Revisiting this one, as Rob Fulop recently commented (http://www.arcadeattack.co.uk/rob-fulop/#comment-6746) that it's the fault of Atari's Management for this game being so different from the arcade version.. which is a rather absurd comment to make considering hes' the one who programmed it! Fulop: "There was nobody looking over my shoulder to tell me that I should copy the original Taito arcade version as closely as I could so I just made up my own, inferior, version. Nobody cared, nobody even looked at my version compared to the original, they just released it. Looking back, it seems incredible that the company was run so recklessly but it's a testament to how seriously mismanaged Atari was at the time. Literally not one person in the company asked "hey, why not just make our Space Invaders look exactly like the coin operated version that we are licensing?" That's how little they cared."
No Rob, that's how little YOU cared. Didn't realize programmers had to be told when porting an arcade game to make it actually look, sound, and play as close to the original as possible. That would explain a lot of bad ports (nobody told me to do a good job, so I didn't...). What happened to the stories of how other people in the lab would help improve each other's games? None of your fellow co-workers said anything about the fact you left the bunkers out, had invaders that looked as different from the originals as possible, and that you slapped some huge rocket on the side of the screen? If licensing back then was all about having the same name, and not the same experience, then a lot of time and money was wasted on games like this.