Defined my childhood: console video games

#tbt: Defined My Childhood: ATARI 800 & 2600

Atari console

Atari = old school gaming

The consoles that started it all for me.  My maternal grandfather always loved technology & so, when the ATARI 800 came out in 1979, he bought the console for my mom.  I’m not sure if this is something she asked for or not, but I reaped the benefits!  I was a precocious child, so I was very interested in technology & how things worked.  I especially enjoyed puzzles & patterns, something that has stayed true to this day.  I played Pong a lot, though my mom says I wasn’t very good.  But hey, as a 2-3 year-old, I think I was pretty awesome!

In 1985, my mom bought the ATARI 2600 for Christmas, since she saw I enjoyed playing the ATARI 800 so much. The elegant simplicity & simultaneous complexity of the games this console brought into my life were wonderful.  I loved the joystick controller; some games should only be played with a joystick, in my opinion.  There is no doubt in my mind that my affinity for arcade machine controllers with joysticks stems from my ATARI 2600 playing. [See my post on my top single-player and top multiplayer arcade games for more.]Atari joystick

Both ATARI consoles were an important introduction to video games & they began my diverse interest in gaming genres. It also helped hone my developing eye-hand coordination, which would serve me well later on as a soccer goalie, volleyball player, & 1st base in softball.  I don’t remember playing ATARI games that were multiplayer with anyone other than with my mom, so it definitely wasn’t something that I remember bonding me with other fellow emerging gamers.

In upcoming posts of this series, I will be discussing the games that really defined my childhood on these consoles (in no particular order): Centipede, Joust, Pac-Man, Pong, & Space Invaders.

Do you have any ATARI memories?  What ATARI game made the biggest impact on you as a child?

Photo credit: striatic / Foter / Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)
Photo credit: 
mrbill / Foter / Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

5 thoughts on “#tbt: Defined My Childhood: ATARI 800 & 2600

  1. Jemma

    I remember my dad with his 1970s long hair playing Pacman on one of the Ataris with the wooden trim – think it was a 2600 hahaha – good times!

    Reply
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  3. Pingback: Space Invaders (ATARI 2600) Defined My Childhood: Home Console Video Games

  4. Pingback: Defined My Childhood: Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) | My Geek Side Is Showing

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