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Atari Mountain King

Atari Mountain King

This was practically one of the best games I played in the early days when I owned an Atari 2600 system. There are so many things I’d like to explore, but I figured it would be proper to explain how to play the game first, before I get into the Easter egg secrets discovered in the upper “heavens”.

Playing Mountain King

The goal of this game is to obtain the golden crown at the bottom level and while racing the countdown timer, advance to the highest mountain in order to become the “Mountain King!”

Along the way you will be able to collect points by picking up diamonds and treasure chests.

Finding the Flame Spirit

You will need to collect diamonds and accumulate over 1,000 points, and then the Flame Spirit will be available for capture. 

During this time, you will follow music that begins to play. As you get closer, the sound will be louder.

Once you have found it, just press the joystick down (kneeling) and it will be picked up, and then you can obtain the crown.

Note: You must first find the Flame Spirit or the Skull Spirit guarding the crown won’t let you in. If you do decide to try your luck, the player will temporarily freeze in position.

The Skull Spirit

The Skull Spirit can only be seen when you shine your flashlight on him only. Then having the Flame Spirit in your possession, you are free to pass.

Enemies in Atari Mountain King

To prevent your mission from being successful, gray cave bats fly around, and will try to steal the flame spirit before you can reach the Temple.

On the lower level is also a giant spider. If the spider reaches you, it will freeze you in its web for a short time. You will need to wiggle the joystick to the left and right to escape. Hurry. If the spider returns, it will eat you and the game will end.

Mountain King Easter Egg

When I first discovered this secret on Atari Mountain King this then became my favorite game for the Atari VCS.

In order for this to work, you must jump up levels until you reach the very top of the highest mountain. Once you are there you will begin to jump up to the left, bounce off the top of the level, and begin going up in a diagonal direction.

If you time this properly, you will be able to land on some ladders that are higher above. Then you can begin moving around as if you were playing the game.

Warning: Expect some very strange things to happen. More often than not, you will freeze when you try moving over specific ladder sections. See if you can avoid the traps, and continue to the top.

If you are successful, you will see the bottom of the map.

Programmer's Perspective

The upper “secret level” has been labeled a “glitch” by so many people.

Honestly though, as one who programs the Atari computer, these levels would have to be laid out in memory somewhere, so I’m not 100% convinced, it’s a glitch. Yet, it does strange things with the game, so who knows? I just know that when you usually design a map its placed in a memory area close to the other data, but it has to be coded in memory to exist there in the first place!

Just my two cents…

Mountain King PDF Download

Click the button to read the Atari Mountain King manual.

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Steve has always had a passion for computers even before I owned one. His first personal computer was an Atari 65xe purchased at Children's Palace around 1986. In later years he attended DeVry University and received a Computer Science degree, works as a Front End Web Developer and is a born again Christian. Although this is a tech site, I am never shy to admit that I am a sinner saved by the blood of Jesus Christ. If you ever want to talk about salvation, I'm game.