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GhostbustersActivisionAtari2600Cartridge

This was the first Atari 2600 game that the Angry Video Game Nerd ever reviewed.

Before the NES port showed how much unnecessary trivial nonsense can be crammed into a game based on a popular movie, Activision previously made a version of the game for the Atari 2600 in 1985 with Dan Kitchen programming and David Crane creating the graphics. It is a far superior port than it's later NES version, sporting livelier and more colorful graphics, a driving stage with zero other drivers to avoid and the need to get gas being absent entirely. The proton packs are actually closer to the film, being jiggling yellow lines instead of diamonds. The need to buy the equipment is still there, but it's the first thing the game requires the player to do and never requires re-visiting. The infamous stairwell stage as well as the ending fight with Gozer are also completely absent. In conclusion, comparing the Atari 2600 port to the NES version is a perfect case of "better graphics do not make a better game."

There was also an Atari game based on Ghostbusters II that Activision also made in 1989 but it was only released in Europe due to the 2600 still being relatively popular there, whereas in America the vast majority of Atari 2600 consoles were collecting dust on shelves or stashed in boxes in the attic, having been long-since surpassed by the still-burgeoning popularity of the NES.

The Nerd considered the Atari 2600 port of the game a bit better than the NES version, nice and original for its time mainly complaining on the ghost catching segments where the ghost AI was random and made it hard to catch.

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