Atari (Part 1) “INTRODUCTION” with James & Mike

Mike Matei / June 14th, 2013


  • June 14, 2013 at 10:23 pm


    • June 14, 2013 at 10:24 pm

      I really do like these videos a lot. Im glad there is going to be new ones every week!

      • June 16, 2013 at 1:31 am

        Agreed. I love the AVGN videos but these are such excellent fillers both James and Mike can make with little prep and work. Each and every one is entertaining but much easier for James to create.

    • oldschool

      June 18, 2013 at 5:54 pm

      This first shit is sooo lame. Do you really think James and Mike want to see this? This tells them nothing. They want to hear what your thoughts are. Just think next time any of you say first or second they don’t like that. Is that what you want? Everybody else- when we see people doing this lame ass first and second shit we can all say to ourselves there goes two people that enjoy upsetting James and Mike.

      • July 7, 2013 at 8:25 am

        Do you honestly think they give a shit? And are you the same one from the other video? Do you complain in EVERY video that someone has said “First!” in? Just shut the fuck up, its clear that you give a shit or else you wouldn’t be commenting on this, i’m commenting on this because shit-holes like you always write this shit

      • The Kaleidoscopic God

        November 11, 2013 at 7:18 pm

        Dear God, shut up. I can fucking guarantee you that a “first” comment does not ruin their day. It’s not a big fucking deal until people like you make it so. That said, I agree that it’s lame as fuck, but to battle it by saying “oh noes you’re gonna upset James and Mike” as if they’d even be bothered with something so trivial is downright insulting to them.

  • Ace

    June 14, 2013 at 10:38 pm

    Ha, I remember playing most of these… am sure a considerable percentage of my childhood was spend on Kaboom alone!

  • culwin

    June 14, 2013 at 10:55 pm

    Damn, lots of new content this week!

  • June 14, 2013 at 10:57 pm

    this video was fucking great. can’t wait for the other parts. great video.

  • June 14, 2013 at 11:14 pm

    Oh god the horror of cinemassacre begins with Atari.

  • Zakkusy

    June 14, 2013 at 11:39 pm

    It’s nice to see how the informative side from other Cinemassacre game-related series has kinda evolved and integrated to this series.

    While the AVGN series still entertains me very much, I think the older episodes had more game/console history and nice little facts which I enjoyed (namely the miniseries of various consoles).

    Glad to see that side back in this format. Also love the unscripted and laid back style of these videos! You guys rock!

  • June 14, 2013 at 11:47 pm

    After AVGN, I do believe James & Mike Play is my favorite video series. Don’t get me wrong, I love Board James and You Know What’s Bullshit?! too, but I feel more at home with James & Mike Play because they’re just off the cuff, unscripted, and intriguing what you two come up with. This one is by far the best episode yet, and I can’t wait to see more. I also fully agree that you guys need to make a video for ToeJam & Earl. I don’t care if it’s an AVGN video, or a James & Mike play video, but it needs to be done. I think it would also be great to talk about ToeJam & Earl: Panic On Funk-O-Tron as well to show the drastic changes that took place on the same console. You could also talk about the one that was made for the XBOX about ten years back, which was sadly the very last one to ever be made. At least that I am aware of, anyhow. I don’t know if I’d say that the Atari 2600 is King of all consoles, but they are most definitely the Godfathers that helped usher in a new way of playing games for millions of people for future generations. Oh, and thanks for the Atari link in the video. I will most definitely have to give it a look-over. Thanks for brightening up my Friday night, James & Mike. I truly appreciate it. 🙂

  • June 15, 2013 at 12:08 am

    nice one! can’t wait to see part 2. Also, the uncut contra episode was great!! It could be good to have new unedited james and mike play episodes from time to time

  • karel1

    June 15, 2013 at 12:09 am

    While I’m not an Atari fan (a NES guy), I DO however; agree Whole-Heartedly with Jame’s statement about the nostalgic charm and appeal of the older, simpler video game systems. I know I now sorely regret getting rid of my Sega Genius, NES and Nintendo 64, as I won’t be able to pass it to the next Generation.

    I must say that I found the whole history behind lesson and discussion on the Atari quite fascinating on the whole. Video games have sure come along way since we were kids, and I can’t wait to see the next few instalments!

  • fcabanski

    June 15, 2013 at 12:33 am

    The first time I played the Atari 2600 was the day we bought it. It was the Sears version. The controller broke on day 1.

  • June 15, 2013 at 1:10 am

    does james make more money from me watching videos on this website or youtube. i would prefer w/e gives him the better benefit.

  • June 15, 2013 at 2:12 am

    I love the both Atari and the NES. If you ask me, the Atari 2600 and the NES have an equal spot in video game history.

    The Atari was the peak of the pre-crash era, and certainly the system most responsible for popularizing video games in the first place.

    The NES was the system that brought games back from the crash and managed to re-popularize console games after a couple years of nothing. It was also a big leap forward that hasn’t been matched by any other generation leap.

    Personally, I like the NES better as a system. It’s era was a golden age of creativity for games. But the Atari is a great system in it’s own right, and I like the eerie mood you get from the bright colored sprites on black backgrounds, with no music, only electronic sound effects. The simplicity itself has lots of charm.

    I look forward to more of these Atari videos.

  • June 15, 2013 at 4:19 am

    guys please do toejam&earl and compare it to its crappy very different sequel!

  • Squall85

    June 15, 2013 at 4:53 am

    I have an Atari 2600 ripoff with the same games built in. It has some connection issues so sometimes the game gets corrupted, I disassembled it but no visible break.

    Berzerk! My favourite game on MAME, that’s the main reason I built an arcade cabinet for myself!

    Ohh, you gotta check out The Black Lodge PC and Mac game, it was made in Atari 2600 style about the final episode of Twin Peaks.

  • Eric

    June 15, 2013 at 5:07 am

    Holy shit, you have the C64 game “Panther” playing in the background…..I was just talking to my dad about that game the other day!

  • Eris

    June 15, 2013 at 6:46 am

    The reason most people who play retro games go to the NES instead might be due to what they grew up with. Those of us born in the late 80s are likely to have has an NES but not an Atari, like me, but early to mid 80s might have been more likely to have had an Atari.

  • An Heroic Hippo

    June 15, 2013 at 8:03 am

    The Atari 2600 just has this charm about it that doesn’t exist in anything that came after.

    Also, loving these James and Mike play videos. Great entertainment.

    • UberNoodle

      June 19, 2013 at 12:59 am

      I was going back through my games even in the Ps2, GCN era and there were plenty of games which still had that innocence of design and innovation, especially on those two consoles. Much less so on the Xbox.

  • June 15, 2013 at 8:40 am

    My first console… I was a Yars’ Revenge addicted. There’s a game I loved but that I can barely remember. It was vaguely similar to Zelda, with dungeons, chests to find and ghosts all around. If I remember well, the cover featured a hero on a bridge, with a dragon and mountains of treasures. Can Someone of you guys remember the title?

  • Ricky Vega

    June 15, 2013 at 9:15 am

    What’s the music from 2:39 from?!

  • xdeathknightx

    June 15, 2013 at 10:05 am

    I always liked Atari. Sadly I never had one myself but played it a lot at a friends place. And I agree that you had to use your imagination to really make these games work.

    And I agree with Mike, it’s fun how people could just be left to their devices and see what comes out. Besides indies the only real big developer I can think of that does that is Valve. With Valve you are open to start a project, if people find it interesting they can just move their desk close to yours and work with you. If you don’t get anyone interested you are on your own though. They even went as far that they gave two engineers that left the full rights to the project they were working on.
    But yeah that kind of business practice has kind of become a dying breed. But with the indie scene booming we might see a return.
    I am looking forward to seeing you play your favorite Atari games.

  • taykel

    June 15, 2013 at 10:46 am

    My friend’s next door neighbor has an Atari 2600. I used it for the first time months ago and I don’t know if it’s because the system was so old the joystick was a little stiff. Although it was amazing to use an old system that James has. Thank you man for teaching me about the classics.

  • June 15, 2013 at 11:43 am

    I remember I got into Atari from playing an Atari Plug and Play, and got my first Atari systems from Thrift Stores, where I usually get my consoles at. I absolutely love to play that console so much, and I’ve built up a large collection of Atari games, including Kung Fu Master, Gravitar, Berserk, Galaxian, Vanguard, Swordquest Earthworld and Fireworld, Video Pinball, and even my own copy of E.T.: the Extra Terrestrial, which, oddly enough, was the first Atari cartridge I ever bought, before I even had an Atari system. I even have an original Swordquest Fireworld poster on my wall! I love being a nerd.

  • June 15, 2013 at 12:21 pm

    I will sound like a Nintendo fan but i am soooo…xD.
    Nintendo still does that old style, recently Miyamoto said: “we think of a gameplay than we think oh having a new IP for it or it’s a gameplay that fits a series already so to not copycat ourselves we use the brand we already have, it’s useless to have a new IP if it’s a gameplay already done in another series.”
    Reggie said: “We want our customers to own their games for a very very very long time, like forever if they want.”
    Also Sakurai got a bad wrist, not solved, by beta testing everyday the Wii U version of Super Smash Bros. He was playing with the gamepad with one hand and playing with the Pro Controller with the other.
    Since i play when i was little and i had that crazy little amazing thing called SNES i really cannot follow another company, also you should check out the eShop on Wii U, Mike, it has already some crazy indie games.

  • Rubizon

    June 15, 2013 at 1:03 pm

    Thank you guys for this great video. This is so nice! Thanks!

  • June 15, 2013 at 1:13 pm

    wait a minute… Mike… you had the C64 BEFORE the Atari? Then why couldn’t you figure out the “RUN” command in all those early C64 videos?
    (well that kinda answers itself… Mike was too young)

  • June 15, 2013 at 1:40 pm

    Awesome! Can’t wait to see more! Love the 2600 🙂

  • bruceleerobot

    June 15, 2013 at 4:31 pm

    OMG! WHAT is the indie game @ 7:00??

  • erik37

    June 15, 2013 at 4:46 pm

    I remember playing defender for like 2 hours both pissing off an exciting my friends at the same time I was unstoppable an just kept going, they were amazed at what i was doing but then id hear hurry up man an die I wanna play lol, some very good memories play Atari 🙂

  • iamashithead

    June 15, 2013 at 6:59 pm

    Next you guys should do James & mike play DooM!

  • Freddie Phillips

    June 15, 2013 at 7:12 pm

    I still play Atari nearly everyday. Have you played Atari Today? Yes I have.

  • Freddie Phillips

    June 15, 2013 at 7:21 pm

    Do you have a Spikes Peak/Ghost Manor cartridge? those are two of my favorite games on Atari. I hope to see them.

  • Chrono

    June 15, 2013 at 9:46 pm

  • br34l

    June 15, 2013 at 10:45 pm

    nice video. looking forward for more nostalgia!

  • June 15, 2013 at 11:14 pm

    Love you guys and thank you for getting back to the basics! Please do these all the way up to modern consoles… we need you two. Motherfucker Mike- you are not a right hand man in our eyes. James may have started this thing and been the star but you two are a real unit and soooo strong together!!! Each of you bring a lot to the table and varied character. Long live James and Mike… you mother fucker! Still the best introduction to a person I have EVER seen in that crossfire video. It was scarce on this site for a while… we held strong and we all await the arrival of the film… but thank you guys (and those who go unnamed) for giving us more juice!!! For every comment posted goes by many others who feel the same. Thank you guys. Love this series.

  • June 16, 2013 at 1:04 am

    This may be a stupid question but how did you guys make that intro?

  • Aaron1375

    June 16, 2013 at 2:36 am

    What was that game with the girl in the cage? That one actually looked pretty good graphic wise, I could tell what stuff was….

  • cerb2k3

    June 16, 2013 at 3:52 am

    Just wanted to pop in and say that I used to have Commodore 64 joysticks that worked with a Sega as well. I’d occasionally use the Sega controllers with the C64 games and vice versa. The coolest use I found was a joystick for Sonic, since it only needed one button anyway.

  • June 16, 2013 at 6:01 pm

    I know exactly what Mike was talking about. When you have a bunch of executive meddling, a bunch of scrutiny, when your work is examined under a microscope, it completely stifles the creative process. Instead of making something original, something you dreamed up and wanted to create, you end up trying to appease the people examining your work, and trying to anticipate what those people want instead. The more people you have combing through your work, the more mediocre and average it becomes. Think of it this way, you ever notice how when people write stories or something, you see a lot of cliches and tropes and patterns emerge? That’s kind of what I’m talking about.

  • EmSeeSquared

    June 16, 2013 at 10:17 pm

    My Atari experience is a bit different from other people. First of all, I don’t remember a time before the NES, which i eventually got for my 7th birthday in 1989. As for Atari, we didn’t start with the 2600, but with an 8-bit Atari 400 computer, which, as i described in the comments for the Odyssey vid, was pretty much the 5200 done RIGHT. Then later, still before i finally got that Nintendo, we received a 2600, but not the classic 2600 most are familiar with, but a 2600 Junior model:
    So yea, from the 400 to the 2600, it’s like we went backwards, lol. We only had 4 games for it, too: Stargate, Jungle Hunt, Galaxian, and, dun dun dun…..E.T. I still have them, lol

  • Thifurious

    June 16, 2013 at 10:56 pm

    Always love all’ve your videos, but this was especially interesting having you guys give us background on the console and the funny facts about the Atari developers. REALLY liked this; please consider doing this type of video for other consoles after Atari!

  • christburner

    June 17, 2013 at 5:18 am

    … i want to hang out with you guys… its not weird… haha

  • niclas johansson

    June 17, 2013 at 12:46 pm

    This good stuff!

  • Andrew Langley

    June 17, 2013 at 12:48 pm

    You can play Sonic The Hedgehog with an Atari controller. You only needed one button and that was the jump button. I did this a few times before. Great work as always, keep it up!

  • Travis McNabb

    June 17, 2013 at 1:47 pm

    I love this series (James & Mike Play). Always a blast and fun to watch!

  • joliet_jane

    June 17, 2013 at 2:54 pm

    I’m so glad I was just old enough to play Atari and just young enough to play NES.

  • firestonex

    June 17, 2013 at 4:55 pm

    Toe Jam and Ear is the BEST GAME for the Genesis!!!!

  • MadHitz

    June 17, 2013 at 8:51 pm

    You guys said you were wondering why people today don’t talk more about Atari, and how it has kind of been forgotten. I think that’s because The Wii Virtual Console has breathed new life into all the classic Nintendo titles, so they have overshadowed Atari and now when people talk about classic gaming, NES seems to be the first thing that comes up. It would be really cool if they released Atari 2600 games via download, and make them like 99 cents each or something.

  • MrCredibility

    June 18, 2013 at 2:02 am

    I really hope you guys play Solaris, I was quite young when we got our Atari and boy did that game ever give my kid brain hella frustration. Can’t wait to see more Atari/LP videos, I loved the history sidelines in this one.

  • Billy Staton

    June 18, 2013 at 5:57 am

    Sweet! Great idea, gentlemen. Looking forward to it!

  • Romero

    June 18, 2013 at 5:59 am

    You HAVE to play HERO and/or Joust 😀

  • Kreta_TX

    June 18, 2013 at 7:20 am

    Commodore V.S. Atari o.k. i also was a Nintendo generation fanboy, but my elder neighbor used have an Amiga not an Atari, and grew out to be a Playstation cultist. I think that Amiga was to us Europeans what Atari was in the U.S., in particular because of the games pubblished by Psygnosis, and then inherited by PS1 and PC gamers. You should make an history on the defunct Psygnosis games of Amiga someday.

  • Kreta_TX

    June 18, 2013 at 7:22 am

    Check them out if you have time to..

  • The Kemosabi

    June 18, 2013 at 1:00 pm

    Woohoo! Looking forward to the upcoming Atari videos! Thanks guys!

  • UberNoodle

    June 19, 2013 at 12:56 am

    RE: Atari 2600, C64 and Sega consoles having the same joy/pad ports — at least Sega were illegally using patents for that port and the algorithms involved. There was a lawsuit in regards to that, albeit very much belated.

  • June 19, 2013 at 3:24 am

    I have my Dad’s old atari u somewhere in my attic. It used to be an old relic system when I as a kid considering I was used to Playstation and Genesis. Still I played a lot of good games like fast food and frogger for example.

  • ToraToraTora

    June 19, 2013 at 12:26 pm

    How does the Atari mind control work?

  • Ben_from_G-town

    June 20, 2013 at 1:14 am

    Atari was the first system I ever played. I played my parents Atari 2600 back in the day. Joust, Frogger, Pitfall, Knight Rider, Missile Command, Combat… good times. 🙂

    I remember the TV just showed up in green, though. Which made me think that Atari wasn’t full color. TV was broken, it turns out. 😛

  • Killboy Powerhead

    June 20, 2013 at 7:16 am

    Damn you guys are cool. Make more of these and never stop making more of these. Thanks.

  • relic

    June 21, 2013 at 10:36 pm

    Hard to explain how big the Atari was in pop culture back then, you had to be there. We didn’t talk about “playing video games”, we just called it “playing Atari”.

  • June 24, 2013 at 12:12 pm

    Great video guys, can’t wait to see the next part. On the subject on good games to get kids started I’d like to mention mobile games for Android and iPhone. I used to be skeptical about them, but then I saw my 3 year old niece play cut the rope and where’s my water. It was then when I realized these games have a place besides killing time while waiting in line. Now that my niece is a bit older she plays games like New Super Mario Bros on the DS. It’s really cute when she asks me to beat a level and she probably wouldn’t have picked up a DS at all if it weren’t for mobile games.

  • June 25, 2013 at 10:55 am

    can’t wait to see part 2!

  • Smeghead420

    June 27, 2013 at 3:09 am

    Do you only allow so many pages of comments?

  • Alexei Robles

    September 2, 2013 at 8:10 pm

    Hey guys, do you know what a Sega Fusion is?
    Here’s the answer
    i found it awesome!

  • November 16, 2013 at 11:37 pm

    The mindlink for the atari actually never reached the shelves of a store due to issues that had with the entire consept.Not to mention that was really early even for the light guns to show up back in those days.

  • February 2, 2014 at 5:28 am

    Weren’t the controller connectors back then some kind of electrical/computer standard (one of them ‘DIN’ connectors?), then they went proprietary till nowadays when we have Bluetooth controllers?

  • March 20, 2014 at 2:07 am

    It honestly wasn’t until I was older that I really started to appreciate the work that went into to making early video games, like the one’s produced for Atari. From the way they describe things, it seems like Atari published first party games.

  • matt neathery

    April 6, 2014 at 5:38 pm

    what is the game with the planes when hes talking about the difficulty of programing for the 2600

  • matt neathery

    April 6, 2014 at 5:39 pm

    and also the game when james is saying there will never be another 2600

  • Zak Seib

    June 17, 2017 at 12:25 am

    I love that intro so much, I wish they never changed it.

Leave a Reply

James’ favorites