Targ (Universal Chaos)

TargThe Game: You’re trapped in a symmetrical maze with a bevy of robotic target vehicles – “Targs” – which are programmed to do just one thing: collide with your vehicle. You have one advantage on these decidedly mean streets, however – you can fire missiles ahead of your car (but the Targs are capable of dodging your projectiles too, so don’t get too cocky). Every once in a while, one of the impregnable blocks in the maze will disgorge a new enemy which is just a little bit faster and deadlier than the rest. Clearing the screen of Targs advances you to a new level with faster enemies – and eventually they’ll put the brakes on your attempts to survive. (CBS Video Games, 1984)

Memories: Exidy‘s offbeat menagerie of arcade games was ripe for licensing in the early 1980s, and for the most part it was Coleco that jumped on that bandwagon, grabbing the rights for games such as Mouse Trap, Venture, Ladybug and Mr. Do, both for their own ColecoVision console and as a third-party title for competing platforms like the Intellivision and the Atari 2600. CBS‘ short-lived entry into the video game market saw them licensing games originating with Bally/Midway (Gorf, Omega Race, Blue Print, etc.), but at one point CBS won the rights to, and advertised, a cartridge version of Targ. The game was completely programmed and ready to go – and then the crash hit.

TargBut Targ did resurface…but as often was the case, without any indication that it had, at one point, been the real deal and not an unlicensed knockoff. Telegames, which released several post-crash bargain bin titles, obtained the finished source 3 quarterscode for CBS’ Targ and released it under the title of Universal Chaos. The original Targ ROM was unearthed at Classic Gaming Expo 2004, and aside from some cosmetic changes, it’s the same game.

About Earl Green

I'm the webmaster and creator of theLogBook.com and its video game museum "sub-site", Phosphor Dot Fossils.
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