ATARI 2600tm PHOENIX* * trademark licensed by Centuri, Inc.
Atari welcomes your comments. Please address all correspondence to:
1312 Crossman Avenue
Sunnyvale, California 94086
NOTE: Always turn the console POWER switch OFF when inserting or removing an
ATARI(R) Game Program(tm) cartridge. This will protect the electronic
components and prolong the life of your ATARI 2600(tm) Video Computer
(C) 1982 ATARI,INC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
TABLE OF CONTENTS
1. PHOENIX FIRE RISING ________ 1
2. GAME PLAY __________________ 2
3. USING THE CONTROLLER _______ 3
4. CONSOLE CONTROLS ___________ 4
5. SCORING ____________________ 5
6. HELPFUL HINTS ______________ 6
7. SCORECARD __________________ 7
1. PHOENIX FIRE RISING
In ancient times, legend says, there was a bird of great beauty. About
the size of an eagle, it had brilliant scarlet and gold feathers, a
melodious song, and was the only one of its kind in the entire world.
This fabulous creature lived in Arabia and had a life span of over five
hundred years. At the end of its life, the phoenix built a nest of
frankincense, myrrh, and other aromatic spices. After setting fire to
the nest by rapidly beating its wings, the beautiful bird settled down
to die amidst the flames.
From the ashes of that fire miraculously arose a young, revitalized
Phoenix. This new bird then took the remains of its parent to the
temple of the sun at Heliopolis in Egypt, and sacrificed them on the
The long life of the Phoenix and the dramatic rebirth from its own
ashes has made this legendary bird a symbol of immortality and spiritual
rebirth in many cultures. The Egyptians saw the myth as a symbol of
the life cycle of the sun, which dies every day at sunset and is reborn
every morning at dawn. Most others interpret the legend as a general
symbol for the regeneration of life after death.
However, something awful has happened to tarnish the long-standing
image of the Phoenix. Due to the effects of radioactive fallout on its
nest, the Phoenix has unfortunately mutated into a bird of prey.
Now, several birds arise from the ashes, but these are not like the
beautiful, friendly bird of old. These birds are mean. Their cries are
shrill. They have developed a tough, metallic-like skin that makes them
almost indestructible. And they have turned their backs on the human
race to offer their services to alien beings determined to drain away
earth's energy resources.
Your mission: Eliminate these seemingly immortal war hawks, destroy the
alien spaceship, and safeguard our planet from ravaging energy-thieves.
2. GAME PLAY
You have five lives in which to survive the bombing attacks of four
separate flocks of Phoenix war birds who protect the alien spaceship.
Your challenge is to eliminate the birds, get to the spaceship that
follows the fourth wave of birds, and shoot the alien pilot.
To eliminate the large, menacing Phoenixes of the third and fourth
waves, you have to hit them in the center. If you only wing a Phoenix,
like its ancient ancestor, it will soon regenerate the missing part and
become a whole bird to attack you some more.
To destroy the alien pilot, you have to erode the multi-colored hull of
the spaceship directly beneath the cockpit to create a clear shot at
him. But one of the hull layers - the blue layer - rotates the length
of the spaceship. So, you not only have to chip away at the blue
layer, but you also have to time your shot at the alien to coincide
with the hole passing directly under him.
3. USING THE CONTROLLER
Use your Joystick Controller with this ATARI Game Program cartridge.
Be sure the controller cable is firmly plugged into the left jack at
the back of your 2600 Video Computer System console. Hold the Joystick
with the red button to your upper left, toward the television screen.
(See your Owner's Manual for further details.)
TO START THE GAME
PHOENIX is a one-player game. To start the game, press the GAME RESET
button on your Video Computer System console. Then grab your Joystick
and avoid getting bombed by the small birds that weave back and forth
across the screen. (Figure 1.)
TO OPERATE YOUR LASER CANNON
Move your Joystick left or right to move your laser cannon left or
right. Pull the Joystick toward you to activate a protective force
field around your laser cannon.
This force field is energized for only 1 1/2 seconds before it fades;
it cannot be reactivated until another 3 1/2 seconds elapse. When the
force field is activated, you cannot move your cannon, but you can
still fire your laser.
| .---. |
Left <========| |========> Right
| `-|-' |
\ | /
To fire your laser cannon, press the red fire button. You can only
have one laser shot on the screen at any one time.
[Small Phoenix Birds (First Wave) Figure 1 - Opening Game Situation
(Shows the Laser Cannon to be in the lower part of the screen and the
Score and Lives in Reserve to be in the upper part. The birds are
violet with orange.)]
4. CONSOLE CONTROLS
GAME RESET SWITCH
Press the GAME RESET switch to start the game after you insert the
cartridge into the console. Press it anytime during game play to
return to the first display (Figure 1) and start a new game. After you
have exhausted your game quota of five lives, you can also start a new
game (and reincarnate yourself!) by pressing the red fire button.
GAME SELECT SWITCH
Since PHOENIX consists of one continuous game, the GAME SELECT switch
has no function.
Since PHOENIX is difficult enough as it is, the DIFFICULTY switches
have no effect on game play either. However, if you wish to eliminate
the background sounds of the bird cries, set the LEFT DIFFICULTY switch
to the "A" position. The action sounds will remain, no matter which
setting you choose.
TV TYPE SWITCH
Set this switch to COLOR if you're playing on a color TV. Set it to
B/W to play the game on a black and white TV.
[Figure 2 - Small Phoenix Birds (Second Wave) (The birds are violet
Point values are identical for the first two waves of attack by the
small Phoenix birds. (Figures 1 and 2). You get 20 points for each
small bird you hit while it is moving in a horizontal pattern; you get
80 points for each bird you shoot while it is actually swooping in at
[Figure 3 - Large Phoenix Birds (First Wave) (The birds are blue.)]
[Figure 4 - Large Phoenix Birds (Second Wave) (The Force Field is
shown to be a white hexagon around your laser cannon. The birds
are red in this wave.)]
Point values are also identical for the last two waves of attack by the
large Phoenix birds (Figures 3 and 4). You get between 100 and 500
points for each large Phoenix you eliminate, depending on its proximity
to you when you destroy it. The closer the bird is, the more points
you get. If you only wing one of the large birds, you get 20 points.
[Figure 5 - Alien Spaceship (Shows the Alien Pilot in the space ship
and the Rotating Blue Layer)]
The alien spaceship (Figure 5) counts between 1,000 and 4,000 points
in the first round - depending on its proximity to you when you
vaporize the alien. In this case, the quicker you destroy the ship,
the more points you'll score. If you survive long enough to confront
the spaceship again, the highest score you can achieve increases by a
thousand points in each round to a maximum of 9,000 points.
6. HELPFUL HINTS
* Overcome the temptation to fire away the first time the small birds
appear. Instead, take a few moments to study their patterns. Observe
what happens when you are positioned directly beneath the birds, and
when you are not. Study the attack patterns of the lower birds. Learn
how to move your laser cannon between the bombs without getting blown
* In all phases of the game except for the second wave of small birds,
you must press the red fire button each time you want to squeeze off a
shot. However, in the second wave of small birds, you'll get
continuous firing if you hold the button down.
* Don't waste lives trying to accumulate a lot of points in the early
waves. Play it safe. Save your stamina for the large birds and for
the spaceship, where the real big points are scored.
* For the first two times you encounter the alien spaceship, you can
chip away the blue layer of the spaceship without getting bombed if
you fire close to the edges furthest from the cockpit. Starting with
the third encounter with the spaceship, however, bombs will fall from
those edges and the alien's shots will be faster-paced and more
accurate - just to make things more challenging for advanced players!
At all times, you need two shots at the same point to create a hole in
the blue layer.
* Use your force field sparingly and as a strategic device in emergency
situations. If a bird brushes up against your force field, it will be
disintegrated; but if a bird crashes into your unprotected laser
cannon, you're both "dead ducks." The moral: Keep a watchful eye for
low flying birds!