Future Waves

AMOA Expo '82: The Arcade Beauty Pageant

by Scott Phillips
From JoyStik magazine, volume 1, number 5 (April 1983), excerpt of p. 11


Rumor has it that Liberator was actually ready for production during the 1980 AMOA pageant. It was to be a "super" version of Missile Command. However, Atari supposedly kept this contestant out of the show for fear of it competing with the original Missile Command.

Actually, Liberator is more like an "inverse" Missile Command. Your goal is still to protect a planet from alien attack, but instead of fighting the alien ships from the planet's surface, your four fighters are now in orbit. You must locate and destroy the enemy "bases" on the planet's rotating surface. The familiar Trak-Ball controlled cursor still marks the spot where your ship will shoot. And your enemies still fight with slow-moving, blue "attack missiles." If you destroy all of the enemy bases, your fighters land on the planet's surface and you collect bonus points.

Liberator is a challenging (and colorful) game, but it's best thought of as the sequel to Missile Command, and not as a new game concept.

West Coast Game Manufacturers

What's New from Sega, Atari, Nintendo, and Others

by Doug Mahugh
From JoyStik magazine, volume 1, number 5 (April 1983), excerpt of p. 22

Atari, Sunnyvale

Atari, the grand old man of video games, has a new complex in high-tech, security-conscious, Silicon Valley that looks more like a bunker than a multi-million dollar corporate HQ. Squat, sprawling, and virtually windowless, the building's architecture reinforces an atmosphere of secrecy and paranoia that is made explicit in the sign that clearly forbids cameras, trespassers, and casual visitors.

They seem to be saying: "Games are serious business." We're not arguing -- who couldn't take these game seriously? With only four new games for this year, Atari has managed to pack in more quality and variety than any other manufacturer. Liberator, Quantum, Millipede, and Pole Position are the games, and they have almost nothing in common except the Atari label.

Liberator (described in detail on page 11) is basically Missile Command in reverse, with a few new twists. The most impressive and entertaining part of the game is an animated spaceman face that tells you how you're doing.

Excerpts copyright 1983 by Publications International, Ltd.

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Lee K. Seitz (lkseitz@hiwaay.net)
Created: 8 Feb 2007; Last Modified: 8 Feb 2007