aka: Ballblaster
Buy on Apple II
Buy on Atari 5200
Buy on Commodore 64
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Description official descriptions

In the year 3037, the most competitive sport in the known universe is Ballblazer. For the first time ever, humans from the planet Earth have won the right to compete in the final round of the Ballblazer Championship, to fight for Earth's honor and the title Masterblazer!

Ballblazer is a 3D futuristic soccer-like game, where the player (inside a Rotofoil) is set on a one-on-one 1,155 square playing field (the Grid). The objective of the player is to kick a floating ball (Plasmorb) inside the opponent's goal (Goalbeams). A player may compete against a human or computer opponent.

The Rotofoil is equipped with a multi-purpose forcefield. This forcefield when in short distance of the Plasmorb will act as a pull field, automatically pulling the Plasmorb towards the player. When a player in possession of the Plasmorb shoots, the forcefield will act as a push field and launch the ball. When the match starts, the player must move down the field, attempt to gain possession of the Plasmorb using the joystick and blast the Plasmorb to an intended direction.

The player should also be aware that the Goldbeams move slightly every second and the distance between them will shrink. The highest scoring goals are goals made when Goldbeams have disappeared across the horizon (Over The Horizon/OTH shots). A player may also attempt to steal possession of a Plasmorb by rushing beside the opponent and blast the Plasmorb away. The game ends when time runs out or a player wins 10 consecutive goals. If the game ends in a draw, overtime will apply and the first player to score will win the game.

Scoring* Close-in goals - 1 point

  • Goals near Goldbeams - 2 points
  • OTH shots - 3 points
  • Players may steal points from each other by making goals.
  • The total combined score of both players cannot exceed 10 points.
  • A player winning 10 consecutive points automatically wins the game.


  • ボールブレイザー - Japanese spelling

Groups +



Credits (Commodore 64 version)

10 People (9 developers, 1 thanks)

Project Leader
Contributions and Support by
Special Thanks to
A Lucasfilm game converted by
  • K-Byte
Additional Programming by



Average score: 77% (based on 15 ratings)


Average score: 3.2 out of 5 (based on 38 ratings with 1 reviews)

Simple Game but Lots of Fun

The Good
The game was simple enough....a soccer-type game, set on the "grid", and played with robotic "rotofoils" . The music, based on some sort of fractal equation, was incredible (I can still hear it today, and I haven't played in 15 years). Large numbers of robot competition made it a challenge, even as I got progressively better

The Bad
This was my first game with split-screen graphics. That, coupled with the "rotosnap" (the rotofoil snaps 90 degrees to follow the ball, or, if the player has the ball, to face their goal line) made things a bit disorienting at first. The scoring system was a bit confusing as well. However, both of these could be overcome simply by familiarizing yourself with the game

The Bottom Line
Enjoyable.....worth playing

Atari 7800 · by Josh Cating (5) · 2008


1001 Video Games

Ballblazer appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.

Delayed release

Ballblazer was, like Rescue on Fractalus!, originally supposed to be released in 1984 for Atari computers and the Atari 5200 console. Both games were presented at a press conference in May. But around that time, the Atari 5200 was discontinued and a short time later Atari changed management when Jack Tramiel bought the company. Reporting such as in Computer Entertainer (e.g. February 1985 issue) and copyright dates indicate that the retail versions of these games were not available before 1985, when computer versions were released through Epyx. The Atari 5200 version was eventually released as part of a last wave of titles in 1986.

Tim Schafer and the name of the game

Tim Schafer was an avid player of this game back in high school. When he was calling David Fox from LucasFilm Games to ask for a job in the company he told him that he loved Ballblaster to which Fox answered: "Well, the name of the game is Ballblazer. It was only called Ballblaster in the pirated version."

Schafer eventually got the job thanks to the original resume he sent simulating a semi-graphic adventure of the time.

The whole story.

Unique features

"Ballblazer" had a musical score which reacted to what was going on, giving the player important audio cues as to their current status. For its time, the use of music that reacted to the player's actions and therefore never repeated itself, was groundbreaking for the industry and has only ever been replicated in a small number of games of that times.

The very first

Together with "Rescue on Fractalus!", "Ballblazer" was one of two games that was the very first titles of LucasFilm Computer Division Games later rebranded to LucasArts.


  • Commodore Format
    • January 1991 (Issue 4) - listed in the A to Z of Classic Games article (Great)

Identifiers +


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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Der.Archivar.

ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC added by Martin Smith. Atari 8-bit added by Terok Nor. Apple II, Atari 5200, Atari 7800 added by Servo. NES added by Игги Друге. MSX added by koffiepad.

Additional contributors: MichaelPalin, Trypticon, Patrick Bregger, mailmanppa, Rik Hideto, FatherJack.

Game added September 29th, 2003. Last modified August 28th, 2023.