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Starpath was founded in June 1981 under the name Arcadia Corporation. The original founders were Alan Bayley, Robert Brown and Craig Nelson. Brown had previously served as director of microelectronics and director of research and development at Atari for four years with supervision of 40 engineers. The company was originally located in a single-room office in Livemore, California. Within a few months the company relocated to Santa Clara to continue with work on the Supercharger, the brainchild of Brown.

In October 1982, the company changed its name to Starpath Corp. The name change coincided with the completion of $2.25 million in second round venture funding, bringing total venture financing for 1982 to $3 million. In addition, Starpath received a $5 million line of credit with Bank of America. Such were the humble origins of the Supercharger men.

The Starpath Supercharger was unveiled in 1982, and was a plug-in device which expanded the Random Access Memory (RAM) of the Atari VCS almost 50-fold, from 128 to 6,272 bytes. The increased memory added vivid high resolution graphics capabilities like never before on the venerable Atari machine. The Supercharger was inserted into the cartridge slot of the Atari unit. A cable from the Supercharger plugged into the earphone jack of almost any cassette player. Starpath games were recorded on audio cassettes, achieving greater memory capacity and reduced cost of cassettes. The user simply placed the game cassette in the caseette player, pressed the play button, and played the game. The Supercharger originally listed at $44.95, and was packaged with the game Phaser Patrol, an excellent Star Raiders knockoff. Additional games could be purchased for a mere $15-18.

Although the Supercharger brought about drastic improvements in the quality of Atari 2600 games, the third wave of videogame systems, led by the Colecovision and Atari 5200 SuperSystem, dealt a blow to the peripheral as the next generation systems began to steal the limelight. Furthermore, many of the better Atari 2600 cartridges such as Pitfall II, Demon Attack and Tunnel Runner, boasted graphics that were on par with those from Starpath.

When the market for videogames began to crumble around them, Starpath positioned themselves to develop games for the advanced game systems and computers. Before doing so, however, Epyx bought out the company and Starpath disappeared forever.

As the first true upgrade for a game machine, the Supercharger must be considered as at least a partial success. It sold moderately well, and it continued to be supported until the (first) demise of the 2600 in mid-1984. Although Starpath was the only company to support its peripheral with software, its software lineup was completely devoid of duds, and was filled with playable titles with graphical flair. Escape from the Mindmaster was a riveting corridor extravaganza set in a Doom-like environment; Sword of Saros was an elaborate maze-adventure game that involved treasure and magic, and multi-load Dragonstomper may very well be considered the first console Role-Playing game.


  • Communist Mutants from Space
  • Dragonstomper
  • Escape from the Mindmaster
  • Fireball
  • Frogger, The Official
  • Killer Satellites
  • Party Mix
  • Phaser Patrol (packaged with the Supercharger)
  • Rabbit Transit
  • Suicide Mission
  • Survival Island
  • Sweat: The Decathlon Game (not released, prototype demo exists)
  • Sword of Saros


  • Supercharger Demonstration Unit (for dealers only)
  • Supercharger (packaged with Phaser Patrol)

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