Classic Retro Video Game Reviews

20th Century Fox's Crash Dive -Atari 2600
Retro Gaming Review

Atari 2600 VCS console Classic Retro Gaming Video Game Review20th Century Fox's Crash Dive for Atari 2600 Classic Retro Gaming Video Game Review
Title: Crash Dive
Manufacturer: 2oth Century Fox
Platform: Atari 2600
Release Date: 1983
Part #: 11031
Rating: 3.5 out of 5
ESRB Rating: N/A

Rating: 20th Century Fox's Crash Dive Classic Retro Video Game Review Rating
20th Century Fox's Crash Dive Screenshot:
20th Century Fox's Crash Dive for Atari 2600 screenshot Classic Retro Gaming Video Game Review

Crash Dive is a side-scrolling shooter with a few tricks up it's sleeve. Set against a beautiful background, your flying submarine can fly, sail, and submerge allowing you to fight off enemies from the skies to the seas. Each area effects your horizontal speed, the skies being the fastest way to travel. You possess a single missile launcher which shoots two kinds of projectiles depending on your Difficulty Switch settings.

I was stoked at first to see how this game would pan out. I love the visual effect of a "splash" as you enter or leave the water. It's a nice touch, but is too similar to the explosions that indicate your demise. While the game play may become a tad boring, be sure to set your dip switches to spice up the action.

Crash Dive's Story Arc

There's really no back story which is a shame. It wouldn't have hurt to add a makeshift paragraph outlining some sort of goal. Alas the manual says your goal is to rack up points. OK, but it's more fun when you can pretend to be saving civilization from an invading force. I suppose you'll have to use your imagination for that part.

20th Century Fox's Crash Dive for Atari 2600 sea enemies Classic Retro Gaming Video Game Review

Crash Dive's Game Play

You begin the game with three lives in reserve as you venture into the action, piloting The Sea Hunter - your flying submarine. The game cartridge says there is a 2-player version, but there's no mention of this in the manual nor the initial game screen. The object is to shoot all the enemies, some of which will shoot at you. You will encounter the following enemies: Plane, Helicopter, Bird, Boat, Sting Ray, Shark, Angler Fish, Squid, Lobster, Sea Monster, and Mines. Touching any enemy results in your death.

Your controls allow you to travel forward and slow down with horizontal joystick movements as well as move up and down. Your travel speed is highest at the top of the screen in the skies and cuts in half when in the water. Be careful of the ocean floor where no horizontal movement is possible. Dive down for the kill and resurface.

Holy shit! Check this out...
Obstacles always travel in groups: one in the sky, one on the sea, two in the water and one on the sea floor.
Always approach these groups from the sky. The seventh group of obstacles is always the mine field. If you survive, there is always an opportunity to refuel before advancing for the next treasure.

Sound plays a role in providing clues to impending enemies. Before you can see them on screen, you'll hear the bird, helicopter and plane. Take them out and proceed to boats and underwater enemies. Birds are not worth any points, so you can ignore them and tend to more pressing defenses. The refueling ship can be heard in any area of the screen.

Treasures will appear on the sea floor (Sword, Wine Bottle, Sunken Boat, Crown, Chalice, Pot of Gold, and a Key). Collecting all six will give you another life as well as significant points. Below the screen, the prize displayed in the far right position will be found under the mine field. The prize to its left is a random prize that will be found under the sea monster.

Your fuel gauge is at the bottom of the screen and depletes during your travels. You can find a refueling vessel after passing successfully through the underwater mines. Mines can't be destroyed, so evading them is the tactic.

20th Century Fox's Crash Dive for Atari 2600 enemies Classic Retro Gaming Video Game Review

Crash Dive's Difficulty Switch Settings

I recommend checking your Difficulty Switch settings as this adds quite a few changes to the game, adding challenges across enemy approaches and your ability to fire at them.

Atari 2600 VCS console Classic Retro Gaming Video Game Review
Final Judgement:

20th Century Fox's Crash Dive

provides more action than you may think. With randomly ordered enemies and guided missiles, there's more to this than simply depressing the fire-button.

Snag treasures for big points, refuel and stick to the right side for more quick paced action :)

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