ATARI: 1981


If you have just purchased your ATARI Video Computer System, get ready for some real excitement on your home television set. When it comes to video games, no other manufacturer stacks up to ATARI. There are literally dozens of exciting, entertaining and educational games in the ATARI Game Library. Just connect it to your television set and plug it in. It does not interfere with normal television viewing. ATARI takes fun seriously!

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  • fodder650

    I wonder why they didn't add this to the list

    <img src="; width=600 />

    • It didn't exist yet:

      "Though 1982 wasn’t a perfect year for Atari. At the end of the year they released E.T., a licensed game of the incredibly popular Spielberg film. The game cost around $125 million to develop, largely due to the licensing costs of the game. The game designer was Howard Scott Warshaw, who had received nothing but praise and adulation for his game Raiders of the Lost Ark.

      However, due to the amount of time that negotiations took, Warshaw was left with just 5 weeks to design the game in time for the festive period. The result: one of the worst video games ever made and one of the biggest video game commercial failures of all time. Apparently 1 million of the 5 million cartridges were sold, with rumours of the rest being buried in a New Mexico landfill."

      • BlackIce_GTS

        The were ground up before being dumped, so you can't just go out there and dig one up, as is a popular ironic-stuff-collector fantasy.

        • That's pretty awesome, I had never heard of that. I only had a vague notion that maybe E.T. had come out after this catalog, and when I looked it up I found that. I didn't know the game was so awful it was buried. Ancient ATARI Archaeological Expedition!

  • skitter

    I think this would have been around the time my mom and her siblings started playing games on the monstrous computers my grandfather would drag home from 3M. She was the only one who could win the Civil War game with the smaller armies of the South; she said she could outflank any adversary whether they were attacking or retreating.

    I have absolutely no difficulty believing that.

  • When it came to Atari Asteroids and Missile Command, I was the (little) man!

  • Scott

    There's no way an Atari game in 1982 cost $125 million to develop. There's a decimal point missing in there, at the very least.

    • CaptianNemo2001

      Most likely adjusted for inflation.

    • In addition to the source cited above, check out the extensively researched E.T. game WikiPedia page (with quite the multitude of sources) that quotes the same cost number. Also, I believe that number includes the cost of buying the rights to the movie from the studio, as well as rushing the game into production prior to the holiday season. Additionally, Atari reported a $536 million loss in 1983, so even though it was the early 80's, the video game industry wasn't exactly working with peanuts.

  • Plecostomus

    oh my god, the art style of that catalog.

    That bubbly art style persisted through the mid-late 90's, and I'm still glad it went away. I'm by no means an amazing artist – bottom of my class in design school – when i went – but I could've drawn this catalog better. XD

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