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Silverback's Halloween's Special



It's that time of year again where people like to scare themselves silly with movies (like The Hike and WJHC AM), haunted houses, costumes, and even, video games. Just like any other console, the 7800 has it's share of season appropriate games that you may want to pay attention to this October. But be warned, a lot of these titles are only available via download, using a flash cart, or even spookier...EMULATION! Muahahahahaha *lightning strike*

So here's the lowdown. I'll mention various games that have something to do with Halloween, or may just have a spooky, season appropriate vibe. I'll try to inform you whether they are a retail game, Work in Progress (WIP), Homebrew, or a hack of an existing title, and give it a ranking on the ol' Silverback Halloween meter. If I give it 5 then, then its macabre as hell, if I give it a 1, then it may only just contain the color orange or maybe it has a spider in the corner... ya know... not very Halloween-y.

First, let's get some honorable mentions out of the way:


The Pac Man Family of Games:



Pac Man, Pac Man Plus, Ms. Pac Man, Jr. Pac Man, Super Pac Man, Pac Pollux, Pac Sammich and the list goes on. These games have been made available to play in one way or another on the Prosystem. No, these games aren't really scary or Halloween themed, but they do feature ghosts. Colorful, silly ghosts. By the way, Pac Man and family look like monsters, too... but dont tell them that, they are fragile.

Halloween Theme Score: 0.5





SVENGOLIE
Hack\ Not Available:



This one was made by Frankodragon and was actually featured on the Svengoolie TV show on METV. What, you don't know Svengoolie? He's a spooky host of a show that originated in the Chicago area that features various classic and B horror movies from the 30's to the 70's mostly. Frankodragon hacked up what appears to be fast food or a similar game using the titular host and various guests on the show. The fact that he deals with horror stuff makes it appropriate, but METV requested that the game not get released and currently can not be played. BOO!

Halloween Theme Score: 2





HAPPY HALLOWEEN CART
Greeting Card (I guess) \ Downloadable:



This was made and distributed to various forum members on cart over at AtariAge as well as being made downloadable. It's basically wishing some of the long time AtariAge users a Happy Halloween while showing a pumpkin and playing a song. It's fine to throw on in the background while you do something else, but really even that is only good for a few minutes at a time. Still, when it comes to Halloween this ranks up there in the theme. Unfortunately it's not something you really play.

Halloween Theme Score: 4


***It also features Funkmaster V's other moniker, Cousin Vinnie, on the rolling marquee, automatically making this cart worth less.




Okay so those were the honorable mentions, now onto the games that are more playable and easier to obtain that should tingle your spines and make your palms sweaty.




MONSTER MAZE
WIP \ Downloadable:



I've been really looking forward to this game being worked on by BydoEmpire. It's currently available at AtariAge under a thread titled "It's Dark Out There...Better Bring A Torch." Monster Maze is still a work in progress but what is here is very playable and fun. You travel through a forest and other spooky settings, only able to see a few tiles around you as you try to pick up all the dots and avoid terrifying enemies that you can't keep track of. It's parts Pac Man and Haunted House, and is all Halloween-style fun!

Halloween Theme Score: 4





LAST STAND: HALLOWEEN
WIP (abandoned?) \ Downloadable:



Last Stand: Halloween sounds like an exciting survival horror game, but it is really a game that feels more like shooters Asteroids, Star Castle and Rip Off more than anything else. Your mileage may very in this Halloween Edition of Last Stand, which has you shooting both large and small pumpkins from your fortress in the middle of the screen. This one is also available on the Atari Age forums and can be found with a quick search. I mean, you can't get more Halloween than Jack o Lanterns trying to kill you, right? But the spaceship hoop-la diminishes the gothic vibes, affecting the Halloween score a tad.

Halloween Theme Score: 3.5





GHOSTS AND GOBLINS
WIP \ Downloadable:



This is an incredible port being worked on by mksmith over at, you guessed it, AtariAge forums. Right now the first level is really the only thing that's done but most players will find plenty of challenge in that level to start. Everything looks and plays incredible and the community is really hyped for this one. And it makes the perfect game for the Halloween season, as you take on zombies, red devils and Satan himself. And there's nothing scarier than a knight in his underwear...

Halloween Theme Score: 4.5





DUNGEON STALKER
Homebrew \ AtariAge Store:



This homebrew is available at the AtariAge store proper and may remind some of Halloween. The spiderweb in the upper left corner alone makes us think of scary haunted houses and caves. The Halloween theme may be a bit of a stretch here, but it's still a decent game to pick up and play anytime of year. This is a very good game that for some reason hasn't been reviewed by us on the site yet. We need to fix that.

Halloween Theme Score: 3





PAC JASON
Hack \ Downloadable:



So if Ms. Pac Man cheated on Pac Man with Rob Zombie, society could get Pac Jason as a weird result. Here, you play as a Jason mask being chased by Freddy Krueger heads! I mean come on! Okay, so really it's just more Pac Man when you boil it down, but the sprites have to count for something! I also like the Gothic crosses in the corners.

Halloween Theme Score: 3.5





MIDNIGHT MUTANTS
Retail Release \ eBay



Midnight Mutants might be the only Halloween game you'll ever need. Its been a tradition for me to complete this game during October for the last few years, and that will continue for as long as the cartridge boots up. Zombies, werewolves, evil optometrists, severed skeletal ram noggins, and giant, Al Lewis- Grampa Munster heads... what could be more Halloween-y than all that? This is a fun, comedic action RPG (with gameplay similar to Legend of Zelda), and it is a very good Halloween game to boot. Hell, the game even happens ON Halloween. So it wins "BEST PLACE", hands down. Good night.

Halloween Theme Score: 5