Star Castle (arcade) 1980
First game to use an experimental artificial intelligence to harrass the game player's ship (A barely noticable feature of the game from our perspective, but a fundemental element of all video games today)
Arcade system: unique
1) The star constellation in the background was actually the outline of a centerfold from a 1980 issue of OUI magazine. When management found out after shipping about 5,000 units, they flipped out and almost stopped production. They eventually came to their senses and nothing was changed.
2) The original inspiration for the game reportedly came from an early version of Larry Rosenthal's never-released "Oops!" game in which the player controlled a sperm trying to fertilize
an egg in the center of the screen. Later, Dan Sunday changed the game so that the player rotated in the middle of the screen, protected by rotating blocks, and shot snowflake-shaped objects that
were flying towards him. Eventually, the player would be overwhelmed by the objects and the game would be over. Tim Skelly later changed the game around to it's final form by anchoring the enemy
in the middle of the screen, and having the player fly around and destroy the shield.
3) One level in "Angry Birds: Space" is a direct homage to this game.
Review, New York times 1982
"Near by, wearing a wet raincoat and steamy glasses, a middle-aged man jabs furiously at the thruster of a Star Castle game. He admits to being an attorney in private practice, but says, “I’d really rather you didn’t use my name. This is my secret place. It would drive my wife crazy. I really don’t come here very often.” Two hours later, he is still there battling the machine’s alien psychology—and his own."
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