I remember playing Atari’s “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial” as a kid. I was fortunate because my friend knew the ins and outs — how to avoid the wells, how to find phone pieces, how to get to the landing site, etc. I didn’t encounter the frustrations that caused many others to revile this game (nor did I realize E.T. game hate was so strong).
Today, in one of those serendipitous click trips (see the “via” segment, below), I was reintroduced to the E.T. game by way of this VHS-era tutorial:
I understand the frustration now. Marching E.T. through dull screens in search of pixellated doodads feels like an exceptional waste of time. And the sound. My God, the sound.
Yet, the thing I always enjoyed about this game is that it had an ending. That appealed to me much more than gathering points or setting a new high score (much of this is due to my complete incompetence as a gamer — I’m really quite horrible).