- Asteroids (1982 on Nascom)
- Asteroids (1982 on ZX81)
- Asteroids (1982 on ZX81)
- Asteroids (1983 on VIC-20)
- Asteroids (1998 on Windows, PlayStation, 1999 on Game Boy Color)
Description official descriptions
Play the role of a spaceship pilot trapped in a gigantic asteroid cloud and pulverize incoming asteroids with the ship's photon cannon. When all asteroids are destroyed, the player can then move on to the next round. In addition to the asteroids, the player will also face an Alien Robot Saucer which shoots randomly across the screen.
The player using the controller may rotate the ship (left or right) in any direction or move the ship forward. Shots will be fired according to the ship's direction. The player has three reserved ships available to replace a destroyed spaceship. The spaceship is destroyed if an asteroid collides with the spaceship or is shot by an Alien Robot Saucer. Additionally, the player may opt to use the hyperspace warp to avoid a collision. The warp, however, may also destroy the spaceship in the process.
Asteroids when shot will break up into smaller pieces or be destroyed. There are three types of asteroids: large asteroids, medium asteroids, and small asteroids. Large asteroids and medium asteroids when shot will break up into two smaller sized asteroids. Small asteroids when shot will be destroyed.
Alien Robot Saucers come in two sizes: small and large. Both use photon lasers to shoot and will explode when destroyed. Alien Robot Saucers will not appear at the Novice Level.
Game Difficulty and Variations
There are 4 available difficulty settings: Novice, Intermediate, Advanced, and Expert.
The game also offers three different game variations: Standard Play* - For one or two players, taking turns when a player's ship is destroyed.
Competition Asteroids - Two players appear on the screen at the same time. Friendly fire is in affect, which means shots fired from one player's spaceship will destroy the other player's spaceship. Each player has separate ship reserves.
Team Asteroids - Two players on the screen at the same time. Friendly fire is disabled, which means shots fired from one player's spaceship will not destroy the other player's spaceship and just pass through. Ship reserves for both players are combined.
The score of the Player 1 is viewable on the upper left side of the screen, while Player 2 on the opposite upper right side. A player will be awarded a new reserve ship for every 10,000 points.* Small saucer - 1,000 points
- Other player's ship - 500 points
- Large saucer - 200 points
- Small asteroid - 100 points
- Medium asteroid - 50 points
- Large asteroid - 20 points
Credits (Arcade version)
Average score: 77% (based on 21 ratings)
Average score: 3.4 out of 5 (based on 117 ratings with 8 reviews)
I was born in 1985, so Asteroids kind of went by me. As did the Atari 2600 as a whole. My first real experiences with the 2600 can be pinpointed to the months before The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion was released. I had run out of recently released games to play and had come with the marvelous idea to download an Atari 2600 emulator and have some fun with that.
And fun I had! Though it shines in simplicity and you are blasting away in space with ease in seconds, beating the game was quite a challenge. It was, however, the only Atari game I ever had the dedication for to beat! The premises is simple, just shoot asteroids and don't let them hit me, but it can get really intense.
I really liked the sounds in this game. And that's saying something, because for the most part I found the sounds that my emulator produced horrible and nauseating.
Later I played the original Asteroids using MAME and I must say that the original version is (not surprisingly) superior, due to the minimal capabilities of the 2600 system. The new bitmap graphics do give it a nice distinct feeling, but everything feels smaller and more crowded.
After a while the game gets rather repetitive and boring. Some variations in the waves would have been welcome. But with the Atari you can't have high demands like that, I guess.
The Bottom Line
Asteroids is fun! You get to blow stuff up in space! You'll get tired of it after a while, but not without having your share of fun. In my opinion it's one of the better titles of the system. But that's a retrospective opinion of someone who missed the first age of video games.
Atari 2600 · by vedder (68275) · 2014
It just keeps going on, and you get another life every 5,000 points you get. Your not stuck in the middle or just on one line, like other games.
Hard to beat.
The Bottom Line
Great game. Definitely one to buy if you own and still play your Atari 2600!
Atari 2600 · by Alex K. (3) · 2003
Pure old school shooting action ! AKA blow stuff up. More specifically asteroids. That's about all there is to it. The controls were well tuned and and easy to figure out. The downgrade to pixel asteroids from vector asteroids was disappointing, but hey ! YOU GET TO BLOW THEM UP ! Who can argue with fun like that ?
No gripes whatsoever ! Period !
The Bottom Line
If you'r in the mood to blow stuff up, I can recommend no other game ! After all these years it's ironic that this is still the game we all play to blow stuff up. Go figure.
Atari 2600 · by GAMEBOY COLOR! (1989) · 2007
|free browser version||Rola (8131)||Jan 26th, 2014|
1001 Video Games
The Arcade version of Asteroids appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.
Asteroids was one of the "Fabulous Eleven" launch games for the Atari 7800.
The original Asteroids arcade control scheme (five buttons, no joystick) is identical to the configuration employed in the early PDP-1 Spacewar! implementation.
Internally at Atari the two flavours of UFO in Asteroids (slow and fast) were referred to as "Mr. Bill" and "Sluggo", after characters in Saturday Night Live skits. After this was disclosed in an interview, Atari was sent a cease-and-desist letter by NBC's lawyers.
References to the game
Asteroids was popular enough to have a song inspired by it on the full-length Pac-Man Fever album: Hyperspace.
The original Coin-Op game of Asteroids in the arcade machines contained 4 kilobytes of code and 4 kilobytes of graphic data. Programmers managed to squeeze it in to 1 kilobyte of data for the Atari 2600!
- MobyGames ID: 8872
- Wikipedia (en)
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Contributors to this Entry
Game added by Servo.
Game added April 12th, 2003. Last modified September 20th, 2023.