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Asteroids Deluxe

Atari Asteroids Deluxe, 1980

Fairly soon after the major hit that was Asteroids Atari released the Deluxe version using an extremely similar pcb and code at least for the asteroids floating around so this is absolutely correctly named ‘Asteroids’ Deluxe. The asteroids count and type are actually the same as in the original – only now rotating – but there are still only four types of asteroid geometries at any given frame (in max. 3 sizes). Similarly the UFO behavior is an adaptation of the last, rev4 Asteroids rom – esp. the shot behavior of the small UFO. However the large UFO now shoots directly at asteroids, too, to break them apart and get the game towards a harder gameplay sooner. That is the scheme of the game, really: it is not the more sedate and easy gameplay which Asteroids can offer. once you’ve mastered it: the Deluxe version is faster and harder. To offset this the ship is also faster, a fleet little fighter, and has a shield instead of the previous, unreliable hyperspace. And the addition of the ‘snowflake’ enemy whose components are fiendishly fast at higher waves once broken up.

The upright Asteroids Deluxe cabinet also uses a neat feature, in my mind mainly used by 1970s arcade games (sometimes) so almost a throwback as are the monochrome vectors in 1980: the player looks at the game via a mirror which merges the vector output with overlay graphics enhanced by a black light. For this feature the cabinet style had to change and while doing this Atari slimmed down the control panel massively, too – the original upright Asteroids uses a huge control panel since it was inherited by Lunar Lander – and Lunar Lander needed a huge panel for its thruster and the mission icons.

I really like to play Asteroids Deluxe – at least as much and possibly even more than Asteroids which stopped being a real challenge for me. Just not on a mirrored display, though, which I find distracting. Plus the upright Asteroids cabinet in my mind is just the perfect Asteroids play experience – no doubt because that is the one I’ve played back in the day.

Options

  • Input: Buttons / Digital Joystick / Analog Joystick
  • Language: English / French / German / Spanish
  • Lives: 2-4 / 3-5 / 4-6 / 5-7
  • Reset Highscores
  • Speed: Normal / Slower / Faster
  • Text: Normal / Terse
  • Bonus Ship: None / 10000 / 12000 / 15000
  • Brightness: Debris / Playfield / Shots / Ship&UFO
  • Difficulty: Easy / Hard
  • Game Info.: ”                           Welcome to Asteroids Deluxe, the 1980 Arcade game by Atari.                    This game is an excellent sequel to Asteroids: the gameplay is faster, the sounds more elaborate and the addition of the new killer satellite changes the strategy and skill required to survive the higher waves quite a bit. Even though I prefer the clean black and white outout and general style of the original upright Asteroids cabinet I definitely think this game is even more fun. Not for the faint of heart, though, brutally hard if you are not already a decent Asteroids player in the higher waves.                Once again this is a as-perfect-as-possible translation, all graphics and audio are not actually emulated as such but custom Vectrex functionality is generated for a given game state.                Special thanks to Toby Bermann and Darryl Hirschler who as proud owners of Asteroids Deluxe cabinets were kind enough to test this translation.                                        “

Input

Attract

  • 2: start two player game
  • 4: start one player game

In-game

‘Buttons’ input option

  • 1: turn left
  • 2: turn right
  • 3: thrust
  • 4: fire
  • holding all four buttons: shield
  • joystick y: shield

‘Digital Joystick’ input option

  • joystick left: turn left
  • joystick right: turn right
  • 2: shield
  • 3: thrust
  • 4: fire

‘Analog Joystick’ option

  • Joystick: ship swivels to the direction pointed towards
  • 2: shield
  • 3: thrust
  • 4: fire

Localization

//NAME="ASTDEL"
//

GERMAN[] = {
    { 0, 0, "Geschwindigkeit"},
    { 0, 0, "Langsamer"},
    { 0, 0, 0},
    { 0, 0, "Schneller"},
    { 0, 0, "Helligkeit"},
    { 0, 0, "Schüsse"},
    { 0, 0, "Spielfeld"},
    { 0, 0, "Schiff/UFO"},
    { 0, 0, "Explosionen"},
    { 0, 0, 0},
    { 0, 0, "Text: Gekürzt"},
    { 0, 0, "Schwierigkeit: Einfach"},
    { 0, 0, "Schwierigkeit: Schwer"},
    { 0, 0, 0},
    { 0, 0, 0},
    { 0, 0, 0},
    { 0, 0, 0},
    { 0, 0, 0},
    { 0, 0, 0},
    { 0, 0, 0},
    { 0, 0, 0}
};

FRENCH[] = {
    { 0, 0, "Vitesse"},
    { 0, 0, "Plus Lente"},
    { 0, 0, "Normale"},
    { 0, 0, "Plus Rapide"},
    { 0, 0, "Luminosité"},
    { 0, 0, "Tirs"},
    { 0, 0, "Aire de Jeu"},
    { 0, 0, "Vaisseau/OVNI"},
    { 0, 0, "Débris"},
    { 0, 0, "Texte: Normal"},
    { 0, 0, "Texte: Concis"},
    { 0, 0, "Difficulté: modérée"},
    { 0, 0, "Difficulté: élevée"},
    { 0, 0, 0},
    { 0, 0, 0},
    { 0, 0, 0},
    { 0, 0, 0},
    { 0, 0, 0},
    { 0, 0, 0},
    { 0, 0, 0},
    { 0, 0, "                           Bienvenue dans Asteroids Deluxe, le jeu d'arcade d'Atari sorti en 1980.                 Ce jeu est une excellente suite d'Asteroids : la jouabilité s’avère plus pointue, les sons plus élaborés et l'ajout d'un nouveau satellite tueur modifie considérablement la stratégie et l'habileté requises pour survivre dans les niveaux supérieurs du jeu. Même si je préfère l’affichage en noir et blanc et le style général de la borne d'origine verticale d'Asteroids, je pense vraiment que ce jeu peut être encore plus amusant; sans doute pas pour les néophytes, chez qui il pourra paraître particulièrement ardu, mais plutôt pour les joueurs déjà confirmés d'Asteroids capables de progresser longuement dans le jeu.                 Une fois de plus, il s'agit d'une adaptation aussi parfaite que possible: tous les graphismes et le son ne sont pas émulés au sens strict du terme, mais des fonctionnalités particulières sont définies pour le Vectrex selon la situation.                 Nous tenons à remercier tout particulièrement Toby Bermann et Darryl Hirschler, qui, en tant qu’heureux propriétaires des bornes d'Asteroids Deluxe, ont eu la gentillesse de tester cette adaptation.                                        "}
};

ENGLISH[] = {
    { 0, 0, "Speed"},
    { 0, 0, "Slower"},
    { 0, 0, "Normal"},
    { 0, 0, "Faster"},
    { 0, 0, "Brightness"},
    { 0, 0, "Shots"},
    { 0, 0, "Playfield"},
    { 0, 0, "Ship/UFO"},
    { 0, 0, "Debris"},
    { 0, 0, "Text: Normal"},
    { 0, 0, "Text: Terse"},
    { 0, 0, "Difficulty: Easy"},
    { 0, 0, "Difficulty: Hard"},
    { 0, 0, "2-4"},
    { 0, 0, "3-5"},
    { 0, 0, "4-6"},
    { 0, 0, "5-7"},
    { 0, 0, "10000"},
    { 0, 0, "12000"},
    { 0, 0, "15000"},
    { 0, 0, "                           Welcome to Asteroids Deluxe, the 1980 Arcade game by Atari.                    This game is an excellent sequel to Asteroids: the gameplay is faster, the sounds more elaborate and the addition of the new killer satellite changes the strategy and skill required to survive the higher waves quite a bit. Even though I prefer the clean black and white outout and general style of the original upright Asteroids cabinet I definitely think this game is even more fun. Not for the faint of heart, though, brutally hard if you are not already a decent Asteroids player in the higher waves.                Once again this is a as-perfect-as-possible translation, all graphics and audio are not actually emulated as such but custom Vectrex functionality is generated for a given game state.                Special thanks to Toby Bermann and Darryl Hirschler who as proud owners of Asteroids Deluxe cabinets were kind enough to test this translation.                                        "}
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