Atari‘s Food Fight is an interesting arcade game. It was initially developed by a ‘rival’ company, GCC, who were involved in a legal battle with Atari. The legal dispute was settled out of court, leading to an agreement that GCC would produce games for Atari, and Food Fight was one of the games made for that deal. It was released into arcades in March 1983.
Food Fight is a neat food-throwing game and in it you play a small, blonde kid called Charley Chuck (unfortunately not the mad-haired UK comedian). The idea is that you simply have to reach the on-screen ice cream cone, before it melts. Standing in your way are a bunch of chasing chefs who will kill you if they touch you. They can also pick up and throw food at you, just as you can do to them. There are holes in the ground too, which you must avoid falling into.
As you’d expect: early levels are straightforward. Later levels – anything after level ten – are much more difficult. You have to do some serious ‘jinking’ to get past the chasing chefs and onto the cone.
Food Fight also had a unique joystick that allowed the player to run and aim very quickly, which helps when playing on an actual arcade cabinet, but makes emulation somewhat tricky.
There are 125 levels in total and later levels are insane, as you’d expect. After a certain point, though, you can’t really do much apart from run and try to reach the cone. Food Fight is a simple, classic, cute game, but with limited longevity.
I would love to see someone take the Food Fight characters and concept further, with a more involving sequel! 🙂