The 10 worst Atari video games

It’s been over 45 years since the release of the Atari 2600 and it’s remarkable how far video games have come during this time. Companies like Sony, Nintendo, and Microsoft have become major homegrown developers, while former trendsetters like Atari are now relics of a simpler past.

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There’s no denying that the video games available for the Atari 2600 in the late ’70s and early ’80s are ridiculous compared to even the worst modern video games. That being said, many Atari 2600 games have strong foundations that were necessary to jumpstart the industry. However, there are also some really terrible video games that deserve to be forgotten.



10 Tic tac toe 3D model

Release date: 1978

A game is developed in 3D Tic-Tac-Toe of Atari 2600

A quick look at tic tac toe 3D model for the Atari 2600 immediately demonstrates how far video games have come as a form of entertainment. tic tac toe 3D model It does exactly what it says on the tin and it’s hard to imagine anyone preferring the wireframe aesthetic of this game to the traditional pen and paper approach.

tic tac toe 3D model it offers nothing beyond its slim concept, but the game’s most excruciating detail is that it takes 20 minutes for the computer to make a move. Such a long processing time drags a simple match to unnecessary lengths.

9 Karate

Release date: 1982

A one-on-one fight takes place in Atari 2600's Karate

An Atari 2600 karate game seems like an easy win, but Karate is, sadly, one of the most embarrassing entries on the console. There’s really no rhyme or reason to Karate‘s, which means that random joystick movements work just as well as any “strategy”. Besides everything else, KarateThe rudimentary graphics make it feel like an early release and not a game that came out later in the console’s lifespan.

Karate it also contains a perplexing game decision where it gets harder after repeated losses. Player losses mean that the CPU opponent is promoted and becomes more powerful as a result. It is not a way to encourage repeated games.

8 fire fly

Release date: 1983

The player shoots down enemies in the Atari 2600's Fire Fly

There are a number of game developers still finding their footing developing Atari 2600 titles, but Mythicon has a notorious reputation for making some of the worst games on the console. fire fly is an unoriginal space shooter that plays like dozens of other Atari 2600 games.

titles like fire fly can stand out through creative design touches, but fire fly it does not include any sound effects, and its background is limited to an empty black void. There is so much white space on the screen all the time.

7 Sneak around and take a look

Release date: 1982

A game of hide and seek takes place on the Atari 2600 Sneak 'n Peek

Sneak around and take a look takes the novel idea of ​​translating the playful pastime of hide-and-seek into an Atari 2600 game. This bizarre game pits Sneak and Peek against each other in what is easily the laziest version of hide-and-seek to date. Players have a limited time to hide, and then search, through a rudimentary house, which then repeats.

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Sneak and Peek don’t have any animation abilities, so they just disappear when they make contact with their hides instead of crouching or showing some sort of change. The game is not fun to play at all and the strange aesthetics of the Sneak around and take a look house makes the game feel like a piece of cursed media.

6 Snake

Release date: 1982

Navigate a maze and avoid enemies in Atari 2600's Sssnake

Snake is a sorry Atari 2600 game that plays more like a demo than a finished product, even during this era of gaming. Snake contains a player, who is carried by a single block, across smooth sand while avoiding snakes, represented by several connected blocks, and other avoidable obstacles.

None of the enemies in Snake They’re really challenging, but the game’s one-life, one-screen setup provides players with the bare minimum. The introductory screen setup is all that Snake it amounts to and even the rudimentary game “Snake” in which a short snake gets progressively longer would be more entertaining than this.

5 warplock

Release date: 1982

Take down enemy invaders in Warplock for Atari 2600

warplock is a hollow attempt to space invaders-As a shooter who strives for the minimum on every occasion. There are plenty of disposable shooters for the Atari 2600 and warplock it ranks among the worst due to its one-hit play and lack of scope with its level design.

There is only one screen that warplock it spins with its alien invasion, making it very easy to figure out the pattern and go into autopilot for an exercise that each time stops feeling like a video game. The game’s high score counter resets to 0 after reaching 100 points, which even erases any interest in a competitive scene.

4 Magician

Release date: 1983

Sorcerer shoots enemies in Atari 2600 Sorcerer

Not to be confused with the rather harmless Atari 2600 Disney, sorcerer’s apprenticeplain old Magician from Mythicon is much more devoid of personality. Magician It’s more or less from Mythicon fire fly but with a sort of derivative palette shift.

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There is not much logic behind it. Magician and lower stakes accompany gameplay that involves retrieving a puck and shooting enemies. MagicianThe instruction manual evokes a rich lore and exciting fantasy adventure, neither of which is made clear in the actual game.

3 king kong

Release date: 1982

The player ascends to retrieve the damsel in Atari 2600's King Kong

atari 2600 king kong has the audacity to rip off Nintendo donkey kong and slap Universal’s celebrated giant ape intellectual property in the game, but make all of this worse. king kong rrequires players to ascend to the top of the screen to rescue a damsel in distress who has been kidnapped by a monstrous ape.

king kong It only has one screen, unlike the many that make it up Donkey Kong. However, the game’s bizarre programming decision to have the barrels “drop” from the bottom of the screen instead of the top becomes frustratingly difficult.

2 star fox

Release date: 1983

Flying through space on the Atari 2600 Star Fox

Another Mythicon glitch, star fox is a poor attempt at an action title in which players protect themselves from alien threats while navigating barren levels to find a crystal. Underwhelming sprite designs and an incessant buzz on the soundtrack don’t do much to enhance the experience.

There are also puzzling control quirks that seem to actively work against the player, like how retrieving the blinking crystal gem in each level becomes a machine-like effort with stiff claws. There’s just not enough to grab on star fox and what’s there doesn’t do much to impress. Fortunately, Nintendo itself star fox later he would make everyone forget that this abysmal Atari 2600 game exists.

1 amidar

Release date: 1982

Creatures advance on the player in Atari 2600's Amidar

amidar is ostensibly a more painful version of pac man which quickly becomes a repetitive task. amidarThe box art cheekily mocks a King Kong-style gorilla, but the stripped-down gameplay involves coloring a crude maze while the player avoids contact with enemies.

Basic grid layouts for levels, slow gameplay, and annoying sound effects only emphasize how much work really goes into the seemingly simplistic effectiveness of pac man. It’s easy to be exhausted with amidar at the end of the first level, providing very little incentive to repeat this process ad nauseam.

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