In 1980, Stern Electronics released a multidirectional shooter game with the title Berzerk. This game was programmed by Alan McNeil and it was among the first games to use voice synthesis. Mr. McNeil stated he came with the idea of the game after having a dream in which he had to fight robots. He also named the game after the Berserker series of science fiction novels by Fred Baberhagen.

In Berzerk, the player controls a stick-figure man who is in a set of mazes that are full of robots who are in the hunt for “the humanoid.” To advance from one maze to the next, the player must escape through one of the openings located in the maze (usually opposite to where the player enters or on either the top or bottom of the maze) while destroying the robots in them. The player character has a laser weapon that can be fired in eight directions. The game has 876 unique maze layouts but there are 65,536 rooms to play through! The player can be killed if shot by any of the robots, by hitting an exploding robot, by hitting the electrified maze walls….

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Eugenio Angueira Eugenio Angueira (4 Posts)

Eugenio has been an avid video gamer since he was introduced to the Atari 2600 back in the early 80's. Since then, he has amassed a collection of 23 systems and handhelds with over 2000 games. He actively participates in various retro gaming forums, where he shares his love for video games, and where he is known as “the legendary” TrekMD. He has contributed retro game and system articles to Retro Video Gamer forum, The Retro Gaming Times, Vectorbolt Magazine, and Homebrew Heroes Magazine. Oh, and he’s also an avid Star Trek fan.