On the Practice Race, if you don't move your marble then after a few
seconds a ramp will appear forcing your ball to move.
On the fourth level (Silly Race), if you look carefully you can see an
M. C. Escher-style optical illusion near the finish line. A level part of the environment
bends around and comes near to itself, but when it does, it is "higher" than
where it started out!
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.
In 1984, Marble Madness was the first game for the new Atari System 1 and
Atari Games demonstrated the technical superiority of this new piece of
hardware with this outstanding game.
The original plans called for the trackball to be motorized and syncronize
its spin with that of the marble, to simulate inertia.
Marble Madness was the first arcade game with true stereo sound.
Marble Madness had a definitive end. The game could actually be "won"
rather than just played perpetually.
Marble Madness was ported from the original arcade stand-up version to
over ten different platforms.
Marble Madness credits:
• Designer / Graphics: Mark Cerny
• Programmer: Bob Flanagan
• Sound / Music: Hal Canon and Brad Fuller