|SINGLE PLAYER GAME|
The game-play sequence in MEGATACK consists of 4 or 5 turns (operator selectable) each of which lasts as long as the player can skilfully maneuver his spacepod to avoid destruction. When he loses a spacepod, the GIP message reappears, accompanied by the GIP sound, and displays the number of spacepods left. After the last spacepod is destroyed, the game-over sound is heard and the game-over message is displayed.
Assuming a (4) pod game, play begins with player-scores (00000) and at the top and the (3) best scores displayed across the bottom Eight (8) monsters appear in the upper portion of the screen and move towards the bottom, while dropping their bombs. The player uses his joystick control to move his spacepod across the bottom of the screen. The spacepod will start with the number (4) in the center and the number will decrease each time a spacepod is destroyed so that the number (1) will be in the center on the last round.
As the spacepod is moved across the bottom of the screen the player fires his laser energy-beams towards the left, right, and straight-up accompanied by an echoing laser sound effect. The laser beams have unlimited range, covering the entire play-field, and each spacepod has an unlimited number of shots. The (3) laser beams are fired simultaneously. Each fire-button must be released and pressed again to fire a second shot. Also, there is a slight "reload" delay so that beams cannot-be fired too rapidly.
Whenever a laser beam strikes a monster or a bomb, it explodes with a visual flash and an audio blast. If a monster is blasted, the player is awarded a 'kill' and his score is increased by the appropriate score (per the scoring menu when a bomb is blasted, no points are scored.
When a spacepod is hit by a bomb, it explodes with a growing flash and a reverberating blast. When the spacepod gets too close to a monster, the monster jumps up and sporadically devours it while growling and burping, if a monster reaches the bottom, it bounces across the bottom in an attempt to devour the spacepod.
When all the monsters in a given round have been destroyed the screen will turn into a starfield, and small space rings will appear, which if not shot at, hit, and destroyed will grow in size. If any one (1) ring is allowed to reach a predetermined size, it will de-activate the spacepods laser gun, which during these rounds only fires straight up, lift the spacepod off the bottom of the screen, absorb it and then disappear (shrinking in size), thus ending the round. The next round begins with the next wave of monsters. This starfield round occurs between every wave of monsters, and if the player is successful in destroying all the rings the next wave of monsters will then appear.
When the spacepod is finally destroyed either by being absorbed, hit by a bomb or devoured by a monster the round is over and the video image returns to the GIP display flashing player (1) up and displaying the remaining spacepods the screen then goes black again and this time the pod with the number (3) in the center appears at the bottom of the screen and play continues as before.
During play there are always (8) monsters (max) on the screen, however the monsters attack in waves of 25, after each multiple of 25 kills the starfield or space ring round will appear with each ring worth the same score as the monsters were worth in the previous screen display. The monsters that reappear after each space ring round are a new shape, and color and score more points, and drop a different color bomb, any monsters left at the end of a round will reappear at the beginning of the next round. At the beginning of the game the action is rather moderate to allow new players an opportunity to develop a 'feel' for the game. In each succeeding wave of monsters, the bombs begin to fall at an increased rate and the monsters motions are increased.
All of these features combine to make MEGATACK satisfying for the novice, challenging for the expert, and profitable for the operator.
The play of MEGATACK in a two-player game is identical to single-play with the players alternating turns. On the Upright Version, the players use one common set of controls. On the cocktail version there are two sets of controls on opposite sides of the table. The computer activates control alternately between player 1 and 2 and flip-flops the screen image so that it is oriented to the player in control.
The GIP message, which appears after each turn, clearly indicates which player is up by flashing it in the player's color. This also allows time for the players to position themselves at the controls, but is brief enough to avoid unnecessary "dead-time". The use of two different player-colors eliminates any confusion as to which player is in control.
Game description from www.arcade-history.com