CAX 2006 Atari Panel Discussion- Part One

Here is the first installment of the California Extreme 2006 Atari Panel Discussion video. The video features Al Alcorn, Eujene Jarvis, Ed Rotberg, Steve Ritchie and Dave Sheppard. Look for part two in a couple of days. Watch part one in the 'Videos' section.


Food Fight Concept Sketches

Here are some concept sketches for the Food Fight arcade game. These sketches were typically done, to present the graphics treatment to management/marketing. A small scale model of the cabinet was also put together to show what the graphics would look like when applied to the game.


Atari WInchester Building

How about this? Instead of modern days shots of the Winchester Building, I have some original black and white shots from 1973-74 era. This is the front of the building, and the lobby.


Atari's Second Building

Atari started in a small workshop building, and needed a place to build Pong machines. They found this old Roller Rink in Santa Clara. It's on Martin Ave, near Scott Blvd. Al Alcorn, who designed Pong, said "When we got it it was an old roller skating rink.  I remember the hardwood floors.  Before we moved in I took my Triumph 650 motorcycle for a spin inside.  I almost fell due to the film of dust on the slick hardwood floor." It's currently for sale for $3.8 Million.


Atari's First Building - Where it all started.

I lived in Silicon Valley for 30 years, and I passed this intersection all the time. I finally stopped by this week, and got some pictures of the first building Atari occupied. This is the building where Pong was born. It has a small office in the front, with a workshop and roll-up door in the back. It's the office on the corner of the building. 2962 Scott Blvd in Santa Clara. Currently it's a machine tool service facility for a large Japanese company. Nothing special, but I figured some people would like to see it.


Centipede Memos!!

Over 60 pages of Centipede related memos. Design docs, field review, collections and other interesting information. Check it out in the Document Library.

Atari Programmers Reference Guide

So you wanted to be a game programmer at Atari? Well, here is a programmers reference manual for working on Atari hardware. Check it out in the Documentation Library.atariprogramref

Dave Theurer Article from Atari Life


Primal Rage Model Pictures

I added a picture section for Primal Rage II characters. These are pictures of the models used for promotional purposes. Check them out in the Photo Album links.


Marble Man- Marble Madness 2 -Operators Manual

I scanned the manual for this unreleased game. Check it out in the Document Library.

Marble Madness Design Document

I scanned the original Marble Madness design document. It shows many ideas that did not make it into the final game, as well as the original title for the game. Read more in the Document Library.

Marble Madness II field test report.

I just added a new document to the Document section. It's the Marble Madness II Field Test Report- This document explains alot about the end product, and clears up alot of rumors. It explains the name change, why the surviving machines have joysticks, and what players thought about the game.


Atari Breakout Prototype Box

I saw an auction on ebay last week, for the unreleased Atari Breakout handheld game. It sold for $821. I dug thorough my collection of stuff and found this interesting piece. It's an unfolded box for the game. The artwork is by George Opperman.


A day late and a dollar short! California Extreme 2007 pictures posted.

Here are a bunch of random shots from California Extreme 20007. Check them out in the Photo area.

Atari Promotional Items

I added pictures of a bunch of Atari promotional items. Check them out in the picture section

Movie Updates!!!

The Movie page has been updated. Lots of new stuff to watch.

BMX Heat Prototype Pictures

Check out these pictures of the never released BMX Heat prototype game. Based on Hard Drivin hardware, and a very complicated bicycle assembly. Built in fans keep you cool, as you pedal away on the track. Check out the pictures in the photo section.

New Documents from the 70's era posted.

I just added a bunch of new documents from the 1970's to the Document Library



I just added several pictures of the Atari 4x4 Pinball machine that I picked up this summer. It's one of two that exist. The other is owned by the Pinball Hall of Fame in Las Vegas. Check out the picture in the Photo Section.

Back for More...Part 2

Now that I have failed at my first attempt at updating the website for the New Year, I think I finally have everything working again.


Back for More

1/1/07 -WOW, 2006 has come and gone.  I had hoped to make more progress on the website, but I just ran out of time last year.  To kick off the new year, I put together an update that I hope you will enjoy.  It’s a bunch of historic photos from the Atari factory in December of 1973 and the 1983 AMOA show in New Orleans.  Check them out in the photo area

SAD NEWS: Kelly Turner, November 6, 1961-September 18, 2005

(Updated 9/24/05) I just heard the terrible news, that Kelly Turner has passed away. Kelly had been an invaluable source of information for the web site, for many years. Kelly had provided me with invaluable video tapes, documentation and information in my research on Atari Games. Kelly was also featured in the Atari Panel discussions at California Extreme 2003 and 2004. He was always willing to help out, and he had some great stories to tell. He will be missed....
Kelly started programming computer games in 1976. His first job in the game industry came in 1984 when he joined Atari Coin-op. Kelly spent 10 years at Atari and was involved in programming , game design , and producing. Some of his coin-op achievements include : Super Sprint , Championship Sprint , Vindicators , Tetris , Batman , Badlands , and Off the Wall.
After Atari , Kelly spent a year at P.F. Magic and another two at Virgin. Along the way he picked up some experience in the Special FX field of the film industry and at an L.A. based company , Rhythm & Hues. Kelly also worked at 3DO and was known for the Army Men series of games.

Kelly Turner passed away today after a brief and completely unexpected illness. He was rushed to Irvine Medical Center on September 5th with an extremely high temperature, extremely low blood pressure, and possible organ damage. He remained in Intensive Care for several days while doctors attempted to stabilize him and figure out what had happened. Despite their best efforts, including dialysis to take the load off his organs, he fell into a persistent vegetative state on September 13th, with no brain activity. He had a Living Will and left explicit instructions that extraordinary measures should not be taken to preserve his life, so life support was withdrawn yesterday afternoon, in the presence of his family, in accordance with his wishes. He passed peacefully in his sleep this morning in the arms of his life partner.

Video game producer Kelly Turner died of multi-systemic organ failure Sept. 18 in Irvine, Calif. He was 43. A memorial service will be held Sunday, Sept. 25 at 10 a.m. at El Camino Memorial Park, 5600 Carroll Canyon Rd., San Diego.
Turner started in the game industry as a programmer at the coin-op division of Atari in 1984. Over the last 20 years, he worked in virtually every aspect of development and production at companies that included, in addition to Atari, P.F. Magic, Virgin Interactive, Rhythm& HuesRhythm & Hues, The 3DO Company and Eidos. He most recently joined videogame maker Point of View in Irvine, Calif.
Turner had been involved with the Producers Guild of America New Media Council for two years, most recently as Vice Chair.
He is survived by his partner, Tom Grissinger; his mother, a sister and a brother.
Donations may be made to the Producers Guild of America, Kelly Turner Memorial Fund.

(this article has been compiled from various sources on the internet)



(9/19/05) Here is a short movie clip, featuring the game play of the unreleased Hot Rod Rebels game. This was to be the sequel to Rush 2049. This is the last game that Atari worked on, before they closed down the coin-op division. The game was never finished, but this clip will give you a taste for what could have been. Watch it here. You can also learn more about the game here.


Here is another game that Atari was working on in 1997-98. Steve Ritchie was the producer for this game, and this was after California Speed had been released. The game is very much, a modern day Roadblasters. The game is not tuned, and it had a long way to go before the 'fun' would have been there. The coolest thing about this demo, is the level layout. The multi level freeway is awesome! Watch a clip of this game here.


Okay, I know this is not an Atari proto, but it is from a company that was started by ex- Atari employees. This game is built upon the Amiga 500 hardware platform. It has a I/O sound interface, and the ROM daughter card added to the base Amiga system. The game uses two joysticks, just like Robotron. One to move, one to fire. You movements are restricted to jumping one square at a time, like Qbert. You can fire in four directions. There is an additional button, which activates your Jet Pack. The Jet Pack allows you to jump more than one square at a time, and also allows you to jump up onto platforms and obstacles. Several enemies try to kill you including some blob looking creatures, a tornado, and an atom particle. You goal is to get from one end of the level to the other, while avoiding the enemies. You can also collect gems along the way, which raises your payload meter. When you are hit or shot by an enemy, you lose some portion of your shield. When your shield is worn down, you die. You can also die, by falling off the platforms. You can recharge your shield, by jumping on a square that contains 'radiation'. A radiation meter, helps you locate those squares.
This is a very cool game. I finally got this working, and it will be at California Extreme 2006. Here are some pictures of the boards and some game play:
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