the great Frankenstein's Monster by Data Age. If you haven't played this because you think all Data Age games are garbage, you have been misled. I urge you to give this a try, it is one of the best on the system. Up next we will give thanks for Demolition Herby by Telesys! If you have thoughts on this one, please send them to me at by November 1st. I haven't played this in years so I don't remember it, but it was recommended in the Video Game Update newsletter, so I am excited to try it out. Enjoy the rest of the Spooky Season and thank you for listening! Frankenstein's Monster on Random Terrain Frankenstein's Monster on Atari Protos Video Game Update April 1983 on Atari Compendium Aracde Express May 8 1983 1985 Wichita Eagle profile of George Jabara/Kandyman Sales Part 1 1985 Wichita Eagle profile of George Jabara/Kandyman Sales Part 2 Video Games magazine September 1983 Atari Internal CES Review document June 1982 KMS web site jlun2 TAS of Frankenstein's Monster Brian from Albuquerque's Youtube page France Gall - Frankenstein


Skeleton+ by Eric Ball

Boo there! Thanks for being patient with me once again. It's spooky season and that means spooky games! We begin with Skeleton+, a homebrew game by Eric Ball from way back in 2002. It's a lot of fun and I hope you are able to try it out! Next up is the amazing Frankenstein's Monster by Data Age, which was kind of their final released game. If you have feedback or thoughts on Frankenstein's Monster, please send them to by October 18th. No need to summarize the game, I'll take care of that. Only 4 more episodes until the Christmas special! That seems weird. But maybe not, I did buy egg nog this week. Thank you all for listening! Initial Skeleton WIP thread on Stellalist Skeleton complete on Stellalist Skeleton 1.1 release on Stellalist First Skeleton+ thread on Atari Age Enhanced Skeleton+ thread on Atari Age Final Skeleton+ thread on Atari Age Eric Ball's intro thread on Atari Age Eric Ball's first 2600 demo Hozer Video website Order Skeleton on Packrat Games Order Skeleton on Atari Age F n Z Show and Far Cry Z podcasts/videocasts


Sir Lancelot by Xonox

Good morrow gentle Swain! Alright, enough of that. This week we are looking at Sir Lancelot by Xonox, maybe a Joust tipoff but it's a lot of fun! Next month is October already, sheesh. We'll be celebrating all month with S C A R Y games! First up will be the Homebrew game Skeleton+ by Eric Ball, followed by the wonderful Frankenstein's Monster by Data Age. I'm really looking forward to these games, and I hope you are too! iIf you have feedback for either game, please send it to me at I will need feedback for Skeleton+ by October $th, and October 18th for Frankenstein's Monster. Thanks so much for listening! Sir Lancelot on Random Terrain Xonox Press Kit on Atarimania Xonox on GDRI Gordon Martin and Associates on GDRI Sir Lancelot manual on Atari Compendium Kurt Howe Memorial thread on Atari Age


Bugs Bunny by Atari

Long time no see doc! *smak* This week we are discussing the prototype/reproduction game Bugs Bunny, originally from Atari. This Bob Polaro/Alan Murphy collaboration was shelved in the 80s and finally saw limited release at the late, lamented Philly Classic in 2002. It's a beautiful game that I hope you will seek out and try. Coming up next is Sir Lancelot by Xonox. If you have feedback for this guy, please send it to me at by September 21st at 10 PM EST. You get a smidge more time for this one, then hopefully I'll get back on track and stay that way. HA HA HA HA. Thank you again for all the kind words about the Space Shuttle episode, and thank you so much for listening. Bugs Bunny on Atari Protos Bob Polaro's web page Bob Polaro interview by Sarah Szefer Bob Polaro interview by Al Backiel Alan Murphy on Artstation Atari Promo Video 1983 Bugs Bunny Footage Photos from Philly Classic 3/Bugs Bunny release Bugs Bunny Press Release Atari Compendium Easter Egg page Easter egg thread on Atari Age Video Dames 0 by Kate Willaert Porno Hustlers of the Atari Age by Kate Willaert on Kotaku


Space Shuttle by Activision

The day many of you have been waiting for (and waiting and waiting, sorry about that) is finally here. Today is the finale of the Summer of Shuttles, and I am covering Space Shuttle by Activision. I'm not a simulator fan at all, so I hope I have done this game justice and I hope you enjoy the episode. Coming up pretty quick since I want to keep my schedule is the prototype game Bugs Bunny by Atari. I said in the episode to get me your feedback by the 10th, but let's change that to the 11th at 10PM EST, because when I recorded the episode I thought it would go out on the same day. You can send your feedback to me at Thank you again for your patience, and as always, thank you for listening. Space Shuttle on Random Terrain Space Shuttle on Atari Protos Electronic Fun article February 1984 Video and Computer Gaming Illustrated article January 1984 (yes, there is no page 75) Video Game Update article November 1983 (Atari Compendium) Computer Chronicles episode February 1984 Space Shuttle manual on Atari Age Space Shuttle Pilot patch on Digital Press Space Shuttle Commander patch on Digital Press STS 3 page on Spacefacts AA thread with Nukey Shay's fuel and docking hacks Barbara Morgan watches the Challenger 1986 Space Shuttle Operator's Manual by Kerry Mark Joels Antic Interview 420 with Brenda Laurel Space Camp home page Space Camp Movie on Youtube


Shuttle Orbiter by Avalon Hill

Hello and welcome to the Summer of Shuttles! (It's only a month.) First up we are talking about the Avalon Hill game Shuttle Orbiter, which I enjoyed but found a little frustrating. Lots of great feedback as usual, I hope you enjoy the episode. Coming up next is the one a lot of you have been waiting for, Space Shuttle, a Journey Into Space, by Activision. My attitude towards simulation games precedes me, but I will give this a fair shake. I just can't promise I will be able to figure it out. If you have feedback for Space Shuttle (I know you do), please send it to me at by AUGUST 21ST. I'm going to need all the time I can get for this one. I'm sure the description of the game will be rather long, so no need to summarize the gameplay in your feedback, I just want your thoughts and/or memories of the game. Thank you so much for listening! Shuttle Orbiter on Random Terrain Phosphor Dot Fossils - Shuttle Orbiter STS-7, second Challenger flight on Wikipedia Woodgrain Wonderland - Shuttle Orbiter review Shuttle Orbiter on The Log Book 35th Anniversary of the Challenger disaster from NASA