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1983 Winners





Access Software, 1983

B.C.'s Quest for Tires

Sierra On-Line, 1983


Epyx, 1983

Flight Simulator II

Sub Logic, 1983


Spectrum Holobyte, 1983

One on One: Dr. J vs. Larry Bird



Publisher: Electronic Arts

Developer: Eric Hammond, Larry Bird & Julius Erving

Original PC Platform: Atari 8-bit

Ported Platforms: C-64, Apple II, Intel, Amiga, Macintosh

Collecting Fact: One on One is not only the first game to have an athlete (or two) put his name on the cover, it is also the first PC sports program to sell over 100,000 copies.  Therefore it is  a relatively common collectible.

Summary: Way back in 1983 -- before their current dominance of the action-oriented sports category -- Electronic Arts released a gem of a game called One on One: Dr. J vs. Larry Bird.  In many ways, this simple 8-bit game changed everything. No one had ever done a graphical game that featured real-life pro athletes, let alone of the caliber of these two hall-of-fame players. The list goes on and on: the three-point line;   backboards that shattered, and a janitor who cleaned it up; a referee who called fouls;  a fatigue model that necessitated time-outs; and most importantly, a game that somehow managed to capture the essence of one-on-one hoops.

Even EA Sports' NBA Live 2001, which features a one-on-one mode, can't capture that. This is one game you owe it to yourself to collect or play, both for the on-court action as well as chance to play as two of the best players to ever grace the hardcourt.

-- George Jones


Electronic Arts, 1983

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Ultima III

Origin Systems, 1983


Infocom, 1983


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Publisher: Electronic Arts

Developer: Ozark Softscape (Dan Bunten, Bill Bunten, Jim Rushing, Alan Watson)

Original PC Platform: Atari 8-bit

Ported Platforms: C-64, NES, MSX-1, PC-8801 MKII

Collecting Fact: M.U.LE. was one of the first and most revered games published by Electronic Arts.  Therefore it is one of the most desirable of the EA flat boxes (which are already favorites of collectors).

Summary: When M.U.L.E. was released in 1983, it was the first multiplayer resource-based strategy game for home computers. It was destined to become a classic, winning much critical acclaim including Electronic Games Magazine's "Best Multi-Player Game of the Year" award. What made M.U.L.E. unique was its use of a variety of economic principles, including: supply and demand, economies of scale, learning curve theory of production, law of diminishing returns, and the prisoner's dilemma.

The object of M.U.L.E. is to colonize the Planet Irata with the help of a M.U.L.E. (Multiple Use Labor Element.) Up to 4 human players compete against each other (or computer opponents if less than 4), to become First Founder of the colony. There are three versions of M.U.L.E.: Beginner's, Standard and Tournament. Each version has slightly different rules. Players must manage several resources: food, energy, smithore, and in the tournament version, crystite. The player with the most points at the end wins, but only if the colony as a whole survives. Greedy players can buy up all of the resources to drive prices sky high, but the colony might not survive if food or energy resources become too scarce. It's the cooperation (or lack of it) between players that makes this game so fun. It's much like Monopoly in how the players interact. In fact, the tournament version includes collusion, which is a powerful technique that allows players to make private deals.

M.U.L.E. has achieved cult status since its release. Aside from the many officially released versions, there are numerous commercial and shareware clones available for a variety of platforms, including Windows, Unix, Atari ST/GEM, and Amiga. The most notable of these are Traders (Amiga, Atari ST, PC) and Subtrade (Amiga, PC.) There are currently several unofficial "sequels" in the works, including Planateer and M.U.L.E. 1.5.

-- Tony Cervo

War in Russia

SSI, 1983



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Last modified: November 08, 2003
Copyright 1998 - 2004 Hugh Falk International Interactive Enterprises Industries Incorporated Limited Etceteras.  All rights reserved.