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My Collection - Part Three



Hm, interesting, so it seems I have 90 Atari loose cartridges including some duplicates/variations. For some reason I thought I had more.

Not surprisingly, there are a lot of common cartridges here. You have your standard Combat, Air-Sea Battle, Yars Revenge, Defender, Asteroids, Missile Command, Pac-Man, Space Invaders, Berzerk, and maybe Adventure. 90% of the people that have an Atari probably have 3 or more of those in their collection. Those are the mainstays. I have the common paddle games there like Warlods, Video Olympics, Breakout, Super-Breakout, and Night Driver.

Then there's the usual second wave of (arcade) games such as Ms Pac-Man, Galaxian, Phoenix, Moon Patrol, Jungle Hunt, Centipede and Pole Position. Again this is the group that probably most people have in their collection as well, common but also good quality titles. Followed by the sporadic wave of newer titles like Battlezone, Dig Dug, Mario Bros, Millipede, Crystal Castles, and Kangaroo. Pretty common ones and in my mind, all these titles are well worth having. I remember seeing all of these in the stores when I was a kid and even got to play many of them when some of my friends or classmates lent them to me.

I noticed that I have Gremlins in there. I remember hunting for this one high and low, and found it a box of what must have been 500 Asteroids, Defender and Space Invaders cartridges at some video game store in Kensington Market in downtown Toronto. Got a pretty good deal on it as well. Occasionally I will run into a store where the owner has no real sense of the worth of the cartridges or just wants to get rid of it. Mind you, I've had people blatantly wanting to rip me off just to see how high I will go. Unfortunately the game Gremlins isn't very good.

Then there's a group of cartridges that came out in the late 80s like Solaris, Desert Falcon, Super Football, Jr. Pac-Man, Sprint Master, and Realsports Boxing. I recall buying these when I came to Canada at fairly good prices ($20-$30 I believe at the time). Pretty good titles, I always liked Desert Falcon (I seem to be the minority), Solaris (probably the most advanced game in my mind) and Realsports Boxing.

There are a few titles that I wasn't really aware of until I re-started my collection like Radar Lock, Road Runner, Off-the Wall, Midnight Magic, Crossbow, and Double Dunk.

I have some Sears titles, although I keep looking for Submarine Commander.

The thing that has puzzled me how some of the more obscure crappier older Atari games like Game of Concentration are being sold for higher prices than what I have accustomed seeing. Many of the older titles are pretty poor and don't hold my interest for more than a few minutes at a time. There are few where I turned it on and then right away turned it off (Math Grand Prix, Home Run, etc) . I can deal with bad graphics and sounds, but poor gameplay won't get my time.

There's been a few titles that I looked for a long time like Track&Field, Taz and Road Runner. I probably paid more for them than I should, but after a while I just tired looking for a good deal. I play T&T quite a bit and Road Runner is actually pretty fun to play. Taz is not that good.

I don't really care for variants of the games based on label, or go out of my way to collect the Coleco or Parker Brother re-issues by Atari. The ones I have usually came when I bought bundles from someone privately.

I still keep an eye out for games like Pengo, Quadrun or Video Cube and I sometimes think, "hell, just pay for it on eBay and get it over with". With respect to any of the older titles that I'm missing, ifI stumble upon on it when I browse at stores I may just buy it on the spot. It's getting to the point where many times I'm not totally sure what I'm missing. Used to have a list on my phone (even created a Windows Phone app in Visual Studio at some to manage it) but I haven't kept my wishlist up-to-date.

Also wish I had a Indy 500 racing controller, but I have a feeling I'd play it like once or twice and then put it away.

A bit of a shame the quality of the labels of many of the cartridges that I have. Got to give Atari credit for the artwork on their games. Interesting to see all the variations of the Atari cartridges.

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When I got back into collecting Atari games in 2019, I (unfortunately?) got a copy of the book 'Classic 80's Home Video Games ID & value guide'. Although the book is a great list and resource, there are some errors in it; for example, I wonder if the late Atari release games were even made in 1985? The number of different label and box variants was astounding to me. The Sears carts are insane with the first nine games without a department id number, then the two to three department store id numbers they used. I did not even know about the Atari Corp releases. As for Canada, I give up on getting all the Zellers CIB games, it just is not happening.

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