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Electronic Games Issue 1

ISSUE: 1Content


  • Atari VCS - Atari 2600
  • Atari Remote Control VCS - Atari 2700 (never released)
  • Mattel Intellivision
  • Zircon Channel F - Fairchild Channel F
  • Astrovision Professional Arcade - Bally Astrocade
  • Atari 400
  • Atari 800
  • Apple II
  • Commodore PET
  • Exidy Sorcerer
  • Radio Shack TRS-80 Color Computer
  • Odyssey2
  • stand-alones
  • arcade


(TOC excerpts follow, with (notes) and bullet lists added for clarity)

(Besides being the first dedicated video games magazine commercially available within the USA, the Winter '81 issue of Electronic Games is also widely regarded as containing the first instance of 'Easter Eggs' used to describe hidden, in-game secrets. Arnie Katz is editor of this issue under pseudonym Frank Laney Jr.)

Switch On! - Welcome to ELECTRONIC GAMES

A hearty welcome to the first fun-packed issue of Electronic games from the editor to you! (Editorial by Frank Laney Jr. with additional message by Bruce Apar)

Readers Replay

A special serving of letters from some of the biggest names in the electronic gaming field. (Reader letters column; being the first issue, this is instead populated by congratulatory letters from industry insiders)

Inside Gaming

"Playing Chicken with David Crane" takes you behind the scenes for the story behind ActiVision's offbeat videogame hit, Freeway.

Meet The Editors! (Editor bios; this article is not mentioned is this issue's TOC)

Electronic Games Hotline

Who's holding a $50,000 tournament? What secret message does Adventure contain? (News section with news stories presented in capsule fashion:)

  • Atari confirms rumor; secret messages exist! (Adventure "Easter Egg")
  • Atari Report (McDonalds/Atari considering video games; Asteroids cart employs bank-switching; Red Baron quadrascan arcade game)
  • Tourney offers $50,000 in awards (Atari World Championships)
  • Brett strikes out in electronic baseball (George Brett, Mike Schmidt play Intellivision Major League Baseball)
  • Inside Mattel (upcoming games; Dungeons & Dragons license; new games)
  • Activision Close-Up (Steve Cartwright joins Activision; Activision Club; Laser Blast & Kaboom high-score goodies)
  • Computer Upgrade (upgrade kits for Atari 400, TRS-80 Color Computer)
  • Cosmos Put on the Shelf (COSMOS stand-alone programmable goes back to drawing board)
  • Odyssey Outlook (Odyssey to hold video game tournaments; Quest for the Rings & Conquest of the World boardgame-videogame hybrids; Quest for the Rings promotional items; Odyssey considers promotional magazine)
  • GOTO Computer Camp (Creative Computing magazine starts computer camp)
  • Here Come the Videogame Clubs! (Atari Game Club, Intellivision Game Club)
  • Today's Army - Trained On Games (Battlezone as tank training simulator)
  • IBM Gets Personal (IBM to produce home computers)
  • 'Cue Ball' Controller Makes Coin-Op Debut (arcade Centipede)

Holiday Gift Giving for Gamers

If you're still stumped for something to give that special arcader this year, EG has some dynamite suggestions. ('Holiday Gift Guide for Gamers' Selected by the EG Staff:)

  • Fidelity Champion Sensory Challenger (computer chess stand-alone)
  • Casio Game-Playing Watch (model CA-90; reported here as the first wristwatch ever with built-in game)
  • Satin Space Invaders Jacket
  • Merlin (electronic stand-alone)
  • Space Invaders T-Shirt
  • Pocket Simon (electronic stand-alone)
  • The Children's Discovery System (2K computer)
  • Home Bingo Machine
  • Head-to-Head Boxing (electronic stand-alone)
  • Alien Invaders & Galaxian Mini-Arcades (electronic tabletop stand-alones)
  • The Apple-Crate (storage)
  • Horse Race Analyzer (electronic micro-computer)
  • Electronic Detective (electronic boardgame)
  • Lexor (electronic Scrabble)

Test Lab

You've seen the ads and heard the promises about Tandy's TRS-80 Color Computer, now read Jethro Wright's probing technical report of this hot new micro. ('Tandy Unveils Color Computer' by Jethro Wright III; includes 'Computer Glossary' and 'TRS-80 Color Computer at a Glance' sidebars)


EG's very own Game Doctor provides straight answers to some tough gaming questions.

Strategy Session

Arcade ace Frank Tetro reveals the secrets of the videogame masters. Learn how to beat your friends at Space Invaders and Super Breakout. ('How to Zap More Space Invaders' by Frank Tetro Jr.)


It's a super-game vs. super-game showdown with the loyalty of 10 million electronic gamers as the prize!

What's Next?

Here's the advance scoop about the incredible new electronic games we'll be playing next year! ('What's next for electronic games?' by Bill Kunkel and Frank Laney Jr.; video game software and hardware previews, including Atari's Remote Control VCS (shown).)


EG's magazine-within-a-magazine tells you everything you need to know about programmables. (A collection of related articles; * include 'At A Glance' sidebar; some article titles surmised:)

  • Video Games: The Entertainment Revolution! (commentary; 'The Arcade Awards' 1980-1981)
  • Atari Offers Largest Game Library (Atari VCS) *
  • Activision: More Games For The Atari (includes 'Custom Control With LE Stick' sidebar) *
  • Zircon Revives Channel F (Zircon Channel F) *
  • Odyssey2 Emphasizes Sports and Science Fiction *
  • Mattel Features Modular Design (Intellivision) *
  • Professional Arcade Upgrades To A Computer (Astrovision Professional Arcade)
  • What System's For You? (includes 'Videogame System Scoreboard Chart')

Programmable Parade

Incisive reviews of the newest programmable videogame cartridges. (video game reviews by Bill Kunkel and Frank Laney Jr.)

  • Quest for the Rings (Ody2)
  • Missile Command (VCS)
  • Kaboom (VCS)
  • Auto Racing (Int)
  • UFO (Ody2)
  • Tennis (VCS)
  • Air-Sea Battle (VCS)
  • Breakout (VCS)
  • Boxing (VCS)
  • Alien Invaders - Plus! (Ody)
  • Space Battle (Int)
  • Video Whizball (ChaF)

Computer Playland

Save the universe! Bowl a perfect game! Blast those space rocks! (computer game reviews; * games are reviewed under single combo-review)

  • Star Raiders (400,800)
  • Bowling (400,800 cassette)
  • House of Usher (400,800,Apple II,Pet,TRS80) *
  • Beneath the Pyramid (400,800,Apple II,Pet,TRS80) *
  • Sands of Mars (400,800,Apple II,Pet,TRS80) *
  • Nominoes Jigsaw (Apple II,400,800,TRS80)
  • Space Chase (400,800)
  • War at Sea (400,800 cassette,disk)
  • Alien Rain (Apple II)
  • Asteroid Field (Apple II)
  • Mystery Fun House/Adventure #7 (400,800,Apple II,Sorcerer,TRS80)
  • Empire of the Over-Mind (Apple II,800,Pet,TRS80)
  • Dino Wars (TRS80)
  • Lords of Karma (Apple II,800,Pet,TRS80)
  • Gorgon (Apple II)
  • Horseracing (400,800)
  • Space Trader (TRS80)

Insert Coin Here

Executive editor Bill Kunkel introduces a trio of coin-op games just hitting the nation.

  • Pleiades
  • Space Odyssey
  • Venture
  • Warlords

Stand-Alone Scene

Explore the mysteries of Dark Tower and other handheld and tabletop electronic games. ('Dark Tower Challenges Adventurers!' by Joyce Worley)

  • Dark Tower (electronic boardgame)
  • Bank Shot
  • Alien Attack
  • Bowlatronic
  • Wildfire

Own your Own Arcade Game

You can fulfill the arcader's dream of having your private coin-op machine at home. (by Willy Richardson)


Think you can out-coach Bum Phillips and Don Shula? These games give you the chance. (football-themed video games, computer games, and stand-alones)

Attack of the Chess Robots

These stand-alone chess-playing machines are certainly no pawn-pushers! (computer chess stand-alones)

Reader Poll

Fill out and return this poll ballot to help us make the next Electronic Games even better!

Arcade Spotlight

Step up for a guided tour of the Broadway Amusement Center, the biggest arcade in game-crazy New York City.

  Report Issue



    Title: Electronic Games Issue 1
    Month: Winter
    Year: 1981
    Publisher: Reese Publications
    Editor: Arnie Katz
    Pages: 84
    Price: $2.95
    Country: United States
    Language: English
    Votes: 0

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