720°

screenshot

The [Coin-Op] Arcade Video Game by Atari Games Corp. [Milpitas, CA, USA]

 
DESCRIPTION
 
[Coin-Op] Arcade Video Game

720° © 1986 Atari Games.


720° is a one or two-player arcade game with players taking on the role of a skateboarder, and must perform various tricks and maneuvers to earn the points and tickets needed to compete for medals in the game's numerous skate parks.

The bulk of the action takes place in a 'Skate City', a small urban area made up of ramps, jumps and hazards. Players can skate anywhere they wish as they perform the tricks and jumps needed to reach the score thresholds that will earn them entry tickets to Skate City's skate parks to compete for medals and cash prizes.

Each score threshold must be reached and a park entered within a tight time limit. Failure to do so sees the skater persued by a swarm of bees and the words SKATE OR DIE appear. Should the bees touch the skater before he enters a park, the game ends. Skate City's roads and pavements are populated with moving traffic and pedestrians and any collision with them will result in the skater being knocked from his board, costing the player precious seconds.

The parks themselves each feature one of four different disciplines: Slalom, Jump, Downhill and Ramp. Each park has a timer and players can earn either a bronze, silver or gold medal - together with a cash prize - depending on how quickly the park is completed. If the park target score or finish line is not reached before the timer expires, no medal or money is awarded.

Money won can be used to buy equipment upgrades from the stalls that litter Skate City. Players can buy upgraded boards, helmets, pads and shoes. Boards give faster speed; helmets allow for more risky maneuvers; pads give a faster recovery from falls and shoes provide more height on jumps, as well as giving a quicker standing start.

At the start of each new game, players can select from one of two play modes. 'Training Level' is available for beginners and gives players numerous playing hints and tips. 'Experienced Level' is more challenging as well as offering fewer hints. It does, however, include the 'add-a-coin' feature, which allows for awards and items already won to be carried over to a new game.

The main objective is to compete in as many skate parks as possible. There are numerous city hazards to be avoided, such as BMX riders, cars, Frisbee throwers and other skaters. To guide the player around Skate City are map tiles. Riding over one of these will temporaily pause the action and display the layout of the city, including the locations of the skate parks and equipment stalls.

720° features ten 'class levels' which determine the degree of difficulty in the skate parks and the timer in the city streets. Each of the four skate parks is graded in difficulty, ranging from 1 (easiest) to 4 (hardest).

By using the add-a-coin option available in the 'Advanced' game mode, players can keep any special skate equipment they have acquired in the previous game, as well as all accumulated cash, tickets, points and medals.

From Atari Games
THE ULTIMATE AERIAL EXPERIENCE!

* Superior graphics and animation for more player involvement.
* Realistic skateboard action lets players attempt daring maneuvers.
* Players select where they want to skate, making each game a different experience.
* New rotary controller allows full directional and circular motions.
* Contemporary cabinet design with new 25" higher-resolution monitor.
* 8" audio speakers to highlight the custom music scores, sound effects, and speech.
* Add-a-Coin feature keeps players in the action.

720° has all the thrills and skills of real skateboarding with both freestyle and competitive action. A totally unique game format challenges players to become champion of the skating world.

* Start by skating to a skatepark to select difficulty.
* Perform skate maneuvers in the city to earn tickets to get into a skatepark.
* The "Ramp" is one of over 20 skateparks.

By definition, a 720° is one of the most daring moves attempted only by the best, where the skater does a full 720-degree twist while soaring through the air. In 720°, the game, players can attempt to perform this move without bodily injury. This is only part of the fantasy world of 720°...

* Unique Action and Game Format.
The player portrays the skater who must earn the right to compete in the skateparks of the city and ultimately win the title of champion of the skating world. The action starts with the player in the middel of "Skate City", where all surfaces are skateable - a skateboarder's dream world! The player earns tickets by performing skillful skate maneuvers in the city.

These tickets allow him to enter the skateparks where he competes against the clock fot gold, silver or bronze medals. "Cash" prizes are awarded to the skater if he qualifies for a medal. After the skatepark competition, the game continues back in the city for more freestyle action. Numerous hazards and obstacles create a busy scenario in the city, and the skater has a limited time to get to another skatepark.

Players can use their "cash" winnings to buy skating equipment from various skate shops though-out the city.
- BOARDS will give the player faster speed.
- HELMETs allow more risk-taking for successful maneuvers.
- PADS give faster recovery from falls.
- SHOES provide better height on jumps and quicker starts.

* New Controls
Players controls consist of a rotary controller which allows full circular and directional movement. A kick button keeps the player skating, and a jump button is used to "catch air" for higher points. Anything goes in this game, as players learn to make incredible skate maneuvers.

* More Visual and Audio Entertainment.
720° has a new 25" higher-resolution monitor for better graphics and animation than ever before. Plus, 8" speakers highlight the custom music, sound effects and speech, making the player feel like he's tight there in the action.

* Operator Features
720° is equipped with the comprehensive self-test and statistics package on all recent Atari Games products. Operator difficulty adjustments are also provided by four different option switches.

* Special Game Features
- In 720° players create their own game action as they select where they want to skate. PLayers will find map areas in the city which will momentarily display the layout of the city and the skatepark locations.
- Players can select the class level in which they want to compete. At the start of each game, players skate towards one of four skateparks which very in difficulty from "novice" to "pro". As the game progresses players automatically advance to the next level.
- Players can compete on over 20 skateparks, each requires a different skill. There are variations of a half-pipe ramp, a downhill, a slalom and a jump park.
- The city is filled with hazards which the player must avoid, including: street traffic, BMX bikers, skater gangs, and frisbee throwers/
- An Add-a-Coin feature lets players stay in the action and keep any special skate equipment acquired.
TECHNICAL
 
PICTURE :
1
720° machine
Click to enlarge (members only)
Game ID: 136047

Runs on the "Atari System 2" hardware.

Players: 2
Control: Circular rotating joystick
Buttons: 2
=> [1] Kick, [2] Jump

The cabinet for this game was unique at this time. The speakers for the game are mounted atop the cabinet in a structure resembling a boom box, in line with the game's skate-kid theme. The display is larger than that for a typical arcade game and of a very high resolution (similar to that used for "Paperboy"). The main control is also unique. This joystick moves in a circular fashion, instead of in compass directions like standard joysticks.

* Dimensions
Height: 74.0 in, 188 cm.
Width: 27.5 in, 70 cm.
Depth: 38.0 in, 97 cm.
TRIVIA
 
720° was released in December 1986.

2,265 units were produced in the USA. The selling price was $2,995.

720° is notable in that it is one of the first extreme sports video games. The game's name comes from the 'ultimate' skateboarding trick; turning a full 720° (2 complete circles) in the air after jumping off a ramp.

Ron Perelman holds the record for this game with 527,100 points on June 17, 1987.

Soundtrack album releases :
That's Atari Music Vol. 2 ~ G.S.M. Atari Games 2 (PCCB-00070) (September 21, 1991) [Pony Canyon/Scitron]
That's Atari Music Vol. 2 ~ G.S.M. Atari Games 2 [Reprint] (SCDC-00314) (December 3, 2003) [Scitron Discs]
TIPS AND TRICKS
 
Develop skill in using the rotary control in conjunction with the Jump button to do aerial moves, because they are worth more points. Press the Jump button after gaining speed, and then rotate the control in a 360-degree motion. In this game, it is possible to do much more than just a 360-degree turn!

When attempting certain aerial or rotational moves, it is important to be properly aligned on landing, otherwise the skater bails, or falls down.

To qualify for medals in the higher classes of skate parks, it is best to try to buy some skate equipment first to allow players to perform harder moves.

Daring players should try to wait out the timer in the streets, performing skate moves and acquiring points until the timer is about to expire.

In the ramp park, a good trick is to constantly push the kick button and do skid-outs at the top of each side of the half-pipe. To do this, get to the lip of the ramp, hold the stick parallel with the lip, and stop pressing kick. This will cause you to grind and skid down the ramp. You will be awarded big points at the lip and at the base of the ramp. This procedure may be repeated over and over for some incredible (effortless) high scores.

Don't forget to visit the skate shops. Do not underestimate what a new board and shoes do for you. Buying new equipment allows you to move faster, jump farther, recover faster, and pull off more tricks.

In the ramp section, levels 8, 9, and 10 : holding down the kick and jump buttons simultaneously on the lip of the ramp will boost your air. This trick only works when you're going the correct speed (usually your third or fourth jump), and only once (as far as I can tell) per ramp session per level.

The entire game should focus around the Sessions skate park (the blue park in the right quadrant of the play-field). Making multiple passes through this park will greatly increase your scores. Remember to keep jumping and spinning. A good game should leave you feeling completely exhausted!
STAFF
 
Software / Game design : John Salwitz
Playfield / Game design : Dave Ralston
Software : Paul Kwinn
Technical assistance : Rob Rowe
Animation : Sam Comstock, Will Noble, Mark West
Audio : Brad Fuller
Music : Hal Canon, Earl Vickers
Control design : Jack Aknin
Game design : Milt Loper
Hardware support : Gary Stempler
With invaluable support from : Dave Cook, Dennis harper, Russel Dawe (Rusty), Jess Melchor
PORTS
 

Consoles:


Nintendo NES usa (November 1989) "720° [Model NES-72-USA]"
Sony PlayStation usa (September 30, 1999) "Arcade Party Pak [Model SLUS-00952]"
Sony PlayStation europe (February 23, 2001) "Arcade Party Pak [Model SLES-02339]"
Sega Dreamcast usa (November 15, 2001) "Midway's Greatest Arcade Hits Vol. 2 [Model T-9714N]"
Sony PlayStation 2 usa (November 18, 2003) "Midway Arcade Treasures [Model SLUS-20801]"
Microsoft XBOX usa (November 24, 2003) "Midway Arcade Treasures"
Nintendo GameCube usa (December 18, 2003) "Midway Arcade Treasures [Model DOL-GAKE-USA]"
Microsoft XBOX europe (February 6, 2004) "Midway Arcade Treasures"
Sony PlayStation 2 europe (February 6, 2004) "Midway Arcade Treasures [Model SLES-51927]"
Microsoft XBOX 360 usa (November 6, 2012) "Midway Arcade Origins"
Sony PlayStation 3 usa (November 6, 2012) "Midway Arcade Origins [Model BLUS-31083]"
Microsoft XBOX 360 europe (November 15, 2012) "Midway Arcade Origins"
Sony PlayStation 3 europe (November 15, 2012) "Midway Arcade Origins [Model BLES-01768]"

Handhelds:


Atari Lynx [Unreleased Prototype]
Nintendo Game Boy Color usa (1999) "720° [Model DMG-AA7E-USA]"
Nintendo Game Boy Color europe (1999) "720° [Model DMG-AA7P-EUR]"
Sony PSP usa (December 13, 2005) "Midway Arcade Treasures Extended Play [Model ULUS-10059]"
Sony PSP europe (February 24, 2006) "Midway Arcade Treasures Extended Play [Model ULES-00180]"

Computers:


Commodore C64 europe (1987) : Featuring a recording of the arcade soundtrack on the flip-side of the cassette. The same was done for US Gold's home conversions of "Out Run".
Commodore C64 usa (1988)
Sinclair ZX Spectrum europe (1987) by US Gold
Amstrad CPC europe (1988)
Commodore C64 usa europe (1989) "720° Part 2"
PC [MS Windows, CD-ROM] usa (January 1, 1999) "Arcade Greatest Hits - The Atari Collection 2"
PC [MS Windows, CD-ROM] usa (August 27, 2004) "Midway Arcade Treasures"
PC [MS Windows, CD-ROM] europe (November 23, 2004) "Midway Arcade Treasures"
SOURCES
 
Game's ROM.
Game's Flyer.
Game's Picture.

Page last modified on November 12, 2014
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