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Bobbety_F's Blog - My Quest for the Activision Patches!


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In addition to videos of my Gaming Odyssey, I am also recording my quest for the Activision patches (in virtual form, although I may try to track some of them down on eBay at some point).

I had never heard of these until I happened upon Spider Fighter - which I think might just be the best single screen shooter ever made! – and, through emulation, singularly failed to reach the required score! I couldn’t let it lie, however, and - as I noted in the forums – I tried again on genuine Atari hardware, and managed to hit the requisite 40, 000 points quite quickly. No higher, just 40, 000. One day, I’ll try and hit the 50, 000 (I know, lofty ambitions;-))

This got me thinking. Why not try to get all of the patches!? I ignored the voice at the back of my head saying, ‘Because they’re hard when you have old-man reactions, you fool!’

The next obvious choice (as it was the next 2600 game in my main series), was River Raid…and dear me, that’s hard, so it’s one I’ll come back to! Likewise Enduro. I salute anyone who can reach the end of Day Five. I’m finally able to start Day Three, but am currently…resting, in order to, er, come back refreshed:)

Following these failures, I the did a little research right here on AtariAge to try and find the games for which the patches are most easily attained. Ice Hockey seems to be one of them, so off I went, initially via emulation, one hopeful Saturday afternoon. It started well enough, with one or two goals scored right off the bat (or stick!). So encouraged was I, that I hit the screen-record button and restarted the game – this was going to be a piece of cake! So I played and played…and played, and lost and lost…and lost. For more than two hours I lost. Eventually I decided a break was in order…

…I returned to Ice Hockey two weeks later while on holiday - via emulation, as I could only take portable technology with me, and my VCS doesn’t really fit into that category…or my suitcase. It seemed the break had helped. I was still losing, but to not quite such a humiliating de!ree. Finally, feeling relatively confident, I pressed record, an action which had previously triggered crushing defeat! And I did it. I actually did it. It was close (9 to 8 ) but hey, a win’s a win!

The recording failed.

I took this as a sign that I should really wait and try again on the real hardware - hooked up to a DVD recorder - which I did this past weekend, two weeks after the recording-that-wasn’t. Within twenty minutes, I won 14 to 6, and it’s an achievement of which I am very proud…and still slightly shockedJ

So now I need to think about which patch to try for next. Are any other patches are considered ‘easy’? Any suggestions from the AtariAge cognoscenti will be very gratefully received and I promise to regale (!) you all with the story of my path to...ahem…glory!

Here’s the video – just imagine my breath being very firmy held during the final minute!

Until next time…

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