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ATARI BYTES


Remember those classic Atari 2600 games? They were sure fun to play, but didn't you ever wonder why they sent a plumber to take out Donkey Kong? What Yar was seeking revenge against? What made those robots go berserk? Me too? ATARI BYTES is more than a game review podcast. It's an exploration of the games to divine what exactly the story within the game is. And if we can't find those answers, we'll make 'em up.

Last feed update: Tuesday June 15th, 2021 11:08:54 AM

EPISODE 281: INTELLIVISION MONTH - SUB HUNT

Sunday June 13th, 2021 05:30:00 AM
You're gliding along peacefully, when suddenly your periscope shoots upward. Through the murky depths you are shocked to see rocketing toward you... ATARI BYTES episode 281! Intellivision Month continues this week with Mattel's 1982 nautical adventure SUB HUNT. Is it a thrilling submarine simulator or a soul-crushingly boring, slow-paced game bogged down by an overly dense manual? Gee, I dunno... This week's short story: Bad Poetry Corner - Floaters and Sinkers Thanks to Kevin McLeod at Incompetech.com for creative commons use of his songs "Take a Chance", "Reformat" and "Pinball Spring".  Thanks to Sean Courtney for the "Storytime" and "Jason Sez Stuff" themes.  www,carnivalofgleecreations.com is your destination for info and links for this show ATARI BYTES here, and for my other show IT'S A PODCAST, CHARLIE BROWN here.  The website also has info and links for books that I've written, like HELL'S CEREAL: VERY SHORT STORIES FORTIFIED WITH ESSENTIAL SYLLABLES here. You can also support the show on the ATARI BYTES page on patreon.com and possibly get BONUS stuff. 

EPISODE 280: INTELLIVISION MONTH - STAR STRIKE

Sunday June 6th, 2021 05:30:00 AM
INTELLIVISION MONTH 2021 has arrived in episode 280 of ATARI BYTES!  *Deafening cheers erupt* **Also an angry stampede out the door by some Atari purists** We kick things off with Mattel's 1981 title STAR STRIKE, which may or may not be inspired by Star Wars; which is true of much of life really. That's why I dress as an Ewok much of the time. Can anyone recommend a good conditioner? This week's short story: Star Strike Celebrity Bowling Thanks to Kevin McLeod at Incompetech.com for creative commons use of his songs "Reformat", "Take a Chance" and "Pinball Spring".  Thanks to Sean Courtney for the "Storytime" and "Jason Sez Stuff" themes. Go to the website to find out more about ATARI BYTES here and about my other show IT'S A PODCAST, CHARLIE BROWN here.  The website also has info and links to order books like HELL'S CEREAL: VERY SHORT STORIES FORTIFIED WITH ESSENTIAL SYLLABLES here.  Support the show on the ATARI BYTES page on patreon.com 

EPISODE 279: IS ATARI TOO OLD TO BE POP CULTURE?

Sunday May 30th, 2021 05:30:00 AM
Doing something a little different this week in ATARI BYTES episode 279. Setting aside the games (Wait! Come back!) to share some thoughts I had while working a booth at a recent convention to promote the show and my books. In short, I noticed Atari did not have a huge presence, nor indeed did very much from before the 1980s. What gives? Could it be Atari is TOO OLD to be pop culture anymore?  Whoa. Let's talk about it.  We'll also read entries from the Pac-Man-story-t-shirt-giveaway I did at that con. This week's short story: Bad Poetry Corner: ONE GROUP, MANY FANDOMS Thanks to Kevin McLeod at Incompetech.com for creative commons use of "Take a Chance", "Pinball Spring" and "Reformat".  Thanks to Sean Courtney for the Storytime and Jason Sez Stuff themes. www.carnivalofgleecreations.com is where you should go to find links and info for ATARI BYTES here and for my other podcast IT'S A PODCAST, CHARLIE BROWN here.  The website also have info and links to a few of the places you can buy my books, including HELL'S CEREAL: VERY SHORT STORIES FORTIFIED WITH ESSENTIAL SYLLABLES.  Support the Atari Bytes patreon project on patreon.com here. 

EPISODE 278: STEEPLECHASE

Sunday May 23rd, 2021 05:30:00 AM
Take a deep breath. Smell that? That's episode 278's equine-filled game. On this week's ATARI BYTES, we're playing the 1980 horse-racing game, STEEPLECHASE.  Jockey your way to this episode and mount your steed. This week's short story: STEEPLECAUGHT Thanks to Kevin McLeod at Incompetech.com for creative commons use of his songs "Take a Chance", "Reformat" and "Pinball Spring".  Thanks to Sean Courtney for "Storytime" and "Jason Sez Stuff" themes. www.carnivalofgleecreations.com is where you need to be for info and links for this show ATARI BYTES and for my other podcast IT'S A PODCAST, CHARLIE BROWN here.  The website also has info and links for books I've written here, including HELL'S CEREAL: VERY SHORT STORIES FORTIFIED WITH ESSENTIAL SYLLABLES.  Support the show on the ATARI BYTES patreon project on patreon.com here. 

EPISODE 277: TOOTH PROTECTORS

Sunday May 16th, 2021 05:30:00 AM
What's that in your teeth? Why, it's another episode of ATARI BYTES! In episode 277, we take a huge, wet bite out of TOOTH PROTECTORS and let juices drip down our chin. This is the Johnson & Johnson (yes, the one-shot vaccine people) 1983 mail order, promo game. Instead of saving planets, shooting monsters or winning races, the goal is good oral hygiene. What kid doesn't love that?!?! This week's short story: THE PARABLE OF THE SUGAR BUGS Thanks to Kevin McLeod at Incompetech.com for creative commons use of his songs "Take a Chance", "Reformat" and "Pinball Spring".   Thanks to Sean Courtney for the "Storytime" and "Jason Sez Stuff" themes.  carnivalofgleecreations.com is where you should go to find show notes, episodes and more for this show ATARI BYTES here, and my other show IT'S A PODCAST, CHARLIE BROWN here.  The website also has info and links to some places to buy my books, like HELL'S CEREAL: VERY SHORT STORIES FORTIFIED WITH ESSENTIAL SYLLABLES. Support the show on the ATARI BYTES patreon page here. 

EPISODE 276: THIS PLANET SUCKS

Sunday May 9th, 2021 05:30:00 AM
This planet sucks. Wait! Don't go! This isn't political or cultural commentary. THIS PLANET SUCKS, a self-published Greg Troutman title from 1997, is the name of this week's game on ATARI BYTES. So, absolutely NO sucking to be had in episode 276. Well, no more than usual...      Thanks to Kevin McLeod at Incompetech.com for creative commons use of his songs "Reformat", "Take a Chance" and "Pinball Spring".  Thanks to Sean Courtney for "Storytime" theme and the "Jason Sez Stuff" theme. www.carnivalofgleecreations.com is where you need to go to get info about this show, ATARI BYTES, here and about my other show IT'S A PODCAST, CHARLIE BROWN here.  The website also has info and links to some places to order books I've written, like HELL'S CEREAL: VERY SHORT STORIES FORTIFIED WITH ESSENTIAL SYLLABLES. You can support the show by signing up on the ATARI BYTES patreon page here. Thanks!

EPISODE 275: TIME PILOT

Sunday May 2nd, 2021 05:30:00 AM
For those of you who lack the physicality to dance to the time warp, ATARI BYTES episode 275 has you covered. In the 1983 Coleco port of TIME PILOT, the time warp requires no dancing, just wave after wave of aerial dogfighting. Not even Tim Curry can help you. This week's short story: MARKING TIME Thanks to Kevin McLeod at Incompetech.com for creative commons use of his songs "Take a Chance", "Pinball Spring" and "Reformat".  Thanks to Sean Courtney for the "Jason Sez Stuff" theme and the "Storytime" theme. www.carnivalofgleecreations.com is your one stop shop for info, social media, show links and more for this show, ATARI BYTES, here and for my other show IT'S A PODCAST, CHARLIE BROWN here.  The website also has info about other things I've done and books I've written, including HELL'S CEREAL: VERY SHORT STORIES FORTIFIED WITH ESSENTIAL SYLLABLES. Support the show on the ATARI BYTES page on patreon.com. Depending on what level you come in on, you could get stuff!

EPISODE 274: LASER GATES

Sunday April 25th, 2021 05:30:00 AM
In ATARI BYTES episode 274, we're playing LASER GATES. Two guesses what this game is about. Wrong! It's monkeys and gonads, obviously. (You gotta listen to the show to understand that.) This week's Bad Poetry Corner: IF WARREN ZEVON'S A ROBOT Thanks to Kevin McLeod at Incometech.com for creative commons use of his songs "Take a Chance", "Reformat", and "Pinball Spring".  Thanks to Sean Courtney for the "Storytime" and "Jason Sez Stuff" themes. www.carnivalofgleecreations.com is where you need to go for social media, show notes and episodes for this show ATARI BYTES here, and for my other show IT'S A PODCAST, CHARLIE BROWN here.  The website is where you should go to find out about my other projects, including books that I've written, like HELL'S CEREAL: VERY SHORT STORIES FORTIFIED WITH ESSENTIAL SYLLABLES. Consider supporting the show by subscribing on the ATARI BYTES page on patreon.com. Subscribers get bonus stuff!

EPISODE 273: BERMUDA TRIANGLE

Sunday April 18th, 2021 05:30:00 AM
One day in April 2021, ATARI BYTES drifted into Data Age's 1982 game BERMUDA TRIANGLE and was NEVER SEEN AGAIN. Episode 273 is the chronicle of that disappearance.  If you look up, you might see your host mooning you from the spaceship. This week's short story: BERMUDA SHORTED Thanks to Kevin McLeod at Incompetech.com for creative commons use of his songs "Take a Chance", "Reformat" and "Pinball Spring".  Thanks to Sean Courtney for the "Storytime" theme. Thanks to The Delroys for the use of their song "Bermuda Shorts" www.carnivalofgleecreations.com is where you can go for show notes, episodes, and info for this show ATARI BYTES here, and for my other show IT'S A PODCAST, CHARLIE BROWN here.  The website also has info about my books, like HELL'S CEREAL: VERY SHORT STORIES FORTIFIED WITH ESSENTIAL SYLLABLES here.  You can support the show by subscribing to the Atari Bytes patreon page here. 

EPISODE 272: TEMPEST

Sunday April 11th, 2021 05:30:00 AM
This week's ATARI BYTES episode, 272 for those scoring at home, is totally tubular (that's for you Gen Xers) Or is it? We're playing the unfinished 1984 effort TEMPEST, which tries to translate the 3D tubes the action plays out on on the arcade screen onto our home screens. Listen to find out if it works. We also talk about Shakespeare and say the word "panties". A lot.  This week's short story from Bad Poetry Corner: Parched in a Tempest. Thanks to Kevin McLeod at Incompetech.com for creative commons use of his songs "Take a Chance", "Reformat" and "Pinball Spring".  Thanks to Sean Courtney for the Storytime theme. www.carnivalofgleecreations.com has all the info you need about this podcast, ATARI BYTES here, and my other show IT'S A PODCAST, CHARLIE BROWN here.  The website also has info about my books, like HELL'S CEREAL: VERY SHORT STORIES FORTIFIED WITH ESSENTIAL SYLLABLES here. Support the show by subscribing at patreon.com here. 

EPISODE 271: Q*BERT'S QUBES

Sunday April 4th, 2021 05:30:00 AM
ATARI BYTES 271 revisits an old friend. A twitchy, large-nosed, profanity-obsessed friend who just won't just hold still for goodness sakes. We all have a friend like that. If you're not sure about that, it's probably you. It's Q*BERT'S QUBES, the 1983 follow-up to the adorable arcade-er (I'm trying to make that a word. Help me out. I'll be rich!). Is the game fun cubed, or just for squares, man? This week's short story: NOT THE CUBES YOU EXPECTED Thanks to Kevin McLeod at Incompetech.com for creative commons use of his songs "Take a Chance", "Reformat" and "Pinball Spring". Thanks to Sean Courtney for the Storytime theme. www.carnivalofgleecreations.com has all the show notes, social media, info you need about ATARI BYTES here, and about my other show IT'S  A PODCAST, CHARLIE BROWN here.  The website also has info about books I've written, like HELL'S CEREAL: VERY SHORT STORIES FORTIFIED WITH ESSENTIAL SYLLABLES, here, with links to a few of the places you can order them. Support the show financially on the patreon page and you could get early access to episodes and bonus content.

EPISODE 270: QUADRUN

Sunday March 28th, 2021 05:30:00 AM
Guys, if life has taught us nothing else, we all should know by now that we must pick up our balls. This is especially true in Atari's 1983 let's-stick-it-to-em-and-see-how-mad-they-get, QUADRUN, our focus for ATARI BYTES episode 270. Tune in to find out just how frustrated this game makes me.  This week's short story: CAGE FREE Thanks to Kevin McLeod at Incmpetech.com for creative commons use of his songs "Take a Chance", "Reformat" and "Pinball Spring".  Thanks to Sean Courtney for the "Storytime" theme. www.carnivalofgleecreations.com is where you should go for show notes, episodes and social media for this show, ATARI BYTES, here and for my other show, IT'S A PODCAST, CHARLIE BROWN, here.  The website also has info about books I've links to some places to order them, like HELL'S CEREAL: VERY SHORT STORIES FORTIFIED WITH ESSENTIAL SYLLABLES.  Consider supporting the show by subscribing on patreon.com here. Subscribers can get early access to the main feed and BONUS CONTENT. Thanks!

EPISODE 269: SOLAR FOX

Sunday March 21st, 2021 05:30:00 AM
In episode 269 of the ATARI BYTES podcast, we play SOLAR FOX, the 1983 CBS Electronics port of Bally/Midway's 1981 arcade game. Much like Icarus, we fly a wee bit too close to the sun, but do we get burned? Listen and find out! This week's short story: THE SOLAR FOXES REBOOT The ComicVine piece about the "Solar Fox" comic ad. Thanks to Kevin McLeod at Incompetech.com for creative commons use of his songs "Take a Chance", "Reformat" and "Pinball Spring".  Thanks to Sean Courtney for the "Storytime" theme. www.carnivalofgleecreations.com is your one-stop-shop for all things related to this show ATARI BYTES here, and my other show IT'S A PODCAST, CHARLIE BROWN here. The website also has info and links to places to order my books, like HELL'S CEREAL: VERY SHORT STORIES FORTIFIED WITH ESSENTIAL SYLLABLES. You can support the show by subscribing on the "Atari Bytes" patreon page on patreon.com and perhaps get early access or bonus content!

EPISODE 268: PEPSI INVADERS

Sunday March 14th, 2021 06:30:00 AM
ATARI BYTES episode 268 is bubbling over with tasty goodness. We're playing PEPSI INVADERS, a 1983 cartridge created by Atari to cheer up sad Coca-Cola sales people sad about losing the "cola wars" to Pepsi. This episode is both sugar and caffeine free, so you'll just have to rely on my dulcet tones to keep you awake. Sorry.  This week's short story: THE COLA WARS BUBBLE OVER Thanks to Kevin McLeod at Incompetech.com for creative commons use of his song "Take a Chance", "Reformat", and "Pinball Spring".  Thanks to Sean Courtney for the "Storytime" theme. www.carnivalofgleecreations.com has all your info, episodes and social media needs for this show, ATARI BYTES, here, and for my other show, IT'S A PODCAST, CHARLIE BROWN, here.  The website also has info about books I've written, like HELL'S CEREAL: VERY SHORT STORIES FORTIFIED WITH ESSENTIAL SYLLABLES and links to some of the places you can get them.  Support the show on our ATARI BYTES patreon project here. Thanks!

EPISODE 267: ALIEN

Sunday March 7th, 2021 06:30:00 AM
In 1979, Twentieth Century Fox unleashed an iconic sci-fi movie called ALIEN. In 1982, Atari released the game version, in the maze style of iconic game Pac-Man. In 2021, the podcast ATARI BYTES did an episode about ALIEN, episode 267. It was...wait for it...iconic. THIS WEEK'S SHORT STORY: BAD POETRY CORNER - WHEN PERSEVERANCE RAN OUT Thanks to Kevin McLeod at Incompetech.com for creative commons use of his songs, "Take a Chance", "Pinball Spring" and "Reformat".  Thanks to Sean Courtney for the "Storytime" theme. www.carnivalofgleecreations.com is where you can go for info about my work, including ATARI BYTES here and my other podcast, IT'S A PODCAST, CHARLIE BROWN here.  The website also has info about books I've written and links to some places you can buy them, like HELL'S CEREAL: VERY SHORT STORIES FORTIFIED WITH ESSENTIAL SYLLABLES. Go to Patreon.com to help keep the lights on in the podcast studio. Subscribers get episodes early and bonus content. 

EPISODE 266: RUBIK'S CUBE 3D

Sunday February 28th, 2021 06:30:00 AM
We're back to cram more square pod pegs into your round ear holes. It's another cubist's delight in 266 with RUBIK'S CUBE 3D. The three "D"s are "delightful", "delicious" and "de-wonderful", to borrow from an old song.  Or are they? Tune in this week to find out. With this 3D, there are no glasses required. Or pants.  Short Story: 3D-NYED Thanks to Kevin McLeod at Incompetech.com for creative commons use of his songs "Take a Chance", "Reformat" and "Pinball Spring".  Thanks to Sean Courtney for the "Storytime" theme. www.carnivalofgleecreations.com is your stop for info, show notes, episodes of ATARI BYTES here and my other show IT'S A PODCAST, CHARLIE BROWN here.  The website also has info and links to some places you can order my books, like HELL'S CEREAL: VERY SHORT STORIES FORTIFIED WITH ESSENTIAL SYLLABLES. Support the show by subscribing here on patreon.com and you could get bonus stuff! No, really!

EPISODE 265: RUBIK'S CUBE

Sunday February 21st, 2021 06:30:00 AM
ATARI BYTES episode 265: Back in the 1970s, Hungarian inventor Erno Rubik, we assume, decided to see if he could drive people insane. He designed a cube consisting of a bunch of smaller cubes of many colors. He said, "Here, take this cube. Mess up the colors, then put them right again." Of course, he probably said it in Hungarian. But that makes it no less insidious. The Rubik's Cube was born. Then in 1982, Atari put out the trademark-friendlier "Atari Video Cube", redubbed in 1983 "Rubik's Cube", translating Erno's quest for insanity to our TV screens.  And that's why the world is the way it is today. SHORT STORY: Love Cubed and Lubed. Thanks to Kevin McLeod at Incompetech.com for creative commons use of his songs "Reformat", "Take a Chance" and "Pinball Spring".  Thanks to Sean Courtney for the "Storytime" theme.  www.carnivalofgleecreations.com is where you need to be for show notes, social media, episodes and more for this show, ATARI BYTES, here and for my other show, IT'S A PODCAST, CHARLIE BROWN, here.  The website also has info and links to some places to order my books, like HELL'S CEREAL: VERY SHORT STORIES FORTIFIED WITH ESSENTIAL SYLLABLES here.  Support the show by subscribing on the ATARI BYTES page on patreon.com here. 

EPISODE 264: PONG

Sunday February 14th, 2021 06:30:00 AM
On episode 264 of ATARI BYTES, we went back to the beginning; a bit of a palate cleanser after the disturbing "Porky's" last week. We take a look at PONG, the game that started it all. The original came out in 1972 with an Atari port in 1975. For my fifteen-year-old on the field report, it may as well have come out in the Pleistocene.  Kids, man. This week's short story: PING PRAWN Engadget.com "Atari Pong Review (1976) Thanks to Kevin McLeod at Incompetech.com for creative commons use of his songs "Take a Chance", "Reformat" and "Pinball Spring".  Thanks to Sean Courtney for the "Storytime" theme. www.carnivalofgleecreations.com is where you need to be for info, show notes and episodes for ATARI BYTES here and for my other podcast, IT'S A PODCAST, CHARLIE BROWN here.  The website also has info and links to places you can buy my books, including HELL'S CEREAL: VERY SHORT STORIES FORTIFIED WITH ESSENTIAL SYLLABLES. Support the show by subscribing on the ATARI BYTES page on patreon.com and you could get access to episodes early, bonus content, and maybe even help program the show. 

EPISODE 263: PORKY'S

Sunday February 7th, 2021 06:30:00 AM
In 1981, 20th Century Fox released a little family film called "Porky's" about a precocious lad named PeeWee with a knack for revenge against strip clubs and putting his privates where they probably shouldn't be. THEN, they made the obvious brilliant marketing move of turning that movie into an Atari game.  In episode 263, we play PORKY'S...because listener Patrick told us to. We're still a little mad about it. No shower scenes in the episode though...or are there? Plug your peepholes and earholes and give a listen. THIS WEEK'S BAD POETRY CORNER - BOOBS: A POEM Listener Patrick started an ATARI BYTES message board and has put up one of the covers from BLIP magazine, a 1980's game-themed comic. Check it out.  Thanks to Kevin McLeod at Incompetech.com for creative commons use of his songs "Reformat", "Take a Chance" and "Pinball Spring".  Thanks to Sean Courtney for the "Storytime" theme. www.carnivalofgleecreations.com is where you should go for show notes, social media and info about this show ATARI BYTES here and about my other show IT'S A PODCAST, CHARLIE BROWN here.  The website also has info and links to some places you can buy my books, like HELL'S CEREAL: VERY SHORT STORIES FORTIFIED WITH ESSENTIAL SYLLABLES.  You can support the show on Patreon.com. Becoming a subscriber could get you early access to episodes, bonus content and more. 

EPISODE 262: POLARIS

Sunday January 31st, 2021 06:30:00 AM
In ATARI BYTES episode 262, we're playing the 1983 Tigervision port of Taito's 1980 arcade cabinet POLARIS. Defend your nuclear sub from withering attacks by destroyers, dive bombers and ever increasing frustration. Is the game a hit or miss - ile? Sorry. This week's short story: DOWNTIME Thanks to Kevin McLeod at Incompetech.com for creative commons use of his songs "Take a Chance", "Pinball Spring" and "Reformat".  Thanks to Sean Courtney for the "Storytime" theme Thanks to @M_Carp for the "What Game is Henry Playing While We Podcast About a Different Game" theme. www.carnivalofgleecreations.com is where you should go to find show notes, info, social media and what not for this show, ATARI BYTES, here and for my other show, IT'S A PODCAST, CHARLIE BROWN, here.  The website also has info and links to places to pick up my books, like HELL'S CEREAL: VERY SHORT STORIES FORTIFIED WITH ESSENTIAL SYLLABLES here. Support the show on the ATARI BYTES page at patreon.com and get bonus content and episodes early!



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