Background EditBerzerk started off as an arcade game, pitting players in a series of mazes filled with robots they had to destroy and make it to the exit without touching any of them or any maze walls (which would kill the player). If they spent too much time in a maze, the indestructible Evil Otto nemesis would come after them. The game was unique at the time, due to being one of the earlier games that talked, as well as the A. I. of the robots being quite low, as they could run into and shoot each other, which the player would receive points whether they destroyed the robots or not. The game was ported to the Atari 2600, Vectrex and Atari 5200, along with being followed by the arcade sequel of Frenzy.
The Vectrex port of the game had a bug that caused the player to not receive a bonus for destroying all enemies on a level with ten robots. The game could crash at higher point ranges (5,000/7,000 points and above) as a high number of robots returning fire simultaneously could overload the memory needed to keep track of all the projectiles. There was also a high scoring bug that shot up players' games by tens of thousands of points.
Berzerk Debugged is a version of the original Berzerk which no longer has crashes and has a few other bugs fixed. It was distributed by Classic Game Creations, Vectrex carts and Packrat Video Games, LLC.
The game involved the player(s) running their way through a series of mazes while destroying as many robots as possible; destroying all robots in a maze would result in a bonus. Touching any robot, explosion from destroyed robot or wall segment or being shot would cause them to lose a life, and once the player ran out of lives the game would end.
If the player took too long to escape from a level, the indestructible Evil Otto would appear from wherever the player had originated from in a maze and bounce his way across the screen, through walls and robots alike. The fewer robots that remained, the faster Otto would travel.
Main Menu Edit
- Choose from one or two players--button one
- Start game--button four
- Move--joystick or D-pad
- Fire--any button
Homebrewer Mark Shaker released Berzerk Debugged as part of his Vectrex carts site. At the time, he had acquired two different fixed versions of Berzerk which contained several bug fixes. One was a GCE prototype dubbed Berzerk II and the other was a debug by programmer Fred Taft from a disassembled ROM. Both fixed the crash and had a number of other optimizations. Berzerk II is included on the Sean Kelly Multicart while the Fred Taft Berzerk Debugged may be the version released by Mark Shaker and later John Donzila.