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History

Marble Madness was the first of the new Atari System 1 games. Released in 1984, Marble Madness raised the bar for exceptional arcade games with its superior graphics and sound. The game featured:

  • Beautiful graphics with a color-depth and resolution not seen in other games (256 colors, 336x240 resolution, 56 motion objects).
  • True stereo music with a unique, memorable soundtrack for each level.
  • Little or no violence.
  • Abstract, Escher-esque 3D graphics and environments.
  • Two-player simultaneous play.
  • Unique levels with no repetition.
  • A real and definitive ending. The game could actually be WON!
  • Attractive new cabinet design.

Mark Cerny was only 17 years old when he joined Atari and designed Marble Madness. The game was designed as part of a contest Atari ran at the time, allowing outsiders to design a game. Mark was very well known for his game-playing skills and easily won the contest. Mark taught himself how to program in assembly language before joining Atari, so he fit right in.

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