Defender
Defender

 
     Defender was one of the first games to combine high-resolution color graphics with fast action and demanding play. It was also the first video game to employ “side scrolling,” a horizontally moving background, which creates an unbounded field of play. The enemies in Defender are far more intelligent and differentiated than in any previous game, and the machine features more controls than most of its contemporary counterparts. Players control a small cannon-firing jet plane that flies at varying altitudes and speeds over a barren planetscape.
     Defender has an impressive amount of computational power: it can handle input from five different controllers, display numerous sound-linked graphics, and sustain a complicated game scenario. This is made possible through the use of a fast graphics chip and ROM storage of sound and graphics data. When the game debuted at an industry conference, trade publications deemed Defender too complex and difficult to succeed. As Defender’s designer, Eugene Jarvis, points out, those publications are no longer in business.