"DEAR AGH" (September/October, 1997)

From: Doug G.
Date: Fri, 31 Oct 1997
Subject: Doom 2600

  • Hi, I stumbled upon your cool Atari page and loved it. However, I was surprised that you had no info on the Doom port for the 2600. I had heard about it several months ago and saw a few mock-ups of the "box" art and some screen shots floating around the net. Any news on this? I first saw this development on Blue's News (www.bluesnews.com).

    John Replies:

  • Those pics you saw of Doom were a hoax. There is no Doom, and nobody is programming it. Most likely someone used a graphics program like Photoshop to create those images.


    From: T. Crowley
    Date: Thu, 30 Oct 1997
    Subject: Amazing site + a question...

  • First of all, let me congratulate you on an amazing site! I'm a 24-year old gamer that gets a tear in his eye relating to all things Atari, as well as old-school coin-ops, and holy shit, your site has it ALL! I am in complete amazement on how you have so many pix of... EVERYTHING! Please, give me a moment to wipe the tear of nostalgia out of my eye before I ask my question... ("They had a picture of Black Widow...!" *sniff*)

  • Okay, I've composed myself. Now, to my query: what's this about these Generation2/Barry Bankhead games for the Lynx? I bought all of my friends Lynx II's for Christmas (love those liquidators!) and I'd sure love to have some new stuff for 'em...

  • And one more thing. What's up with Nolan Bushnell? Better yet, has he ever made any comments about the fall of Atari? I mean, look what Jack (off) Tramiel did to his baby... ah well. Maybe he's loungin' on an island somewheres, drinking margaritas with Chuck E. Cheese and looking up into the heavens (with some Bushnell telescopes, natch)... Keep up the good work! You guys are gods!

    Les Replies:

  • Barry is hard at work with several Lynx projects. You must understand, however, that he's doing it all by himself as a labor of love. In other words, since this is merely a hobby of his and not a full time career, you'll just have to be patient and wait with the rest of us for his creations to become a finished reality.

  • Nolan Bushnell has remained mum about his old company. He was more interested in acquiring Atari Games (the coin-op division) before Midway/Williams snatched it up.


    From: C.G. Chiriatti
    Date: Tue, 28 Oct 1997
    Subject: library

    Hello AGH !
    Well i love your site ! It's fantastic !
    But only one thing : put more articles in the library !
    I'd like to read more of this early video games stuff.

    Keita Replies

  • Judging by feedback from our visitors, the AGH Library appears to be one of the most popular sections of our site. Since you asked for it, we'll deliver! Look out for even more classic literature to make its way to the Library in the coming months.


    From: P. Muller
    Date: Sat, 25 Oct 1997
    Subject: About ATARI show in summer ?

  • I've met, Brad Koda (Best Elec.) at the Dusseldorf SHOW (in Deutschland). Brad said me that AGH have a project of show in DISNEYLAND of L.A? Is it ok? Do you have the date or the month? Because I have to take me tickets for the plane in advance.

    Keita Replies:

  • The show, called Atari World 98, is in the early planning stages. AGH is not the promoter of the convention, but is actively assisting in its organization. The date for the show has yet to be determined, but it will be sometime next Summer. We now have an Atari World 98 page elsewhere on our site, so please visit often for the latest developments of what promises to be an epic bash! And fill our survey while you're there so that the organizers can make Atari World the best show possible.


    From: Shawn K.
    Date: Thu, 23 Oct 97
    Subject: Question

  • I was wondering where I could get some promotional info on the Atari Lynx sent to me (such as posters or other info). Could you possibly send any?

    Les Replies:

  • You must be mistaking us for Atari Corporation. They are no longer involved in the videogame business but you might want to try 1-800-GO-ATARI, although I doubt they'd send you anything for free unless you purchase something.


    From: T. Johansson
    Date: Wed, 22 Oct 1997
    Subject: Great STuff...

    I looked for some Atari stuff on the web and ended up here.
    Wow...you got some archive here.
    I know Atari released some odd stuff.. but heh the more the better :)

  • I grew up with Atari. I got my 130XE when I was 4. I kept with Atari ever since. Now I own a Falcon 020, an STe, an ST (broken) and my old XE.

    'Tis nice to see that some people still care about Atari.

  • I was stunned when i saw the "MindLink" device. At first, I thought it said MIDLINK, but after a close look.... Did it really work? Heh... can't wait to harrass my Amiga using friend,,...

    Keep up the good work.

    John Replies:

  • Your background certainly makes you worthy of being an Atariphile, that's for sure! Yes, the Mindlink works. In fact, the game Bionic Breakthrough (an unreleased prototype) will not play UNLESS you have the Mindlink plugged into the system. It's about the oddest (and rarest) item Atari ever made.


    From: Topdawg
    Date: Mon, 20 Oct 1997
    Subject: What will become of Atari fans?

  • I don't know about you, but I am just a little adjatated about Atari selling out like they did. I think that if every one chiped in a few bucks, a person could actualy by the name. At least if they did that, they might be able to make better games. Let me know what you think about that, I think it is a shame what has happend and it could have been avoided. Sincerely a Jaguar fan.

    Les Replies:

  • I'm sure just about all of us have wondered out loud what the best possible scenario would be for Atari's resurrection. However, let's get serious here... a "couple bucks?" That would take like, ummm, a couple of million folks chipping in to make that happen. And then what? It'll take millions more to DO something with the company.

  • Let's just hope that the right investor or company will make good use of the Atari name if they should acquire it.


    From: J. Tilton
    Date: Thu, 09 Oct 1997
    Subject: museum

    Hiya, guys.

  • Well, I uncovered the rest of the museum. I'd overlooked entire sections of it before because I never noticed the "Other AGH Museum Sections" at the top. Seems a shame that people have to follow an oblique link like that to get to some of the spiffiest sections of the site. IMHO, making the museum accessible right from the starting page would be a Good Thing. Just a suggestion. :)

  • Oh yah...while I'm looking at it here...you have the Suncom Joy Sensor for Colecovision noted as "unreleased."

  • Anyway, the site kicks ass. Tremendously entertaining and informative. I hope it stays around for a good long time.

    Keita Replies:

  • Thanks for your suggestions and pointing out the errata. Yes, the museum is definitely the highlight of AGH -- after all, our pictures and scans has been (and will continue to be) the backbone of our site from day one. We've been beefing up the other sections of AGH to make it as interesting of a place to READ as it is to see, but judging by the hit counts on our different pages, it appears that we have plenty of work if we are to achieve that goal.

  • Before our move to our own domain, AGH did have a direct link to the museum. However, we found that many people merely visited the museums without bothering to check out all the other great stuff that we've worked hard to create. While we were delighted to see so many people visiting our museum, we felt that many of the other sections -- the Library, the patent database, and the 5200 FAQ -- among other things, deserved the attention of sitegoers as well.

  • Perhaps we will have a direct link again in the near future, provided that we become secure enough in our other sections to believe that the other pages will get a fair shake. But we do realize that the fonts of the links are quite small and will work to correct this problem very shortly. Thanks for your insight and comments.


    From: SailorMoonFan
    Date: Sun, 28 Sep 1997
    Subject: What game is this?

  • Hi. I am trying to remember a game I played in the arcade a long time ago. I think it's an atari game. If not, I apoligize. All I remember about the game is that at the end of each round you ended up in an elevator. If you made it then you're fine. If you just made it he would be sweating or his hat would be smoking or whatever. I'm going from vague memories here. If you know the name of this game PLEASE tell me. It's driving me crazy. Thank you.

    John Replies:

  • That would be Cloak and Dagger by Atari


    From: Thomas D. Harker
    Date: Fri, 26 Sep 1997
    Subject: Nice Site Keita

  • You have done a great job here. Keep up the good work.

  • I was especially pleased to see that they are making a 2nd edition of Phoenix. I read that years ago. I wonder if ICD or 4Play will make the pages. :-)

    Keita Replies:

  • Thanks for the kind words, Tom! However, AGH is comprised of three individuals, with the other two being Les Caron (the graphics and coding wiz) and John Hardie (collector extraordinnaire). I'll take credit if the others get to share in it :)

  • Since I'm buddies with Leonard Herman, I would've asked him to include ICD in the 2nd Edition if you would've sent me a free Catbox. However, as luck would have it, you ARE mentioned in the book already .

    Take care.


    From: Brian D. F.
    Date: Wed, 24 Sep 1997
    Subject: No Subject

  • I recently saw your screen shots for Road Riot and Centipede for Atari Lynx on your internet page. I would like to know where I might be able to purchase these games.

    Les Replies:

  • Neither of the games are currently available... yet. We're keeping our fingers crossed and hope that they will get picked up for release by someone, because we've played both of them and they're terrific!


    From: Rafael
    Date: Tue, 23 Sep 1997
    Subject: 2600

  • Hi I enjoyed your page. What a blast to see such a well made page on the Atari. I have two things. Wasn't River Raid made by Activision? Not Tigervision? And the other the rarest game for the Atari that I've never heard mentioned was a game called Custers Revenge. It was a porno video game for the system (I swear it's real). The goal was tgo get to the Indian girl on the other side avoiding arrows. She was naked and so was he. Maybe it is somewhere on the site but I just missed it. Anyways, great site.

    John Replies:

  • River Raid was made by Activision. Unless we misspelled it in our page, the one by Tigervision is called River Patrol.

    Custer's Revenge was for the 2600, but was made by a company called Mystique. They produced two other adult games as well. The reason the game isn't mentioned is because it's not considered a "holy grail" by most collectors. There are far rarer games out there in the 2600 game library.


    From: Philippe D.
    Date: Sat, 20 Sep 1997
    Subject: Atari Panther

  • Great pages of yours, for sure! But I'm lacking technical information about the Atari Panther prototype that I can't find over the web. Could you help me, please?

    John Replies:

  • Sure, we've got piles and piles of internal Atari technical documents pertaining to the unreleased machine. Just let us know where to send it and we'll..... errrr...

  • Sorry, we do not have any tech info about the Panther other than the little details that are common knowledge to everyone. Good luck on your search, and by all means let us know if you get lucky.


    From: Jesus G. Soto
    Date: Sat, 20 Sep 1997
    Subject: Hello

  • I'm from Puerto Rico. The Atari page is excellent... I love Atari. I have 2600, 5200 and 7800. This e-mail is because I need some information about 3 games... I remember the XXX games for the 2600. The company is or was Mystique but I don't know the names of the XXX games. Can you or someone help me? Thanks for your time....

    Les Replies:

  • The three games by Mystique were Bachelor Party, Beat 'Em and Eat 'Em and Custer's Revenge. You can find scans and company history elsewhere on AGH.


    From: bond@*.net
    Date: Tue, 16 Sep 1997
    Subject: Pole Position for the Atari 9000

  • Hi. AMAZING site. Amazing. A lot of things I've never seen shots of... And the layout for the site is quite impressive. I really dig the GIF anims on the front page :)

  • But I have a theory about the Pole Position shots...which you have probably figured out.

  • They are just artists concepts. But it may indicate that Atari was using freelancers?? I can't imagine an Atari employee NOT knowing the major systems, etc. A lot of times people doing concepts and mockups will know a few catch phrases or words, but that is it. And you need to fill out the space so you use text (copy) that is "greeked." Which is just nonsense text to occupy space.

  • Anyway, quite interesting!

    Keita Replies:

  • Yes, that's our belief as well. They just put something down for the hell of it, just for the sake of "completeness" at least for the beta artwork drawing. Thanks for your insight on this matter.


    From: Falcon40
    Date: Sun, 14 Sep 1997
    Subject: Maybe you can help me

  • I'm looking for a copy of Adventure that will run on the PC. Some of the old games have been converted for the PC, and I wondered if this old favorite of mine had been converted also.

    Les Replies:

  • As a matter of fact there is.. It's called "Indenture" and it's written by Craig Pell. There's even an expanded version with more rooms, more treasures and more secrets.

  • Check out http://www.clark.net/pub/vgr/.


    From: L. Foster
    Date: Sun, 14 Sep 1997
    Subject: Spectravideo

  • Keita,

  • I posed the question to Joe S. and Jerry G. and have yet to get a response. Last week at a flea market, I picked up a Spectravideo SV-903 Data Cassette player. It looks like a normal cassette player back then, but says it has duel channel capability, one for voice, one for data. I was wondering if this was released in conjunction with the 2600 or other system, in use of tapes like Starpath, or is it just something the company released. I'd appreciate any info. Thanks.

    Keita Replies:

  • The SV-903 is just a tape add-on for the SV-318/328 line of computers. Spectravideo's computers were a flop and didn't sell at all. They're not really that collectible at all as well, since it's considered more of a computer than a game machine (like a TRS-80, Vic-20, etc.)

  • The 903 has nothing to do with the 2600, and was for Spectravision's line of dedicated computers that were not compatible with anything else (they later released a line of computers that were MSX compatible, but that's another story.


    From: A. Mills
    Date: Sat, 13 Sep 1997
    Subject: Revenge of the Beefsteak Tomatoes

  • I just got finished looking at your page and after looking at your trade list I was wondering something. Have you heard of a game called Revenge of the Beefsteak Tomatoes? It isn't on anybody's want list or anything so i guess it's a pretty common game, but its very odd. I know Atari did some odd things but I figure this game couldn't have been a great success. Its a 20th Century Fox game so was it a movie or what? Turmoil wasn't a movie was it? Just wondering if you have the answers.

    John Replies:

  • Revenge of the Beefsteak Tomatoes was indeed based on a movie. It's a parody of the cult flick "Attack of the Killer Tomatoes" by 20th Century Fox. Turmoil is not based on a movie, it is an adaptation of an Atari Computer game developed by Sirius Software's Mark Turmell. Most all of Fox's 2600 games were movie based, with the exception of a few of their games and all games that were licensed from Sirius.


    From: F. Thompson
    Date: Fri, 12 Sep 1997
    Subject: Links

  • Did you drop your links page? It's not obvious where it is now.

    Keita Replies:

  • Yes, we eliminated the links section. It was getting too difficult to keep up-to-date, what with pages coming and going and URLs changing constantly. Furthermore, a link page was never one of our primary goals when we set out to create AGH. Besides, over 90% of gaming pages have links anyways, so we didn't feel our readers would miss it much. For THE definitive page with just about every link imaginable, you really only need one: The Classic Video Games Nexus.


    From: Andy & Tony M.
    Date: Fri, 12 Sep 1997
    Subject: Great Page! Also, I have something...

  • OUTSTANDING PAGE!!! I can't say this loudly enough!

  • What I'm writing about, though, is your museum section... I have a few of the boxes in storage that you don't have scans of, and I was wondering if you'd want scans of them, which I can make realatively easily. I remember specifically I have Pitfall, Keystone Kapers, and some more common ones as well.

  • I also have a Beamrider cart, which is listed as ER-, if you'd like a scan of that.

  • Let me know. Always glad to forward to cause.

    John Replies:

  • Thanks for the compliments as well as your offer to help out. As for the scans for the museum, We collectively have images of just about every single 5200 game box, cart and instruction manual. Just because they're not on the page doesn't mean that we don't have access to them. Rather, it's the shortage of space available on our web page which inhibits us from putting EVERYTHING on the page.

  • Because of the bandwidth limitation, we really had to prioritize and focus on the rare items, since most people who visit the site either have seen or own a 2600 Pac-Man or Combat cart.


    From: Alex L.
    Date: Thu, 11 Sep 1997
    Subject: Native by Duranik, any more info on it?

  • Hi, do you have any more info on the Native game by Duranik. This looks like a truly awesome game!! I definately want one. If you have any info on it, please mail me.

    Les Replies:

  • At this moment, we do not have any additional info other than what's there on our News page. Keep checking back with us for the latest info on this promising shooter.


    From: D. Finkelstein
    Date: Thu, 11 Sep 1997
    Subject: Atari 800?

  • No Atari 800?

  • This thing was not only an awesome gaming flatform (256kb RAM, upgradable [which my dad did] to 512kb -- running at something like 3mhz..), but also the platform from which I first learned how to program in Basic! If we had a gaming-only Atari like the 2600, maybe I wouldn't know as much about computers as I do now..

  • Atari 400/800 games were more advanced than the games for the older games-only Ataris, with some of my favorites being Pac-Man (of course), Pole Position, Star Raiders, Space Invaders. Plus, with the Tape + Disk drive, I had lots of other games, including one of the first adventure games ever made for a computer called "The Quest" -- it came on a *double-sided disk* -- amazing stuff (you actually had to flip the disk over).

  • Anyway, hope you expand your awesome Atari page to include this piece of ancient computer history :)

    John Replies:

  • While we will be the first to admit that our Atari computer coverage is a bit shallow relative to the other sections on our page, we would like to note that it's still under construction (do we have to put those little shiny logos with men digging ditches to alert everyone to that fact). However, there we DO have some space devoted to the system even now. In addition, check out the AGH Library for an interview with Doug Neubauer (of Star Raiders and POKEY fame) and an article about the Atari Program Exchange as well.

  • Yep, we owe a lot to Atari. You are mistaken on the RAM count, however. The 800 came with 48K.

  • The Quest was by Penguin Software, and I agree that it was an awesome adventure game. Lots of great stuff from third party companies supported Atari's 8-bitter. But wouldn't go as far as you did in saying that the 400/800 games were more advanced than their console cousins. The 5200 was its equal (for obvious reasons) and the 7800 has the edge in terms of graphics. But the Computers really held their own with a HUGE library of games, many of which are available in floppy disk format (a cheaper medium for storage).

  • Trust us, we intend to beef-up our computer section. Problem is, time is tight, and there are only the three of us here at AGH. There's only so much time we have during the week to get some work done on the page. We'll try to get rolling with the computers section but it might take some time so please bear with us.


    From: Eric
    Date: Wed, 3 Sep 1997
    Subject: Atari Collection 2

  • Hello fellow Atarians! The only thing I am really interested in is the Atari Collection 2 by Midway that promises to be great! I didn't know if you guys knew anything about when it is to come out. I know that the Midway Collection 2 is scheduled to be out in November. Can't wait to play all the old arcade games again. THANKS.

    From: EricBC
    Date: Thu, 11 Sep 1997
    Subject: Atari

  • I am glad to see that the Midway Collection 2 is coming out in November for Playstation. I was wondering if you knew when the Atari Collection 2 is coming out. THANKS.

    Les Replies:

  • Arcade's Greatest Hits: The Atari Collection Volume 2 should be out in time for the winter holidays. We're also very excited about this CD compilation as well.


    From: J. Piper
    Date: Tue, 2 Sep 1997
    Subject: Blue Max

  • I am trying to find the game Blue Max for the PC. I remember playing it years ago on the Atari 800 and am looking to find a version of it that will work on the PC along with an emulator if needed. Please tell me if you know where I might find it or if you have it in your archives could you send it to me.

  • If you attach a file you can send it here at the aol account I'd appreciate it.

    John Replies:

  • To our knowledge, a PC version of Blue Max does not exist. You can, however, play the game using one of the emulators for the Atari 8-bit Computers. Since you do not own the game anymore, we would strongly suggest that you take caution when downloading or playing a game you don't own as it is technically considered piracy. The emulators and ROM image necessary to play the game can be found by doing a simple search on the web.


    From: Darren
    Date: Tue, 2 Sep 1997
    Subject: I have a "Star Wars" Atari 2600 game!

  • Hi there! I recently found my Atari 2600 in a shed in my backyard, and it is in good shape. I would like to set it up again, but I need another AC adaptor, Switchbox, and standard joysticks for it. Do you know where I can buy any of this stuff???

  • I also found two Atari 2600 games: Dodge 'Em and Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back. The Star Wars game was made by Parker Brothers. The date on it is 1982. Is this a rare cartridge??? Please write back!!! Thanks!!!

    Keita Replies:

  • Most dealers and traders on the web don't sell 2600 parts seperately, and even if they did, it would most likely cost you more to purchase them and have them shipped to your place than if you went out and bought a complete 2600 setup from a thrift store or flea market. As 2600s are relatively easy to find, we suggest you take this route.

  • Both Dodge 'Em and Empire Strikes Back are about as rare as cockroaches in Manhattan :)


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