As Virtuality was bringing an old classic back to arcades in a new way, other companies were releasing classic arcade games for new formats. Following the success of Activision’s Atari 2600 Action Packs, several companies began releasing compilations of classic arcade games.
Williams released its Williams Arcade Classics early in the year. Among the six games included in this collection were Defender and Joust. What made this collection particularly interesting was that the games used the original program code, which ran through an emulator so they could be played on di erent platforms. Besides being available for the PC and the Mac, Williams Arcade Classics was released for the 16- and 32-bit game consoles. The CD versions of Williams Arcade Classics also included histories of the featured games. Unlike the text history that had been included on the Activision CDs, Williams Arcade Classics contained multimedia interviews with the designers, as well as photos of early game designs.
Williams’ sister company, Midway, released a PlayStation CD that spotlighted Atari’s classic arcade games. Arcade’s Greatest Hits: The Atari Collection contained six of Atari’s most famous arcade games, including Asteroids and Tempest. In the spirit of Williams Arcade Classics, the games on the disc featured the original code running through an emulator, and also contained multimedia histories of the games.
Check out more of the rich history of the industry in Leonard Herman’s book Phoenix IV available at Rolenta Press www.RolentaPress.com and make sure to sign up to get Old School Gamer Magazine for free by clicking here!