Interview with Mark Cerny
By the end of 1984, arcades were already on a bit of a downward spiral. The hardware, however, was getting better and better and games were featuring powerful 16-bit processors like the Motorola 68010. To that end, a wonderful game called Marble Madness came out designed by Mark Cerny who was working at Atari at the time. It wouldn’t be until later, however, that this game would get a much bigger following.
It was not unusual for arcade games to get ported to home systems but the Amiga that came out in 1985 was actually the perfect home system for a Marble Madness conversion since it shared similar graphics, sound, and processor as the hardware Atari used in the arcade. Some even cited the Amiga version as superior to the arcade version although most people would have preferred to be able to use a trackball like the arcade featured. The Commodore 64 version although inferior in graphics and sound actually featured a level not found anywhere else.
Marble Madness is available on the Nintendo Entertainment System, Amiga, Commodore 64, Sega Genesis, Game Boy, ZX Spectrum, and PC. You can find versions of it on the Midway Arcade Treasures collection for the PS2, Xbox, GameCube, PS3 and Xbox 360. You can also find it for iOS as the Midway Arcade.
Marble Madness is a perfect mix of great graphics, wonderful sound and music, and great controls. If you have never played it is definitely another buried treasure worth the effort to track down.
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