Atari 2600 Game
Produced by: First Star Software
8 Very Rare+
Year of Release: 1983
Programmer: Alex Leavens
and Shirley Russell
This was the only Atari 2600 game produced by First Star Software. It is a great Q*Bert clone. The game is played on a 6x6 grid. The object is to turn the colors of all the steps, by stepping on them one at a time. This game is a lot more fun than the 2600 version of Q*Bert is (and actually predated it by a few months). But it can't compare to the arcade Q*Bert it was based on.
From the manual
You bounce the BUBBLE around a playfield of 36 STEPS (6 rows of 6). The BUBBLE must land on each step and turn it "on", sometimes in a particular order. The BUBBLE EATER or the PIN will pop the BUBBLE if either comes in contact with it. The BUBBLE EATER chases the BUBBLE, while the PIN descends the steps from the top row down. The PIN will pop the BUBBLE or the BUBBLE EATER if they are in its path.
The object of the game is to jump the BUBBLE around and turn each step on. When you first begin the game a short tune will play before you can start. In the first 3 levels, jumping on a step will turn it on and leave it on; but in the last 3 levels, each time you jump on a step, it will reverse: if it's "off", it turns "on" - if it's "on" it turns "off! On some levels you must turn on a particular row or rows of steps before you can turn on steps in any other row (see LEVELS).
The BUBBLE EATER always start out in the lower right corner, waits a couple of seconds and the tries to catch you (the BUBBLE). If he lands on you or you lands on him, you lose a BUBBLE. The PIN starts out at the top, randomly choosing one of the 6 columns. Avoid the PIN as it is a fatal to the BUBBLE! You can temporarily zap the BUBBLE EATER by luring him under the oncoming PIN. The BUBBLE EATER disintegrates and starts glowing. After a few seconds the BUBBLE EATER reappears and continues the chase. Make good use of this time! The glowing time (when you are safe) decreases as the waves advance (see LEVELS). You can turn on steps while the BUBBLE EATER is out of commission. When the BUBBLE EATER is stunned and glowing, the BUBBLE can jump on him without popping.
There was also a variation of this game that was available in a Xonox style case (with a handle on the end). Both versions are equally rare.
This game is valued at around $100 USD
(price current as of September 2001). As always, games with boxes and manuals are worth more.