Archive for the 'Intellivision' Category

Atari Demonstration Center, Circa 1982

Atari Demo Tower

Two more from the Tower Records Project. The location is Mountain View, California. I don’t recall many of these demo centers inside record stores at the time; Tower certainly had the floor space. There’s a list of games on the Entertainment Sale sign, including Raiders of the Lost Ark, released in 1982.

Tower Mountain View Entertainment

Christmas Morning, Circa 1979: Intellivision

intelligent television

Michael Paulus landed the greatest console of all time.

Video Game Demonstration Center, Circa 1980

Video Game Demo Circa 1981

According to Vintage Richmond, the shot is from a Circuit City store circa 1981. I think the year is likely 1980, because I don’t see Asteroids, Missile Command, or Yar’s Revenge, all of which were released for the 2600 in 1981. I do see Space Invaders and Warlords, both released in 1980.

There are two 2600 consoles in the photo, as well as a Magnavox Odyssey² and an Intellivision. I keep thinking two things: first, who was the poor bastard who had to get those TVs onto that shelf? And second, those TVs look very precariously perched on that shelf.

Note that customers had to “limit video game play to 5 minutes only”. I’m sure the kids minded the warning.

Notes from a Time Capsule, 1983

Time Cap-1

Time Cap-2

Time Cap-3

I sense a theme in these 6th grade student statements from the 1982-1983 school year, summed up nicely by Navin Joneja: “The movie Tron is a perfect example of how computers might take over the world.”

The capsule was sealed in 1983 and released in 2006. The photos are via Mike Bouchard, who was in the class that wrote the notes.


Father and Son Playing Intellivision, 1981 (Part Two)

Intellivision 1981

From Mark Leslie, who lost his father unexpectedly in 2003:

I thought I’d post this picture of my Dad and I playing Intellivision back in the early 1980’s. I love this picture. We were collaborating on one of the simple initial game offerings on this system: Space Battle. One of us would navigate the cross-hairs over the enemy spaceships and the other would fire. A simple task that certainly didn’t require two people, but the game was so much more fun when we did it together.

Sometimes, when my son and I are collaboratively trying to beat the computer on a game (most recently the Lego Star Wars game on our Wii), I think back to the joy brought by the memory of this simple time spent with my father.

And I’m thankful for every moment I spent with my father; and every moment I spend with my son.

The Slush Puppie Video Game Game Card (1982)

Slush Pup 1982

Slush Pup 1982-2

Grand prize: Intellivision video game unit, 34 game cartridges, Intellivoice and 3 voice cartridges. Second prize was Mattel’s Synsonics Electric Drums. With some tweaking, these things made some very cool sounds, and synth artists still use them today. Check out the commercial and a demo below.


(Images via Atari Age)

Father and Son Playing Intellivision, 1981 (Part One)

Intellivision 1981

The box on top, and the game they’re playing, is NBA Basketball. The game on the bottom belongs to the Strategy Network (Intellivision cart boxes were color coded according to game type). I bet it’s Utopia, one of the first sim games and a favorite of mine.

(Photo via Adam Pratt/Flickr)

A Holiday Shopping Guide: `The Best Video Games of 1982′



It’s interesting how the author defines video games as “mindless entertainment” and “cheap thrills” on the one hand, but props them up as “sophisticated” and “cerebral” at the same time.

His description of Intellivision is right on, though: “While the competition strives to bring arcade action home, Mattel continues to woo the cerebral video buff—as symbolized by their TV shill, George Plimpton.” (See Plimpton “shilling” here.) Sub Hunt and Utopia are two of the best games I’ve ever played. If I get another game system, it’ll be an Intellivision.

The Vectrex system also gets a rave review. Sort of like Tomytronic 3D, but with vector graphics, I remember playing a display unit a few times at Sears. Here it is in the 1983 Sears Wishbook. Note the price slashed in half because of the video game crash.

Vectrex Sears Wishbook 1983

I thought this part might have been urban legend: “Earlier this year, a young man in Indiana who was playing the coin-op `Berserk’ died of heart failure.” Turns out it’s true.

Atari’s E.T. is one of the best games of 1982? Somebody paid him to say that.

(Article via Intellivision Revolution)

Kids Playing Atari in Department Store, 1981

Kids Playing Atari 1980

The year is a guess, and the exact location is unknown. I’m going with 1980 because that’s when Intellivision (carts in the glass cabinet on the left) was released nationwide. The Atari 400 and 800 came out in November of ’79, and the Odyssey² came out in ’78. The original Magnavox Odyssey hit shelves in 1972. The ping-pong game that came with it inspired Pong.

I can’t tell what’s playing on the 400, but somebody’s playing Space Invaders on the screen to the far left. It doesn’t look like any of the Atari versions, so maybe my year is off after all. It could be Intellivision’s Space Armada (1981), but there’s more space between the aliens in that game.

UPDATE: The year is at least 1981. Lefty Limbo spotted the Asteroids 2600 cart (1981) on the top row of the front glass cabinet. Title updated accordingly.

(Photo via Historic Images/eBay)

More Intellivision Overlays and Boxes

intellivision bomb squad

Bomb Squad

intellivision demon attack

Demon Attack

intellivision motu

motu intellivision

motu intellivision-2

intellivision space hawk

Space Hawk

intellivision sub hunt

Sub Hunt

intellivision star strike

Star Strike

intellivision tron maze

Tron - Maze-A-Tron

The tasty overlay images are from our friend WEBmikey’s Flickr. (You might remember Mikey from this killer shot.) The tasty box images are from The Old Computer, with the exception of Masters of the Universe, which I got from Moby Games.

I had no idea that Intellivision developed the very first MOTU video game. It came out in 1983 and was released in the 2600 format as well. See a demo here.

Intellivision released three Tron games in 1982: Tron: Deadly Discs, Tron: Maze-a-Tron, and Tron: Solar Sailor. Only Deadly Discs was adapted for the 2600, and it’s the only one I’ve played.

My first installment on overlays/boxes is here.




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