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Atari 2600 Game
Produced by: Answer
Model Number: ASC1001
Rarity: 9 Extremely Rare
Year of Release: 1983
Programmer: Uncredited

Malagai is a maze game with a twist. You control a little space man in a red maze. Three colorful aliens move through the maze. You have to go touch one of them, and then escape to your safe zone at the top of the screen. You have about 10 seconds from the start of the game to touch an alien (you have to touch them in the order listed at the top of the screen if you wish to advance). After 10 seconds (or about a second after you touch one) they turn hostile and try and squish you. Escaping to the bottom of the screen resets their behavior. To me this game comes off as a very bad variation on Pac-Man. It is very difficult, and simply not that fun.

Changing the Atari 2600's difficulty switch to "A" will give you fifteen seconds before you are chased (as opposed to ten). On the first level all the monsters have unique shape and color, making it easy to tell which one you need to capture. On the second level they are all shaped the same, and by the third level they all have the same color as well. To compound the difficulty of the third level, the game no longer lets you know if you even touched the right monster. Which means you have to guess if you should retreat to the "airlock" or the "compartment", and guessing wrong means death.

From the manual

You are Harrington 'Harry' Crag, commander of the starship "Endless Search".

You have landed on a MALAGAI starbase to make emergency repairs to your ship. The repairs are now complete but the MALAGAI are holding you for ransom...they need the secrets of your advanced civilization!!! You are allowed to roam about the ship as long as you are not away from your compartment too long and you do not try to escape. Your ship is located outside a series of three airlocks. The key to each airlock is held by one of the MALAGAI. You must catch the MALAGAI in the order shown at the top of the screen and get to the airlock before being captured. If you take too long, or catch the wrong MALAGAI, returning to your compartment will make the MALAGAI friendly again and give you another chance for escape.

Collectors Information

This is one of the rarest known Atari games. It was only available by mail order. It was long thought that there no box included with this title, only a thin foam case. But recently a copy of this game sealed in the original box surfaced on eBay. The box shows a man in a blue and white jumper attempting to open a door (and it looks like he has a toilet seat around his neck). Two monsters loom in the background (they look kind of like they were traced from illustrations in the old "First Edition" AD&D Monster Manual). This game is worth at least $200, but may go for much more.

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