Air-Sea Battle


Developer: Atari
Publisher: Atari
Designer Larry Kaplan
Genres: Fixed Shooter
Release date(s): 1977
Media Cartridge
Number of players Single player, Multiplayer
Input methods Joystick
Platforms Atari 2600

Air-Sea Battle is a game developed by Atari, Inc. for the Atari 2600, and was one of the nine original launch titles for that system when it was released in October 1977. It was also released by Sears as Target Fun and was the pack-in game with the original Sears Tele-Games version of the Atari 2600.


There are six basic types of game available in Air-Sea Battle, and for each type, there are one or two groups of three games, for a total of twenty-seven game variants. Within each group, variant one is the standard game, variant two features guided missiles which can be directed left or right after being fired, and variant three pits a single player (using the right gun) against a computer opponent, which simply fires continuously at the default angle or speed. In every game, players shoot targets (enemy planes or ships, shooting gallery targets, or each other, depending on the game chosen) competing to get a higher score. Each round lasts two minutes and sixteen seconds; the player with the higher score after time expires is the winner, unless one player wins (and ends the game) by reaching 99 points before the time is up.

Anti-aircraft gamesEdit

Variants 1-6 are anti-aircraft games, in which the player uses a stationary anti-aircraft gun that can be positioned at a 30, 60, or 90-degree angle to shoot down four different types of aircraft. The planes typically appear in groups of three to five, and once every plane in a formation has been destroyed, a new formation appears. There are two groups of anti-aircraft games: in variants 1-3, each target hit is worth 1 point, while in 4-6, the various types of aircraft have different point values. Additionally, zero-point blimps are added as obstacles in games 4-6.

Torpedo gamesEdit

The torpedo games (7-12) are essentially the same as the anti-aircraft games, except that each player mans a submarine and fires at ships instead of planes. As with the anti-aircraft games, in games 7-9, all targets are worth one point, while games 10-12 have variable point values for targets and additional zero-point obstacles, this time in the form of mines.

Shooting gallery gamesEdit

The shooting gallery games (13-15) differ from the previous variants in that, in addition to setting the gun angle, the player can move the gun left and right. Instead of planes or ships, clowns, ducks, and rabbits are the targets, with point values of 1, 2, and 3 respectively.

Polaris gamesEdit

The polaris games (16-18) put the player in control of a boat which moves back and forth across the bottom of the screen automatically. Instead of controlling the gun angle, the player controls the speed at which the ship moves, attempting to shoot the same fleets of planes as in the anti-aircraft variants, with the point values of games 4-6.

Bomber gamesEdit

In the bomber games (19-21), the player-controlled vehicle is a plane flying near the top of the screen dropping bombs on the ships from the torpedo games. As in the polaris games, the plane's speed is controlled by the player, and the point values are identical to those in games 10-12.

Polaris vs. Bomber gamesEdit

In the polaris vs. bomber games (22-27), one player controls the ship from the polaris games while the other controls the plane from the bomber games, with the goal being to destroy the other player's craft. Games 25-27 feature zero-point mines as obstacles.


Air-Sea Battle appears on the Atari Anthology collection for Xbox and PlayStation 2 and the Atari Flashback dedicated console.

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