CHEAT MODE many lives (128) - edit this cartridge image 1 byte at offset $2946, change the $04 to $7F. If 04's not there, search Joust for the sequence $A9 $A9 $04 $85, this is the #4 to bump up. 4 is the number of reserve lives given to each player at the start. Values higher than $7F are signed-negative and won't work, $80 plays but your first man can't score points.
Model 5200 Joust isn't as good as this 800 because you can't walk your bird off a pad while materializing in 5200. There are beta version(s) too, betas make yer life tokens look like number 6, whereas commercial releases have a mirror image tokens look like lowercase "a". All versions let you find and implement 128 lives cheat.
It's also fun to experiment with "momentary rapid fire" on the controls, for flapping climbing faster than humanly possible. I tested cheat and rapid fire last night and scored over 200,000 by the time I quit. You all know you can only kill a pterodactyl with a lance to the throat, yea? I think the hand at the bottom is named something like "lava monster" and it can grab and kill computer players too. I'm not sure if the arcade let it grab your fleeing free range bird without you on it, or if they put that feature in this version. Great game overall. Funny how Atari made Williams Defender and Williams Joust 2 of their best games most faithful to the arcades, unchanging screen orientation had something to do with it, but maybe Atari was out to steal fans from Williams while never cloning their own games as good. Isn't "Yars' Revenge" name about corporate warfare, Atari vs. Cinematronic.?
Punkydudester - 12/12/2014
This is one of the best multi-player games on the Atari 800. I played this a lot and we would also tease the lava hand and get it to latch but you could make it let go if you flapped quick enough.
I think someone might be getting the 7800 version mixed up with the 2600 version (floating eggs).
Agreed. This one is the very best port of the game on homecomputer/consoles.
I prefer this over the Atari ST, 7800, and others that I have played. Although graphics look better on ST/7800 in paused mode, this game is all about moving objects and those graphics look like blobs except on Atari 800. Eggs are better done with better gravitation rather than flying around as if they were balloons. Collision detection is right on and very good sprite multiplexor given A8. Control is excellent.
I remember this game - it was a blast to play with friends.
I also agree that the conversion is not as good as the original--understandable given the 8-bit capabilities. I can't see ranking this game very high when the Atari repertorie has so many excellent unique games that stand the test of time.
Couldn't agree more Nick. I played this a lot in the 80s. My cousin Jayne used to moan when me and her brother used to have the computer on all day and she'd want to watch the tele, but when she saw Joust we couldn't get her off it! Two player mode was great fun, especially Gladiator rounds. We used to enjoy teasing "the hand" in the lava, see who could hover above it the longest without being dragged in.
Nick Di-Perna - 06/12/2005
Again, another arcade game conversion which I prefer to the original. Graphics are cruder than the Arcade and Atari 7800 versions but the ease of control amounts to a much more playable game, more suited for armchair Jousters like me. It doesn’t get much better than this on Atari 8-bit home computers and that’s without even trying the simultaneous two player option. 9/10