Originally Posted by Retro-Nerd
The Atari 800 XL was a really decent gaming platform. I still wonder why the UK & France user were so obsessed by the ZX Spectrum and CPC machines. Only the color palette looks a bit strange in some games.
Don't forget Yoomp!:
Ever since I got to try space raiders on an 800 in a local computer store around Christmas 81/82 I was an atari 8-bit computer fan.
Certainly here in the UK, around 82/83 the spectrum was about £130, the commodore64 £250, and the Ataris were the same price as the BBC (£299/399). You could save up for a spectrum with a paper round (or like me, evening/weekend after school job), the others, your parents had to pay for (and they tended to go for the BBC).
Commodore I think succeed with the 64 because of of a mix of price, power, being cheaper than the BBC, business links and games from the USA.
The Atari 800, priced exactly the same as the BBC just got hammered as the parent pound went to Acorn (which had BBC and School endorsements). It hung on but was not the success it should have been.
I never understood why the CPC range did so well, don't get me wrong, it was a very good machine (and quite expandable), but Sinclair, Commodore and Acorn had pretty much annihalated the competition in the years 1982/3. Once established, inertia did the rest to keep them top machines untill the arrival of the 16 bits. The CPC should have failed but somehow it bucked the trend and hung on in there
After the spectrum i worked to save up for at school, I finally got my hands an an Atari 800XL from dixons with my first pay packet from my first full time job!
Best of luck with the project, I hope to play it on my 130xe at some point!