Classic Game Room HD – REACTOR for Atari 2600 review

Classic Game Room was the FIRST classic video game review show on the Internet in 1999. Returning in 2008 with new episodes, Classic Game Room breaks out a review of REACTOR for the Atari 2600 video computer system. Reactor is not a famous, well known or coveted game today. This is a shame because beneath its drab exterior lays an exciting game that is as addictive as the most engaging Atari games out there. Reactor is an old school somewhat arcade style action strategy puzzle game where you fly as a space ship (like the one in Inner-Space) inside a nuclear reactor to fight off enemy particles who are trying to destroy you. Smash the particle bad guys into control rods and shrink the nuclear core, rack up points and have a great time. Reactor is not a graphics powerhouse or memorable 80’s bastion of cartoon happyness, but it is darned fun and worthy of adding to your Atari 2600 VCS collection of games. I doubt we’ll be seeing a remake of Reactor any time soon for the next gen consoles, but if we do I hope they bring out a cartoon Nuclear Reactor called “Reacty the Reactor!” Classic Game Room was the original classic video game review show on the Internet in 1999-2000, now on DVD. The reviews on the HD series are reviewing PS3, PS2, Genesis, NES, Atari and Xbox 360. XBLA. videos review reviews show


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  • The trick is to orbit around the open reactor core.

  • I have a 1981 xmen comic with this game advertised on the back still in mint condition

  • I loved this game played it alot. Was very good at it

  • I would play this for hours back in the 80s, i dont know how i had so much mental fortitude to play some of these games for so long non-stop. Lol
    I know i just would keep playing it over and over to beat my previous score and try and get the highest i could, until i couldnt go any higher. I dont recall how high i got on Reactor, but i know i got to the red alert rooms. The sound effects were really good and the game music was menacing and scary as you went along.
    I still have all my games but as i got older i just couldnt muster the focus nor interest to play them anymore after i got a Playstation 1, andor PC games.
    I still get out the Telegames system periodically and play some.
    I always loved the theme song for Reactor, it rocked hard.

    I still like the home version of Omega Race also. It came with a gimmicky joystick modification handle, like a fighter jet design, that went on over the atari joystick and just basically gave one another firing trigger on top of the stick. It was pretty good port, the movement of the ships were almost exactly as the arcade vers., that floaty, gravity free, frictionless motion, like the original arcade Asteroids or StarCastle.

  • Had it as a kid, loved it and I still do. I guess you have to be a bit of a freak to really want that highscore but the difficulty and bouncing physics make it very satisfying to skill up on!

  • I really appreciate these games with deep gameplay you need the manual to understand. They can be the most rewarding once you get it.

  • I understand it's nuclear, but I can't help but think of bugs and a giant bug zapper.

  • The reactor is visually impressive. I thought maybe you were rockin' a 5200 there.

  • Does this also use the analog trackball? That is crucial.

  • Incredible game. I bought it back in the day, cheap, and played it incessantly for hours, days, and weeks on end. I still have it and am going to fire it up again and go a few rounds after seeing this review! One of the most outstanding and underrated Atari 2600 games of all time. I had a chance to play the arcade version briefly once, and it seemed really difficult. I'd seriously consider buying the original upright arcade game, if it weren't $3,500 in early 2019… apparently it's become quite a collector's item!

  • Sound effects = ouch!

  • If you watch the documentary Atari: Game Over about the video game crash and how people say the E.T. was responsible they say that E.T. was not even the worst game to come out of that era. While they are saying that they are cycling through images of other "horrible" video games and one of them was Reactor. If anyone here knows the guy who made that documentary can you tell him to take his head out of his tuchus. Reactor is a great game and I wish it had been ported to newer systems like Genesis or Play Station.

  • For maximum enjoyment, play using a 2600 trackball controller…

  • When the core shrinks down the whole thing looks like a pigs face

  • like the sound effects on this version

  • game of the day

  • Thank you for giving this game a chance. This game was very well designed. There was alot of strategy required to play but eventually you were just white knuckled from gripping the control.

  • Very abstract game. I didn't even notice the control rods until you mentioned them.

  • Was this released in 1982 or 83?

  • was this made in 1979 or 1986 get it

  • play the Gotleib arcade version, it's much more addicting