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Mario's Shrine to Movies, Video Games, and Animation

Atari Star Wars: The Arcade
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Long before the brilliant X-Wing and Tie Fighter games, in 1983 Star Wars: The Arcade gave fans of the films a taste of what it would be like to be Luke Skywalker attacking the Death Star.  While certainly arcade-y compared with the simulation depth of X-Wing or Tie Fighter, Star Wars: The Arcade was no less as exciting.  It was probably years ahead of its time and is still just as fun to play today.  Like previous Atari and arcade games, this one had no end(at least none that I could see).  Each successive wave was more difficult than the last, and you just kept on taking down Death Stars until you died.  Unlike previous Atari games, though, Star Wars: The Arcade had a much grander vision.  What Star Fox did for polygons, Star Wars: The Arcade did for wireframe.  It was probably one of the earliest 3D games, if not the very first.  Even though you mostly controlled the laser cannons of the X-Wing and were on rails like Star Fox, you also had a modest amount of control over where your vehicle went.  The sense of three dimensional space and speed from such primitive technology was incredible.  The game even had digitized voices like Star Fox that were crisp for the time period and sounded almost like from the movie.  Even though numerous home console versions existed on systems like Atari 2600 and Colecovision, I've never played them and don't know of their faithfulness to the original.  My experience is limited to a nifty bonus found on the demo disk of Rogue Squadron III for Gamecube.  This bonus game is about as perfect of a translation as you can get and in my opinion is vastly more fun than the demo of the technologically superior game. 
Grade: Great

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