I thought that this was going to be easier than it turned out to be, but there are so many great homebrews and hacks for the 2600. I am sure that I have missed some great games, but here is my current list…
Berzerk VE– An extensive hack of Berzerk to improve some of the graphics and add voice similar to the arcade. It is a blast to start this game and hear “intruder alert!”. Mike Mika did a masterful job in taking a great game and making it even better!
Chetiry– An original game just released for the 2600. Finally, there is a Tetris like game for Atari! This game takes advantage of a special edition of the Melody board. Chris Walton, Zach Matley, Nathan Scrum, and Fred Quimby teamed up for a really cool game with outstanding graphics, music, and, believe it or not, high score keeping. Don’t miss this one!
Defender Arcade– An extensive hack of Stargate to create the version of defender that Atari should have done from the outset. This game is so good that you will forget that you are playing it on a 2600. Another must have from Bob ‘PacManPlus’ DeCrescenzo. Grab a friend to manage the special features controlled by the second joystick!
Juno First– An awesome game by Chris Walton. Juno First pushes the limits of the 2600 and has awesome graphics and outstanding gameplay. Not an easy game, but a blast to play. If you like space shooters, this is another must have for your 2600 collection!
Galaxian Arcade– An extensive hack of Galaxian to improve the graphics and eliminate the crazy yellow borders. Jess Ragan did a nice job of making a good game into a great game. I really enjoy playing Galaxian Arcade for the 2600!
Medieval Mayhem– If you like Warlords, you are going to love Medieval Mayhem. This game by Darrell Spice Jr. features a great graphics, great sound, and menu selection for game options. All you need to do is watch the start of this game and you will know that it is something special!
Pac-man Arcade– Rob Kudla did an extensive hack of Ms. Pac-man to create a much improved version of Pac-man for the 2600. Rob’s version is what Atari should have been able to release for the 2600 and should not be missed. If you are a Pac-man fan, you might also want to try the new Pac-man 4K. I haven’t played 4K yet, but it looks to be even better than Arcade.
Space Invaders Arcade– Rob Kudla is back at it with a hack of Space Invaders to make the already good 2600 version even better. Rob improved the sound, colors, and graphics to make this version closer to the real deal. If you like Space Invaders, give Rob’s version a try…you will not be disappointed!
Seawolf– Similar to the arcade game with the same name, Seawolf is a blast to play. The game play is simple, but it is so much fun. Manuel Rotschkar did an awesome job with the graphics and game play. This game belongs in every 2600 collection!
Thrust+ PE– Considered by many to be the best homebrew for the 2600, this is the latest version of Thomas Jentzsch’s masterpiece of programming. Thrust has been updated to be able to use a variety of controllers. Thrust features great game play and graphics. It is not an easy game, but it will keep you coming back for more!
And here is a bonus game that will be released soon…
Space Rocks– An awesome new game from Darrell Spice Jr. The best way to describe this game is Asteroids Deluxe for the 2600. Space Rocks takes full advantage of the ARM CPU and memory on the Melody board to create one of the most advanced games ever for the 2600. Be sure to keep an eye out at AtariAge for the release of this awesome new game!
Of all of these great games, I really have to call out Chetiry and Space Rocks as they push the 2600 in ways that could not have been imagined until now. They both take advantage of the capabilities of the Melody board, in different ways, to produce games that would have been impossible just a couple of years ago.
Check out all of these great homebrews and hacks at AtariAge as well as many others!