Star Fire - Atari 2600



TV Type:  NTSC        PAL      
Box Upgrade:  No        Yes (Add $15.00)      

Star Fire is Manuel Rotschkar's second Atari 2600 homebrew title, a port of the 1979 arcade game of the same name created by David Rolfe and Ted Michon and released by Exidy. Star Fire is a wave-based space shoot'em-up, with several surprises that you won't find in the original arcade game. It carefully tries to not only adopt most features of the original, but to enhance the gameplay whereever possible as well.

Star Fires features include:

  • Title tune and warp sequence by Paul Slocum!
  • Animated title screen by Thomas Jentzsch!
  • Realtime calculation of up to 9 double sized, independent moving space objects!
  • Intelligent Anti-Flicker engine!
  • 9 different starting waves of increasing difficulty

Star Fire includes a beautiful, full-color manual and label created by Dave Exton. Star Fire is available in both NTSC and PAL formats, please select above when ordering.

Get a Star Fire Box!

Star Fire BoxStar Fire Box

If you'd like a boxed copy of Star Fire, please select "Box Upgrade: Yes" at the top of the page before adding Star Fire to your cart. Our boxes are professionally printed and include a box insert to hold your Star Fire cartridge in place. We want you to play our games, so we have not sealed or shrinkwrapped the boxes in any way, allowing you easy access to the game cartridge and manual.

These boxes are the same size as boxes Atari produced for their games "back in the day". They look great sitting on a shelf with your other boxed homebrew games, or alongside games from the classic Atari 2600 library. We only have a limited number of boxes for each game, and there is no guarantee they will become available again once our supplies are exhausted. Click on the images to the right to see larger photos of the box.

Author Manuel Rotschkar
Number of Players 1
Controller Joystick
Cartridge Size 8K
Label Design Dave Exton
Steven Louis Ramirez on 04/28/2020 09:04pm
Wow! This is one intense shooter. I've never played the arcade version, but I can't believe that it has anything on this port. This game is very challenging but will leave you yearning to play 'one more time'. The game includes a great title screen with excellent music, nearly flicker free graphics with various recognizable ships and at the current price of just $25.00 (cart and manual) this has to be one of the best values in the Store. Make no mistake about it, Star Fire is one of the best shooters ever made for the 2600. Go ahead and get yourself a copy now.
Dan Wolak on 01/20/2019 08:18pm
It's like Battlezone in space! This 2003 port of Star Fire still holds up quite well 16 years later. I never played the original 1979 arcade game, but I tried the Atari 8-bit and C-64 ports. I really liked the a800 version, but this one takes it up a few notches. There are more enemies, more action, and the challenge is bumped up a bit. For a slightly less pain-inducing experience, I recommend using the 7800 proline controller over the 2600 joystick.

Fans of Battlezone, Star Wars the Arcade Game, Bosconian, and even Dr. Who will really enjoy some of the surprises in this game. But, be warned, the action gets pretty frenetic by the time you get to Wave 4! Good luck!
David Maddox on 09/09/2017 01:44pm
In this superb arcade port, you get the action of Star Raiders and StarMaster. Rather than worrying about fuel, star bases, shields, and maps, you worry about shield strength and laser temperature. All action. No filler. Great theme song, and guest appearances from the TARDIS and Death Star. To think we settled for Atari "Star Ship" in 1978 when the VCS was capable of so much better! My hat is off to the programming team. My only quibble, which doesn't detract from my top rating, is that the invisible/shielded "Exity Freighters" can be hard to locate. You'll occasionally be hunting for them at the end of a wave, and they don't appear on radar. In all, this game compares favorably with the Atari 400/800 port.
Ralf Matz on 04/24/2016 01:42pm
A "Must Have". My favourite game was up to now Star Voyager from Imagic back in autumn 1984. This is very similar even with more foes and action. I've purchased the cartridge and the source file of this game is also available in order to learn on how to program the Atari 2600. One of my new favourite games!
StanJr on 11/07/2009 09:31pm
A great first person space shooter with all kinds of mad challenge. If you are a fan of cockpit shooter games, this is one of the pinnacle games of the genre.

Graphically, the game is a bit blocky, but you'll not soon care as the action is fast-paced and engaging. Surprisingly, strategy is going to be as important as quick reflexes. There is enough challenge here to make the game fun and replayable without a lot of frustration.

Excellent music and a fancy title screen are cherries on the top of this video game sundae! Enjoy!
Darrell Spice on 09/22/2007 06:55pm
You're a rookie pilot who is Earth's last hope against the Exidy Armada. Hidden amongst each attack wave are a few Exidy Freighters. The freighters are visible to the naked eye, but not to your instruments, so be on the lookout for them.

Star Fire starts out with a slick title screen, which once again has excellent music by Paul Slocum of Tree Wave. From here you can use SELECT or your joystick to choose the starting wave of 1-9. Hit Fire to start the game. Oddly enough, RESET only returns to the menu, it's not used to start a game.

Once the game starts use your joystick to fly around the sector and pick off the alien ships. The game uses standard flight controls, where pushing the joystick up causes your ship to fly down. You can change this if you wish by setting the Right Difficulty switch to A. Your laser generates a lot of heat, rapid fire can cause your laser to jam until the heat dissipates. It's not an issue in the first few rounds, but to do well in later waves you must learn to only shoot when you're guaranteed a hit. The Left Difficulty switch is used to control the amount of heat each shot generates. Setting to A causes the laser to heat up twice as fast, but with the added bonus of higher points for each enemy ship destroyed. The game play is excellent and keeps you coming back for more.

The graphics are very well done. The enemy ships are very detailed, so detailed that they use both of the Atari's sprites to draw each ship. The only downfall to this is there can at times be a lot of flicker. There are a number of different ship graphics, mostly inspired by Star Wars. The Tardis does seem out of place.

Your ship can take 6 hits before the shields give up. Pick off an Energy Diamond to reenergize for one hit. Surviving the wave will also add back a hit. When you die, there's a really neat death sequence, along the lines of Battlezone.

The manual artwork by David Exton is top-notch.
ace list on 10/07/2006 10:52pm
Oh man, this game is DOPE! I remember playing the Exidy game back in the day when I was a little kid. This joint is WAY better! I can't say enough about this homebrew.. graphics, gameplay, challenge, it's ALL GOOD! By the way, if you are into Star Wars, you HAVE to have this game! Did I really see the Slave I in this? Darth Vader's modified TIE fighter? The freakin' DEATH STAR? Ya gotta get this game. That's that. One more word: the manual made it kinda seem like there might be only 9 levels.. there are way more, and you are gonna die. Many, many times..
Brian Clark on 05/10/2006 11:49am
Wow. This game is just plain awesome! It stands among the some of the best space shooters on the system. The game takes elements from the arcade and mixes in cool new stuff like Death Stars, the Tardis from Dr. Who, and warp gates. The graphics are very well done. The enemy AI is excellent and provides a good challenge. Highly recommended.
Matthew Johnson on 04/03/2006 04:45pm
This is my single favorite homebrew game. If you like 2600 games like Star Raiders, Starmaster, and Star Voyager, then this game is for you. The action starts out at a nice pace, but a couple of levels in and you will find yourself scrambling to keep your sheilds up! The music theme is great also. Pick this one up, you won't be disappointed.
Raul Torres on 01/03/2006 10:28am
I loved StarMaster while growing up. Star Raiders was ok too, I liked using the control pad with it. And Star Voyager was no lame duck either. I enjoyed all those games quite a bit. I still own all of them... Then came Phaser Patrol, and that one became a quick favorite for me... I never thought it could be topped. StarFire to me is on even ground with Phaser Patrol, but it is such a good game in itself that it may very well be the best in this genre of games. Excellent Graphics and game play... don't be afraid to pick this one up if you are looking to upgrade from StarMaster, Star Raiders, Star Voayger or Phaser Patrol... StarFire rocks!
John Payson on 12/22/2005 11:32pm
This game is basically Starmaster/Star Raiders minus the map screens, but with a stepped up level of action. Whereas those other games only pit the player against one enemy at a time, this one throws in lots.

One point to be aware of: on some television sets, the 'multi-hit' monster on levels 4, 8, etc. may be hard to see unless you turn up the brightness.
Michael Molero on 08/18/2005 06:41am
along with Skeleton+, Star Fire was the first homebrew purchase i've made. this game alone is the reason why i'm back to check out some more homebrews. if you're skeptical about shelling out $25 for a single atari 2600 cartridge that "has no collecting value", boy are you sadly mistaken. this thing is an instant classic, and far superior to just about every space shooter game you own for your 2600. the only negative thing i can possibly say about this title is that, for me at least, it's too freaken hard!! i spent weeks trying to rack up a high score (above 3500 points) so i could become one of the top 50 space cadets or whatever they call it. anyway, Star Fire is one homebrew you do NOT want to pass up. it's brilliant.
Ethan Nobles on 09/29/2004 06:17pm
Had this game been released during the Atari 2600's prime, it would be considered an absolute classic and a must-have title for the system. "Star Fire" belongs in every Atari fan's library. Don't just collect the rascal, pull it out and play it! This game simply screams quality, and is among the best first-person, space-combat games you'll find for the Atari.
Nathan Strum on 06/25/2004 12:38am
Star Fire may be the best first-person space shooter for the 2600. It's a fantastic tribute to the original arcade game, that manages to improve upon the original.

There can be an overwhelming number of enemy ships onscreen, and when they get aggressive, they'll challenge you like few other games have. Star Voyager, Starmaster and even Phasor Patrol can't match the level of unrelenting action in this game.

Everything is first-rate: the graphics, sound, gameplay, and even the manual. There's attention to detail everywhere.

Only two words left to say - buy it!
jeff drost on 05/20/2004 10:39pm
Great sound. Great gameplay. No flicker!!! A must have for ANY gamer! Top notch homebrew.
Tim Lehner on 03/03/2004 12:28am
You cannot go wrong with this game. Music, game play, graphics, and sound effects are all top notch. One of the best homebrews to date. Buy it now!

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