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Berzerk

MobyRank MobyScore
Arcade
...
3.1
Atari 2600
...
3.5
Vectrex
...
3.8
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Description

You have been sent into a building infested with robots, and must do your best to clear it out. Each rooms has a number of walls through the middle, which restrict your movement. There will be a number of bad guys in the room - on early screens they may be immobile and not shoot at you, but after a few levels they become capable of shooting in multiple directions. You can shoot at them in 8 directions, but can't shoot diagonally while moving. There are gaps at the side of each room, through which you exit, before or after clearing the room (there is a bonus for clearance). You get an extra life every 2000 points.

Screenshots

Berzerk Atari 5200 Title screen
Berzerk Atari 5200 Beginning a game
Berzerk Arcade A High Score.
Berzerk Arcade Moving to next screen.

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

Chicken, fight like a robot! Atari 5200 *Katakis* (37744)

The Press Says

The Video Game Critic Atari 2600 May 01, 2001 A- 91
The Video Game Critic Atari 5200 Oct 14, 2000 B+ 83
VideoGame Atari 2600 Jun, 1991 4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars 80
Game Freaks 365 Atari 2600 Jul 11, 2008 7.3 out of 10 73
Digital Press - Classic Video Games Atari 5200 Jan 08, 2005 7 out of 10 70
Digital Press - Classic Video Games Atari 2600 Sep 25, 2004 7 out of 10 70
TeleMatch Vectrex Jul, 1983 3 out of 6 60
The Video Game Critic Vectrex Sep 02, 2001 D- 16

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Trivia

Atari 8-bit port

The game is also in circulation for Atari 8-Bit computers, this is however believed to be the result of a leaked prototype and not an official release in the early '80s.

Board game

In 1983, Milton Bradley adapted this video game into a boardgame.

Comic book

Atari's 2600 release on Berzerk came with a comic book of Atari Force #2. Here is that comic at AtariAge.com.

Death

The coin-op version of Berzerk has the distinction of being associated with the first ever "video game death". Jeff Dailey, a 19-year old, suffered a heart attack in January 1981 shortly after playing the game.

References to the game

The famous phrases from the game "Intruder alert! Intruder alert!" and "Get the humanoid!" are sampled in the Futurama episode "Fear of a Bot Planet" where they are heard over a loudspeaker and by robots are chasing Fry and Leela. Also in The Simpsons episode "Homer Goes to College", Homer enters a residence where nerds are working at computers and one says "Intruder alert! Intruder alert!" while another says "Stop the humanoid!".

Song

Berzerk was popular enough to have a song inspired by it on the full-length Pac-Man Fever album - Goin' Berzerk.

Voices

The coin-op arcade version of Berzerk had digitally recorded dialogue. There were 16 spoken words stored on a small microchip, and they were put together in sequences to create complete sentences such as "Intruder alert! Intruder alert!" and "Destroy the humanoid!" This was technologically groundbreaking, but consider the cost. Almost a thousand dollars per word.

Awards

  • Retro Gamer
    • Issue 46 - #10 in the "Top 25 Atari 2600 Games" poll
Information also contributed by Guy Chapman, LepricahnsGold, Maw, PCGamer77, Pseudo_Intellectual and Scaryfun
Contributed to by RKL (5614), Pseudo_Intellectual (44369), Servo (55897) and wanax (291)