The Weirdest Video Game Box Art of All Time

October 16th, 2009 by Benj Edwards

World's Weirdest Video Game Box Art - Deadly Duck - Atari 2600 - 1982

And you thought eatin’ shrooms to grow bigger was strange. How about this: flying green crabs dropping red clay bricks on a grinning, toothy duck wearing a cape and glasses with a double-barrel shotgun coming out of his mouth.

At least it’s set in a pond, so the backdrop isn’t too fanciful.

The game is Deadly Duck for the Atari 2600, a 1982 shooter title published by 20th Century Fox. I’ve played it, and it’s not too bad. It’s a vertical shooter, similar to Space Invaders and Demon Attack.

Deadly Duck Screenshot - Atari 2600 - 1982You play as a duck striving to gun down flying crabs that drop bricks on you — actually, around you. When the bricks land, they temporarily impede your movement to the left or right, then disappear in a few seconds.

This is one of the many vintage video game box illustrations that rendered the typically absurd and abstract situations of extremely low resolution games in a very realistic and literal manner. Super Breakout for the 2600 is one of my favorites (it also inspired a 2006 Halloween costume suggestion).

You can find many more examples of this curious art form on the web, including many parody boxes, so watch out for fakes.

2 Responses to “The Weirdest Video Game Box Art of All Time”

  1. JackSoar Says:

    I love everything about that box art. I kind of want to add it to my modest 2600 collection for that reason alone. Although I’m not seeing any boxed versions on eBay at present, and the label just has a screenshot on it.

  2. arlandi Says:

    i love the box and poster arts for old games!!
    the fact that graphics were merely simple colored boxes, because the pixels are huge, made you need to use a lot of imaginations.
    i know my imagination power need to have a jump-start, so a good box or poster art will help a LOT!!

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