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Arcturus is a Zaxxon clone made by Bill Bies for the TI-99/4A home computer system. It was released during the first quarter of 1985 on a gaming cartridge. Unlike most cartridges for the TI-99/4 and TI-99/4A, this cartridge didn't plug into the normal spot on the front of the machine. It was designed to be inserted into the sidecar slot similar to the Speech Synthesizer.

Arcturus Title Screen
Arcturus Title Screen [1]
Publisher(s) Exceltec
Original Retail Price $54.95 (USD)
Programmer(s) Bill Bies
Part# STA 103
Format(s) Solid State SoftwareTM Command Module
Release 1985 (1st Quarter)
Genre(s) Action, Shooter


This game has a unique perspective as the player controls a ship that shots on an angle and enemies swoop in from the opposite angle. Initially, the player faces a hoard of ships and mines that the player can either shoot to destroy or simply avoid. The player moves left or right and uses the fire button to shoot. Eventually, the player reaches a "command center" where the player must also avoid hitting obstacles on the surface. The player can move left, right, up, or down. The player can estimate how high or low they are compared with the command center based on the distance between the craft and its shadow. The player begins with 3 ships. The game ends when the player is hit or crashes losing the three ships.


I really can't find any other information out about this software title. If anyone knows of a resource that gives additional information, please let me know. For example, if you have a better copy of the manual that you could take a higher resolution and color copy scan of, I would appreciate and give you credit for it here. Likewise, if you have a cartridge and could take a high-resolution photo of it, I would again love to use it on my site and give you the credit. Email me here!



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