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Good old days of video games

Techcrunch had a post today that reminded me that this month is the 30th anniversary of the launch of the Atari 2600.

I worked at a company, GCC Technologies (now GCC Printers), that developed games for Atari.  I worked on a bunch of 2600 games, including Phoenix, Jungle Hunt, Battlezone, and Joust.  This all happened between 1982 and 1984.

The most satisfying thing about that is that these games still have appeal today.  I tihnk that it is the casual nature of these games -- they are easy to learn and control, they are not intimidating to start, they are not too intense, and they don't take that long to play (unless you are really good!).  Too many of today's games, particularly the action games, are too intense for a lot of kids.  I have found that a lot of kids enjoy these casual games, which is one reason why they have been continuously popular.  Also, adults love playing the games of their youth.

I still remember the first time that one of my CEOs, who was just the right age, found out that I had worked on 2600 Joust.  He was the neighborhood champion and looked at me like I was a god!  Unfortunately, celebrity is fleeting.

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Comments

Chandra,

Yes, I remember working on the 7800. I worked on Desert Falcon, an original game with 3-D graphics and an Egyptian theme. It was a pretty ambitious project, and Atari eventually released it. I was at the Vintage Computer Fair event at Sun where we had a mini-GCC reunion. Steve Golson regaled us with stories of GCC as only he can tell them. It was a lot of fun.

Mike

Mike..I love the 2600...I just got my first one recently. I suspect the 2600 will live on forever through the use of emulation, but there is nothing like real hardware. As a hobby I collect old 8-bit machines (Trs-80, Apple Lisa, Atari 800 etc.) and recently found out that the 7800 was designed by GCC. Did you happen to attend the GCC get together at the Sun campus a few years back? It was a great event and the stories were very interesting.

Thanks,
Chandra

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