Retro Scan of the Week: Super Breakout’s Rainbow-Smashing Astronaut

October 16th, 2006 by Benj Edwards
Super Breakout Manual Cover

If you’ve ever wondered what really went on inside the game Super Breakout, then wonder no further. The explanation that Atari contrived is so dramatic and exciting that I’m not even going to make anything up this time. I’ll just read directly from the instruction manual for the Atari 2600 version of the game…

Super Breakout Atari 2600

Imagine you’re in a one-man space shuttle travelling through the heavens at the speed of light. You and your tiny ship are totally engulfed in darkness, except for the luminance of an occasional passing star.

Suddenly, without warning, there’s a brilliant flash straight ahead. You check the radar screen. Nothing. Pretty soon there’s another flash, and another. Next thing you know the flashes have turned into one gigantic force field of some kind and it’s dead ahead. You check the radar screen again, still nothing.

The colors in this mysterious force field are so bright, they’re almost blinding. And they seem to be in layers. But the strangest thing is that nothing shows up on the radar screen. What could that mean? Is it possible to travel through this mysterious force field or will you crash and be destroyed? And what about the layers? If you make it through one, can you make it through the next, and the next?

It’s decision time and there are only a few seconds to think about it. Turn back or blast ahead and try to make it through the layers of the brightly colored force field. It’s up to you.

The crappy thing about all this is that you have to go through it all over again on level 2. So if you’re playing, get ready to stop and read the story all over again each level to get pumped up for your next escape from the rainbow force field.

Now here’s a great Halloween costume idea: go as the Super Breakout Astronaut! If anybody does, send me a picture.

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6 Responses to “Retro Scan of the Week: Super Breakout’s Rainbow-Smashing Astronaut”

  1. Bruce Anderson Says:

    They came up with some spectacularly stupid stories to go with these games. We didn’t care about stories! We just wanted to play the games!

  2. KitsuneDarkStalker Says:

    Well think about it, with only around 300 pixels on screen at once you HAD to have a story to even understand wahat was going on…

  3. RedWolf Says:

    Nobody HAD to understand what was going on. It was obvious at a glance, and that’s what was beautiful about it. That’s why it seems absurd that Atari felt like it needed to create fancy stories to justify the action going on in these games.

  4. Layne Says:

    Did everyone read the cover? There were helpful hints in section 6. Hint #1, don’t let the ball get past you. Hint #2, aim at the wall. Hint #3, repeat ad nauseum.

    I wonder what the special feature with the teddy bear icon was.


  5. GameCollector Says:

    I’m not sure, but I think the special feature logo indicated there was a ‘children’s’ setting in the game.

  6. shaun Says:

    You’re a human space farer who has suddenly become the plaything of cosmic beings. They trap you and test you and toy with your fate. Can you win your freedom? Who is the mysterious Doh?

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