Video Game #16: Q*Bert (1982)
If the best video games let you do stuff you can never do in the real world, then Q*Bert is a shoe-in for one of the greatest. Where else can you hop about an Escher-like pyramid floating in the void, as killer marbles and snakes made out of springs relentlessly pursue you? Based on a classical optical illusion of 3-dimension cubes in a 2-dimensional space, Q*bert was deliciously disorienting — especially when creatures whose floor was your wall began drop in from the side of the screen.
Land on a cube and it changed color; change all the cubes and you advanced to the next level. It sounds easy, and it is at first, until the accumulation of opponents catches up with you and you miss a jump, plunging into the abyss. And Q*Bert had attitude, swearing in cartoonese whenever he was squashed. It was great, goofy fun that challenged your spacial and pattern recognition skills like few other games.
Catch up on the complete list of games here: http://wp.me/P26xZm-6h