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Although it enjoyed a reputation as a leader in innovative entertainment and educational software in the home computer market, First Star almost went unnoticed as far as console gaming was concerned. In fact, their only cartridge based game was a mildly enjoyable Q*Bert spin-off for the VCS -- hardly the kind of stuff that legends are made of. Their only other contribution to home video games was in the licensing and development of their hit computer game, Astro Chase, to Parker Brothers for the Atari 5200 and 2600 (the latter was announced by Parker Brothers and later sold to Atari, but never saw the light of day).

Boing! was First Star's token entry in the 2600 sweepstakes and it required the gamer to jump onto blocks in order to change them all to the same color (sound familiar?). You're being chased by a soap bubble and a pin, and can move around to use the pin to burst the bubble. The game does suffer from flickering and the graphics and sound are very simple. But to its credit, it is rather addicting, and later rounds offer a decent challenge.

First Star has the distinction of being the first company to have a home version of a hit game to be later released in Arcade format. Boulder Dash was released into the arcades 4 different times: first by Exidy, then Data East, then Arcadia Systems (Mastertronics) and then by Data East again. In December of 1984, it was announced that Warner Software, Inc., a subsidiary of Warner Publishing, Inc., had acquired a substantial interest in First Star. The company still exists to this day, although we are unsure whether they are an independent entity or a subsidiary of another company. They have either licensed or developed such titles as Spy vs. Spy, Boulder Dash and Superman for the NES, Game Boy and Sega Master System. Astro Chase was redone in the mid-'90s by First Star as Astro Chase 3D and licensed to Mac Play/Interplay as a very successful Macintosh title. They also ported Boulder Dash for the Palm pilot and are in negotiations with no less than two major publishers for a total revision of this classic. As classic games are taking off again and Sega's Dreamcast machine is announced they have been approached to facilitate redesiging Boulder Dash to maximize its addictive game play utilizing today's vastly more powerful platforms.

  • Boing!

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