Yes (Sears only)
|Port of the 1976 Atari coin-op
When Atari and Sears struck a deal to have Sears become an exclusive
distributor of Atari games, they wanted a few unique titles to call their
own. So Atari let Sears lay claim to Submarine Commander, Stellar
Track, and Steeplechase (Super Breakout was also briefly a Sears exclusive).
The deal worked out fairly well for Atari as none of these games were
destined to become big sellers. In fact some people claim that these
three titles were games that Atari had rejected, and Sears got the "leftovers".
Although Atari denied this, after looking at the titles Sears got
one has to wonder if there isn't a hint of truth to that rumor.
Out of the three Sears exclusives, Steeplechase is clearly the best
of the lot. Steeplechase is a horse racing game (those little hurdles
the horses jump are called steeples), similar to Mattel's Horse Racing
for the Intellivision. Steeplechase could support up to four players
due to its use of paddles instead of joysticks (two paddles per controller
port). Players must carefully move their horses down the track as
they jump the steeples that get in their way. While this may not
exactly sound like excitement, when four players are involved this game
really gets exciting.
Although horse racing games have always been a niche market,
Steeplechase was probably a decent seller for Atari (err. Sears).
The ability to have four simultaneous players was something of a curiosity
back then and probably contributed to Steeplechase's success. Interestingly
Atari didn't push the gambling aspect of horse racing the same way that
Mattel did. Maybe Atari thought that the appeal of horse racing
was all in the action and not in the betting? Or maybe everyone
at Mattel just had a gambling problem?
||Steeple Chase EPROMs 4/15/80
||Has some different colors from the final
to 2600 Software