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Atari Stunt Cycle
AtariSC
'

Origin

United States

Availability

1977-19??

CPU

Unknown

Colors

Unknown (Around 6)

Sound

Yes

Game Format

Cartridges

Price

(USA) $N/A

"Considered by many collectors as the coolest of the dedicated (non-cartridge) Atari home consoles, Stunt Cycle allowed aspiring Evel Knievel wannabes the joy of performing knarly stunts -- without the risk of breaking one's neck. Tons of tricks to pull off here, from jumping cars and buses to flying over wide canyons. Based on the coin-op of the same name.

The original coin-op had been released in 1975 to take advantage of the then popular motorcycle stuntman Evel Knievel. Originally a motorcycle salesman who began doing stunts to draw attention to his store, by the early 70's he was a household name. Atari's coin-op attempted to capture the feel and fun of the stunt jumping Evel Knievel was famous for, and was a mild success.

Now under Warner control and hoping to ride the crest of the Evel Knievel toy craze (even though it was near it's end), Atari decided to release a home version of Stunt Cycle. Originally codenamed "Stunt Debbie" during it's design, Atari Stunt Cycle (Model C-450) was released in 1977. Unfortunately 1977 also happened to be the year known for the death of the "dedicated" consoles, as the Fairchild Video Entertainment system had been released the year before. Known as the first programmable cartridge based console, it caused the "pong" market to collapse as the many pong knockoff manufacturers saw "the end" coming. Subsequently, they dumped their merchandise at clearance prices in an effort to get out with at least some money - unknowingly sparking what is known as the "first great video game crash". Atari didn't help Stunt Cycle's chances by releasing no less than 6 new pong consoles that year AND debuted it's own programmable console - the now famous Atari Video Computer System (2600).

As with all Atari dedicated consoles, Sears released it's own Atari manufactured version of the Stunt Cycle that same year. Called the Sears Telegames Motocross (Model 99748), Sears tried to remedy the flood problem by combining it's Ultra Sports IV console (equivalent to Atari's Pong Sports Doubles) console with Stunt Cycle. The result was a hybrid system that allowed you to plug in 4 pong paddles and play 16 different pong games along with the normal Stunt Cycle games.

Unfortunately, the plan didn't help Sears either. Besides the dedicated console crash, Evel and his toys were on the way out by the late 1970's due to his decreasing popularity after a series of failed stunts "

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