Still entombed after all these years: The continuing twists and turns of a maze game

Faculty Advisor
Date
2022
Keywords
archaeogaming, video games, Atari
Abstract (summary)
The Atari 2600 video game Entombed (1982) left open questions in the design and implementation of its efficient maze-generation algorithm that, through serendipity, we are able to address at last. We have analysed almost 500 artefacts that capture the development process leading up to Entombed, artefacts that have not been seen for decades, including a distinct, unreleased Atari 2600 game. This work is interdisciplinary between the fields of archaeology and computer science in the area of archaeogaming; computer science has allowed informed technical analysis of the artefacts, with processes from archaeology used to manage and organise the large number of artefacts, as well as view game development in a human, archaeological context. The deliberate inclusion of a co-author who was a first-hand participant in the game development additionally raises interesting questions about autoethnography, authorship, and objectivity.
Publication Information
Newell, P.A., Aycock, J. and Biittner, K.M. 2022. Still entombed after all these years: The continuing twists and turns of a maze game, Internet Archaeology 59. https://doi.org/10.11141/ia.59.3
Notes
Item Type
Article
Language
English
Rights
Attribution (CC BY)