Lunar Lander®

Lunar Lander
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Lunar Lander®

Many arcade games which were released in the 80’s used vector graphics. Even though these games did not have much to offer when it came to graphics, they were a huge success due to their easy game play.

Lunar Lander®, arcade game was released in 1979 and uses a vector monitor to display vector graphics. The object of the game is to pilot a lunar landing module to a safe touchdown on the moon.

The Gameplay

The gameplay of the game involves piloting a lunar landing module as it prepares to touch down on the moon. The terrain is very jagged and has only a few flat areas appropriate for landing. These areas are highlighted with a flashing bonus multiplier, which is higher for smaller areas. If the player successfully lands the module, he or she is awarded points based on how good the landing was and the difficulty of the landing site. If the module crashes, points are awarded based on the severity of the crash and sometimes the player receives a fuel penalty. In either case, the game starts another round with a different set of terrain and the player’s remaining fuel.

The player uses a proportional throttle to adjust the strength of the thrusters. Three buttons provide the ability to rotate the craft clockwise and counterclockwise, and to “abort” an approach by firing the thrusters at full strength for a short time. Each action uses up the craft’s limited fuel, and when fuel has run out, the module stops responding to the player’s actions. The player can optionally purchase more fuel at any time during the game.


To pilot the Lander, the player must counteract gravity by using the module’s aft thrusters to slow its descent. They have to be used carefully as they use up fuel.

Difficulty Levels

The game ends when the player runs out of fuel or crashes. The player can adjust the game’s difficulty at any time during play.

Interface and Controls

The interface and controls are very easy. Control buttons can be used to control the landing of the module.

Lunar Lander® is a very easy game with simple gameplay. This game is very addictive and gamers of every age can enjoy it.

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Lunar Lander® © 1979 Atari Interactive, Inc. ©2011 Atari and the Atari logo are registered trademarks of Atari Interactive, Inc. All rights reserved. Used under license.