Combat cart (PAL version)

Combat was the launch title for the Atari 2600, which was created by Atari and released in 1977. It was also the pack-in game for the 2600 for several years.


Combat had 27 games in one, which were all variations on tank, biplane, and jet gameplay.

In all games, players must try to outscore their opponent by scoring hits on them as often as possible. Each time an opponent is shot, the other player is awarded one point. All games are timed for a duration of two minutes and 16 seconds and whoever has the most points at the end of a game is the winner.

Game variations, TANKEdit

In games 1-5, players control one tank each that must maneuver their way through a playfield in order to shoot their opponent as many times as possible. The variations for these games include the Open Field (a totally open playfield), an Easy Maze (with a few barriers to hinder tanks with that players will have to maneuver around), and a Complex Maze (having the most barriers of all games), along with using either Straight Missiles in a game (missiles that fire in a straight line) or Guided Missiles (which can be guided after they have been fired). Game variations, TANK-PONG

In games 6-9, the same set of playing fields return as before (Open, Easy and Complex), although players' missiles will bounce around the playfield. There are also two sets of hit variables as well, being Direct Hit (a hit is counted as usual), or the Billiard Hit (where a missile must bounce off a wall or barrier before striking an opponent, as a direct hit without the missile hitting something before it hits an opponent's tank will not count, as the missile will just pass right through the tank).

Game variations, INVISIBLE TANKEdit

Games 10-11 have Open Field and Easy Maze (respectfully), each with Guided Missiles. Tanks are invisible until a tank bumps into a wall or barrier, a shot is fired, and when a hit is made.

Game variations, INVISIBLE TANK-PONGEdit

Games 12-14 have Easy Maze and Open Field variations, the latter two having a Billiard Hit, whereas game 12 is Direct Hit or Billiard.

Game variations, BiPLANEEdit

The objective is the same as with all games -- where a player tries to outscore their opponent -- although this time the battle takes place in the air.

Games 15-18 pits one Biplane per player against another, firing either Guided Missiles, Straight Missiles, or Machine Guns (which fires a spray of several rapid-fire shots). Further options includes Open Skies (like the Open Field TANK option) or variations with Clouds, which planes cannot be seen when they enter a cloud. However, a hit can still be scored inside a cloud though.

Games 19-20 features more than one onscreen plane at once that can be controlled in an Open Sky. In game 19, each player controls two planes each (which shoot and move simultaneously) with Guided Missiles, then game 20 has three planes (controlled by player two) against one large Bomber (controlled by player one) with Straight Missiles.

Game variations, JET-FIGHTEREdit

Jet Fighters fly faster than Biplanes, which games 21-24 has Clouds and Open Skies with Guided and Straight Missiles, whereas games 25-27 have two games where each player controls two Jets at once (with Guided or Straight Missiles, being Open Skies and ones with Clouds), and game 26 has three Jets against one Bomber in an Open Sky with Guided Missiles.

Controls, difficulty variationsEdit

If a Difficulty level switch is set in the A position, the missiles that are fired from a player's vehicle will not travel as far if they were set in the B position. Also, in the Biplane and JET-FIGHTER games, the planes whose Difficulty is set in the A position will fly slower.

Controls, TANK gamesEdit

  • Fire--Button
  • Move tank forward--Up on controller
  • Move tank forward left--Up/left diagonal
  • Move tank forward right--Up/right diagonal
  • Turn tank left/right--Left/right

Note: tanks cannot move backwards.

Controls, Biplane gamesEdit

  • Fire--Button
  • Perform medium dive (turn plane clockwise)--Up
  • Slow dive--Up/left diagonal
  • Slow--Left
  • Slow climb (turn plane counter clockwise)--Down/left diagonal
  • Medium speed--Joystick in center position
  • Fast dive (turn plane clockwise)--Up/right diagonal
  • Fast--Right
  • Fast climb--Down/right diagonal

Note: Planes constantly move, so joystick positions effects speed and various turning maneuvers.

Controls, JET-FIGHTER gamesEdit

  • Fire--Button
  • Fast dive--Up
  • Fast left--Up/left diagonal
  • Medium left (turn jet counter clockwise)--Left
  • Slow left--Down/left diagonal
  • Medium speed--Joystick in center position
  • Fast right (turn plane clockwise)--Up/right diagonal
  • Medium right--Right
  • Slow right--Down/right diagonal

Missiles, additionalsEdit

  • Steer Missile (after being fired)--Left/right (when applicable)
  • Machine gun fire--hold down button (when applicable)
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