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This is the first game in the Star Wars series. For other games in the series see the Star Wars category.

Box artwork for Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back.
Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back
Developer(s)Parker Brothers
Publisher(s)Parker Brothers
Year released1982
System(s)Atari 2600, Intellivision
Followed byStar Wars
SeriesStar Wars
ModesSingle player, Multiplayer
LinksStar Wars: The Empire Strikes Back ChannelSearchSearch
This guide is for the 1982 Parker Brothers Atari 2600 and Intellivision game. For the 1985 Atari Games arcade game, and the 1992 JVC NES and Game Boy game, see The Empire Strikes Back and Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back (1992).

Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back is a scrolling shooter video game published by Parker Brothers in 1982 for the Atari 2600 and in 1983 for the Intellivision. It was the first Star Wars video game.

In the game, the player controls a snowspeeder to battle against Imperial AT-AT walkers on the planet Hoth. The goal is to hold off the walkers as long as possible before they blow up the power generator at the Rebels' Echo Base. The difficulty levels included several variables, including the initial speed of the walkers, whether or not the walkers were solid, and whether or not the walkers included a "smart bomb".

The player can destroy a walker by shooting it repeatedly in the head or torso; shots to the legs are ineffective. As the walker is damaged, it changes colors - transitioning from black (undamaged) through various shades of gray, red, and orange to yellow (critically damaged). The player can also destroy the walkers by shooting a small flashing spot that randomly appears during gameplay. On the Intellivision, the walkers require thirty hits to take down, compared to forty-eight hits on the Atari.

The walkers shoot back at the player, whose speeder also changes colors as it receives damage. The player can land a damaged speeder to repair it. On some game levels, the walkers are solid, meaning that the player can crash into them, damaging them and destroying the player. Other levels include a smart bomb which periodically launches from the flashing port on a walker and follows the player for a time. If the player is hit by the smart bomb his speeder is destroyed. Occasionally, the player is granted the power of The Force. When this happens, the speeder flashes colorfully and becomes invulnerable for a short time. The game ends when five speeders are destroyed or when the lead walker reaches Echo Base, destroying it. As the game progresses, the walkers move more rapidly, increasing the difficulty level.

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