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Flex That Maria Muscle
What Can the Atari 7800 Handle Graphically?




If you are a fan of the Atari 7800, you may have heard whispers circulating in sewing circles that Atari 7800's Maria chip is capable of producing graphics that could make the NES and Sega Master Systems whimper in the corner in fear. Now... there's not a lot of evidence of that, although we know the system can generate lots of pretty colors at once compared to the 7800's competitors.

A couple of pals in the Atari development world just arrived on the 7800 scene and decided to make a... a thing... not quite a game... not quite a movie... not quite a sexual experience... but something a little bit like all three to show off that Maria Muscle. Here's some words from the men themselves about the project:

Kiwilove (Harvey)-
This is neither a work in progress or a demo - call it a test - for what the Atari 7800 hardware can do. (We are trying) to push the limits of the Atari 7800 hardware. Apologies for this poor quality video - ignore the audio - no audio from this test - only a soap opera going on in the background. The room wasn't dark enough...This is running via a 7800 emulator on a laptop. Programming is by Paul Lay - graphics by Paul Lay and myself. Game routines are not finished. No idea when this will be finished nor what it will end up looking like.

His partner Paul reiterates that this is nothing really serious at the moment. This project has no official name as of now, but I pushed him on that and he tentatively called it "Gunkan Assualt". That title is seemingly related to another similar project that they have worked on together: "Atariblast" for the Atari 5200/ 8 bit computers.

Whatever the name fellas, this thing looks great. As a Prosystem true believer, make this a game. These screen shots and gameplay footage from Youtube look CRAY CRAY, and the amount of craziness happening at once is unreal. Looks fun!