Star Wars Rogue Squadron III: Rebel Strike
Star Wars Rogue Squadron III: Rebel Strike is an action video game developed by Factor 5 and published by LucasArts for the Nintendo GameCube. The game is set during the original Star Wars trilogy and recreates battles that take place during those films; the game follows the Rogue Squadron, under the command of Luke Skywalker and Wedge Antilles, uses starfighters to engage and defeat the Galactic Empire. Rebel Strike was developed as a sequel to Star Wars: Rogue Squadron and Star Wars Rogue Squadron II: Rogue Leader. Rebel Strike added the ability for players to leave their starfighters to participate in ground battles as well as enter and pilot other vehicles during certain missions; the game has a two-player multiplayer mode allowing cooperative play for all but two missions from Rogue Leader. In Rebel Strike the player controls several Star Wars vehicles such as the X-wing and AT-ST across missions that span the movies and moments outside the films, it contains on-foot missions in addition to the space battle missions found in the previous Rogue Squadron series games.
The game includes some unlockable classic missions inspired by the Star Wars original trilogy. The game features two multiplayer modes: Co-op and Versus. Co-op allows players to replay missions from Rogue Squadron II: Rogue Leader in split-screen, excluding the levels Triumph of the Empire and Revenge on Yavin. In Co-op, players share the same pool of lives. Versus features a variety such as Dogfight and Survival. In any Versus mode, players can pilot several craft, including X-Wings, A-Wings, TIE Fighters, Darth Vader's TIE Advanced; the story is set shortly after the destruction of the Death Star above Yavin 4. The Empire drives the Alliance off the moon, leaving the Alliance searching for a planet to serve as its next base. Tycho Celchu, an Imperial officer, defects to the Alliance on Dantooine and leads it to a group of scientists on Ralltiir who wish to defect. During the battle to rescue the scientists, Rogue Squadron member Sarkli defects to the Empire. Despite this, Rogue Squadron and the scientists escape safely in a transport craft.
The Rebels settle on Hoth, but the Battle of Hoth forces them to leave as the Empire attacks and destroys their base. The Wedge Antilles campaign takes place after the Battle of Hoth, leading a raid on Bakura to extract rebel hostages from the orbiting prison. Sarkli leads Rogue Squadron into Geonosis' orbit, where they both crash following an ambush by TIE fighters and Imperial escort carriers. Rogue Squadron fights with battle droid remnants. By making use of various pieces of deactivated Galactic Republic machinery left over from the Battle of Geonosis, Rogue Squadron escapes and Wedge flees the system; this uncovers a ploy to wipe out part of the Alliance fleet over Dubrillion, and, in response, Rogue Squadron raids the shipyards of Fondor to destroy a Super Star Destroyer under construction. Emperor Palpatine reveals; this proves disadvantageous to the Rebels in the upcoming Battle of Endor. Han Solo, having been rescued from Jabba the Hutt, disables the shield protecting the second Death Star over Endor while killing Sarkli, allowing the Rebels to achieve victory.
The production team felt the need to expand upon the game's predecessor by adding enhanced atmospheric effects, more impressive explosions and the capability of having many more enemies on-screen at once than Rogue Leader could handle, among other improvements. The game ran into some troubled development; because of the decision by Director of Technology Thomas Engel and Development Director Holger Schmidt to scrap all the coding of the engine for Rogue Leader so they could "reinvent the wheel" with the knowledge of the GameCube engine they had at that point, Factor 5 ran into various glitches as well as had various difficulties in development of a new landscape engine, causing it to go as long as tedious as in Rogue Leader, due to underestimating the amount of time it would take to do so. Pre-orders for the game included a bonus disc featuring several game demos, trailers, a playable version of the original Star Wars arcade game and a Rebel Strike art gallery. Rebel Strike was met with positive reception, as GameRankings gave it a score of 76.61%, while Metacritic gave it 75 out of 100.
Critics praised the intense gameplay and the ability to have more enemies on screen than on Rogue Leader. However, Rebel Strike was criticized for its on-foot missions, due to its clunky gameplay and lack of refinement. Star Wars Rogue Squadron III: Rebel Strike at MobyGames
Video game genre
A video game genre is a classification assigned to a video game based on its gameplay interaction rather than visual or narrative differences. A video game genre is defined by a set of gameplay challenges and are classified independently of their setting or game-world content, unlike other works of fiction such as films or books. For example, a shooter game is still a shooter game, regardless of when it takes place; as with nearly all varieties of genre classification, the matter of any individual video game's specific genre is open to personal interpretation. Moreover, each individual game may belong to several genres at once; the first attempt to classify different genres of video games was made by Chris Crawford in his book The Art of Computer Game Design in 1984. In this book, Crawford focused on the player's experience and activities required for gameplay. Here, he stated that "the state of computer game design is changing quickly. We would therefore expect the taxonomy presented to become obsolete or inadequate in a short time."
Since among other genres, the platformer and 3D shooter genres, which hardly existed at the time, have gained a lot of popularity. As hardware capabilities have increased, new genres have become possible, with examples being increased memory, the move from 2D to 3D, new peripherals and location. Though genres were just interesting for game studies in the 1980s, the business of video games expanded in the 1990s and both smaller and independent publishers had little chance of surviving; because of this, games settled more into set genres that larger publishers and retailers could use for marketing. Due to "direct and active participation" of the player, video game genres differ from literary and film genres. Though one could state that Space Invaders is a science-fiction video game, such a classification "ignores the differences and similarities which are to be found in the player's experience of the game." In contrast to the visual aesthetics of games, which can vary it is argued that it is interactivity characteristics that are common to all games.
Descriptive names of genres take into account the goals of the game, the protagonist and the perspective offered to the player. For example, a first-person shooter is a game, played from a first-person perspective and involves the practice of shooting; the term "subgenre" may be used to refer to a category within a genre to further specify the genre of the game under discussion. Whereas "shooter game" is a genre name, "first-person shooter" and "third-person shooter" are common subgenres of the shooter genre. Other examples of such prefixes are real-time, turn based, side-scrolling; the target audience, underlying theme or purpose of a game are sometimes used as a genre identifier, such as with "games for girls," games for cats,"Christian game" and "Serious game" respectively. However, because these terms do not indicate anything about the gameplay of a video game, these are not considered genres. Video game genres vary in specificity, with popular video game reviews using genre names varying from "action" to "baseball."
In this practice, basic themes and more fundamental characteristics are used alongside each other. A game may combine aspects of multiple genres in such a way that it becomes hard to classify under existing genres. For example, because Grand Theft Auto III combined shooting and roleplaying in an unusual way, it was hard to classify using existing terms. Since the term Grand Theft Auto clone has been used to describe games mechanically similar to Grand Theft Auto III; the term roguelike has been developed for games that share similarities with Rogue. Elements of the role-playing genre, which focuses on storytelling and character growth, have been implemented in many different genres of video games; this is because the addition of a story and character enhancement to an action, strategy or puzzle video game does not take away from its core gameplay, but adds an incentive other than survival to the experience. According to some analysts, the count of each broad genre in the best selling physical games worldwide is broken down as follows.
The most popular genres are Shooter, Role-playing and Sports, with Platformer and Racing having both declined in the last decade. Puzzle games have declined when measured by sales, however, on mobile, where the majority of games are free-to-play, this genre remains the most popular worldwide. List of video game genres
The Atari 2600 sold as the Atari Video Computer System or Atari VCS until November 1982, is a home video game console from Atari, Inc. Released on September 11, 1977, it is credited with popularizing the use of microprocessor-based hardware and games contained on ROM cartridges, a format first used with the Fairchild Channel F in 1976; this contrasts with the older model of having dedicated hardware that could play only those games that were physically built into the unit. The 2600 was bundled with two joystick controllers, a conjoined pair of paddle controllers, a game cartridge: Combat, Pac-Man; the Atari VCS launched with nine low-resolution games in 2 KiB cartridges. Disagreements over sales potential of the VCS led Bushnell to leave Atari in 1978; the system found its killer app with the port of Taito's Space Invaders in 1980 and became successful, leading to the creation of third-party game developers, notably Activision, competition from other home console makers such as Mattel and Coleco.
By the end of its primary lifecycle in 1983-4, the 2600 was home to games with much more advanced visuals and gameplay than the system was designed for, such as scrolling platform adventure Pitfall II: Lost Caverns, which uses four times the ROM of the launch titles. Atari invested in two games for the 2600, Pac-Man and E. T. the Extra-Terrestrial, that would become commercial failures and contributed to the video game crash of 1983. The 2600 was shelved as the industry recovered, while Warner sold off the home console division of Atari to Commodore CEO Jack Tramiel; the new Atari Corporation under Tramiel re-released a lower-cost version of the 2600 in 1986, as well as the Atari 7800, backwards compatible with the 2600. Atari dropped support for the Atari 2600 on January 1, 1992, after an estimated 30 million units were sold over the system's lifetime. Atari was founded by Nolan Bushnell and Ted Dabney of which their first major product was Pong in 1972, one of the first successful arcade games.
It transitioned Pong into a home console version by 1975, helping to pit Atari against Magnavox, the only other major competitor for home consoles at the time. Bushnell recognized that this approach to home consoles has a drawback in that because it used custom logic burned onto the circuit board, it was limited to only one game and any variants, would require consumers to buy another console to play a different set of games. Further, while they could continue to take games they had created for arcade machines to home consoles, this development step cost at least US$100,000 and time to complete, once on the market, had only about a three-month shelf life before being outdated, making this a risky move. In 1974, Atari had acquired Cyan Engineering, an electronics company founded by Steve Mayer and Larry Emmons, both former colleagues of Bushnell and Dabney from Ampex, started Atari's Grass Valley Think Tank, where they were involved with coming up with new ideas for arcade games. Based on Bushnell's concern about single-game consoles, the Grass Valley team started working on how to achieve a home console with multi-game support.
Mayer and Emmons recognized that to achieve a home console with multiple game functionality, they would need newly-invented microprocessors within the console, but at that time, such microprocessors cost US$100–300, far outside the range that their market would support. In September 1975, Chuck Peddle of MOS Technology had created a low-cost replacement for the Motorola 6800, the MOS Technology 6502, which they introduced at the 1975 Wescon trade show in San Francisco. Mayer and Ron Milner attended the show, met with Peddle, invited Peddle to Cyan's headquarters to discuss using MOS's microprocessors for a game console. Mayer and Milner had been able to negotiate purchase of the 6502 chips for US$8 a piece, sufficient to begin development of a console. Through their discussions, Cyan and MOS decided that the better solution would be the MOS Technology 6507, a more restrictive but lower-cost version of the 6502. Cyan and MOS arranged to bring in Synertek, a semiconductor manufacturer whose co-founder, Bob Schreiner, was good friends with Peddle, to act as a second source for the 6507.
By December 1975, Atari hired Joe Decuir to help design the first prototype around the 6502, codenamed "Stella", the name of Decuir's bicycle. A second prototype had been completed by March 1976 with the help of Jay Miner, able to squeeze an entire wire wrap of equipment making up the Television Interface Adaptor, sending graphics and audio to the television display, into a single chip; the second prototype included the 6507, the TIA, a ROM cartridge slot and adapter, each cartridge holding a ROM image of a game. Believing that "Stella" would be a success, Bushnell acquired the entire Grass Valley Think Tank and relocated them into Atari's new headquarters in Sunnyvale, California by mid-1976, putting Steve Mayer in charge of the project. Bushnell feared that once this unit was released, competitors would try to copy it, preemptively made arrangements with all integrated chip manufacturers that had interest in the games market to deny sales to his competitors. Fairchild Semiconductor introduced its Fairchild Channel F home console in November 1976, which included ROM cartridge technology, beating Atari to the market.
The company lacked the funds to do so. Bushnell had considered taking Atari public but instead decided to sell the company to Warner Communications for US$28 million, subsequently Warner provided around US$100 million to Atari, allowing them to prioritize and fast-track Stella. By 1977, the product had advanced far enough to brand it as the "Atari Video Computer System" and enga
TIE fighters are fictional starfighters in the Star Wars universe. Propelled by Twin Ion Engines, TIE fighters are fast, yet fragile starfighters produced by Sienar Fleet Systems for the Galactic Empire. TIE fighters and other TIE craft appear in Star Wars films, television shows, throughout the Star Wars expanded universe. Several TIE fighter replicas and toys, as well as a TIE flight simulator, have been produced and sold by merchandise companies. Industrial Light & Magic's Colin Cantwell created the concept model that established the TIE fighter's ball-cockpit and hexagonal panels design for Star Wars. Star Wars creator George Lucas liked the basic design consisting of two panels connected by a stick with a ball-shaped cockpit, but Cantwell's concept had few details. Joe Johnston created additional details, such as the cockpit window and the attachment points between the solar panels and the hull. Given a blue color scheme, the TIE fighter models for the first film were grey to better film against a bluescreen.
Sound designer Ben Burtt created the distinctive TIE fighter sound effect by combining an elephant call with a car driving on wet pavement. In the book The Sounds of Star Wars, the engine roar is likened to German Junker Ju 87 "Stuka" bombers, who used sirens to frighten civilians on raids; this could have been a possible inspiration for the sound. Combat scenes between TIE fighters and the Millennium Falcon and Rebel Alliance X-wing fighters in Star Wars were meant to be reminiscent of World War II dogfight footage. Darth Vader's distinct TIE Advanced x1 in Star Wars was designed to make it recognizable, the TIE Interceptors developed for Jedi were designed to look fast and frightening; the Jedi starfighter, created for Revenge of the Sith, was designed to bridge the appearance of the Jedi starfighter in Attack of the Clones and the TIE fighter design from the original trilogy. The V-wing starfighter, seen at the end of Revenge of the Sith makes the distinctive TIE fighter sound when flying by a Star Destroyer.
Dark Horse Comics' Sean Cooke designed the TIE predator for Star Wars: Legacy, set 130 years after the events of Star Wars, to appear both reminiscent of and more advanced than the original TIE fighter. Designers for The Force Awakens had numerous discussions about how much to "update" the TIE fighter for the first sequel film set 30 years after Return of the Jedi, they retained the starfighter's design but altered its aesthetic to suggest improvements to the vessel's manufacturing process and materials. Star Wars literature states that Sienar Fleet Systems manufactures TIE fighters and most TIE variants. TIE fighters' solar panels power a twin ion engine system that accelerates gases at a high speed along any vector, affording the ships tremendous speed and maneuverability. Described as lacking a hyperdrive or shield generators, the fragile TIE fighters are deployed in large numbers from bases or larger ships. Expanded Universe material holds that TIE fighter pilots, who undergo intense physical and psychological testing, are trained to be intensely loyal to Emperor Palpatine and the Empire, willing to sacrifice themselves and their wingmates to accomplish their mission.
TIE pilots were seen as expendable assets, as it was far cheaper to manufacture a great deal of standardized spacecraft in overwhelming numbers than it was to equip the craft. A TIE fighter consists of the absolute minimum necessary to function as a spacecraft, being nothing more than a cockpit with an engine and weapons. Although Expanded Universe material describes TIE fighters as lacking an ejection seat, the player can eject from TIE craft in LucasArts' TIE Fighter flight simulator. During the events of The Force Awakens, the First Order sees the value in its TIE pilots and equips its TIE fighters with shields to protect their occupants, with Special Forces models further equipped with missiles and a co-pilot/gunner seat. A TIE fighter stolen by Poe Dameron and Finn in The Force Awakens has an ejection seat, allowing both characters to survive a crash. In addition to the standard TIE/ln fighter, a variety of other TIE craft appear throughout the films. Darth Vader flies a TIE Advanced x1 in many media, most notably in Episode IV.
The Empire Strikes Back introduces a TIE shuttle and TIE/sa bombers, which ferry Captain Needa to Darth Vader's Super Star Destroyer and bomb asteroids in the hunt for the Millennium Falcon, respectively. Both TIE craft have a design that stems from an unused "TIE boarding craft" concept developed for A New Hope; the TIE bomber's double-hull design led ILM's modelmakers to dub the ship a "double chili dog" fighter. The TIE/sa was the inspiration for the triple-hulled TIE lander, featured in Star Wars #60 and in Star Wars: Complete Locations. TIE/IN interceptors — faster TIE fighters with dagger-shaped wings and four laser cannons — appear at various points in Return of the Jedi. Two scales of TIE interceptor models were used during filming. In the Legends continuity, red modified TIE interceptors are used by the Emperor's Royal Guards, as featured in Rage of t
The Intellivision is a home video game console released by Mattel Electronics in 1979. The name Intellivision is a portmanteau of "intelligent television". Development of the console began in 1977, the same year as the introduction of its main competitor, the Atari 2600. In 1984 Mattel sold their video game assets to a former Mattel Electronics executive and investors that would become INTV Corporation. Games development continued until 1990 when the Intellivision was discontinued. From 1980 to 1983 over 3 million Intellivision units were sold. In 2009, video game website IGN named the Intellivision the No. 14 greatest video game console of all time. It remained Mattel's only video game console until the release of the HyperScan in 2006; the Intellivision was developed at Mattel in Hawthorne, California along with their Mattel Electronics line of handheld electronic games. Mattel's Design and Development group began investigating a home video game system in 1977, it was to have long lasting gameplay to distinguish itself from its competitors.
Mattel identified a new but expensive chipset from National Semiconductor and negotiated better pricing for a simpler design. Their consultant, APh Technological Consulting, suggested a General Instrument chipset, listed as the Gimini programmable set in the GI 1977 catalog; the GI chipset lacked Mattel worked with GI to implement changes. GI published an updated chipset in its 1978 catalog. After choosing National in August 1977, Mattel waited for two months before going with the proposed GI chipset in the fall of 1977. A team at Mattel, headed by David Chandler began engineering the hardware, including the famous hand controllers. In 1978, David Rolfe of APh developed the executive control software and, with a group of Caltech summer student hires, programmed the first games. Graphics were designed by a group of artists at Mattel led by Dave James; the Intellivision was test marketed in Fresno, California in 1979 with a total of four games available. It was released nationwide in 1980 with a price tag of US$299, a pack-in game: Las Vegas Poker & Blackjack and a library of ten cartridges.
Mattel Electronics would become a subsidiary in 1981. Though not the first system to challenge Warner Communications's Atari, it was the first to pose a serious threat to the market leader. A series of advertisements featuring George Plimpton were produced that demonstrated the superiority of the Intellivision's graphics and sound to those of the Atari 2600, using side-by-side game comparisons. One of the slogans of the television advertisements stated that Intellivision was "the closest thing to the real thing"; the other console's games had a blip sound and cruder graphics, while the Intellivision featured a realistic swing sound and striking of the ball, graphics that suggested a more 3D look. There was an advertisement comparing the Atari 2600 to it, featuring the slogan "I didn't know". In its first year, Mattel sold out its initial 175,000 production run of Intellivision "Master Components". In 1981, over one million Intellivision consoles were sold, five times as many as in 1980; the Intellivision Master Component was distributed by various companies.
Before Mattel shifted manufacturing to Hong Kong, Mattel Intellivisions were manufactured by GTE Sylvania. GTE Sylvania Intellivisions were produced along with Mattel's, with the brand name the only differentiation; the Sears Super Video Arcade, manufactured by Mattel in Hong Kong, has a restyled beige top cover and detachable controllers. The Sears Intellivision modified the default titlescreen by removing the "Mattel Electronics" captioning. In 1982 Radio Shack marketed the Tandyvision One, similar to the original Intellivision but with the gold plates replaced with more wood trim. In Japan Intellivisions were branded by Bandai in 1982, in Brazil there were Digimed and Digiplay Intellivisions manufactured by Sharp in 1983. Inside every Intellivision is 4K of ROM containing the Exec software, it provides two benefits: reusable code that can make a 4K cartridge an 8K game, a software framework for new programmers to develop games more and quickly. It allows other programmers to more review and continue another's project.
Under the supervision of David Rolfe and graphics supplied by Mattel artist Dave James, APh was able to create the Intellivision launch title library using summer students. The drawback is that to be flexible and handle many different types of games the Exec runs less efficiently than a dedicated program. Intellivision games that leverage the Exec run at a 20 Hz frame rate instead of the 60 Hz frame rate for which the Intellivision was designed. Using the Exec framework is optional, but all Intellivision games released by Mattel Electronics are 20 Hz; the limited ROM space meant there was no room for computer artificial intelligence and many early games required two players. All Intellivision games were programmed by the outside firm, APh Technological Consulting, with 19 cartridges produced before Christmas 1980. Once the Intellivision project became successful, software development would be brought in-house. Mattel formed its own software development group and began hiring programmers; the original five members of that Intellivision team were Mike Minkoff, Rick Levine, John Sohl, Don Daglow, manager Gabriel Baum.
Levine and Minkoff, a long-time Mattel Toys veteran, both came over from the hand-held Mattel games engineering team. During 1981 Mattel hired programmers as fast it could. Early in 1982 Mattel Electronics relocated from Mattel headquarters to an unused industrial building. Office renovation work happened as n
1985 in video gaming
1985 saw many sequels and prequels in video games and several new titles such as Gradius, Super Mario Bros. and Duck Hunt. For the third Golden Joystick Awards, The Way of the Exploding Fist takes Game of the Year for 1985; the sixth Arcade Awards are held, for games released during 1983-1984, with Star Wars winning best arcade game, Space Shuttle best console game, Ultima III: Exodus best computer game, Zaxxon best standalone game. August, the final issue of Electronic Games magazine is published. New companies: Bethesda, Cinemaware. Codemasters, Square Co. Titus, Westwood Studios Defunct: Adventure International, Bug-Byte, Edu-Ware, RDI Video Systems David Mullich and several other laid-off employees from Edu-Ware form Electric Transit, the first company to join Electronic Arts' new affiliated publisher program. ArcadeJanuary, Konami releases Yie Ar Kung-Fu. March, Tehkan releases Gridiron Fight, an American football sports game featuring the use of dual trackball controls. April, Atari Games releases Paperboy with a controller modeled after bicycle handlebars, Namco releases Metro-Cross.
May, Konami releases Gradius. May, Capcom releases Commando, a vertically-scrolling on-foot shooter which inspires many games with similar themes and gameplay. July, Namco releases Baraduke. July: Sega releases Hang-On by Yu Suzuki and AM2, it is the first of Sega's Super Scaler games. Its motorbike cabinet is controlled using the body, starting a "Taikan" trend of motion controlled hydraulic cabinets in arcades some two decades before motion controls become popular on video game consoles. September 19, Capcom releases Ghosts'n Goblins titled Makaimura in Japan, it was one of the most popular arcade games of the year, went on to spawn a series of games. September 20, Namco releases Motos. October: Sega releases Space Harrier by Yu Suzuki and AM2, it further develops the pseudo-3D "Super Scaler" sprite-scaling graphics of Hang-On, features an analog flight stick for movement, with the ability to register movement in any direction as well as measure the degree of push, which could move the player character at different speeds depending on how far the stick is pushed in a certain direction.
October, Atari Games releases Gauntlet. Based on the lesser known Atari 8-bit game Dandy, Gauntlet is profitable, letting players insert additional quarters for more health. December, Namco releases Sky Kid, a side-scrolling shooter allowing two players to play simultaneously. Tehkan releases Tehkan World Cup, which lays the foundations for association football/soccer games with an above view of the field. ConsoleSeptember 9, Namco releases Battle City for the Famicom. September 13, Nintendo releases Super Mario Bros. which sells 40 million copies, making it the best-selling video game of all time until 2008. It introduces Princess Peach and Bowser to the Mario series, as well as common enemies and powerups including Goombas, Super Mushrooms, Fire Flowers and Starmen, it popularizes the side-scrolling platformer format. October 18, Nintendo releases Duck Hunt for the Famicom. ComputerApril, Game Arts releases Thexder. September 16, Origin Systems releases Ultima IV: Quest of the Avatar, which popularizes the use of dynamic morality systems in computer role-playing games.
October 27, Nihon Falcom releases Dragon Slayer II: Xanadu, a foundation for the action role-playing game genre, combining real-time action combat with character statistics, gameplay elements such as a Karma morality meter, proto-Metroidvania style exploration. T&E Soft releases Hydlide II: Shine of Darkness, an early action role-playing game that features an alignment morality meter. Brøderbund releases Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?, the first game in the Carmen Sandiego series. Electronic Arts releases Racing Destruction Set. Elite Systems UK releases a platformer, it was the first video game to simulate fairground rides. Bubble Bus Software releases the arcade adventure game Starquake for several 8-bit computers. Tau Ceti is published in the UK; the Learning Company releases The Oregon Trail on the Apple II. Novagen releases 3D wireframe game Mercenary for the Atari 8-bit family. ArcadeJuly, Sega releases the Sega Space Harrier arcade hardware, the first of Sega's "Super Scaler" arcade system boards that allow pseudo-3D sprite-scaling at high frame rates.
It displays 6144 colors on screen, out of a 32,768 color palette. Namco begins development on the Namco System 21 around this time, as the first arcade board dedicated to 3D polygon graphics. ComputerJanuary, Commodore releases their final 8-bit computer, the Commodore 128. June, Atari releases the 520ST, the first personal computer with a bit-mapped, color GUI. July 23, Commodore releases the Amiga personal computer. Atari replaces previous models in the Atari 8-bit family with the 65XE and 130XE, the latter of which has 128K bank-switched RAM. Discontinued: Coleco Adam, Commodore VIC-20ConsoleJuly 26, Nintendo releases the Family Computer Robot, a peripheral for their Family Computer home video game console, in Japan. October 18, the Nintendo Entertainment System home video game console, the export version of the Famicom, is launched for a limited test market in the United States, along with the R. O. B. Peripheral. October 20, the Sega Mark III home video game console is launched in Japan. ColecoVision is discontinued.
INTV Corporation releases the INTV III console. Telegames releases the Dina, a ColecoVision clone
The ZX Spectrum is an 8-bit personal home computer released in the United Kingdom in 1982 by Sinclair Research. Referred to during development as the ZX81 Colour and ZX82, it was launched as the ZX Spectrum by Sinclair to highlight the machine's colour display, compared with the black and white of its predecessor, the ZX81; the Spectrum was released as eight different models, ranging from the entry level with 16 KB RAM released in 1982 to the ZX Spectrum +3 with 128 KB RAM and built in floppy disk drive in 1987. The Spectrum was among the first mainstream-audience home computers in the UK, similar in significance to the Commodore 64 in the US; the introduction of the ZX Spectrum led to a boom in companies producing software and hardware for the machine, the effects of which are still seen. Some credit it as the machine. Licensing deals and clones followed, earned Clive Sinclair a knighthood for "services to British industry"; the Commodore 64, Dragon 32, Oric-1, Oric Atmos, BBC Micro and the Amstrad CPC range were rivals to the Spectrum in the UK market during the early 1980s.
While the machine was discontinued in 1992, new software titles continue to be released – over 40 so far in 2018. The Spectrum is based on a Zilog Z80 A CPU running at 3.5 MHz. The original model has 16 KB of ROM and either 16 KB or 48 KB of RAM. Hardware design was by Richard Altwasser of Sinclair Research, the outward appearance was designed by Sinclair's industrial designer Rick Dickinson. Video output is through an RF modulator and was designed for use with contemporary television sets, for a simple colour graphic display. Text can be displayed using 32 columns × 24 rows of characters from the ZX Spectrum character set or from a set provided within an application, from a palette of 15 shades: seven colours at two levels of brightness each, plus black; the image resolution is 256×192 with the same colour limitations. To conserve memory, colour is stored separate from the pixel bitmap in a low resolution, 32×24 grid overlay, corresponding to the character cells. In practice, this means that all pixels of an 8x8 character block share one foreground colour and one background colour.
Altwasser received a patent for this design. An "attribute" consists of a foreground and a background colour, a brightness level and a flashing "flag" which, when set, causes the two colours to swap at regular intervals; this scheme leads to what was dubbed colour clash or attribute clash, where a desired colour of a specific pixel could not be selected. This became a distinctive feature of the Spectrum, meaning programs games, had to be designed around this limitation. Other machines available around the same time, for example the Amstrad CPC or the Commodore 64, did not suffer from this limitation; the Commodore 64 used colour attributes in a similar way, but a special multicolour mode, hardware sprites and hardware scrolling were used to avoid attribute clash. Sound output is through a beeper on the machine itself, capable of producing one channel with 10 octaves. Software was available that could play two channel sound; the machine includes an expansion bus edge connector and 3.5 mm audio in/out ports for the connection of a cassette recorder for loading and saving programs and data.
The "ear" port has a higher output than the "mic" and is recommended for headphones, with "mic" for attaching to other audio devices as line in. It was manufactured in Scotland, in the now closed Timex factory; the machine's Sinclair BASIC interpreter is stored in ROM and was written by Steve Vickers on contract from Nine Tiles Ltd. The Spectrum's chiclet keyboard is marked with BASIC keywords. For example, pressing "G" when in programming mode would insert the BASIC command GO TO; the BASIC interpreter was developed from that used on the ZX81 and a ZX81 BASIC program can be typed into a Spectrum unmodified, but Spectrum BASIC included many extra features making it easier to use. The ZX Spectrum character set was expanded from that of the ZX81, which did not feature lower-case letters. Spectrum BASIC included extra keywords for the more advanced display and sound, supported multi-statement lines; the cassette interface was much more advanced and loading around five times faster than the ZX81, unlike the ZX81, the Spectrum could maintain the TV display during tape storage and retrieval operations.
As well as being able to save programs, the Spectrum could save the contents of arrays, the contents of the screen memory, the contents of any defined range of memory addresses. Rick Dickinson came up with a number of designs for the "ZX82" project before the final ZX Spectrum design. A number of the keyboard legends changed during the design phase including ARC becoming CIRCLE, FORE becoming INK and BACK becoming PAPER; the Spectrum reused a number of design elements of the ZX81: The ROM code for things such as floating point calculations and expression parsing were similar. The simple keyboard decoding and cassette interfaces were nearly identical; the central ULA integrated circuit was somewhat similar although it implemented the major enhancement over the ZX81: A hardware based television raster generator that indirectly gave the new machine four times as much processing power as the ZX81 due to the Z80 now being released from this video generation task. A bug in the ULA as designed