In an industry where an obese plumber can become a cultural icon, it’s no wonder that in video games, weird is normal. However nutty they get, these oddities were never as strange as the ones for the Atari 2600. Ironically the most bizarre of these came out around the crash of the video game industry, causing most of them to go unnoticed in the rubble of a once great gaming console. Take a look weirdest Games you'll ever see, all for the Atari 2600.
1. The A-Team
From Howard Scott Warshaw, the man who brought you Atari 2600 classics such as Raiders of the Lost Ark, Yars' Revenge and E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial, comes a game that was just too darn weird to release.
Based on the high-octane television series, you play Mr. T's floating disembodied head and "Pity the Fool" who tries to make any nuclear warheads! Unlike the show where no one ever dies, the goal here is to kill the A-Teams arch-rival Colonel Decker, who has for some reason decided to turn traitor to U.S. and is supervising the construction of a nuke. The game was built, but canceled before its release. A few prototype cartridges leaked to the fan community, making this a much sought after cult classic.
2. Chase the Chuck Wagon
Nothing goes together better than video games and kibble, so it was only inevitable that the first and only video game about dog food was inspired by those classic 80s Chuck Wagon commercials. You control a dog dodging flying bones, deadly tumbleweeds and his sinister master, all while racing though a series of mazes to reach a giant Chuck Wagon. Once there you get to grub and gain points. The only way to get this rarity was to send in proof-of-purchases from Check Wagon brand dog chow.
In space no one can hear you go "waka-waka-waka-CHOMP". The 1979 big budget Ridley Scott motion picture made its video game debut as this cheap Pac-Man rip-off. The ghost monsters have been substituted with the insect-like Aliens, and pellets replaced with Alien eggs. Stomping through a maze filled with Alien eggs you must crush them all as you avoid multiple Alien baddies. With no power pellets in site you are now equipped with a flame thrower.
4. Pepsi Invaders aka Coke Wins!
An in-joke parody game commissioned by the Coca-Cola Company as a gift to employees and to take pot shots at the competition. A reskinned version of Space Invaders, the player ship is shaped like a can with wings and fires at invading letters that spell out Pepsi. Players get a bonus for hitting the Pepsi logo mother ship. The game was never intended to sell with only 125 cartridges manufactured.
5. Sneak 'n Peek
The first and only virtual hide 'n seek game designed for kids too lazy to play in real life. Not intended for latchkey kids who have no one else to play with, Sneak 'n Peak requires two players. The game does feature some innovative approaches, like having the 2nd player or "Seeker" put his controller down and physically leave the room so he can't see the TV and watch where the "hider" creeps off to. With only three different screens, there aren’t many places for anyone to hide.
6. Tooth Protectors
Deflect tooth rotting food particles from injuring your precious pearly whites in this advergame available only by mailing in proof-of-purchases from Crest toothpaste. On a platform of teeth, you hold a shield of fluoride protection and stop those perfect choppers from getting damaged by the sinister Snack Attacker. If more than three of his cavity causing crusties gets by you, it's time to bring in the big guns: a giant tooth brush and dental floss.
7. Kool-Aid Man
A perfect match for Tooth Protectors
. While one teaches kids how to take care of their teeth, Kool-Aid Man encourages rotting them! In the 80s General Foods Corps marketing team turned the wall-smashing Kool-Aid Man into a pop-culture icon, with his pitcher puss appearing on toys, t-shirts, comic books and, with enough Kool-Aid points, an Atari 2600 game!
You play Kool-Aid man, as your archrivals, the Thirsties, infest his summer pool party. Not only are these dried up pests buzzing around the yard, but they're drinking up all the pool water. When the Thirsties take a swig from your swimming hole, you've got to offer up your refreshing liquid innards. A pretty fun game if you can find it.
8. Communist Mutants From Space
This Space Invaders rip-off is mainly weird for its name and enemies political affiliation. Like Space Invaders you play a horizontally scrolling ship blasting away at an invading enemy fleet of slowly descending aliens. What makes this game unique are that the aliens are all commie bastards, threatening democracy across the universe! Once you shoot an enemy ship down, the mother ship drops an egg with a new "comrade" hatched to take its place. Progressing to the next level requires you blow up the egg spurting mother ship, and reject the teachings of Karl Marx.
9. I Want My Mommy
In a game specifically designed for tots ages eight and under, players control a little teddy bear crybaby who has woken up from a nightmare and needs his mommy's big hug to make the bad dreams go away. In a design that looks suspiciously like the Popeye game, Teddy must climb up a series of platforms connected by "stardust ladders" and avoid Dream Demons who aim to kill the baby bear. Teddy's only defenses against these hell spawns are heart kisses Mommy throws to Teddy. This game teaches youngsters everything they'll need to know about life: Demons, Death, Killing, Magic and having to fight in order to receive a mother's love.
10. Revenge of The Beefsteak Tomatoes
In a concept stolen...er..."inspired" by the cult classic film Attack of the Killer Tomatoes; as a professional tomato sprayer you must trap the revolting produce by building a wall and sealing them in behind it, but don't think the tomatoes are goanna take that kind of ketchup! They'll toss at you exploding tomato bombs and attack from above with flying Beefsteak Tomatoes.
11. Journey Escape
A game starring the hottest rock bands of the 80s...Journey! Now, don't get ahead of yourself and think nobodies like you will actually get to play band members, instead you lead the exciting life of one of their roadies. You're put to work getting them safely from the concert to their spaceship, the Scarab Escape Vehicle. Protect them from crazed groupies, crooked promoters and tabloid photographers, but more important than the band members, you've gotta keep their concert money safe! What a hero!
The game features only part of a Journey song (Don't Stop Believin'). The rest of the music is an original score (not by Journey). Could this game be the turning point that caused the band to break up only two years later?
While I Want My Mommy is on one end of the weird spectrum, Porky's is on the other, in a game no mother could love. Based on the raunchy classic teen sex comedy (isn't that weird enough?) you play the role of Pee Wee on a mission to blow up the Porky's Bar & Strip Club. Along the way you peek into the girls shower, evade Ms. Balbricker, run though a Frogger-like level, avoiding enemies such as strippers, Cops, a pigmobile, Attack Pigs, etc. and escape the Swamp Pit by pole-vaulting out.