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Midnight Magic Review

Developer: Atari Publisher: Atari
Release Date: 1987 Available On: Atari 2600

In the years following the video game crash of 1984, Atari tried to keep the Atari 2600 alive. Although they created some new games during these years such as Jr. Pac-man, Super Football, and Crossbow, they also re-released a lot of games that had been released prior to 1984, even going to far as to license some games that had been originally released by third parties. Midnight Magic is one of those games. Originally released by Broderbund in 1982, Atari licensed and re-released it in 1986. I am reviewing the game based on the 1986 Atari re-release, but am assuming that the two are not significantly different.

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The concept behind Midnight Magic is very simple to explain. It is a pinball game. A ball goes throughout a playing field and the player only controls two flippers at the bottom of the screen. Well, actually, in Midnight Magic, there’s a second set of flippers in the middle of the screen on the two sides, but that changes the game very little. Left on the joystick flips the left set of flippers. Right on the joystick flips the right set of flippers. You also can flip both sets by using up on the joystick. Those are the full controls of the game, other than down pulling the launcher down when you have a new ball and using the button to launch the ball and start the game.

Graphically, Midnight Magic looks a lot better than Video Pinball and the color scheme is a lot nicer as well. However, for 1982, the graphics are pretty much average. Still, they are more than good enough to provide an engaging pinball experience. There is no music to speak of in the game, which is normal for the period, but the sound effects sound very much as if you were playing on a real pinball table, which is certainly a good thing.

The game does keep score, and you are allowed five balls per game, but other than the desire to beat your high score, there’s nothing really to make you come back to this game. However, the desire to beat your high score alone is enough to make the game last a while since that is what makes people come back to most pinball games. Therefore, for those of you out there who enjoy pinball and are looking for a good pinball game on the Atari 2600, this is definitely a better option than Video Pinball and possibly the best option available to you, so it is well worth your consideration.

Graphics: 7.5
Sound: 8
Gameplay: 7
Creativity: 6.5
Replay Value/Game Length: 7.5
Final: 7.3
Written by Martin Write a User Review