Monday, August 02, 2010

Video game number two hundred and twenty: Halo 2600

Video game review number two hundred and twenty in my 365 Games in 365 Days project is "Halo 2600".

A Halo sequel for a game console made over 30 years ago? This is going to be a bit of an odd game review for a couple of reasons:

1. It's a flash game, and I haven't really included those in this project until now. I've probably played a dozen different new ones this year, this is the first one I felt was worthy of a review.

2. My time with this game was incredibly short. It's an Atari game, so what else can one expect out of it?

Still, I felt this one was "momentous" enough to include in this project. I began hearing about this game last week, but didn't actually give it a try until someone forwarded it to me at work this morning. Essentially, this is an Atari 2600 game built from the ground up by Ed Fries, one of the original founders of the first Xbox console.

According to the internets
, he built Halo 2600 after learning the old Atari coding systems. Although memory is limited on that system, he turned out something that is just as interesting to play as anything else I can remember playing on the system. It's certainly good enough to be included in Game Room

The gameplay is incredibly simple, and has you walking Master Chief through some screens with little more than the ability to dodge bullets fired by grunts and elites (don't worry, they're nice and slow). Eventually, you find a gun and you can shoot back. There are also shields which protect you from the enemy bullets.

That is basically the extent of the game, but it's actually pretty tough. You get only three lives, and (for an Atari game) there is a quite a lot to explore. I kept dying before I could finish it and get to the super difficult levels...but it was fun to play in my browser while at work, knowing that many of my coworkers were doing the same. Of course, that fun only lasted for about ten minutes...and then (like everyone else)...I felt like I had experienced all it had to offer.

I'm actually pondering buying it as a real Atari cartridge and digging up my old Atari to see how it runs on my classic console. That is, if I can find a TV old enough to hook up my Atari and play it. I'd be doing this not because I love the game or anything, but's sort of cool to see something new released for an old console, using a property I love. I wonder if they've ever done Atari Mario? I'll have to look that up.

Overall Score? 6/10. I think this game is a lot of fun for what it is. As far as Atari games go (and I've played a lot recently in Game Room)'s really good. If I could travel back in time and give this to 8 year old me, I'm sure he'd be very happy to play it on the family Atari. Sure, it gets old really quick...but don't all Atari games in 2010? While it was free to play, I'd actually buy this (either in Game Room or as a cartridge)...just for nostalgia and as a collectible.

No comments: