by Adam King

Greetings gamers! This month I have a pair of interesting commercials, but first, a pop quiz.

TRUE OR FALSE: You can only play Atari 2600 games on an Atari 2600.

Believe it or not, the answer is FALSE. In 1982, the 2600 ruling the industry, with the Intellivision and Colecovision close behind. Realizing that Atari games are always going to be popular, Coleco and Mattel decided to try and convince gamers to buy their respective systems by saying that their platforms can play 2600 games as well. How, you may ask? By introducing adapters to allow players to use 2600 software on the INTV and Coleco. Mattel had the System Changer, and Coleco has the Expansion Module #1. Interesting thing about these ads is that they feature lots of Atari boxes, and the INTV spot has screenshot fo Atari games. Wonder what the folks at a certain gaming company though about these.

Both these ads are not available online, but will be on the CD (see below).

Intellivision II (System Changer)
Up first is an ad for the Intellivision II, featuring their adapter. Here we find a kid wearing goggles as he zooms down a hallway filled with Atari games. This ad is more aggressive than the Coleco spot since it claims to play more games than the Atari or Colecovision. Plus unlike the Colecovision ad, it actually shows screenshots of 2600 games.

"Finding the best video game system is a tough game to win. Who plays the most games? The best-selling games? Intellivision II! Add the new System Changer and play all Atari 2600 games. The most games. The best-selling games, like Q*Bert, Enduro, Burgertime. Intellivision II has the most going for it. More games than Atari or Coleco. Over 430 games. Get Intellivision II. It's got the most going for it."

Where do I get goggles like that?

Look at all the boxes. Must be an Atari ad.

WHAT?! This isn't Atari?!

We're now flying into some Atari game screens.


Colecovision (Expansion Module)
Our next ad is a commercial for the Colecovision that said that their system played the most games with the Expansion Module 1. They originally had planned a series of expansion modules for the Colecovision, and decided the first would bring 2600 games to their system. They also proclaimed to play the most games ever.

"This is the arcade experience on your Colecovision, and we bring the arcade experience home. With arcade graphics like Donkey Kong with multiple screens, just like the arcade game. Arcade controls, and Colecovision is an expandable system. Plug in the first Expansion Module and play all Atari VCS compatible cartridges. More arcade games than any other video system. Now, bring the arcade experience home because YOUR VISION IS OUR VISION. COLECOVISION!"

Again this is NOT an Atari ad.

From out of the screen into your living room.

Watch out for that laser, dude.

The magic box that makes it happen.

More Atari boxes in an non-Atari ad.

Were either of these modules successful? Hard to say, but my guess is that many players just bought Atari's and forgot about the two systems. Can't win for trying, huh?

Now for more information on the upcoming Commercial Vault CD. All I can say right now is all the ads will be simple MPEGs, so they should play on almost any computer without any special players or drivers. The target date for completion is the end of this year, but maybe it'll be finished sooner than that. Any comments, questions, and especially submissions can be directed at Until next time, keep gaming.

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