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Thread: The Atari 2600 mega-thread!

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    Insert Coin (Level 0) Manga4life's Avatar
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    Default The Atari 2600 mega-thread!

    So, how many of you have owned or currently own an Atari 2600? I remember owning a 2600 back in the early 80's when I was really young, I had it all the way up until around 1988 and then I left the console outside for some strange reason and it rained that night thus ruining the console. I had probably 10-15 games or so, my favorites being Pac-Man and E.T (Yep!), but I loved Defender, Real Sports Boxing, Space Invaders, and Megamania. I got another 2600 again out of nostalgia in 1994 and fell in love with games like Dragonfire, Cosmic Arc, Ice Hockey, and Circus Atari, and have built a lot of memories off of all of the games mentioned over the past 25-30 years.

    Currently, I have an Atari 2600 console with 32 games and I probably won't be expanding upon the collection because the 32 games I own are the 32 games I truly enjoy, I may someday expand upon it but not until I really get the itch (if at all). I play it every now and again but not as often as my NES, SNES, PSone, Genesis, or N64, but I do enjoy a night of Atari every now and again.
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    I currently own two 2600's, the Vader model and the JR model with the JR model being the one that's hooked up and actually used. I own about 40 games or so and like you am not really looking to expand on them as they are the games I enjoy.

    As a kid I remember in the late eighties going to my grandparent's house and playing on their old six switcher in the basement with my cousins. It was the most "modern" piece of equipment my grandparent's owned and it was far from the most up to date console when they bought it from a garage sale.

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    I still have my "light" sixer that we got around 30 years ago, which I recently had modded for composite AV. Have I think 120 games, and of course the Harmony SD cart.
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    I have 2 each light sixers, 4 switch, and Jrs. I have about 400 games altogether, maybe a little less than half of them boxed. I got it for Christmas of 1980, stopped playing it around 1984, then fell back in love with it and started collecting it in 1995. My favorite game for the 2600 (and really, of all time) is Adventure. I also enjoy both Pitfalls, Miniature Golf, Kaboom, Circus Atari, Frankenstein's Monster, Video Pinball, Jr. Pac-Man, Space Invaders, and Asteroids. <shameless plug>I love it so much that I am doing a podcast about the games, which if you are so inclined, you can listen to here: http://2600gamebygamepodcast.libsyn.com/webpage </shameless plug>
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    I never had one growing up but I have one now. I have the Jr. Model and some games. My 3 favorite games are:
    Berzerk
    Solaris
    Secret Quest

    If my Atari knowledge is right, Solaris and Secret Quest are very late releases for the 2600 nearly at the end of the system's life.
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    Pretzel (Level 4) Polygon's Avatar
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    I don't own one and I never did. I have pretty limited gaming experience on any of the Atari systems besides the newer ones. My only memories of playing them were at my cousins house and we didn't see them very often. The 2600 is on my list and I already bought Pitfall complete for it because it one of my favorite games. However, I'm at a loss as to what other games to get. I'm just going to have to watch some gameplay videos on YouTube.
    Atari: 2600, Jaguar
    Microsoft: XBox, XBox 360
    Nintendo: NES, GB, GBC, SNES, N64, GameCube, GBA SP, Wii, New 3DS, Wii U
    Sega: SMS, Genesis, Game Gear, Nomad, Sega CD, 32X, Saturn, Dreamcast
    Sony: PS1, PS2, PS3
    Wanted: 7800, Neo Geo CD

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    I have a light sixer with wood panel, a 4-switch "vader" and a 2600 JR, as well as a Sears Video Arcade model 2 (love those hybrid paddle/joysticks).

    I also have a Flashback 2 modded with a cart slot by Ben Heckendorn (he did it for me back in the day before he was as ultra-busy and high-profile as he is now).

    I haven't done a head count on my carts since I put them into storage, but it's hundreds and hundreds. These days I bust out the Harmony if I'm feeling the need to scratch the ever-present 2600 itch.
    Last edited by Frankie_Says_Relax; 05-16-2013 at 12:10 PM.
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    I have a 7800, a wood grain 4-switch, and a as of yet unmodded Flashback 2 that is on my to do list. I have 185 Atari 2600 cartridges, the majority of which came from my childhood collection. I picked up around 50 or so from a buddy cleaning up his garage about a year ago, and I have maybe sought and bought 10-15 cartridges since I got back into retro gaming. I play my 2600 collection occasionally as there are some magical gems that cry out to me for some love from time to time.

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    Is an Atari 2600 (or 7800 with its backward compatablility) worth owning for anything other then as a historical curiosity at this point?

    I mean, between various compilation releases, and better arcade ports... does it really offer anything you can't find elsewhere?
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Adventurer View Post
    Is an Atari 2600 (or 7800 with its backward compatablility) worth owning for anything other then as a historical curiosity at this point?

    I mean, between various compilation releases, and better arcade ports... does it really offer anything you can't find elsewhere?
    While there are some very good 2600 compilations and emulators out there, the software library goes FAR beyond it's rudimentary (but often very playable) arcade ports.

    The Activision, Parker Bros, Imagic, Mattel and other 3rd party libraries on the system are great, and there have been a TON of excellent commercially produced homebrews released (several every year for a decade or so at least).

    IMO there is simply no substitute to playing 2600 software on authentic hardware. There's a distinct charm and appeal that is equivalent to how a lot of people feel about the NES.

    Yes, collecting for 2600 will surely leave with a lot of more primitive versions of games that you have elsewhere, but I'd never dissuade any gamer from owning or collecting for it.
    "And the book says: 'We may be through with the past, but the past ain't through with us.'"


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    Besides. it's not like collecting for the 2600 is expensive. It's actually quite the opposite.
    Atari: 2600, Jaguar
    Microsoft: XBox, XBox 360
    Nintendo: NES, GB, GBC, SNES, N64, GameCube, GBA SP, Wii, New 3DS, Wii U
    Sega: SMS, Genesis, Game Gear, Nomad, Sega CD, 32X, Saturn, Dreamcast
    Sony: PS1, PS2, PS3
    Wanted: 7800, Neo Geo CD

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    The paddle games alone easily justify owning a real Atari 2600. Kaboom, Warlords (and the homebrew update Medieval Mayhem), Circus Atari, Astroblast...lots of fun to be had there, and no emulator or alternative controller will really capture the feeling of the real thing.

    It's also got one of the most vibrant homebrew scenes of any console -- partly because the architecture is incredibly flexible despite its limits -- and one of the most distinctive personalities as well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Manga4life View Post
    So, how many of you have owned or currently own an Atari 2600?
    Atari, Atari. Hmmm, sounds vaguely familiar

    Yea right, Atari is my video game collecting love affair, especially the 2600. I have over 20 consoles of the various models and a couple hundred games (not including label variations or doubles). I actually had closer to 300 but sold the rarer titles that weren't that fun.

    In my opinion this is one of the best consoles ever made, it has a great library of arcade ports plus all the fantastic stuff from Activision, Imagic, Parker Bros, etc. and because the library is so big there are a lot of great gems that aren't as well known like JawBreaker, Tunnel Runner, or Moonsweeper, and its still a blast to play today like it was in the 70's and early 80's, especially with family and friends and you don't need to devote a huge chunk of your weekend playing them. The Atari epitomizes "pick up and play"

    As mentioned it has a fantastic homebrew scene and there's a new Asteroids coming out called Space Rocks that is just amazing to play with lots of options in it. And yes its a lot cheaper to collect for the Atari systems (minus maybe the Jag) in fact it seems to be getting cheaper as more collectors focus on later 8 and 16 bit generations.

    Calling yourself a video game fan or collector and NOT owning or likeing Atari is akin to claiming to being a Star Trek fan but hating the Wrath of Kahn

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    I have at least four Atari 2600s (heavy sixer, light sixer, 2 woodgrain 4-switch), as well as a 2600jr. In addition, I have a couple of Atari 7800s, which can play 2600 games, and 2600 adapters for both my Atari 5200 and Colecovision (which I find to be fascinating; imagine Sony producing a XBox 360 'expanson module' for the PS3, and the lawsuits that'd cause!). In addition, I have a few dozen games, plus several duplicates. The graphics may be a bit primitive compared to some of its contemporaries, but the gameplay is still quite fun.

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    i always find it a shame that the 7800 came out so late and at the wrong time. It was far superior to the 2600 and fairly decent in the graphics department. some games were near early SMS/NES in thr graphics department.

    So mad my parents threw my out + all my 2600 and 7800 games like 6 months ago.

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    Insert Coin (Level 0) Manga4life's Avatar
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    I have the classic wood grain Atari VCS system, but I'm currently bidding on an Atari 2600 Jr that comes with 10 games, 8 of which I've never owned or played. I guess my comment earlier about not expanding my collection has been voided, lol.
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    Strawberry (Level 2) sloan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Adventurer View Post
    Is an Atari 2600 (or 7800 with its backward compatablility) worth owning for anything other then as a historical curiosity at this point?

    I mean, between various compilation releases, and better arcade ports... does it really offer anything you can't find elsewhere?
    The games for it, even the arcade ports done with better graphics on other systems, are still very fun in their own right. Yes, I have played many VCS games on other systems, but still return for the flavor that VCS offers.

    I have my original Sears Video Arcade 4 switch console from Christmas 1980 and most of my original game cartridges. I have now built to around 500 games for the system. I also have a Sears Video Arcade heavy sixer, an Atari brand heavy sixer, Sears Video Arcade 2, Atari wood-grain 4 switch unit, Colecovision expansion module 1 and 2 7800 consoles.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sloan View Post
    The games for it, even the arcade ports done with better graphics on other systems, are still very fun in their own right.
    Here, here. There are many 2600 arcade ports that are just still fun to play, even if you hypothetically had the arcade cabinet of the game. Moon Patrol, Jungle Hunt, Frogger, and Dig Dug, for example, are all immensely playable and rather than make you feel like your gaming experience is being confined by the 2600's hardware, they make you feel like your gaming experience is being framed by the hardware instead.

    Quote Originally Posted by sloan View Post
    Yes, I have played many VCS games on other systems, but still return for the flavor that VCS offers.
    Fact: The 2600 is the only system I own where playing it feels "right" with rf. As much as I enjoy the VCS flavor, I do struggle to imagine more than a relative handful of retro gamers appreciating this flavor if they did not spend their early gaming years with a joystick in their hand rather than a controller. I use this image of the joystick/controller dichotomy specifically because I really feel that the joystick itself is a barrier to people getting down on the Atari 2600's classic library on the system itself rather than on some compilation. Honestly, even I use my 7800's gamepad controller easily 75% of the time when I play 2600 games.
    Last edited by treismac; 05-16-2013 at 10:17 PM.

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    Insert Coin (Level 0) Manga4life's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sloan View Post
    The games for it, even the arcade ports done with better graphics on other systems, are still very fun in their own right. Yes, I have played many VCS games on other systems, but still return for the flavor that VCS offers.

    I have my original Sears Video Arcade 4 switch console from Christmas 1980 and most of my original game cartridges. I have now built to around 500 games for the system. I also have a Sears Video Arcade heavy sixer, an Atari brand heavy sixer, Sears Video Arcade 2, Atari wood-grain 4 switch unit, Colecovision expansion module 1 and 2 7800 consoles.
    I like that. The "flavor" that the VCS offers when playing 2600 games just feels right, when I've played emulators and one of those 50 in 1 RCA joystick systems it was never quite as good as when I hooked up my 2600 to play.
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    two JR's at the moment, a short rainbow, and a Asia 128 in 1 unit

    Here's my games so far:

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