Amiga Power Module

  • As was the case with numerous companies that planned big things for the 2600 in 1983, Amiga eventually scrapped not one, but two major projects that they had high hopes for.

  • Amiga first unveiled the Power Module in February of 1983 with plans to release the Starpath Supercharger-type 2600 expansion device sometime in the Summer. The Power Module had 6Kbytes of RAM and games were to be in cartridge format.

  • To distinguish itself from the Supercharger which was already on the market, Amiga was pinning its hopes on two unique features. First, the Power Module was to offer a unique machine-interactive game playing capability. When two Power Modules are linked up via seperate modems, they can "talk" to each other over any dial-up phone line. One player can be the submarine commander, another the destroyer captain -- each with their own screen display and set of commands. The modem was to handle the transfer of all information between player's machines. Secondly, Amiga touted a unique programming procedure that allowed games to be played in 3-D, with the same red/blue glasses (included with the Power Module) used to watch 3-D movies. This option was claimed by Amiga to bring a startling new dimension to video game play.

  • The Power Module was to retail for $45 and come with two Power-Play game cassettes: 3-D Ghost Attack, the first 3-D home video game, and Depth Charge, the first machine-interactive (linkable) video game. Additional game cassettes were to sell for $9.95 and they were to include S.A.C. Alert, Strafe, 3-D Havoc and Scavenger Hunt, with more titles slated for introduction soon thereafter.

    Power Play Arcade #1

  • Later that year in 1983, however, Amiga abruptly killed the Power Module before releasing it and instead chose the 1983 Summer CES in Chicago to take the wraps off a unique three-game cartridge for the 2600. The new Multiplay Video Game Cartridges, dubbed the Power-Play Arcade series, was to contain three different games in one cartridge, bettering the two-game efforts done by both Xonox and Playaround.

  • The first release, Power Play Arcade #1, was to feature an all 3-D video game format, including 3-D Ghost Attack, 3-D Havoc and 3-D Genesis. The Multiplay cartridges were to retail for $30 to $40 and be on store shelved in time for the holiday season.

    Power Play Arcade #2

  • Christmas came and went, however, with no sign of the Power Play Arcade games. It came as a surprise, therefore, when Amiga announced in January, 1984 that a second and third series of Power Play cartridges were planned for release. The second cart was to have five games, aimed at the younger game player. The first, Scavenger Hunt, was an all new game designed by Amiga. The remaining four; Eggomania, Gopher, Word Zapper, and Galleon's Gold (Name This Game) were titles that were previously marketed by U.S. Games. For the third cartridge, they had agreed to terms with Imagic that would grant Amiga the rights to market a number of Imagic's VCS titles through the Power-Play Arcade series. The Imagic games covered by the initial agreement included Demon Attack, Atlantis, Cosmic Ark, Dragonfire and Star Voyager.

  • Although Mid to late March deliveries were expected for the Power Play Arcade cartridges, none of them ever saw the light of day.

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