Star Raiders


By making use of many of the unique features of the Atari 8-bit, Star Raiders was able to show off some fancy graphics. Although Display List Interrupts ("DLI"s) weren't used extensively, they were used to separate the game area and the status area into two distinct parts.

Player/Missile Graphics (sprites) were used to display the speedy little enemy ships and wonderfully animated photon weapons (which look like static, much like Star Trek transporter beams), while normal Playfield (bitmapped) graphics were used to display the 3D starfield, weapons targetter, and forward scanner. Alerts and command verifications from the ship's onboard computer were displayed right within the bitmapped graphics by temporarily sticking a text-mode line in! And at the bottom the status display was shown using text-mode lines with futuristic characters and symbols.


No digital sound was used (which is completely understandable, seeing as the game had to fit on an 8K ROM cartridge!) but Neubar's POKEY was put to use playing explosions, ship thrusters, alert signals, and weapons fire, most of the time simultaneously, thanks to the multiple sound channels of the POKEY.

Back to the Star Raiders Tribute
By Bill Kendrick, 1996, 1997