Dragster (video game)

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Dragster
Dragster Cover.jpg
Developer(s)Activision
Publisher(s)Activision
Designer(s)David Crane[1]
Platform(s)Atari 2600
Release
Genre(s)Drag racing
Mode(s)Single-player
Gameplay screenshot

Dragster, released in 1980 for the Atari Video Computer System, is the first video game developed by Activision. It was programmed by David Crane, who later wrote Pitfall!.[1] The objective of the game is to either beat the player's opponent across the screen or to race against the clock for best time, depending on the settings used. Dragster is an unauthorized adaptation of the 1977 Kee Games coin-op Drag Race.[3]

Gameplay[edit]

Reception[edit]

Dragster was reviewed by Video magazine in its "Arcade Alley" column where it was described as having "an interesting premise" and as being "undeniably clever and, with a lot of patience, ... probably fun" but the reviewers also called it the "least" of Activision's early Atari 2600 releases. Specific criticism was given to the "clumsy" and "annoying" gameplay mechanics, and the game design was characterized as "ill-suited to the Atari control system".[4]:105

World record and controversy[edit]

In 1982, Todd Rogers claimed the world record with a time of 5.51 seconds. Until January 29, 2018, this was accepted by Twin Galaxies[5] and Guinness World Records, which later recognized it as the longest-standing video game record. Rogers said he achieved his time by shifting into second gear as the countdown timer reached zero.[6] Eric Koziel, a speedrunner and creator of tool-assisted speedruns, analyzed the code of the game. He did not find it possible to shift during the countdown and determined the best possible time to be 5.57.

On January 29, 2018, Twin Galaxies removed Todd Rogers' records and banned him from participating in their competitive leaderboards.[7][8] Guinness World Records also removed him from its database.[9][10]

The world record stands at 5.57 seconds, which has been achieved by multiple players. [11]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Hague, James. "The Giant List of Classic Game Programmers".
  2. ^ "Dragster". GameFAQs. 2015.
  3. ^ "The Dot Eaters Classic Video Game History - Player 3 Stage 1: Pixel Boxes". Emuunlim.com. 2000. Archived from the original on 2016-10-03.
  4. ^ Kunkel, Bill; Laney, Frank (December 1980). "Arcade Alley: A New Era Begins - Activision Exploits Atari's Success". Video. Reese Communications: 12 and 105. ISSN 0147-8907.
  5. ^ "Scores of NTSC - Game 1, Difficulty B [Fastest Time] - Dragster". Twin Galaxies. Archived from the original on 2017-08-21.
  6. ^ "Guinness Officially Nixes Todd Rogers' Dragster Records". Archived from the original on 2018-02-01. Retrieved 2018-04-18.
  7. ^ "DISPUTE: DICK MORELAND - ATARI 2600 / VCS - DRAGSTER - NTSC - GAME 1, DIFFICULTY B [FASTEST TIME] - PLAYER: TODD ROGERS - SCORE: 05.51". Twin Galaxies.
  8. ^ Wang, Amy B. (2018-01-29). "A man accused of cheating at video games may lose his decades-old Guinness World Record". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2018-01-30.
  9. ^ "Guinness Officially Nixes Todd Rogers' Dragster Records". Kotaku Australia. 2018-01-31. Retrieved 2018-02-05.
  10. ^ "Guinness Officially Nixes Todd Rogers' Dragster Records". Kotaku. Archived from the original on 2018-02-02. Retrieved 2018-04-18.
  11. ^ "Dragster - Leaderboard - speedrun.com". www.speedrun.com. Retrieved 2018-01-30.

External links[edit]