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#1 2009-07-03 22:22:28

Registered: 2007-08-18
Posts: 1,201

Source Code of Several Atari 7800 Games Released!

Atari has "unofficially" released the source code to several Atari 7800 games. … -released/

Some real classics here, and some of my favorites:

Robotron: 2084
Dig Dug
Ms. Pac-Man
Food Fight
Hat Trick
Sphinx/Nile Flyer/Desert Falcon
Super Stunt Cycle/Motopsycho

There is also code for the NTSC and PAL OSes.

This is original source code, mind you, not merely disassembled binaries. Comments, labels, everything is intact. Not sure if these are final release versions or not. I wonder how much of the arcade conversions are ported code vs. original. Regardless, it should give anyone interested in recreating some of these classics amazing insight into their workings. I live for this stuff. smile

Interestingly, there appears to be Asteroids source code and object code included with the OS source code. This was not a built-in game as far as I can tell. Even more interesting, the code refers to the Atari 3600. No such console was ever released. This console, codenamed Sylvia, was developed as a follow-on to the original 2600. Backwards compatibility with the 2600 was one of the 7800's features as well. It would appear that the systems are similar. In fact, they are the same. Despite having shelves of hardware ready for market, the 3600 project was canceled in 1984 during Atari's implosion. After Atari changed hands, the project was revived, renamed, and released in 1986 to compete against the Nintendo Entertainment System. Yes, the technology was already two years when it was introduced. Obviously, it couldn't compete. The funny thing is, the NES was supposed to be released by Atari in North America. Nintendo didn't feel they could market it themselves. After some management shakeups, the licensing deal was thrown out, and the rest, as they say, is history.

There is some 7800 development software available as well. I never knew the Atari ST was the development system for the 7800, and I thought I knew my Atari history. If you want to play with that, I highly recommend STEem Engine. Gemulator is a very good option as well.

This is a pretty amazing. Grab 'em before the lawyers find out. … -released/

Abusing forum power since 1986.


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