My 6th Game Development for the Atari 2600.

The Story of KITE!

In my sparetime I worked for a kite company in the 1990ies and when 2008 came and I was thinking about a new theme for my next Atari VCS programming project I thought that a videogame about kites may be something new for videogame consoles. In fact I only know one unreleased prototype of a kite videogame from 1984. Sure there are some Flash games on PC about this theme, but to my knowledge, no videogame about kites was released for a game console by now. According to the theme I thought that controlling that kite with two joysticks (emulating two kite handles) would be something new, too.

The game is dedicated to and supported by the german kite company ELLIOT.

The Introduction Sequence

The cartridge starts up by displaying the titlescreen showing the game name and copyright information. You can move both joysticks left and right to choose the controls for the game. You can either play the game with two joysticks (using direction down on both joysticks) or with one joystick (using directions left and right). You can also choose one of four colors for your kite by pushing the joystick down. Press fire to start the game and launch the kite.

The Game

You start your kite flight early in the morning. The sun has not been risen and the sky is dark. Your kite launches automatically and you can instantly start collecting the small dots on screen.

Depending on the duration of your game play the difficulty increases and different levels offer different obstacles. Avoid the lightning while the periods between them get shorter in later levels. Watch the bird closely - it sometimes changes from moving horizontally to diagaonally. Th dot is on fixed random positions at the beginning, but in later levels it will also move. Sometimes it moves according to the cloud and sometimes it moves along close to the bird. And sometimes everything happens together. :)

The game tries to avoid unnecessary displays and counters. The remaining game time is indicated by the position of the sun (moving from right to left). The amount of hits is shown by the color of your kite - the color gets darker with every hit. There also is no level number, the current level depends on the position of the sun. A level change is indicated by a slighly changing color of the sky.


You fetch points for every collected dot. The amount of points depends on the number of hits your kite has already taken. You start with three possible hits and receive three points for each collected dot then. After the first hit you only receive two points for a collected dot. After the second hit you still receive one point. And after the third hit... well... you crash into the ground and the game is over!

If you manage to play until the sun disappears at the left side of the screen, you win the game and receive one bonus point for every collected dot.

General Game Controls

The game offers two different control possibilities as you can play the game with one or two joysticks. You choose the amount of joysticks on the introduction screen.

The game was initially designed to be played with two joysticks: one joystick for each hand. Pushing the left joystick down makes the kite turn counter clockwise while pushing the right joystick down lets the kite turn clockwise. These controls offer better authenticity as you control a normal kite with two handles, too. You should use joysticks with suction cups for best control results.

When using only one joystick you press it left to pull the left hand and line on screen which causes the kite to roll counter clockwise. Press right to pull the right hand and line which makes the kite turn clockwise.

Technical Details

The game is written in 6507 assembly and consists of 4 KB (4096 Bytes) of coding, graphics, sounds and all data. KITE! is written for the PAL version of the Atari VCS.

The development is performed on a Pentium-PC using a normal Text-Pad as editor and DASM V2.12 as compiler. Testing is done using the emulators z26 V1.58 and Stella V2.4.2 and finally on real hardware of course.

Download of the Game

You can download the PAL version of the game file here. Use a VCS emulator to play the game and read the included instructions concerning the controls first. Please notice that you use the emulator and my game at your own risk, I don't take any responsibilty for problems occuring to your computer when using an emulator.

You can also play KITE! online in your browser by using this link.

Production of Original Cartridges

You can order your copy of KITE! (PAL game cartridge with labels and manual) directly from - a great source for homebrew games. My other games are available there, too.

Pictures of the Limited Edition

The first release of the game was as a limited edition of 35 copies. The limited edition contains these items: PAL cartridge, plastic box with color cover, instruction manual, window kite, serialnumber and signature. The limited edition is sold out!

A complete copy of the limited edition.

All 35 boxes of the limited edition.

Owners of the Limited Edition

# Name Country
01 Simon Quernhorst Germany
02 Michael Weiß Germany
03 Richard Lecce USA
04 Marc Oberhäuser Germany
05 Mat Allen England
06 Walter Lauer Germany
07 Cyril Denis France
08 Mr. Atari The Netherlands
09 John Tropiano USA
10 Jose Garcia USA
11 Jeff Rothkopf USA
12 Dieter König Austria
13 Ian Baronofsky USA
14 Michael Braun Germany
15 Jörg Müller Germany
16 Ingo Boyens Germany
17 René Meyer Germany
18 Al Backiel USA
19 Jose Artiles USA
20 Syd Bolton Canada
21 Matthias David Germany
22 Martin Clayton England
23 Falk Heinzelmann Germany
24 Jörg Konzan Germany
25 Marco Kerstens The Netherlands
26 r_type2600 Austria
27 Lee Chapman England
28 Fabian Grossekemper Switzerland
29 Rick Weis USA
30 Ron Engel The Netherlands
31 Michael Tausendpfund Germany
32 Kai Darius Kohl USA
33 Rob Neitzke USA
34 Stephanie Payne Canada
35 Laurent Dziubas Belgium

This game for the Atari 2600 was written in 2009 and is (C) by Simon Quernhorst.
The URL is owned by my brother, who is not to be connected
with the development of this Atari 2600 game, so don't bother him with mails.
Atari is a registered trademark, 2600 and VCS are trademarks of Atari Corporation.

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