Publisher: Telesys
Release: 1982
Controller: Joystick
Players: 1 – 2
Genre: Shoot’em Up
Alternate Title: N/A
Model: # 1004
Rarity: 7
Programmer: Jim Rupp

You are the Ramroid, proving that this game came out in a much more innocent time because there is no way it would be taken seriously today.  Anyway, the Ramroid is armed with a large cannon with unlimited ammo, but is trapped in the middle of a tall room that is filled with ever growing colorful blocks.  In order to survive and overcome his extreme claustrophobia, he must destroy all sixteen lines of blocks before they become long enough and trap him forever.


The game begins with you in the center of the room, having the ability to move straight up or down to get into firing position.  When you are ready, you pull the trigger then begin firing as quickly as you can, which means you hold down the button and let it do its thing.  With two quick shots you can eliminate one row, or two simultaneously if you line your shot up just right.  Immediately turn to the other side and repeat the process before moving to the next set of blocks and repeating the process.  Depending on the skill level (one of four ranging from Children to the standard Slow/Medium/Fast) you might be able to take out half the board before going into panic mode as the rows begin growing faster and faster.  If you still have several lines remaining as the counter gets under a thousand, expect to see them expanding faster than you can handle.

There is a 5,000 count timer at the bottom of the screen that ticks off in units of a hundred, which acts as both your bonus meter or the countdown to your demise.  If you are able to eliminate every trace of the colorful blocks, whatever is left goes into your point total.  However if there are still any blocks present when the timer hits zero, you lose a life and the level resets.  You also lose a life if you become trapped by the blocks, you get squished between them, or if the remaining blocks on the screen are all connected.

On the higher difficulties it can be all but impossible to clear the screen using the basic firing techniques due to the speed of your cannon not being up to par (even if you are able to line it up and hit two lines at the same time).  Luckily every now and then one of the rows will start flickering, giving you the opportunity to take it out in a single blow, thereby giving you a fighting chance at survival.


There isn’t much depth to be found here, but if you enjoy a fast paced simple shooter, or just want to be in control of something called a Ramroid, this is worth a look.

More in the Atari 2600 Encyclopedia on great games like this!  Plus subscribe to Old School Gamer for FREE by clicking here!

Derek Slaton Derek Slaton (61 Posts)

Derek began playing video games in the early 80s, cutting his teeth on every Atari 2600 game he could get his hands on. This kickstarted a lifelong love of games, which continues to this day. No matter how advanced the systems and games become, the love for Atari remains supreme, which is why the Atari 2600 Encyclopedia project was done. With this massive project completed, Derek looks to begin work on another system encyclopedia, hoping to pay tribute to the games that shaped his childhood.