Written by Carol Shaw for Activision and published initially for the Atari 2600 in 1982, River Raid is an early vertically-scrolling shoot ’em up with simple graphics, challenging gameplay, and its own unique set of rules.
The ZX Spectrum version of John Van Ryzin‘s classic rescue game, H.E.R.O., looks pretty basic when compared to other versions, but plays just as well as all the others.
Published by Activision in 1985, Tour de France is one of the rare times in gaming history where cycling has proven to be a hit with gamers.
The actual, full title of this 1986 adventure game from Lucasfilm Games is Labyrinth: The Computer Game, but I’ll refer to it from now on as Labyrinth.
Labyrinth was the very first Lucasfilm Games adventure game and is based on the fantasy film of the same name – the one written by Terry Jones, directed by Jim Henson, and starring David Bowie in a big white wig.
I’m not sure if it’s the game or the emulator – or something else – but controlling the spinning top-like device, GERALD, in the Apple II version of Spindizzy is like trying to navigate Cape Horn in a rowing boat in the depths of winter. It’s suicidal…
Another Lucasfilm Games‘ classic that originated on the 8-bit Atari, Ballblazer is a one-on-one, futuristic ball game played out on a giant checkerboard, with players inside floating hovercraft.
David Lubar‘s 1984 classic, Pastfinder, originated on Atari 8-bit home computers.
It’s a strange, vertically-scrolling shoot ’em up with strategic overtones.