Sunday, December 26, 2010

Game of the Week: Tron Deadly Discs for Atari 2600

If you are a fan of the Intellivision home video game system from the early 1980s, you've almost had to have heard of the game Tron Deadly Discs. It was an awesome game, pitting the onscreen character against computerized warriors and a giant robot known as the RECOGNIZER.

But did you also know there was a Tron Deadly Discs game for the famous Atari 2600 home video game system of the day? Not only that, but there was even a version of the game for the Aquarius Home Computer system, but that sense because the Aquarius was made by Mattel, the same company that made the Intellivision.

Mattel also made the Tron Deadly Discs game for the Atari 2600, but under its M Network titles, basically Mattel's title for games it made that could be played on the Atari 2600.

As could be expected, the graphics for the Atari version of the game weren't quite as strong as those for the Intellivision, but the Intellivision was generally known to have superior graphics in the very early 1980s. And the gameplay wasn't quite the same, though it was pretty close.

But does that mean Tron Deadly Discs for the Atari 2600 isn't worth playing? Not at all.

Tron: Deadly Discs (Atari 2600)There was still plenty of great action as you controlled a character running around a huge arena avoiding enemies and the throwing discs from the enemies. The onscreen character even had a throwing disc of his own and could use it to take out the warrior enemies. Unfortunately, the RECOGNIZER robot doesn't appear in the Atari 2600 version of the game.

Also, to help with strategy, the character can throw discs into doors that appear along the top and bottom and sides of the arena on screen. Once a disc hits a door, the door changes color, and if there's another door opposite that door in the arena, then the character can run through the door and come out on the other side of the arena, sort of like when Pac-Man travels through the tunnel on the left and right sides of the screen to come out the other side.

The graphics here are fair, at least standard for the Atari 2600. And the gameplay is decent, but unfortunately once you've gotten halfway decent at this game it tends to lose a lot of its luster because there are no new elements to add flavor. Of course, that could be argued for a lot of video games from the time period.
If you've got an Atari 2600 sitting around and you like to collect games for the system, check out some places online and do a search for Tron Deadly Discs under the M Network title.

Video game links

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