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February 2005

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8/21-8/22/04

 

 

all about the egg cracker and the egg

Twenty-three year old Fard Muhammad has been a fan of Atari since 1989 when his mother gave him an Atari XE Video Game/Computer System and an Atari 2600. Ironically, she bought it for him hoping that Atari was on its way out of business. Perhaps, she thought, the failing company would produce a dearth of playable games that would effectively keep Fard away from all those "expensive video games." Her plan to keep Fard's attention on computers and off games backfired when, instead, she encouraged his fanatical 15-year interest in the company that pioneered the video game business.

Fard also ignored his peers who let him know that, compared to Nintendo, Atari was just not "cool" anymore. This burgeoning visionary knew he had the real deal and rather than cast away his joystick, he went to the library. If he couldn't get games, he'd learn enough to program them. But slowly, family and friends cleaned out closets and supplied Fard with a fine collection of 2600 games.

As his love for the games grew, so did his interest in the company that created them. Why did it fail? Could the company feasibly come back into the gaming world? After researching the topic at length, Fard wrote to Atari to see what they had to say on the matter.

Then, Atari released their Lynx portable video game system and Fard was off and running, hoping that Atari would once more become part of the mainstream. But even this Atari Jaguar/Lynx evangelist and self-described Atari marketing VP couldn't pump life back into the old game producer as it faced the challenges of Sony and Nintendo. So 14 year old Fard turned his energies to the growing gaming community on the web. There he promoted his favorite platform and encouraged the 2000 release of "BattleSphere" for Jaguar.

Now certifiably an Atari historian, Fard continues to gather information on all things Atari in honor of the company that both started and lost itself to the video game business. He still ardently supports and plays the systems he loved when he was a kid (as well as a few others for the arcade), the Dreamcast, and his computer (codenamed "Atari9000"). His Atari collection includes paraphernalia ranging from various models of the 2600 and an autographed copy of the soundtrack of his favorite arcade game "San Francisco Rush 2049" to an autographed copy of "Tempest 3000" complete with a lock of hair from Jeff
Minter's sheep, Flossie.

Fard has a bachelor's degree in computer science from the Illinois Institute of Technology and hopes to go into a career in special effects, computer animation, or web design. And like so many of us, he also has a few ideas up his sleeve that he hopes will bring him a few million dollars. He currently lives in Chicago, Illinois.

List of favorite games

Classic Home Games: Solaris (2600), Yar's Revenge (2600) Classic Arcade Game: Pole Position, PONG, Tetris

Modern Home Games: Tempest 3000 (NUON DVD), BattleSphere (Jaguar), Jet Set Radio (Dreamcast), SimCity Series (PC) Modern Arcade Game: San Francisco Rush 2049, STUN Runner

And now the Egg itself

The answer from the egg cracker himself:

Answer: In Episode 2, while Carla Meninsky talks about how Ray Kassar wanted to get more women to play the 2600 by releasing games with more feminine themes, three 2600 games are featured- Home Run, Space Invaders, and Warlords. Or H, S, and W.


Clever. ;-)

   


Fard Muhammad--the man who cracked the egg


 
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