The Game: Aliens are after your kids! Fortunately, you’re armed with a resource that not everyone has: your own flying saucer. In the opening screen, you have to return to the saucer to resume command, and then you signal your kids to come up, one by one, as you try to pick off alien pursuers who are hot on their trail. If you’re not careful, you can actually zap the kids instead. If an alien manages to reach your saucer, someone else will have to give your kids a ride home from the star academy… (Telesys, 1982)
Memories: It may not have been the biggest, most obvious name in software for the 2600, but I have to give Telesys top marks for coming up with cool ideas for their games. Cosmic Creeps is a great example of what Telesys was best at, and it’s a lot of fun too.
Boasting two different levels, Cosmic Creeps starts out almost like the obscure Lunar Rescue coin-op, while the subsequent stages are pure shoot-em-up fun, except with the player at the top of the screen instead of the bottom. These stages, with the aliens moving at varying speeds, is almost like an upside-down Atlantis.
I have to give the game’s designer credit for managing to have all of those things going on at the same time without any detectable flicker; there are two horizontal boundaries at the top and bottom of the screen which flicker madly, but they’re actually supposed to. It’s a neat look for one of the most unique games in the 2600 library.