I was an avid Atari player in my youth and playing the Atari 2600 Action Pack brings back old memories. These games were just how I remember them, for better or worse. Activision didn't try to spruce the games up or take them to 3D format. They left the games' original integrity intact.
There are some great games in this little bundle. For example, here we find Pitfall, which basically set the standard for 2D platforming as we know it. After all these years, this game is still so much fun--jumping over pits and onto alligators, finding gold bars and jewelry. What a blast! Fishing Derby is another great one. You basically compete with another fisherman in a duel to see who can catch the most fish. Fun and carefree, just like the Atari was in older days. Other notable games are H.E.R.O, a rather obscure title in which you must rescue people, Kaboom!, where you must stop the mad bomber by catching his bombs, and Frostbite, where you must help your little Eskimo build an igloo by jumping on ice. All these games are really fun and addictive.
Unfortunately, there are some stinkers in the pack. There's Crackpots, which is basically a rip-off of Kaboom!; Freeway, an uninspired Frogger; and a few other 2D side-scrolling shoot 'em ups. The five games I mentioned above are about the only ones worth playing in this game pack. That leaves ten other games that aren't too terribly fun or exciting. Does that make this collection worth your hard-earned money?
Not quite and this is unfortunate. Atari 2600 Action Pack could have been a great collection but it failed. For one thing, there aren't enough games on this CD-ROM. CDs can hold around 650 MB worth of data and these games can't possibly take up more than 50k each. To make this worse, you can go out and find almost any Atari arcade game made on the Internet. This somewhat defeats the purpose of getting this collection. Also, Activision didn't put nearly enough classics in the pack. Where is Endurance or Berserk, or my personal favorite, Keystone Kapers?
Unfortunately, the answer is that other good games are being held back by Activision to include on future CD collections. Why distribute one CD with all the games when you can spread it out over two, three, or even four CDs and have the customer dig deeper in his pockets?
Had there been at least fifty games including all the old classics and maybe a nice little presentation on the history of each, Atari 2600 Action Pack would have been a great buy. As it is, it's a fairly obvious money-making scheme.
Graphics: Well, they're Atari graphics--little lines with very little color.
Sound: The sounds are blips, but what good blips they are!
Enjoyment: There are some good games to be found in this collection, but the majority of it is pretty bad and dull. At least there is that nostalgic feeling.
Replay Value: There aren't nearly enough games on here to warrant very much play or replay for that matter.
It's time to set the Way-Back Clock to the early 80s (that's 1980s), when little plastic boxes with fake wood trim ruled the video gaming landscape. In Atari 2600 Action Pack, Activision relives its early glory with 15 of its most popular game cartridges. These aren't PC ports--this package includes a 2600 emulator and the actual cartridge ROMs.
The following games are included: Boxing Chopper Command Cosmic Commuter Crackpots Fishing Derby Freeway Frostbite Grand Prix H.E.R.O. Kaboom! Pitfall! River Raid Seaquest Sky Jinks Spider Fighter Each game includes on-line help that also provides a short history of the game and its designer.
People who downloaded Activision's Atari 2600 Action Pack have also downloaded:
Activision's Atari 2600 Action Pack 2, Atari: 80 Classic Games in One!, Atari Anniversary Edition, Atari Arcade Hits, Namco Museum 50th Anniversary, 3-D Ultra NASCAR Pinball, William's Arcade Classics, Absolute Pinball
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