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Item:204425432074Atari 2600 Atari Force # 2 DC Comics Mini Comic Book (Vintage 1982) Gerry Conway. DC Special #28 (1977). DC Special Series #1, 6, 10, 16 (1977–1978). DC Super-Stars #18 (1978). DC Special Series #26 (1981). DC Retroactive: Wonder Woman – The '80s #1 (2011). House of Secrets: The Bronze Age Omnibus Vol. Atari 2600 Atari Force # 2 DC Comics Mini Comic Book (Vintage 1982) Created and written by Gerry Conway and Roy Thomas Comic measure 5" W x 7" H Comic contains 48 interior print/illustrated story pages plus 4 page cover. 52 total pages. Gerry Conway Gerard Francis Conway (born September 10, 1952) is an American comic book writer, comic book editor, screenwriter, television writer, and television producer. He is known for co-creating the Marvel Comics vigilante antihero the Punisher as well as the Scarlet Spider (Ben Reilly), and the first Ms. Marvel, and also writing the death of the character Gwen Stacy during his long run on The Amazing Spider-Man in the story arc, "The Night Gwen Stacy Died". At DC Comics, he is known for co-creating the superheroes Firestorm and Power Girl, the character Jason Todd and the villain Killer Croc, and for writing the Justice League of America for eight years. Conway wrote the first major, modern-day intercompany crossover, Superman vs. the Amazing Spider-Man. Early life Born in Brooklyn, New York, New York, Conway grew up a comic fan; a letter from him appears in Fantastic Four #50 (May 1966), written when Conway was 13. He attended New York University for a time. Career He published his first professional comic book work at 16, with the 61⁄2-page horror story "Aaron Philips' Photo Finish" in DC Comics' House of Secrets #81 (Sept. 1969). He continued selling such anthological stories for that series and for Marvel's Chamber of Darkness and Tower of Shadows through the end of 1970, by which time he had also published one-page text short stories in DC's All-Star Western #1 (Sept. 1970) and Super DC Giant #S-14 (Oct. 1970). He published his first continuing-character story in DC's semi-anthological occult comic The Phantom Stranger #10 (Dec. 1970). Conway recalled breaking into Marvel Comics through Marvel editor Roy Thomas: I'd been writing for DC Comics for two or three years...but to paraphrase the joke about the actor's ambitions to be a director, what I really wanted to do was write superheroes – specifically Marvel heroes. Through friends I'd become acquainted with Roy Thomas, who was Stan Lee's right-hand man at the time, and Roy offered me a shot at the Marvel 'writing test.' Stan wasn't impressed, but Roy liked what I did, and began throwing some short assignments my way, including scripting over his plot on an early Ka-Zar [story]. Following his first continuing-character story for Marvel, with his script for the jungle lord Ka-Zar in Astonishing Tales #3 (Dec. 1970), Conway began writing superhero stories with Daredevil #72 (Jan. 1971). He quickly went on to assignments on Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk, and both "The Inhumans" and "The Black Widow" features in the split book Amazing Adventures. He scripted the first Man-Thing story, in 1971, sharing co-creation credit with Stan Lee and Roy Thomas. Conway eventually scripted virtually every major Marvel title, and co-created (with writers Roy & Jean Thomas and artist Mike Ploog) the lycanthropic lead character of the feature "Werewolf by Night", in Marvel Spotlight #2 (Feb. 1972); he also wrote the premiere issue of Marvel's The Tomb of Dracula, introducing the longstanding literary vampire into the Marvel universe. Spider-Man and intercompany rotation At 19, Conway began scripting The Amazing Spider-Man, succeeding Stan Lee as writer of one of Marvel's flagship titles. His run, from issues #111–149 (August 1972 – October 1975), included the landmark death of Gwen Stacy story in #121 (June 1973). Eight issues later, Conway and Andru introduced the Punisher as a conflicted antagonist for Spider-Man, as well as the Jackal. The Punisher became a popular star of numerous comic books and has been adapted into three movies and a live action television series. Conway additionally wrote Fantastic Four, from #133–152 (April 1973 – Nov. 1974). Conway in 2009 reflected on writing flagship Marvel characters at a very young age: Precocity is a well-known curse; most of the pressure I felt as a younger writer was self-imposed. I wanted to be accepted by other writers and artists as an equal, which put me in some awkward situations — pretending to be more mature than I was, emotionally and professionally. As it happened, I was pretty good at faking a maturity I didn't have, which had advantages and, obviously, some disadvantages. I think people often forgot how young I was, and expected me to perform at a level that was actually beyond me. The result was, I was pretty stressed for most of my early career as a writer, and I often felt like I had no idea what I was doing —which was true. I wrote instinctively and from the gut; when those instincts were appropriate to the material I was writing – for example, when I was writing [The Amazing] Spider-Man — the results were something I was quite proud of, then and now. When my instincts were off, I didn't have the experience to either recognize it, or to compensate for it, with results that were more uneven. In late 1972, Conway and writers Steve Englehart and Len Wein crafted a metafictional unofficial crossover spanning titles from both major comics companies. Each comic featured Englehart, Conway, and Wein, as well as Wein's first wife Glynis, interacting with Marvel or DC characters at the Rutland Halloween Parade in Rutland, Vermont. Beginning in Amazing Adventures #16 (by Englehart with art by Bob Brown and Frank McLaughlin), the story continued in Justice League of America #103 (by Wein, Dick Dillin and Dick Giordano), and concluded in Thor #207 (by Conway and penciler John Buscema). As Englehart explained in 2010, "It certainly seemed like a radical concept and we knew that we had to be subtle (laughs) and each story had to stand on its own, but we really worked it out. It's really worthwhile to read those stories back to back to back – it didn't matter to us that one was at DC and two were at Marvel – I think it was us being creative, thinking what would be really cool to do." Conway returned to DC Comics in mid-1975, beginning with three books cover-dated Nov. 1975: Hercules Unbound #1, Kong the Untamed #3, and Swamp Thing #19. He wrote a revival of the Golden Age comic book series All Star Comics which introduced the character Power Girl. Shortly afterward, he was chosen by Marvel and DC editors to script the historic intercompany crossover Superman vs. the Amazing Spider-Man #1, a 96-page, tabloid-sized, $2 one-shot, at a time when comic books sold for 25 cents. He continued writing for DC, on titles including Superman, Detective Comics (starring Batman), Metal Men, Justice League of America, 1st Issue Special #11 starring Codename: Assassin, and that of the licensed character Tarzan. Conway briefly returned to Marvel where he succeeded Marv Wolfman as editor-in-chief in March 1976, but held the job only "about a month-and-a-half," relinquishing the post and being succeeded by Archie Goodwin. For a time, a confluence of publishing schedules resulted in Conway stories appearing in both Marvel and DC comics in the same month: The prolific Conway's comic books with January 1977 cover-dates alone, for example, are Marvel's The Avengers, The Defenders, Captain Marvel, Iron Man, The Spectacular Spider-Man, and the premiere issues of Ms. Marvel and Logan's Run, and Superman and Action Comics. DC Comics and later career After leaving Marvel's editorship, he again wrote exclusively for DC for the next decade writing both major and lesser titles – from those featuring Superman, Wonder Woman, and the Legion of Super-Heroes to such books as Weird Western Tales, Atari Force and Sun Devils. He had an eight-year run on Justice League of America, writing most issues from #151–255 (Feb. 1978 – Oct. 1986) including the double-sized anniversary issue #200 (March 1982). Conway wrote two additional Superman projects in the oversized tabloid format, Superman vs. Wonder Woman, drawn by José Luis García-López, and Superman vs. Shazam, drawn by Rich Buckler. He co-created the characters Firestorm with artist Al Milgrom and Steel, the Indestructible Man with artist Don Heck in the premiere issues (both March 1978) of the respective titular comics. Two other Conway co-creations, the Deserter (with artist Dick Ayers) and the Vixen (with artist Bob Oksner) were scheduled to receive their own series as well but were canceled before any issues were published. He additionally co-created the characters Vibe and Gypsy. As writer of Batman #337–359 (July 1981 – May 1983) and the feature "Batman" in Detective Comics #497–526 (Dec. 1980 – May 1983), he introduced the characters Killer Croc and Jason Todd, the latter of whom became the second Robin, succeeding original sidekick Dick Grayson. With artist Gene Colan, Conway revived the Golden Age supervillains Doctor Death in Batman #345 (March 1982) and the Monk in Batman #350 (Aug. 1982). Conway was a frequent collaborator with Roy Thomas. Together they wrote a two-part Superman–Captain Marvel team-up in DC Comics Presents #33–34 (May–June 1981); the Atari Force and Swordquest mini-comics packaged with Atari 2600 video games; and three Justice League of America-Justice Society of America crossovers. Conway contributed ideas to the talking animal comic Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew!, created by Thomas and Scott Shaw. Thomas and Conway were to be the co-writers of the JLA/Avengers intercompany crossover, but editorial disputes between DC and Marvel caused the project's cancellation. Conway was one of the contributors to the DC Challenge limited series in 1986. He returned to Marvel in the 1980s and served as the regular writer of both The Spectacular Spider-Man and Web of Spider-Man from 1988 until 1990. Conway stated in 1991 that "I understand the character a lot better now than I did when I was nineteen. And one of the nice things about the Marvel characters is that you can keep them fresh by changing them just a bit." His run on Spectacular included such story arcs as the "Lobo Brothers Gang War". He relinquished writing duties on both titles when he became the story editor of the television series Father Dowling Mysteries. Conway's last recorded comic credits for many years were Topps Comics' "Kirbyverse" NightGlider #1 (April 1993), scripting from a Roy Thomas plot, and a story for Disney Adventures, published in 1995. Conway returned to comics in 2009 and wrote DC Comics' The Last Days of Animal Man, with artist Chris Batista. In 2011, he wrote the DC Retroactive: Justice League – The '80s one-shot. Also for DC, he wrote the Firestorm feature in Legends of Tomorrow #1–6 in 2016. In 2015, he returned to Spider-Man by writing a story in Spider-Verse Team Up #2, and the "Spiral" storyline in The Amazing Spider-Man #16.1–20.1. He returned to work as a series' regular writer that same year with Carnage which ran for 16 issues until 2017. In 2016, he returned to his creation the Punisher by writing The Punisher Annual #1. From 2016 to 2017, he wrote The Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows #1–9, followed by What If? Spider-Man #1 in 2018 and the oneshot The Amazing Spider-Man: Going Big, penciled by Mark Bagley, in 2019. Books, comic strips, screenplays In addition to comics, Conway published two science-fiction novels: The Midnight Dancers and Mindship (originally published as a short story in the science fiction anthology "Universe 1.") He also wrote the February 14–December 3, 1983 dailies of the syndicated newspaper comic strip Star Trek, based upon the 1960s TV series. Conway as well moved into screenwriting in the 1980s, starting with the animated feature Fire and Ice (1983), co-written with Roy Thomas, based on characters created by Ralph Bakshi and Frank Frazetta. Conway and Thomas wrote the story basis for Stanley Mann's screenplay for the film Conan the Destroyer (1984). Afterwards, Conway and Thomas also worked on the script of a live-action X-Men film for production company Nelvana that wasn't produced because of distributor Orion Pictures' financial troubles and subsequent bankruptcy. Conway wrote, and later produced, such TV series as Father Dowling Mysteries, Diagnosis: Murder, Matlock, Jake and the Fatman, Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, Baywatch Nights, Pacific Blue, Silk Stalkings, Perry Mason telefilms, Law & Order, The Huntress, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, and an episode of Batman: The Animated Series ("Appointment in Crime Alley"). Conway frequently referenced his comic book connections during his stint on Law & Order by naming characters on the show after comic book creators such as John Byrne. Personal life Conway's first wife was comic-book writer Carla Conway. The couple have a daughter, Cara. His second wife, Karen, is a psychologist who works with autistic children. They married in 1992 and have a daughter, Rachel. As of 2015, he and his wife Laura live in Thousand Oaks, California. Conway's ancestral family background is Irish, as he described in his blog: In my case, on my mother's side, I'm a second-generation immigrant. My grandparents were born in Ireland. They came to America in the late 'teens of the last century and lived a life not very different from the life my housekeeper and her husband live today. My grandfather was a day laborer in the Brooklyn ship yards. My (step)-grandmother washed floors at Hunter College in Manhattan. (My biological grandmother died when my mother was eight years old, so I've no idea what she did to earn a living, but I assume it was either piece work or domestic work of some kind.) Because they were lower-class Irish, they were the Hispanics of their day – tolerated, but not embraced, by the larger society, and viewed with scorn by the WASP upper class. ... Even my father felt that anti-Irish prejudice, real or imagined. In the 1950s he once spoke, rather bitterly, about being one of the two 'token Irishmen' working at his company. Conway was raised a Christian, but stated in a 2013 interview that he does not "have any religious belief at this point". Comics bibliography Atlas/Seaboard Comics Destructor #4 (1975) Targitt #3 (1975) Tiger-Man #2–3 (1975) DC Comics 1st Issue Special #11–13 (1976) Action Comics #457, 467, 477–479, 486, 517–523 (1976–1981) Adventure Comics #444, 459–460, 463–464 (1976–1979) All-New Collectors' Edition #C-54, C-58 (1978) All Star Comics #58–62 (1976) All-Star Squadron #8–9 (1982) The Amazing World of DC Comics #11 (1976) Arak, Son of Thunder #7 (1982) Atari Force #1–5 (1982–1983) Atari Force vol. 2 #1–13 (1984–1985) Batman #295, 305–306, 337–346, 348–359 (1978–1983) Batman Family #17 (1978) The Brave and the Bold #158, 161, 171–174 (1980–1981) Cancelled Comic Cavalcade #1–2 (1978) Challengers of the Unknown #81–87 (1977–1978) Cinder and Ashe #1–4 (1988) DC Challenge #8, 12 (1986) DC Comics Presents #17–18, 21, 30–33, 40, 45, 53, 68 (1980–1984) DC Retroactive: Justice League of America - The '80s #1 (2011) DC Special #28 (1977) DC Special Blue Ribbon Digest #5 (1980) DC Special Series #1, 6, 10, 16 (1977–1978) DC Super-Stars #18 (1978) Detective Comics #463–464, 497–499, 501–513, 515–526 (1976–1983) Doorway to Nightmare #2 (1978) Firestorm #1–5 (1978) The Flash #289–299, 301–304 (Firestorm backup stories) (1980–1981) Forbidden Tales of Dark Mansion #8 (1972) Freedom Fighters #1–2 (1976) The Fury of Firestorm #1–53, 100 Annual #1–4 (1982–1986, 1990) Hercules Unbound #1–6 (1975–1976) Heroes Against Hunger #1 (1986) House of Mystery #188, 193, 196, 199–200, 202, 292–294, 296–297, 300 (1970–1982) House of Secrets #81, 83, 85–86, 88–89, 94, 111–112, 140, 150 (1969–1978) House of Secrets: The Bronze Age Omnibus Vol. 2 (story "Night of the Rat", originally intended for publication in House of Secrets #141) (2019) Jonah Hex #40–41, 45–47 (1980–1981) Justice League of America #125–127, 131–134, 151–216, 219, 221–223, 228–230, 233–239, 241–255, Annual #2 (1975–1986) Kamandi #39–44 (1976) Kong the Untamed #3–5 (1975–1976) Last Days of Animal Man #1–6 (2009) Legends of Tomorrow #1–6 (Firestorm feature) (2016) Legion of Super-Heroes vol. 2 #259–278 (1980–1981) Man-Bat #1 (1975) Metal Men #46–48, 54–56 (1976–1978) Mystery in Space #114 (1980) New Gods #12–19 (1977–1978) The New Teen Titans #16 (Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew! insert) (1982) Phantom Stranger vol. 2 #10–11 (1970–1971) Secret Hearts #143, 147, 149 (1970–1971) Secret Origins vol. 2 #4, 17 (1986–1987) Secret Society of Super Villains #1–2, 8–14 (1976–1978) Star Spangled War Stories #193 (1975) Steel, The Indestructible Man #1–5 (1978) Sun Devils #1–9 (1984–1985) Super-Team Family #11–15 (1977–1978) Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes #227, 232, 234–235, 248–249, 252–258 (1977–1979) Superman #301, 303–304, 307–309, 345–348, 350–351, 407 (1976–1985) The Superman Family #175, 184, 186–193, 195–202, 206–211 (1976–1981) Swamp Thing #19–20, 23–24 (1975–1976) Swordquest #1–3 (1982) Tarzan #250–254 (1976) The Unexpected #221 (1982) Weird Western Tales #45–58, 60–70 (Scalphunter feature) (1978–1980) The Witching Hour #10, 14, 27, 38 (1970–1974) Wonder Woman #233–241, 259–285, 329 (1977–1986) World's Finest Comics #245–254, 256–259, 261–262, 268–270, 272, 274–275 (1977–1982) Young Love #122 (1976) Zatanna Special #1 (1987) DC Comics and Marvel Comics Superman vs. the Amazing Spider-Man #1 (1976) Disney Comics Disney Adventures v5 #4 (1995) Eclipse Comics The Unknown Worlds of Frank Brunner #2 (1985) First Comics Hawkmoon: The Jewel in the Skull #1–4 (1986) Hawkmoon: The Mad God's Amulet #1–4 (1987) Marvel Comics Adventure into Fear #10 (1972) Amazing Adventures #7, 9–11, 18–19 (1971–1973) The Amazing Spider-Man #111–149 (1972–1975), Annual #23 (1989) The Amazing Spider-Man vol. 3 #16.1–20.1 (2015) The Amazing Spider-Man: Going Big #1 (2019) The Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows #1–9 (2016–2017) Astonishing Tales #3–8 (1970–1971) The Avengers #151–157, Annual #6 (1976–1977) Black Widow the Coldest War GN (1990) Captain America #149–152 (1972) Captain Marvel #22, 47–48 (1972–1977) Carnage #1–16 (2015–2017) Chamber of Chills #1 (1972) Chamber of Darkness #3 (1970) Conan the Barbarian #226–231 (1989–1990) Creatures on the Loose #18 (1972) Daredevil #72–98, 118 (1971–1975) Daredevil Annual #5 (1989) Deadly Hands of Kung Fu #1, 3–4 (1974) Defenders #42–45, 57 (1976–1978) Dracula Lives #1, 3–5, 7, 9, 12–13 (1973–1975) Fantastic Four #133–152, 179 (1973–1977) Ghost Rider #21–23 (1976–1977) Giant-Size Fantastic Four #2–3 (1974) Giant-Size Spider-Man #3–5 (1975) Giant-Size Super-Heroes #1 (Spider-Man) (1974) Giant-Size Super-Stars #1 (Fantastic Four) (1974) Haunt of Horror #1–2, 4 (1974) The Incredible Hulk #146–147 (1971–1972) Iron Man #35–44, 91–97 (1971–1977) Justice #9–11, 13 (1987) Ka-Zar vol. 2 #6–10 (1974–1975) Kull and the Barbarians #2 (1975) Kull the Conqueror #4–7, 9–10 (1972–1973) Legion of Monsters #1 (1975) Logan's Run #1 (1977) Marvel Comics #1000 (2019) Marvel Comics Presents #101–109 (1992) Marvel Graphic Novel: Conan:The Horn of Azoth GN (1990) Marvel Graphic Novel: The Amazing Spider-Man: Parallel Lives GN (1989) Marvel Point One #1 (Carnage) (2015) Marvel Preview #2 (1975) Marvel Spotlight #2–4 (1972) Marvel Super-Heroes vol. 2 #4 (1990) Marvel Team-Up #2–12, 28–37, 52 (1972–1976) Monsters on the Prowl #13 (1971) Monsters Unleashed #1–2, 6–7, 11 (1973–1975) Ms. Marvel #1–2 (1977) Our Love Story #15 (1972) Planet of the Apes #1 (1974) The Punisher Annual #1 (2016) Punisher Bloodlines #1 (1992) Savage Sword of Conan #166–169, 174 (1989–1990) Savage Tales #2, 6–10 (1973–1975) Sgt. Fury and his Howling Commandos #86, 117–119 (1971–1974) The Spectacular Spider-Man #1–3, 137–174, Annual #8–11 (1976–1977, 1988–1991) Spider-Man/Dr. Strange: The Way to Dusty Death #1 (1993) Spider-Man: Fear Itself GN (1992) Spider-Verse Team-Up #2 (2015) Spitfire and the Troubleshooters #1–6 (1986–1987) Sub-Mariner #41–49 (1971–1972) Tales of the Zombie #4, 10 (1974–1975) Thor #193–238 (1971–1975) ThunderCats #7–12, 24 (1986–1988) The Tomb of Dracula #1–2 (1972) Tower of Shadows #5 (1970) Unknown Worlds of Science Fiction #1–4 (1975) Vampire Tales #3, 8–10 (1974–1975) Visionaries #3–6 (1988) Web of Spider-Man #35–36, 47–48, 50–70, Annual #5–6 (1988–1990) Werewolf by Night #1–4, 9–10 (1972–1973) What If Spider-Man #1 (2018) Worlds Unknown #1–2, 4, 6 (1973–1974) Papercutz Nancy Drew: Girl Detective - The New Case Files #3 ("Together with the Hardy Boys") (2011) Skywald Publications Nightmare #3 (1971) Topps Comics NightGlider #1 (1993) Warren Publications Creepy #38, 103 (1971–1978) Eerie #32 (1971) Television and film credits Television G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero (1985–1986) The Transformers (1986) The Centurions (1986) My Little Pony (1986–1987) Dinosaucers (1987) Spiral Zone (1987) Dino-Riders (1988) Monsters (1990) Father Dowling Mysteries (1990–1991) Jake and the Fatman (1992) Perry Mason: The Case of the Heartbroken Bride (TV movie) (1992) Matlock (1992–1993) Batman: The Animated Series (1992, 1994) Diagnosis: Murder (1993–1997) Diagnosis: Murder - A Twist of the Knife (TV movie) (1993) Perry Mason: The Case of the Killer Kiss (TV Movie) (1993) Spider-Man (1994) A Perry Mason Mystery: The Case of the Jealous Jokester (TV movie) (1995) Two (1996) Pacific Blue (1996) Silk Stalkings (1996, 1998) Players (1997) Baywatch Nights (1997) Hercules: The Legendary Journeys (1998–1999) Law & Order (1999–2000) The Huntress (2000) Law & Order: Criminal Intent (2003–2006) Feature films Fire and Ice (1983) Conan the Destroyer (1984) Roy Thomas Roy William Thomas Jr. (born November 22, 1940) is an American comic book writer and editor, who was Stan Lee's first successor as editor-in-chief of Marvel Comics. He is possibly best known for introducing the pulp magazine hero Conan the Barbarian to American comics, with a series that added to the storyline of Robert E. Howard's character and helped launch a sword and sorcery trend in comics. Thomas is also known for his championing of Golden Age comic-book heroes – particularly the 1940s superhero team the Justice Society of America – and for lengthy writing stints on Marvel's X-Men and The Avengers, and DC Comics' All-Star Squadron, among other titles. Among the comics characters he co-created are Wolverine, Vision, Doc Samson, Carol Danvers, Luke Cage, Iron Fist, Ultron, Yellowjacket, Defenders, Man-Thing, Red Sonja, Morbius, Ghost Rider, Squadron Supreme, Invaders, Black Knight (Dane Whitman), Nighthawk, Havok, Banshee, Sunfire, Thundra, Arkon, Killraven, Wendell Vaughn, Red Wolf, Red Guardian, Daimon Hellstrom, Brother Voodoo and Valkyrie. Thomas was inducted into the Will Eisner Comic Book Hall of Fame in 2011 and into the Harvey Awards Hall of Fame in 2022. Early life Thomas was born in Jackson, Missouri, United States. As a child, he was a devoted comic book fan, and in grade school he wrote and drew his own comics for distribution to friends and family. The first of these was All-Giant Comics, which he recalls as having featured such characters as Elephant Giant. He was enrolled at a parochial Lutheran school and attended St. Paul Lutheran Church in Jackson. As an adult, Thomas is "not religious" and has been described as a "lapsed Lutheran". He graduated from Southeast Missouri State University in 1961 with a BS in Education, having majored in history and social science. Thomas became an early and active member of Silver Age comic book fandom when it organized in the early 1960s – primarily around Jerry Bails, whose enthusiasm for the rebirth of superhero comics during that period led Bails to found the fanzine Alter Ego, an early focal point of fandom. Thomas, then a high school English teacher, took over as editor in 1964 when Bails moved on to other pursuits. Letters from Thomas appeared regularly in the letters pages of both DC and Marvel Comics, including Green Lantern #1 (August 1960), The Flash #116 (Nov. 1960), Fantastic Four #5 (July 1962), Fantastic Four #15 (June 1963), and Fantastic Four #22 (Jan. 1964). Career Marvel Comics In 1965, Thomas moved to New York City to take a job at DC Comics as assistant to Mort Weisinger, then the editor of the Superman titles. Thomas said he had just accepted a fellowship to study foreign relations at George Washington University when he received a letter from Weisinger, "with whom I had exchanged one or two letters, tops", asking Thomas to become "his assistant editor on a several-week trial basis." Thomas had already written a Jimmy Olsen script "a few months before, while still living and teaching in the St. Louis area," he said in 2005. "I worked at DC for eight days in late June and very early July of 1965" before accepting a job at Marvel Comics. The Marvel "Bullpen Bulletins" in Fantastic Four #61 (April 1967) describes Thomas "admitting that he gave up a scholarship to George Washington University just to write for Marvel!" This came after his chafing under the notoriously difficult Weisinger, to a point, Thomas said in 1981, that he would go "home to my dingy little room at, coincidentally, the George Washington Hotel in Manhattan, during that second week, and actually feeling tears well into my eyes, at the ripe old age of 24." Familiar with editor and chief writer Stan Lee's Marvel work, and feeling them "the most vital comics around", Thomas "just sat down one night at the hotel and – I wrote him a letter! Not applying for a job or anything so mundane as that – I just said that I admired his work, and would like to buy him a drink some time. I figured he just might remember me from Alter Ego." Lee did, and phoned Thomas to offer him a Marvel writing test. The writer's test, Thomas said in 1998, "was four Jack Kirby pages from Fantastic Four Annual #2 ... [Stan Lee] had Sol [Brodsky] or someone take out the dialogue. It was just black-and-white. Other people like Denny O'Neil and Gary Friedrich took it. But soon afterwards we stopped using it." The day after taking the test, Thomas was at DC, proofreading a Supergirl story, when Steinberg called asking Thomas to meet with Lee during lunch, where Thomas agreed to work for Marvel. He returned to DC to give "indefinite notice" to Weisinger, but Weisinger ordered him to leave immediately and "I was back at Marvel less than an hour after I first left, and had a Modeling with Millie assignment to do over the weekend. It was a Friday." His employment was announced in the "Bullpen Bulletins" section of Fantastic Four #47 (Feb. 1966) under the heading "How About That! Department" ("Roy's a fan who's made it!"). Thomas later described his early days at Marvel: I was hired after taking [the] 'writer's test', and my first official job title at Marvel was 'staff writer'. I wasn't hired as an editor or assistant editor. I was supposed to come in 40 hours a week and write scripts on staff. ... I sat at this corrugated metal desk with a typewriter in a small office with production manager Sol Brodsky and corresponding secretary Flo Steinberg. Everybody who came up to Marvel wound up there, and the phone was constantly ringing, with conversations going on all around me. ... Almost at once, even though Stan proofed all the finished stories, he and Sol started having me check the corrections before they went out, and that would break up my concentration still further. ... [and] they kept asking me to do this or that, or questions like in which issue something happened, or Stan would come in to check something, because I knew a lot about Marvel continuity up to that time. ... It quickly became apparent to them, too, that the staff writer thing wasn't working, and Stan segued me over to being an editorial assistant, which immediately worked out better for all concerned. To that point, editor-in-chief Lee had been the main writer of Marvel publications, with his brother, Larry Lieber, often picking up the slack scripting Lee-plotted stories. Thomas soon became the first new Marvel writer to sustain a presence, at a time when comics veterans such as Robert Bernstein, Ernie Hart, Leon Lazarus, and Don Rico, and fellow newcomers Steve Skeates (hired a couple of weeks earlier) and O'Neil (brought in at Thomas' recommendation a few months later) did not. His Marvel debut was the romance-comics story "Whom Can I Turn To?" in the Millie the Model spin-off Modeling with Millie #44 (Dec. 1965) – for which the credits and the logo were inadvertently left off due to a production glitch, resulting in this being left off most credit lists. Thomas' first Marvel superhero scripting was "My Life for Yours", the "Iron Man" feature in Tales of Suspense #73 (Jan. 1966), working from a Lee plot as well as a plot assist from secretary Steinberg. Thomas estimates that Lee rewrote approximately half of that fledgling attempt. Thomas' earliest Marvel work also included the teen-romance title Patsy and Hedy #104–105 (Feb.-April 1966), and two "Doctor Strange" stories, plotted by Lee and Steve Ditko, in Strange Tales #143–144 (April–May 1966). Two previously written freelance stories for Charlton Comics also saw print: "The Second Trojan War" in Son of Vulcan #50 (Jan. 1966) and "The Eye of Horus" in Blue Beetle #54 (March 1966). "When Stan saw the couple of Charlton stories I'd written earlier in more of a Gardner Fox style, he wasn't too impressed," Thomas recalled. "It's probably a good thing I already had my job at Marvel at that point! I think I was the right person in the right place at the right time, but there are other people who, had they been there, might have been just as right." Thomas took on what would be his first long-term Marvel title, the World War II series Sgt. Fury and his Howling Commandos, starting with #29 (April 1966) and continuing through #41 (April 1967) and the series' 1966 annual, Sgt. Fury Special #2. He also began writing the mutant-superteam title [Uncanny] X-Men from #20–43 (May 1966 – April 1968), and, finally, took over The Avengers, starting with #35 (Dec. 1966), and continuing until 1972. That notable run was marked by a strong sense of continuity, and stories that ranged from the personal to the cosmic – the latter most prominently with the "Kree-Skrull War" in issues #89–97 (June 1971 – March 1972). Additional work included an occasional "Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D" and "Doctor Strange" story in Strange Tales. When that title became the solo comic Doctor Strange, he wrote the entire run of new stories, from #169–183 (June 1968 – Nov. 1969), mostly with the art team of penciler Gene Colan and inker Tom Palmer. As Thomas self-evaluated in a 1981 interview, shortly after leaving Marvel for rival DC Comics, "One of the reasons Stan liked my writing ... was that after a few issues he felt he could trust me enough that he virtually never again read anything I wrote – well, at least not more than a page or two in a row, just to keep me honest." Thomas eloped in July 1968 to marry his first wife, Jean Maxey, returning to work a day late from a weekend comic-book convention in St. Louis, Missouri. Thomas said in 2000 that Brodsky, in the interim, had assigned Doctor Strange to the writer Archie Goodwin, newly ensconced at Marvel and writing Iron Man, but Thomas convinced Brodsky to return it to him. "I got very possessive about Doctor Strange," Thomas recalled. "It wasn't a huge seller, but [by the time it was canceled], we were selling in the low 40 percent range of more than 400,000 print run, so it was actually selling a couple hundred thousand copies [but] at the time you needed to sell even more." He eventually did have a Caribbean honeymoon, where he scripted the wedding of Hank Pym and Janet van Dyne in The Avengers #60 (Jan.1969). Thomas, who had turned over X-Men to other writers, returned with issue #55 (April 1969) when the series was on the verge of cancellation. While efforts to save it failed – the title ended its initial run with #66 – Thomas' collaboration with artist Neal Adams through #63 (Dec. 1969) is regarded as a Silver Age creative highlight. Thomas won the 1969 Alley Award that year for Best Writer, while Adams and inker Tom Palmer, netted 1969 Alley Awards for Best Pencil Artist and Best Inking Artist, respectively. Thomas and artist Barry Smith launched Conan the Barbarian in October 1970, based on Robert E. Howard's 1930s pulp-fiction sword-and-sorcery character. Thomas, who stepped down from his editorship in August 1974, wrote hundreds of Conan stories in a host of Marvel comics and the black-and-white magazines Savage Tales and The Savage Sword of Conan. During that time, he and Smith also brought to comics Howard's little-known, sword-wielding woman-warrior Red Sonja, initially as a Conan supporting character. Comics historian Les Daniels noted that, "Conan the Barbarian was something of a gamble for Marvel. The series contained the usual elements of action and fantasy, to be sure, but it was set in a past that had no relation to the Marvel Universe, and it featured a hero who possessed no magical powers, little humor and comparatively few moral principles." In 1971, with Stan Lee and Gerry Conway, Thomas created Man-Thing and wrote the first Man-Thing story in color comics, after Conway and Len Wein had introduced the character in the black-and-white comics magazine Savage Tales. Later that year, Thomas wrote the "Kree-Skrull War" storyline across multiple issues of The Avengers penciled variously by Sal Buscema, Neal Adams, and John Buscema. Thomas was the first person other than Stan Lee to receive a writer's credit for The Amazing Spider-Man, and he and artist Ross Andru launched the Spider-Man spin-off title Marvel Team-Up in March 1972. Thomas and Marvel artists co-created many other characters, among them Wolverine, Ultron (including the fictional metal adamantium), Carol Danvers, Morbius the Living Vampire, Luke Cage, Iron Fist, Ghost Rider, Doc Samson, Valkyrie, Brother Voodoo, Werewolf by Night, Banshee and Killraven. Thomas also co-created several characters based on already existing characters, including the Vision, Yellowjacket, the Black Knight, and Adam Warlock. Editor-in-chief In 1972, when Lee became Marvel's publisher, Thomas succeeded him as editor-in-chief. Thomas also continued to script mainstream titles, including Marvel's flagship, Fantastic Four. He launched such new titles as the "non-team" The Defenders, as well as What If, a title that explored fictional alternate histories of Marvel's existing characters and stories. In addition, he indulged his love of Golden Age comic-book heroes in the World War II-set superhero series The Invaders. He was instrumental in engineering Marvel's comic-book adaptation of the 1977 film Star Wars, without which, 1980s Marvel editor Jim Shooter believed, "[W]e would have gone out of business". In 1975, Thomas wrote the first joint publishing venture between Marvel and DC Comics – a 72-page Wizard of Oz movie adaptation in an oversized "Treasury Edition" format with art by John Buscema. He and Buscema crafted a comics adaptation of Tarzan for Marvel in June 1977. DC Comics In 1981, after several years of freelancing for Marvel and a dispute with then editor-in-chief Jim Shooter, Thomas signed a three-year exclusive writing/editing contract with DC. He marked his return to that company with a two-part Green Lantern story in Green Lantern #138–139 (March–April 1981), and briefly wrote Batman, DC Comics Presents, and the Legion of Super-Heroes. DC gave Thomas' work a promotional push by featuring several of his series in free, 16-page insert previews. Thomas married his second wife, Danette Couto, in May 1981. Danette legally changed her first name to Dann and would become Thomas' regular writing partner. He credits her with the original idea for the Arak, Son of Thunder series drawn by Ernie Colón. Writer Gerry Conway would also be a frequent collaborator with Thomas; together they wrote a two-part Superman-Shazam team-up in DC Comics Presents; a series of Atari Force and Swordquest mini-comics packaged with Atari 2600 video games; and three Justice League-Justice Society crossovers. Conway also contributed ideas to the talking animal comic Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew!, created by Thomas and Scott Shaw. Thomas and Conway were to be the co-writers of the JLA/Avengers intercompany crossover but editorial disputes between DC and Marvel caused the project's cancellation. During that era, Roy Thomas and Gerry Conway collaborated on the screenplays for two movies: the animated feature Fire and Ice (1983) and Conan the Destroyer (1984). The duo also worked on a live-action X-Men film for production company Nelvana that never went into production. As a solo writer, Roy Thomas wrote Wonder Woman and, with artist Gene Colan, updated the character's costume and introduced a new supervillainess, the Silver Swan. His final work on the series, issue #300 (Feb. 1983), was co-written with his wife Dann Thomas, who, as Roy Thomas noted in 1999 "became the first woman ever to receive scripting credit on the world's foremost super-heroine." Thomas realized a childhood dream in writing the Justice Society of America (JSA). Reviving the Golden Age group in Justice League of America #193 and continuing in All-Star Squadron, he wrote retro adventures, like those of The Invaders, set in World War II. In addition to the JSA's high-profile heroes, Thomas revived such characters as Liberty Belle, Johnny Quick, Robotman, Firebrand, the Tarantula, and Neptune Perkins. He used the series to address the complicated and sometimes contradictory continuity issues surrounding the JSA. In 1983, Thomas and artist Jerry Ordway created Infinity, Inc., a group composed of the JSA's children. The characters debuted in All-Star Squadron #25 (Sept. 1983) and were launched in their own series in March 1984. Thomas wrote several limited series for DC including America vs. the Justice Society, Jonni Thunder a.k.a. Thunderbolt, Shazam!: The New Beginning, and Crimson Avenger as well as two issues of DC Challenge. From 1986 to 1988, Thomas contributed to the Secret Origins series and wrote most of the stories involving the Golden Age characters including Superman and Batman. In 1986, DC decided to write off the JSA from active continuity. A one-shot issue titled The Last Days of the Justice Society involved most of the JSA battling the forces of evil while merged with the Norse gods in an ever-repeating Ragnarok-like Limbo was written by Thomas, with art by David Ross. Young All-Stars replaced All-Star Squadron following the changes to DC's continuity brought about by the Crisis on Infinite Earths limited series. Thomas' last major project for DC was an adaptation of Richard Wagner's Ring cycle drawn by Gil Kane and published in 1989–1990. Since then, Thomas has written a trio of Elseworlds one-shots combining DC characters with classic cinema and literature: Superman's Metropolis (1996), Superman: War of the Worlds (1998), and JLA: The Island of Dr. Moreau (2002). Return to Marvel and other comic work In 1984, Thomas sent Jim Shooter a letter in which he hoped to let bygones be bygones, and if possible, to avoid adverse comment on Marvel and its policies. I've even long regretted the fact that your elevation to the position of editor-in-chief, in which you've obviously done a fine job, came at a time after I'd moved to the West Coast. Perhaps if we'd had more personal communication from 1977 to 1980, we could have come to some sort of agreement at that time or at least parted under more amicable circumstances. I leave it to you to decide if we should ever make any attempt to rectify that situation; certainly I've never been a grudge-carrier in other cases. ... By 1986, Thomas wrote for Marvel's New Universe line, beginning with Spitfire and the Troubleshooters #5 (Feb. 1987), followed by a multi-issue run of Nightmask, co-scripted by his wife Dann Thomas. He scripted titles starring Doctor Strange, Thor, the Avengers West Coast, and Conan, often co-scripting with Dann Thomas or Jean-Marc Lofficier. Over the next ten years Thomas did less work for the mainstream comics press. For a series of independent publishers, he wrote issues of the TV-series tie-ins Xena: Warrior Princess, Hercules: The Legendary Journeys and The X-Files for Topps Comics. He also wrote for television, and relaunched Alter Ego as a formal magazine published by TwoMorrows Publishing in 1999. In 2005, he earned a master's degree in Humanities from California State University. With Marvel's four-issue miniseries Stoker's Dracula (Oct. 2004 – May 2005), Thomas and artist Dick Giordano completed an adaptation of Bram Stoker's novel Dracula, which the duo had begun 30 years earlier in 10- to 12-page installments, beginning with Marvel's black-and-white horror-comics magazine Dracula Lives! #5 (March 1974). They had completed 76 pages, comprising roughly one-third of the novel, through issues #6–8 and 10–11 and Marvel Preview #8 ("The Legion of Monsters"), before Marvel canceled Dracula Lives and later many of its other black-and-whites. Anthem, a comic book series by Thomas and artists Daniel Acuña, Jorge Santamaria Garcia and Benito Gallego, about World War II superheroes in an alternate reality, was published by Heroic Publishing in January 2006. Thomas returned to Red Sonja in 2006, writing the one-shot Red Sonja: Monster Isle for Dynamite Entertainment. In 2007 Thomas wrote a Black Knight story for Marvel's four-issue miniseries Mystic Arcana. From 2007 to 2010, Thomas wrote adaptations of classic literature for the Marvel imprint Marvel Illustrated, including The Last of the Mohicans (2007), The Man in the Iron Mask (2007–2008), Treasure Island (2007–2008), The Iliad (2008), Moby-Dick (2008), The Picture of Dorian Gray (2008), The Three Musketeers (2008–2009), and Kidnapped (2009). In 2010, Marvel Illustrated released a collection of all the Dracula material adapted by Thomas and Giordano, originally published in the 1970s and mid-2000s. Later career In 2011, Roy Thomas wrote the one-shot DC Retroactive: Wonder Woman – The '80s with art by Rich Buckler. In 2012, Thomas teamed with artists Mike Hawthorne and Dan Panosian on Dark Horse's Conan: The Road of Kings, which lasted 12 issues. In 2014, he wrote 75 Years of Marvel: From the Golden Age to the Silver Screen for Taschen, a 700-page hardcover history of Marvel Comics. The following year, he compiled three volumes of World War II-era comics stories featuring Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman for Chartwell Books. Thomas had a cameo appearance as a prison inmate on the third season of Marvel's Daredevil, released in October 2018 on Netflix, and wrote a blog entry about this experience. On November 10, 2018, Thomas visited Stan Lee at Lee's home in Beverly Hills to discuss Thomas' book The Stan Lee Story. Lee told Thomas' manager, John Cimino, "Take care of my boy Roy" before Lee and Thomas were photographed together. Lee died less than 48 hours later. On February 23, 2019, Jackson, Missouri, declared Roy Thomas Day. In a ceremony, he was awarded the key to the city. On March 23, 2019, the final Amazing Spider-Man newspaper comic strip was published. Thomas had been the ghost writer for Stan Lee on the strip since 2000. Thomas made a return to Marvel Comics in 2019 with the release of the Captain America and The Invaders: Bahamas Triangle one-shot drawn by Jerry Ordway, wrote a Wolverine origin page for the Marvel 1000 celebration issue and did a two-part Savage Sword of Conan story with artist Alan Davis. In 2020, Thomas wrote a 10-page story in the Marvel one-shot King-Size Conan #1. In 2022, Thomas returned to write his most famous co-creation Wolverine, in the first two issues of a new Marvel Comics ongoing series called X-Men: Legends which tells new in-continuity stories of early X-Men adventures. Thomas's two-part story takes place right after The Incredible Hulk #181 and right before Giant-Size X-Men #1 and reveals a missing link mystery about Wolverine's costume. On February 23, 2021, Thomas criticized Abraham Riesman's controversial Stan Lee biography True Believer: The Rise and Fall of Stan Lee. In a guest column in The Hollywood Reporter, Thomas took issue with Riesman's assessment of conflicting accounts of the work of Lee and Jack Kirby, who is credited with co-creating many classic Marvel characters. Thomas stated, "Something like 95 percent of the time, [the book] is a very good biography. However, the remaining (and crucial) 5 percent of its content, scattered amid all that painstaking research and well-written prose, renders it often untrustworthy...i.e., a very bad biography. Because the author often insists, visibly and intrusively, on putting his verbal thumb on the scales, in a dispute he seems ill-equipped to judge." Thomas serves on the Disbursement Committee of the comic-book industry charity The Hero Initiative. Awards 1969: Alley Award for Best Writer 1971: Shazam Award for Best Writer (Dramatic Division) 1971: Goethe Award for Favorite Pro Writer 1973: Shazam Award for Best Individual Story ("Song of Red Sonja", with artist Barry Smith, in Conan the Barbarian #24) 1973: Goethe Award for Favorite Pro Writer 1973: Goethe Award for Favorite Pro Editor 1974: Shazam for Superior Achievement by an Individual 1974: Angoulême International Comics Festival Award for Best Foreign Author 1974: Inkpot Award 1974: Comic Fan Art Award for Favorite Pro Editor 1975: Comic Fan Art Award for Favorite Pro Writer 1975: Comic Fan Art Award for Favorite Pro Editor 1977: Favourite Comicbook Writer at the Eagle Awards 1977: Nomination: Favourite Single Comicbook Story at the Eagle Awards for Fantastic Four #176: "Improbable as It May Seem the Impossible Man is Back in Town" with penciler George Pérez 1978: Nomination: Favourite Writer at the Eagle Awards 1978: Nomination: Favourite Continued Story at the Eagle Awards for Star Wars #1–6 with George Lucas and Howard Chaykin 1979: Nomination: Best Comic Book Writer (US) at the Eagle Awards 1979: Nomination: Best Continued Story at the Eagle Awards for Thor #272–278 with John Buscema 1980: Roll of Honour at the Eagle Awards 1985: Named as one of the honorees by DC Comics in the company's 50th anniversary publication Fifty Who Made DC Great. 1996: Author That We Loved at the Haxtur Awards 2011: Will Eisner Comic Book Hall of Fame 2017: Sergio Award from the Comic Art Professional Society (CAPS) 2022: Harvey Awards Hall of Fame  Bibliography Charlton Comics Blue Beetle #54 (1966) Charlton Premiere #1 (1967) Romantic Story #87 (1967) Son of Vulcan #50 (1966) Cross Plains Comics H.P. Lovecraft's The Return of Cthulhu oneshot (2000) Red Sonja: A Death in Scarlet oneshot (1999) Robert E. Howard's Myth Maker oneshot (1999) Robert E. Howard's Wolfshead oneshot (1999) Dark Horse Comics Conan: Road of the Kings #1–12 (2010–2012) Cormac Mac Art #1–4 (1990) Kings of the Night #1–2 (1989) Michael Chabon Presents the Amazing Adventures of the Escapist #3, 5 (2004–2005) Robert E. 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Thunderbolt #1–4 (1985) Justice League of America #193 (All-Star Squadron insert preview), 207–209, 219–220 (1981–1983) Last Days of the Justice Society Special #1 (1986) Legion of Super-Heroes vol. 2, #277–283 (1981–1982) The New Teen Titans #16 (Captain Carrot insert preview) (1982) The New Teen Titans vol. 2, #38 (1987) The Ring of the Nibelung #1–4 (1989–1990) Secret Origins vol. 2, #1, 3, 5–9, 11–13, 15–22, 24–26, 28–31, 42, Annual #1 (1986–1989) Shazam!: The New Beginning #1–4 (1987) The Superman Family #207 (1981) Superman's Metropolis #1 (1996) Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen #91 (1966) Superman: War of the Worlds #1 (1998) Swordquest #1–3 (1982) The Warlord #48 (Arak, Son of Thunder insert preview) (1981) Wonder Woman #288–296, 300 (1982–1983) World's Finest Comics #271 (1981) Young All-Stars #1–29, Annual #1 (1987–1989) Don Lawrence Collection Storm: De Kronieken van Roodhaar #1 (2014) Dynamite Entertainment Red Sonja #100, #1973, Giant Size #1 (2007, 2013) Red Sonja: Ballad of the Red Goddess OGN (2019) Red Sonja Holiday Special oneshot (2018) Red Sonja: Monster Isle oneshot (2006) First Comics See also: Elric of Melniboné § Comics Alter Ego #1–4 (not to be confused with the magazine of the same name) (1986) Elric: Sailor on the Seas of Fate #1–7 (1985–1986) Elric: The Bane of the Black Sword #1–6 (1988–1989) Elric: The Vanishing Tower #1–6 (1989–1988) Elric: The Weird of the White Wolf #1–5 (1986–1987) Heroic Publishing Captain Thunder and Blue Bolt #1–10 (1987–1988) Heroic Spotlight #10–12, 15–16 (2013–2014) Liberty Comics #6 (2012) Roy Thomas' Anthem #1–5 (2006–2009) Millenium Publications H. 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Lovecraft's Cthulhu: The Festival #1–3 (1993–1994) Marvel Comics Amazing Adventures vol. 2, #5–6, 8, 18 (1971–1973) The Amazing Spider-Man #101–104 (1971–1972) Astonishing Tales #1–2, 7–8, 10–13 (1970–1972) The Avengers #35–104, 132; Annual #1–2, 19–20, 22–23; Giant-Size #1, 3, King-Size Special #1 (1966–1975, 1991–1994) Avengers Spotlight #37–39 (1990) Avengers West Coast #60–63, 65–101, Annual #5–8 (1990–1993) Avengers: The Ultron Imperative #1 (2001) Black Knight #1–4 (1990) Captain America #215, 217, 423, Annual #9, 11, 13 (1977–1994) Captain America: Medusa Effect #1 (1994) Captain America and The Invaders: Bahamas Triangle #1 (2019) Captain Marvel #1–4, 17–21 (1968–1970) The Cat #1 (1972) Chamber of Chills #3 (1973) Chamber of Darkness #2–5, 7 (1969–1970) Conan the Adventurer #1–14 (1994–1995) Conan the Barbarian #1–115, 240–275; Annual #2, 4–7; Giant-Size #1–4 (1970–1982, 1991–1993) Conan the Savage #1–6, 10 (1995–1996) Conan: Death Covered in Gold #1–3 (1999) Conan: Flame and the Fiend #1–3 (2000) Conan: Scarlet Sword #1–3 (1998–1999) Conan: The Lord of the Spiders #1–3 (1998) Conan: The Ravagers Out of Time GN (1992) Creatures on the Loose #10, 16–17 (1971–1972) Daredevil #50–69, 71 (1969–1970) Doc Savage #1 (1972) Doctor Strange #169–178, 180–183 (1968–1969) Doctor Strange, Sorcerer Supreme #5–24, 26–47, 52–56, Annual #2 (1989–1993) Dracula Lives #1–3, 5–8, 10–11 (1973–1975) Epic Illustrated #2–5, 14, 34 (1980–1986) Eternals: The Herod Factor #1 (1991) Fantastic Four #119, 126–133, 136, 157–179, 181, 303, Annual #11, 22 (1972–1977, 1987–1989) Fantastic Four Unlimited #1–7, 9–12 (1993–1995) Giant-Size Super-Villain Team-Up #1–2 (1975) Haunt of Horror #1 (1974) Hulk: Broken Worlds #1 (2009) Impossible Man Summer Vacation Spectacular #1 (1990) The Incredible Hulk vol. 2, #105–106, 121–145, 147, 158, 172–178 (1968–1974) Invaders #1–9, 11–23, 25–28, 32–36; Annual #1; Giant-Size #1 (1975–1979); Giant Size #2 (2005) Invaders vol. 2, #1–4 (1993) Iron Man #44, 47; Annual #11–12 (1972, 1990–1991) Iron Man and Sub-Mariner #1 (1968) Journey into Mystery vol. 2, #1 (1972) Kid Colt Outlaw #127, 136 (1966–1967) King Conan #1–8 (1980–1981) King-Size Conan #1 (2020) Kull the Conqueror/Kull the Destroyer #1–3, 11, 16 (1972–1976) Legion of Monsters #1 (Dracula story) (1975) Marvel Comics Presents #44 (1990) Marvel Comics Super Special #2 (1978) Marvel Double Feature:Thunderstrike/Code: Blue (Code: Blue segment) #13–16 (1994–1995) Marvel Feature #1–4 (1971–1972) Marvel Feature vol. 2, #1, 6–7 (1975–1976) Marvel Graphic Novel #2 (Elric) (1982) Marvel Graphic Novel: Conan of the Isles (1989) Marvel Graphic Novel: Conan the Rogue (1991) Marvel Graphic Novel: Conan: The Horn of Azoth (1990) Marvel Illustrated: The Iliad #1–8 (2008) Marvel Illustrated: Kidnapped #1–5 (2009) Marvel Illustrated: The Last of the Mohicans #1–6 (2007) Marvel Illustrated: The Man in the Iron Mask #1–6 (2007–2008) Marvel Illustrated: Moby-Dick #1–6 (2008) Marvel Illustrated: The Picture of Dorian Gray #1–6 (2008) Marvel Illustrated: The Three Musketeers #1–6 (2008–2009) Marvel Illustrated: Treasure Island #1–6 (2007–2008) Marvel Illustrated: The Trojan War #1–5 (2009) Marvel Premiere #1–2, 15, 29–30, 33–37 (1972–1977) Marvel Preview #1, 9, 19 (1975–1979) Marvel Spotlight #2 (1972) Marvel Super Special #9 (1979) Marvel Super-Heroes #13, 17, 20 (1968–1969) Marvel Super-Heroes vol. 2, #6–7, 12, 14 (1991–1993) Marvel Team-Up #1 (1972) Marvel Treasury of Oz Featuring the Marvelous Land of Oz #1 (1976) Marvel Treasury Edition #23 (Conan) (1979) Marvel Two-in-One #20; Annual #1 (1976) Millie the Model #135–136 (1966) Modeling with Millie #44–46 (1965–1966) Monsters on the Prowl #16 (1972) Monsters Unleashed #1, 3 (1973) Mystic Arcana: Black Knight #1 (2007) Namor, the Sub-Mariner #42–43; Annual #1 (1991–1993) Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. #4, 6 (1968) Nightmask #6–7, 10–12 (1987) Not Brand Echh #1–5, 7–9, 11–13 (1967–1969) Patsy and Hedy #104–105 (1966) Pizzazz (Star Wars comic) #1–8 (1977–1978) Rawhide Kid #67, 91 (1968–1971) Red Sonja #1–15 (1977–1979) Red Sonja vol. 2, #1–2 (1983) Red Wolf #1 (1972) Saga of the Original Human Torch #1–4 (1990) Saga of the Sub-Mariner #1–12 (1988–1989) Savage Sword of Conan #1–79, 190–235 (1974–1984, 1991–1995) Savage Sword of Conan vol. 2, #10–11 (2019) Savage Tales #1–5 (1971–1974) Secret Defenders #1–8 (1993) Sgt. 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Warhawks #1–3 (1990) Screenwriting credits Television The New Fantastic Four (1978)[episode needed] The Plastic Man Comedy/Adventure Show (1979–1980)[episode needed] Thundarr the Barbarian (1980–1981)[episode needed] G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero (1985)[episode needed] Conan the Adventurer (1992–1993)[episode needed] Xena: Warrior Princess (1996)[episode needed] G.I. Joe Extreme (1997)[episode needed] Films Fire and Ice (1983) Conan the Destroyer (1984) Atari 2600 The Atari 2600 is a home video game console developed and produced by Atari, Inc. Released in September 1977, it popularized microprocessor-based hardware and games stored on swappable ROM cartridges, a format first used with the Fairchild Channel F in 1976. Branded as the Atari Video Computer System (Atari VCS) from its release until November 1982, the VCS was bundled with two joystick controllers, a conjoined pair of paddle controllers, and a game cartridge—initially Combat and later Pac-Man. Atari was successful at creating arcade video games, but their development cost and limited lifespan drove CEO Nolan Bushnell to seek a programmable home system. The first inexpensive microprocessors from MOS Technology in late 1975 made this feasible. The console was prototyped as codename Stella by Atari subsidiary Cyan Engineering. Lacking funding to complete the project, Bushnell sold Atari to Warner Communications in 1976. The Atari VCS launched in 1977 with nine simple, low-resolution games in 2 KB cartridges. The system's first killer app was the home conversion of Taito's arcade game Space Invaders in 1980. The VCS became widely successful, leading to the founding of Activision and other third-party game developers and to competition from console manufacturers Mattel and Coleco. By the end of its primary lifecycle in 1983–84, games for the 2600 were using more than four times the storage size of the launch games with significantly more advanced visuals and gameplay than the system was designed for, such as Activision's Pitfall! In 1982, the Atari 2600 was the dominant game system in North America. Amid competition from both new consoles and game developers, a number of poor decisions from Atari management affected the company and the industry as a whole. The most public was an extreme investment into licensed games for the 2600, including Pac-Man and E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial. Pac-Man became the system's biggest selling game, but the conversion's poor quality eroded consumer confidence in the console. E.T. was rushed to market for the holiday shopping season and was critically panned and a commercial failure. Both games, and a glut of third-party shovelware, were factors in ending Atari's relevance in the console market. Atari's downfall reverberated through the industry resulting in the video game crash of 1983. Warner sold Atari's home division to former Commodore CEO Jack Tramiel in 1984. In 1986, the new Atari Corporation under Tramiel released a lower-cost version of the 2600 and the backward-compatible Atari 7800, but it was Nintendo that led the recovery of the industry with its 1985 launch of the Nintendo Entertainment System. Production of the Atari 2600 ended on January 1, 1992, with an estimated 30 million units sold across its lifetime. History Atari, Inc. was founded by Nolan Bushnell and Ted Dabney in 1972. Its first major product was Pong, released in 1972, the first successful coin-operated video game. While Atari continued to develop new arcade games in following years, Pong gave rise to a number of competitors to the growing arcade game market. The competition along with other missteps by Atari led to financial problems in 1974, though recovering by the end of the year. By 1975, Atari had released a Pong home console, competing against Magnavox, the only other major producer of home consoles at the time. Atari engineers recognized, however, the limitation of custom logic integrated onto the circuit board, permanently confining the whole console to only one game. The increasing competition increased the risk, as Atari had found with past arcade games and again with dedicated home consoles. Both platforms are built from integrating discrete electro-mechanical components into circuits, rather than programmed as on a mainframe computer. Therefore, development of a console had cost at least $100,000 (equivalent to about $544,000 in 2022) plus time to complete, but the final product only had about a three-month shelf life until becoming outdated by competition. By 1974, Atari had acquired Cyan Engineering, a Grass Valley electronics company founded by Steve Mayer and Larry Emmons, both former colleagues of Bushnell and Dabney from Ampex, who helped to develop new ideas for Atari's arcade games. Even prior to the release of the home version of Pong, Cyan's engineers, led by Mayer and Ron Milner, had envisioned a home console powered by new programmable microprocessors capable of playing Atari's current arcade offerings. The programmable microprocessors would make a console's design significantly simpler and more powerful than any dedicated single-game unit. However, the cost $100–300 of such chips was far outside the range that their market would tolerate. Atari had opened negotiations to use Motorola's new 6800 in future systems. MOS Technology 6502/6507 In September 1975, MOS Technology debuted the 6502 microprocessor for $25 at the Wescon trade show in San Francisco. Mayer and Milner attended, and met with the leader of the team that created the chip, Chuck Peddle. They proposed using the 6502 in a game console, and offered to discuss it further at Cyan's facilities after the show. Over two days, MOS and Cyan engineers sketched out a 6502-based console design by Meyer and Milner's specifications. Financial models showed that even at $25, the 6502 would be too expensive, and Peddle offered them a planned 6507 microprocessor, a cost-reduced version of the 6502, and MOS's RIOT chip for input/output. Cyan and MOS negotiated the 6507 and RIOT chips at $12 a pair. MOS also introduced Cyan to Microcomputer Associates, who had separately developed debugging software and hardware for MOS, and had developed the JOLT Computer for testing the 6502, which Peddle suggested would be useful for Atari and Cyan to use while developing their system. Milner was able to demonstrate a proof-of-concept for a programmable console by implementing Tank, an arcade game by Atari's subsidiary Kee Games, on the JOLT. As part of the deal, Atari wanted a second source of the chipset. Peddle and Paivinen suggested Synertek whose co-founder, Bob Schreiner, was a friend of Peddle. In October 1975, Atari informed the market that it was moving forward with MOS. The Motorola sales team had already told its management that the Atari deal was finalized, and Motorola management was livid. They announced a lawsuit against MOS the next week. Building the system By December 1975, Atari hired Joe Decuir, a recent graduate from University of California, Berkeley who had been doing his own testing on the 6502. Decuir began debugging the first prototype designed by Mayer and Milner, which gained the codename "Stella" after the brand of Decuir's bicycle. This prototype included a breadboard-level design of the graphics interface to build upon. A second prototype was completed by March 1976 with the help of Jay Miner, who created a chip called the Television Interface Adaptor (TIA) to send graphics and audio to a television. The second prototype included a TIA, a 6507, and a ROM cartridge slot and adapter. As the TIA's design was refined, Al Alcorn brought in Atari's game developers to provide input on features. There are significant limitations in the 6507, the TIA, and other components, so the programmers creatively optimized their games to maximize the console. The console lacks a framebuffer and requires games to instruct the system to generate graphics in synchronization with the electron gun in the cathode-ray tube (CRT) as it scans across rows on the screen. The programmers found ways to "race the beam" to perform other functions while the electron gun scans outside of the visible screen. Alongside the electronics development, Bushnell brought in Gene Landrum, a consultant who had just prior consulted for Fairchild Camera and Instrument for its upcoming Channel F, to determine the consumer requirements for the console. In his final report, Landrum suggested a living room aesthetic, with a wood grain finish, and the cartridges must be "idiot proof, child proof and effective in resisting potential static [electricity] problems in a living room environment". Landrum recommended it include four to five dedicated games in addition to the cartridges, but this was dropped in the final designs. The cartridge design was done by James Asher and Douglas Hardy. Hardy had been an engineer for Fairchild and helped in the initial design of the Channel F cartridges, but he quit to join Atari in 1976. The interior of the cartridge that Asher and Hardy designed was sufficiently different to avoid patent conflicts, but the exterior components were directly influenced by the Channel F to help work around the static electricity concerns. Atari was still recovering from its 1974 financial woes and needed additional capital to fully enter the home console market, though Bushnell was wary of being beholden to outside financial sources. Atari obtained smaller investments through 1975, but not at the scale it needed, and began considering a sale to a larger firm by early 1976. Atari was introduced to Warner Communications, which saw the potential for the growing video game industry to help offset declining profits from its film and music divisions. Negotiations took place during 1976, during which Atari cleared itself of liabilities, including settling a patent infringement lawsuit with Magnavox over Ralph H. Baer's patents that were the basis for the Magnavox Odyssey. In mid-1976, Fairchild announced the Channel F, planned for release later that year, beating Atari to the market. By October 1976, Warner and Atari agreed to the purchase of Atari for $28 million. Warner provided an estimated $120 million which was enough to fast-track Stella. By 1977, development had advanced enough to brand it the "Atari Video Computer System" (VCS) and start developing games. Launch and success The unit was showcased on June 4, 1977, at the Summer Consumer Electronics Show with plans for retail release in October. The announcement was purportedly delayed to wait out the terms of the Magnavox patent lawsuit settlement, which would have given Magnavox all technical information on any of Atari's products announced between June 1, 1976, and June 1, 1977. However, Atari encountered production problems during its first batch, and its testing was complicated by the use of cartridges. The Atari VCS was launched in September 1977 at $199 (equivalent to about $960 in 2022), with two joysticks and a Combat cartridge; eight additional games were sold separately. Most of the launch games were based on arcade games developed by Atari or its subsidiary Kee Games: for example, Combat was based on Kee's Tank (1974) and Atari's Jet Fighter (1975). Atari sold between 350,000 and 400,000 Atari VCS units during 1977, attributed to the delay in shipping the units and consumers' unfamiliarity with a swappable-cartridge console that is not dedicated to only one game. In 1978, Atari sold only 550,000 of the 800,000 systems manufactured. This required further financial support from Warner to cover losses. Atari sold 1 million consoles in 1979, particularly during the holiday season, but there was new competition from the Mattel Electronics Intellivision and Magnavox Odyssey², which also use swappable ROM cartridges. Atari obtained a license from Taito to develop a VCS conversion of its 1978 arcade hit Space Invaders. This is the first officially licensed arcade conversion for a home console. Its release in March 1980 doubled the console's sales for the year to more than 2 million units, and was considered the Atari VCS' killer application. Sales then doubled again for the next two years; by 1982, 10 million consoles had been sold in the United States, while its best-selling game was Pac-Man at over 8 million copies sold by 1990.[a] Pac-Man propelled worldwide Atari VCS sales to 12 million units during 1982, eventually selling 15 million consoles worldwide by the end of the year. In Europe, the Atari VCS sold 125,000 units in the United Kingdom during 1980, and 450,000 in West Germany by 1984. In France, where the VCS released in 1982, the system sold 600,000 units by 1989. The console was distributed by Epoch Co. in Japan in 1979 under the name "Cassette TV Game", but not sell as well as Epoch's own Cassette Vision system in 1981. In 1982, Atari launched its second programmable console, the Atari 5200. To standardize naming, the VCS was renamed to the "Atari 2600 Video Computer System", or "Atari 2600", derived from the manufacture part number CX2600. By 1982, the 2600 cost Atari about $40 to make and was sold for an average of $125 (equivalent to $380 in 2022). The company spent $4.50 to $6 to manufacture each cartridge, plus $1 to $2 for advertising, wholesaling for $18.95 (equivalent to $60 in 2022). Third-party development Activision, formed by Crane, Whitehead, and Miller in 1979, started developing third-party VCS games using their knowledge of VCS design and programming tricks, and began releasing games in 1980. Kaboom! (1981) and Pitfall! (1982) are among the most successful with at least one and four million copies sold, respectively. In 1980, Atari attempted to block the sale of the Activision cartridges, accusing the four of intellectual property infringement. The two companies settled out of court, with Activision agreeing to pay Atari a licensing fee for their games. This made Activision the first third-party video game developer and established the licensing model that continues to be used by console manufacturers for game development. Activision's success led to the establishment of other third-party VCS game developers following Activision's model in the early 1980s, including U.S. Games, Telesys, Games by Apollo, Data Age, Zimag, Mystique, and CommaVid. The founding of Imagic included ex-Atari programmers. Mattel and Coleco, each already producing its own more advanced console, created simplified versions of their existing games for the 2600. Mattel used the M Network brand name for its cartridges. Third-party games accounted for half of VCS game sales by 1982. Decline and redesign In addition to third-party game development, Atari also received the first major threat to its hardware dominance from the Colecovision. Coleco had a license from Nintendo to develop a version of the arcade game Donkey Kong (1981), which was bundled with every Colecovision console. Coleco gained about 17% of the hardware market in 1982 compared to Atari's 58%. With third parties competing for market share, Atari worked to maintain dominance in the market by acquiring licenses for popular arcade games and other properties to make games from. Pac-Man has numerous technical and aesthetic flaws, but nevertheless more than 7 million copies were sold. Heading into the 1982 holiday shopping season, Atari had placed high sales expectations on E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, a game programmed in about six weeks. Atari produced an estimated four million cartridges, but the game was poorly reviewed, and only about 1.5 million units were sold. Warner Communications reported weaker results than expected in December 1982 to its shareholders, having expected a 50% year-to-year growth but only obtaining 10–15% due to declining sales at Atari. Coupled with the oversaturated home game market, Atari's weakened position led investors to start pulling funds out of video games, beginning a cascade of disastrous effects known as the video game crash of 1983. Many of the third-party developers formed prior to 1983 were closed, and Mattel and Coleco left the video game market by 1985. In September 1983, Atari sent 14 truckloads of unsold Atari 2600 cartridges and other equipment to a landfill in the New Mexico desert, later labeled the Atari video game burial. Long considered an urban legend that claimed the burial contained millions of unsold cartridges, the site was excavated in 2014, confirming reports from former Atari executives that only about 700,000 cartridges had actually been buried. Atari reported a $536 million loss for 1983 as a whole,: ch14 and continued to lose money into 1984, with a $425 million loss reported in the second quarter. By mid-1984, software development for the 2600 had essentially stopped except that of Atari and Activision. Warner, wary of supporting its failing Atari division, started looking for buyers in 1984. Warner sold most of Atari to Jack Tramiel, the founder of Commodore International, in July 1984 for about $240 million, though Warner retained Atari's arcade business. Tramiel was a proponent of personal computers, and halted all new 2600 game development soon after the sale. The North American video game market did not recover until about 1986, after Nintendo's 1985 launch of the Nintendo Entertainment System in North America. Atari Corporation released a redesigned model of the 2600 in 1986, supported by an ad campaign touting a price of "under 50 bucks". With a large library of cartridges and a low price point, the 2600 continued to sell into the late 1980s. Atari released the last batch of games in 1989–90 including Secret Quest and Fatal Run. By 1986, over 20 million Atari VCS units had been sold worldwide. The final Atari-licensed release is the PAL-only version of the arcade game KLAX in 1990. After more than 14 years on the market, the 2600 line was formally discontinued on January 1, 1992, along with the Atari 7800 and Atari 8-bit family of home computers. In Europe, last stocks of the 2600 were sold until Summer/Fall of 1995. Hardware Console Main article: Atari 2600 hardware The Atari 2600's CPU is the MOS Technology 6507, a version of the 6502, running at 1.19 MHz in the 2600. Though their internal silicon was identical, the 6507 was cheaper than the 6502 because its package included fewer memory-address pins—13 instead of 16. The designers of the Atari 2600 selected an inexpensive cartridge interface that has one fewer address than the 13 allowed by the 6507, further reducing the already limited addressable memory to 4 KB (212 = 4096). This was believed to be sufficient as Combat is itself only 2 KB. Later games circumvented this limitation with bank switching. The console has 128 bytes of RAM for scratch space, the call stack, and the state of the game environment. The top bezel of the console originally had six switches: power, TV type selection (color or black-and-white), game selection, player difficulty, and game reset. The difficulty switches were moved to the back of the bezel in later versions of the console. The back bezel also included the controller ports, TV output, and power input. Graphics Main article: Television Interface Adaptor The Atari 2600 was designed to be compatible with the cathode-ray tube television sets produced in the late 1970s and early 1980s, which commonly lack auxiliary video inputs to receive audio and video from another device. Therefore, to connect to a TV, the console generates a radio frequency signal compatible with the regional television standards (NTSC, PAL, or SECAM), using a special switch box to act as the television's antenna. Atari developed the Television Interface Adaptor (TIA) chip in the VCS to handle the graphics and conversion to a television signal. It provides a single-color, 20-bit background register that covers the left half of the screen (each bit represents 4 adjacent pixels) and is either repeated or reflected on the right side. There are 5 single-color sprites: two 8-pixel wide players; two 1 bit missiles, which share the same colors as the players; and a 1-pixel ball, which shares the background color. The 1-bit sprites all can be controlled to stretch to 1, 2, 4, or 8 pixels. The system was designed without a frame buffer to avoid the cost of the associated RAM. The background and sprites apply to a single scan line, and as the display is output to the television, the program can change colors, sprite positions, and background settings. The careful timing required to sync the code to the screen on the part of the programmer was labeled "racing the beam"; the actual game logic runs when the television beam is outside of the visible area of the screen. Early games for the system use the same visuals for pairs of scan lines, giving a lower vertical resolution, to allow more time for the next row of graphics to be prepared. Later games, such as Pitfall!, change the visuals for each scan line or extend the black areas around the screen to extend the game code's processing time. Regional releases of the Atari 2600 use modified TIA chips for each region's television formats, which require games to be developed and published separately for each region. All modes are 160 pixels wide. NTSC mode provides 192 visible lines per screen, drawn at 60 Hz, with 16 colors, each at 8 levels of brightness. PAL mode provides more vertical scanlines, with 228 visible lines per screen, but drawn at 50 Hz and only 13 colors. SECAM mode, also a 50 Hz format, is limited to 8 colors, each with only a single brightness level. Controllers The first VCS bundle has two types of controllers: a joystick (part number CX10) and pair of rotary paddle controllers (CX30). Driving controllers, which are similar to paddle controllers but can be continuously rotated, shipped with the Indy 500 launch game. After less than a year, the CX10 joystick was replaced with the CX40 model designed by James C. Asher. Because the Atari joystick port and CX40 joystick became industry standards, 2600 joysticks and some other peripherals work with later systems, including the MSX, Commodore 64, Amiga, Atari 8-bit family, and Atari ST. The CX40 joystick can be used with the Master System and Sega Genesis, but does not provide all the buttons of a native controller. Third-party controllers include Wico's Command Control joystick. Later, the CX42 Remote Control Joysticks, similar in appearance but using wireless technology, were released, together with a receiver whose wires could be inserted in the controller jacks. Atari introduced the CX50 Keyboard Controller in June 1978 along with two games that require it: Codebreaker and Hunt & Score. The similar, but simpler, CX23 Kid's Controller was released later for a series of games aimed at a younger audience. The CX22 Trak-Ball controller was announced in January 1983 and is compatible with the Atari 8-bit family. There were two attempts to turn the Atari 2600 into a keyboard-equipped home computer: Atari's never-released CX3000 "Graduate" keyboard, and the CompuMate keyboard by Spectravideo which was released in 1983. Console models Minor revisions The initial production of the VCS was made in Sunnyvale during 1977, using thick polystyrene plastic for the casing as to give the impression of weight from what was mostly an empty shell inside. The initial Sunnyvale batch had also included potential mounts for an internal speaker system on the casing, though the speakers were found to be too expensive to include and instead sound was routed through the TIA to the connected television. All six console switches on the front panel. Production of the unit was moved to Taiwan in 1978, where a less thick internal metal shielding was used and thinner plastic was used for the casing, reducing the system's weight. These two versions are commonly referred to as "Heavy Sixers" and "Light Sixers" respectively, referencing the six front switches. In 1980, the difficulty switches were moved to the back of the console, leaving four switches on the front. Otherwise, these four-switch consoles look nearly identical to the earlier six-switch models. In 1982 Atari rebranded the console as the "Atari 2600", a name first used on a version of the four-switch model without woodgrain, giving it an all-black appearance. Sears Video Arcade Atari continued its OEM relationship with Sears under the latter's Tele-Games brand, which started in 1975 with the original Pong. This is unrelated to the company Telegames, which later produced 2600 cartridges. Sears released several models of the VCS as the Sears Video Arcade series starting in 1977. In 1983, the previously Japan-only Atari 2800 was rebranded as the Sears Video Arcade II. Sears released versions of Atari's games with Tele-Games branding, usually with different titles. Three games were produced by Atari for Sears as exclusive releases: Steeplechase, Stellar Track, and Submarine Commander. Atari 2800 The Atari 2800 is the Japanese version of the 2600 released in October 1983. It is the first Japan-specific release of a 2600, though companies like Epoch had distributed the 2600 in Japan previously. The 2800 was released a short time after Nintendo's Family Computer (which became the dominant console in Japan), and it did not gain a significant share of the market. Sears previously released the 2800 in the US during late 1982 as the Sears Video Arcade II, which came packaged with two controllers and Space Invaders. Around 30 specially branded games were released for the 2800. Designed by engineer Joe Tilly, the 2800 has four controller ports instead of the two of the 2600. The controllers are an all-in one design using a combination of an 8-direction digital joystick and a 270-degree paddle, designed by John Amber. The 2800's case design departed from the 2600, using a wedge shape with non-protruding switches. The case style is the basis for the Atari 7800, which was redesigned for the 7800 by Barney Huang. Atari 2600 Jr. The 1986 model has a smaller, cost-reduced form factor with an Atari 7800-like appearance. It was advertised as a budget gaming system (under $49.99) with the ability to run a large collection of games. Released after the video game crash of 1983, and after the North American launch of the Nintendo Entertainment System, the 2600 was supported with new games and television commercials promoting "The fun is back!". Atari released several minor stylistic variations: the "large rainbow" (shown), "short rainbow", and an all-black version sold only in Ireland. Later European versions include a joypad. Games Main articles: List of Atari 2600 games and List of Atari 2600 prototype games See also: List of best-selling Atari 2600 video games In 1977, nine games were released on cartridge to accompany the launch of the console: Air-Sea Battle, Basic Math, Blackjack, Combat, Indy 500, Star Ship, Street Racer, Surround, and Video Olympics. Indy 500 shipped with special "driving controllers", which are like paddles but rotate freely. Street Racer and Video Olympics use the standard paddle controllers. Atari, Inc. was the only developer for the first few years, releasing dozens of games. Atari determined that box art featuring only descriptions of the game and screenshots would not be sufficient to sell games in retail stores, since most games were based on abstract principles and screenshots give little information. Atari outsourced box art to Cliff Spohn, who created visually interesting artwork with implications of dynamic movement intended to engage the player's imagination while staying true to the gameplay. Spohn's style became a standard for Atari when bringing in assistant artists, including Susan Jaekel, Rick Guidice, John Enright, and Steve Hendricks. Spohn and Hendricks were the largest contributors to the covers in the Atari 2600 library. Ralph McQuarrie, a concept artist on the Star Wars series, was commissioned for one cover, the arcade conversion of Vanguard. These artists generally conferred with the programmer to learn about the game before drawing the art. An Atari VCS port of the Breakout arcade game appeared in 1978. The original is in black and white with a colored overlay, and the home version is in color. In 1980, Atari released Adventure, the first action-adventure game, and the first home game with a hidden Easter egg. Rick Maurer's port of Taito's Space Invaders, released in 1980, is the first VCS game to have more than one million copies sold—eventually doubling that within a year and totaling more than 6 million cartridges by 1983. It became the killer app to drive console sales. Versions of Atari's own Asteroids and Missile Command arcade games, released in 1981, were also major hits. Each early VCS game is in a 2K ROM. Later games like Space Invaders, have 4K. The VCS port of Asteroids (1981) is the first game for the system to use 8K via a bank switching technique between two 4K segments. Some later releases, including Atari's ports of Dig Dug and Crystal Castles, are 16K cartridges. One of the final games, Fatal Run (1990), doubled this to 32K. Two Atari-published games, both from the system's peak in 1982, E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial and Pac-Man, are cited as factors in the video game crash of 1983. A company named American Multiple Industries produced a number of pornographic games for the 2600 under the Mystique Presents Swedish Erotica label. The most notorious, Custer's Revenge, was protested by women's and Native American groups because it depicted General George Armstrong Custer raping a bound Native American woman. Atari sued American Multiple Industries in court over the release of the game. Legacy The 2600 was so successful in the late 1970s and early 1980s that "Atari" was a synonym for the console in mainstream media and for video games in general. Jay Miner directed the creation of the successors to the 2600's TIA chip—CTIA and ANTIC—which are central to the Atari 8-bit computers released in 1979 and later the Atari 5200 console. The Atari 2600 was inducted into the National Toy Hall of Fame at The Strong in Rochester, New York, in 2007. In 2009, the Atari 2600 was named the number two console of all time by IGN, which cited its remarkable role behind both the first video game boom and the video game crash of 1983, and called it "the console that our entire industry is built upon". In November 2021, the current incarnation of Atari announced three 2600 games to be published under "Atari XP" label: Yars' Return, Aquaventure, and Saboteur. These were previously included in Atari Flashback consoles. Clones and reissues Modern Atari 2600 clones remain on the market. The Atari Classics 10-in-1 TV Game, manufactured by Jakks Pacific, emulates the 2600 with ten games inside a Atari-style joystick with composite-video output. The TV Boy includes 127 games in an enlarged joypad. The Atari Flashback 2 console, released in 2005, contains 40 games, with four additional programs unlocked by a cheat code. The console implements the original 2600 architecture and can be modified to play original 2600 cartridges by adding a cartridge port; it is also compatible with original 2600 controllers. In 2017, Hyperkin announced the RetroN 77, a clone of the Atari 2600 that plays original cartridges instead of preinstalled games. The Atari VCS microconsole was released by Atari Interactive in 2021. Unreleased prototypes The Atari 2700 is a version of the 2600 using wireless controllers. An Atari 2600 variant, known by its production code "CX2000" and nickname "Val", was found as two 1982 prototypes at the New York and Sunnyvale Atari facilities, respectively. It is a redesign of the aging 2600. Its design, with two integrated joystick controllers, is the result of human factor analysis by Henry Dreyfuss Associates. The project never reached market production. Atari started work on a 2600 successor called the "Atari 3200". It was to be compatible with 2600 cartridges, and was rumored to be based on a 10-bit processor, although design documents show it was to be based on the 8-bit 6502. It was still unfinished when preliminary game developers discovered that it was difficult to program. Atari cloned the Atari 3200 into the Sears Super Arcade II, but this was never released. Thanks for shopping Blue Streak Collectibles! Please note that Blue Streak Collectibles does not offer combined handling/shipping discounts for multiple items. Unless noted with FREE SHIPPING, we offer a flat rate standard handling/shipping per item and utilize USPS Economy shipping with delivery confirmation/tracking (tracking numbers provided to all customers with buy-it-now or winning bids). We may determine it is best to combine shipments for multiple items purchased/won based on the logistical ability to deliver quickly from time to time but do not offer discounts for doing this. 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