Demon Attack: Can You Survive the Lawsuit from Atari?

Posted by Michael Pinto on Jun 2, 2009 in Videogames |

What’s great about this 1982 advert for Demon Attack is that the commercial seems to have absolutely nothing to do with the content of the videogame that’s being advertised. Although that disconnect wasn’t too uncommon in that era as the games were rather abstract looking and the box art often told a different (and more detailed) story:

Demon Attack box art

Incidentally the above box art is for the Intellivision version, the Atari version was quite a bit different. Here’s a sample of the actual game play from a tip video from that era — and you can see that those space dragons look a bit more primitive (although that doesn’t make it any less fun to play):

Tragically for the publisher Imagic Demon Attack was a bit too much like the popular arcade game Phoenix which resulted in a lawsuit by Atari. The suit was settled out of court with Atari getting the home videogame rights, sadly making the game the only hit for Imagic who would close their doors in 1986.

Update: Correction, Imagic had other hits although they were hurt pretty badly by the videogame crash of 1983. By the time they went out of business they did have 24 titles under their belt — many of the more popular ones are currently owned by Activision. Special thanks to Dennis Bragg!

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