Championship Videogaming

To the Editor:

The strategy in your first issue regarding Laser Blast is good, though I use a different one which also works well.

1. Fly the ship to the extreme right, then immediately to the left.

2. Fire straight down at the gun on the bottom left then move to the middle of the screen. Fire straight down on the middle gun.

3. Move to the right, firing straight down on the right gun.

4. Go left and pick them off left to right each turn. It is best to fly at full speed and as high as you can.

John Thomas
Tampa, FL

We found that more often than not the second base will pick you off as soon as you’ve blasted the ship on the left.

To the Editor:

In his otherwise superb review of Turbo in your second issue, Randy Palmer neglected to mention an important aspect of getting around the Cylinder.

While circling it, you can actually drive on the fringes of the base of the Cylinder, thus giving yourself an extra buffer in which to pass. The seaside barrier, as he noted, offers no such option.

Nina Anderson
Pacific Palisades, CA

To the Editor:

I really enjoyed the tips you provided in the first issue on how to play Defender. But there is a small tip I’d like to contribute, one which is little-known even to expert players like the one who wrote your article.

The strategy concerns the “International Date Line” to be found at the tallest mountain on the planet. When the ship is on the left, the Mutants will attack. However, if the ship slips over to the right, past the invisible “Date Line,” the Mutants will continue to go left, going all the way around the planet instead of heading toward the player on the right side.

Another small hint: when Smart Bombing Pods, pressing the Smart Bomb button and the Reverse button at the exact same time will ensure that no Swarmers survive.

Apart from having discovered these little tricks, I must confess to being a lousy videogame player. I spend most of my quarters on pinball.

P.D. Sanderson
British Columbia, Canada

To the Editor:

You haven’t done a strategy session on Yar’s Revenge, but you may wish to inform your readers that there’s a secret message hidden in the game. I discovered that if you destroy a Swirl in mid-air, a thin, black line will appear where the Zorlon cannon intercepts it during the brief time the horizontal colors appear. Fly your Yar to the right and left and right of the black line, staying close to it. When the horizontal colors disappear, the designer’s initials “HSW” (Howard Scott Warshaw) appear front-ward and backward.

David K. Nichols
Wilmington, DE

To the Editor:

You article in the first issue of Videogaming Illustrated on Atari’s Superman game was very good, and the strategies were among the best. However, there’s one trick I’d like to pass on to your readers.

You mentioned that it’s impossible to become Superman until after the bridge explodes. Well, that’s not quite true. When you turn on the cartridge, Superman will appear at the top of the screen. Don’t change into Clark Kent. Just hover in the air, pressing your action button (X-ray vision) and staring at the bridge. Keep staring as you move your joystick to the left. Superman will fly off the screen. You’ll have your full roster of powers, and there won’t be any bridge pieces to pick up since the span will never have exploded!

I like experimenting with videogames this way to see what little tricks can be learned.

Joel Callies
Nashville, TN

We’ll do you one better. If you don’t bother turning on the game at all, you won’t have to catch a single criminal.

To the Editor:

Your strategy about Conquering Superman in your first issue was very good, and as you predicted it brought my time down to the two minute mark. However, I have since discovered an additional strategy.

After the bridge explodes, the pieces can always be found at the following places: H J, and O, according to your map. If you rush to those spots and assemble the bridge at once, you won’t have to worry about the helicopter coming along and scattering the fragments.

My best time using this method is one minute and twenty-four seconds.

Dave Turner
Spokane, WA

The strategy is indeed a good one, and we marvel at your excellent time. The sole drawback of this method is that while you’re preventing the bridge from being strewn all over the landscape, the villains are busy scattering hither and yon. We ran the game your way twenty times and found that in slightly more than half, you encounter the scattered pieces of bridge more frequently than the scattered villains.

Speaking about Superman, we’ve been meaning to apologize for not lettering the maps of Metropolis to coincide with references in the text. Fortunately, most of you deduced that panel “A” was in the upper left, and that the scenes progressed accordingly. Obviously, the Man of Steel was not in charge of magazine production.

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