I have some exciting news to share!
Later this month, I’ll begin a new feature I’m very excited about — that speaks to my inner Atari 2600 fanatic fan-boy. Inspired by Ferg’s “Atari 2600 Game by Game Podcast,” I’ll be reviewing ‘homebrew’ Atari 2600 games as I collect them!
‘Homebrew’ games are games that were written by Atari fans or hobbyists, and released as real cartridges, sometimes in boxes, that you can buy or collect. These games obviously were not sold in stores and are more ‘rare’ than regular ol’ Atari games. (There are a few that fetch a pretty penny, however, as any search for Avalon Hill and Atari 2600 might glean on eBay.. uhem!) I’m excited to announce that I officially began collecting Homebrew Atari 2600 Games just this month since my regular collection of Atari 2600 boxed and loose games has more or less maxed out beyond the spending limit I have set for myself. (We won’t go into how much!) However, homebrew games, I feel, bring something special to the Atari 2600 – a huge dose of appreciation and love for a system that has been long gone for over 30 years now. The first game I’ll be reviewing is “Mean Santa” by John K. Harvey and Tim Duarte. This homebrew game was released in December 2009 as a celebration of the 100th print issue of the ‘2600 Connection’ Newsletter. More on that later!
Let me know if you’re interested in me reviewing a particular homebrew game. Feel free to send me the ROM or the actual game by post (message me) and if you want to make a ‘donation’ to my collection I would write a review and credit you for the gift. (And lifelong appreciation, too.) You can find Homebrew games on eBay, in links such as this:
Schedule of upcoming Homebrew Video Game reviews:
*Mean Santa (August 2021)
*Z-Blocks (September 2021)
*Colony 7 (October 2021)
*Juno First (November 2021)
*Super Cobra Arcade (December 2021)
More to come…
Image is from ‘The Electric Frankfurter,’ an Atari 2600 Homebrew fan site. Check him out!
I was just browsing your blog for the first time and this Atari-related post caught my eye. It will be nice to see reviews of Atari 2600 homebrew games. I’ve got a few homebrew cartridges myself and I try to play the new homebrew games that have ROM images that are freely distributable.
About twenty years ago I made my own homebrew cart for the Atari VCS called “Tear-Jerker 2000.” You can read about it in an article I wrote at the time:
(I hope that URL shows-up correctly here.)
Do you have any ideas about how you will compare homebrew games against “regular” games released prior to Klax (the last official Atari 2600 games, I think)? Some of the modern homebrew games look amazing, but they’re sometimes playing on unequal footing, since they can take advantage of extra features such as more ROM, RAM and even extra chips on the cartridges now.
I recommend you try playing “Space Treat Deluxe.” It’s a simple game, but it’s very addictive.