Dark Cavern, for the Atari 2600, was released in 1982. I recently picked this up from a local retrogaming shop here in Houston. I find it tons of fun to pick up many titles for about 3 bucks – what do you have to lose? And you get to build your collection relatively cheaply. The title, Dark Cavern, intrigued me. Hoping for another Adventure type game, I was utterly disappointed. I know I have to set my expectations lower based on a lot of the Atari 2600 games that came out during the time – it was quantity to the corporations, not quality – and Atari being a main offender of this at the time. Make games quick and sell them for a lot. People caught on and it ultimately caused the home video game console crash of the mid-80’s.
Dark Cavern is not a lot of fun. You are perpetually stuck on one screen, or maze, controlling a guy with a gun. Things (blobs and such) move around the maze that can stun you if you hit them, but you can also use your limited ammo to shoot them. You have the opportunity to collect more ammo. The main goal is to avoid the shooting robots amongst the other things in the cavern. If you shoot them, they still are able to shoot you too until they disappear and another one comes.