History Comicbook / AtariForce

30th Sep '17 1:06:07 PM VicGeorge2011
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* SuicidalPacifist: Lucas Orion of the first team. When he and his comrades were being attacked by the Zylons, he refused to even pick up a gun to help his friends fight off the attackers. Fortunately, a CoolShip emerges to save the day, piloted by Lucas' allies.
16th Sep '17 7:49:19 AM tropower
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The arcade game ''Liberator'' (essentially, VideoGame/MissileCommand in reverse) is based on this series (hence the marquee reading "Atari Force: Liberator"). Specifically, it's based on a special insert preview comic called "Codename: Liberator".
30th Aug '17 5:31:52 AM StFan
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[[caption-width-right:300:[-Atari Force v.2: Less Dorky Than Our Parents-] ]]

''Atari Force'' is the name for several comic book series developed and published by Creator/DCComics.

The original series was first published in 1982 as a set of promotional giveaways with selected UsefulNotes/Atari2600 video games. It covered the efforts of the Atari Force as they participate in "Project Multiverse", a mission to [[TheMultiverse travel across dimensions]] and find a new planet for humanity to inhabit after the current Earth is pushed to the brink of collapse by global warfare. While most of the stories were standalone, the team repeatedly clashed with the Dark Destroyer, an interdimensional EldritchAbomination out to conquer the multiverse. The stories were written by Gerry Conway and Roy Thomas, with art by Ross Andru and Gil Kane.

The DC graphic novel ''ComicBook/StarRaiders'' is a SpinOff of issue #3. The pack-in comics can be [[http://www.atariage.com/comics/index.html read here]].

The second series was first published in 1984 as a regular monthly comic under the DC label. Set 25 years after humanity's resettlement, it centered on the adventures of the children of the original crew. Their lives are disrupted by the return of the Dark Destroyer, who has discovered the dimension where humanity has relocated and is preparing to avenge his earlier defeats by humiliating Martin Champion and then destroying the universe. The writers were Gerry Conway and Mike Baron, with art primarily by Jose Garcia-Lopez; later issues featured backup stories by Keith Giffen, Paul Kupperberg, Klaus Janson, James Fry and others.

!! The various ''Atari Force'' series provide examples of:

* AcePilot: Martin Champion, who's been to the Moon four times, commanded two lunar missions, and saved a team of lunar colonists with an emergency rescue flight complete with [[ComingInHot crash landing]].
* AliensSpeakingEnglish: Mostly subverted with some exceptions; Taz will only speak one word of (barely intelligible) English at the end of a word balloon.
* AuraVision: Blackjak temporarily had this ability with the organic eye that the Tazlings had given him.
* BadassBeard: Lucas Orion, though his character is mostly a pacifist that won't fight.
* BadassMustache: Captain Hunter, security chief of Atari Station in the second series. Blackjak combines his with PermaStubble.
* BerserkButton: Never trap Pakrat in a corner, because he'll come out of it fighting!!!
* BlackBestFriend: Lucas is this to Martin.
* BigBad: The Dark Destroyer, natch.
* BountyHunter: Dart and Blackjak.
* BreakOutTheMuseumPiece: In the second series, the ''Scanner One'' was actually a museum piece, and it was still functional and fully stocked!
* TheCameo: [[ComicBook/MartianManhunter J'onn J'onzz]] and [[Film/ETTheExtraTerrestrial E.T.]] make cameo appearances in Pakrat's three-part side-story arc.
** The Hukka puts in an appearance in an issue of ''ComicBook/AmbushBug''.
* CarpetOfVirility: Blackjak.
* CigarChomper: Professor Venture (a female example) and Captain Hunter.
* CrapsackWorld: The backstory establishes Earth as one of these, ravaged by endless war and terror attacks. [[DividedStatesOfAmerica The United States has been shattered]], the United Nations is dead, famine and disease are rampant, billions have already died, and a hemispheric drought has reduced the planet's arable land by a million acres. It's desperate enough that humanity's last hope is to ''travel across dimensions'' to find a new planet for everyone to colonize...
* CreepyCentipedes: In the first series, Martin Champion fights with a giant alien centipede-like creature. It's a rather subtle ShoutOut to Atari's arcade game ''VideoGame/{{Centipede}}''. (As an interesting side note, there's a DC Comics pack-in comic book that came with the Atari 2600 ''Centipede'' cartridge, where the titular centipede is much less creepy-looking.)
* CrushKillDestroy: The friendly toy robot, Bob, who could only say his name cheerfully, went evil after one too many flushes down the toilet. It could still say nothing more than "Bob", but it said it in a much more menacing voice to the point it was obvious that if its vocabulary were bigger, it would've been saying the trope title verbatim.
* DeathByChildbirth: Lydia Champion, at the birth of Christopher. [[spoiler:It's later revealed that this was due to the Dark Destroyer stealing her life force.]]
* DreamingOfThingsToCome: Dart gets precognitive dreams of Blackjak's death. She also dreams of the Atari Force relocating to Old Earth at the end of the second series.
* EldritchAbomination: In its original form, the Dark Destroyer is a planet-sized tentacular monstrosity.
* TheEmpath: Morphea
* EmotionEater: The Dark Destroyer feeds on the torment, fear, and pain of others. It uses its telepathic powers to conquer weaker races and provoke wars to sustain itself. He also has a torturer named Psyklops who locks his victims into reliving painful past memories, as in the case with Morphea.
* EvilKnockoff: [[spoiler:The Dark Destroyer creates a clone of Martin Champion to serve as a host for itself.]]
* ExposedExtraterrestrials: Babe.
* ExpressDelivery: The Dark Destroyer pulls this on a backwater planet creature that he enters into to become born in the form of Martin Champion, speeding up the process to the point where it ends up killing the mother.
* EyepatchOfPower: Blackjak has a cybernetic camera eye attached to his left eye socket that can detach itself and fly around to allow its owner to see other places.
* FaceHeelTurn: [[spoiler:Blackjak.]]
* FacialMarkings: Dart and her previous mercenary partner Dalia not only have markings on the left side of their faces, but also all over the left side of their bodies. Like her father Mohandas Singh, Dart has a red tilak on her forehead.
* FakeKillScare: Done in the second series [[spoiler:with an entire ''dimension''. After the Dark Destroyer has detonated his antimatter bomb, the heroes believe their home universe has been destroyed. It isn't until later that they learn otherwise.]]
* FiveManBand
** First series
*** TheHero: Martin Champion
*** TheLancer: Lydia Perez
*** TheSmartGuy: Mohandas Singh
*** TheMedic: Lucas Orion
*** [[strike:TheBigGuy]] CuteBruiser: Li San O'Rourke
*** TeamPet: Hukka.
** Second series
*** TheHero: Christopher "Tempest" Champion
*** TheLancer: Erin Bia "Dart" O'Rourke-Singh
*** TheHeart: Morphea
*** TheBigGuy: Babe
*** [[{{Mentors}} The Mentor]]: Martin Champion
*** SixthRanger: Moses "Blackjak" Fisk
*** TagalongKid: Pakrat
*** TeamPet: Hukka.
* FiveTokenBand: Egregiously so in the first series. Li San O'Rourke is even ''Chinese/Irish'', just to squeeze in an extra ethnicity.
* FlatScare: Christopher Champion (Tempest) pulls this on a guard at a museum where the Scanner One spaceship was stored.
* FoodSlap: In a Pakrat side story, his female friend Ferra dumps a whole bowl of Draconian loose juice on Pakrat before she leaves the party, looking insulted.
* FunWithFlushing: Hukka attempts to flush the robotic Bob down the toilet in a side story. However, he ends up awakening Bob's evil side.
* GentleGiant: Babe. Justified as he's an infant from a species that grow into ''mountains''.
* HoistByHisOwnPetard: The Dark Destroyer intended to destroy Martin Champion's New Earth universe with an anti-matter bomb, but instead ended up dying in the explosion of his own bomb when Dart accidentally deactivated the fail-safe mechanism.
* InspectorJavert: Rident Oly, though his pursuit of his brother Tukla is justified as he disgraced the Oly family name by becoming a criminal.
* KangarooCourt: The second Atari Force faces one of these [[spoiler:after returning to New Earth]]. Ostensibly, the team is on trial for the theft of ''Scanner One'', but it's part of a larger plan to imprison Tempest and weaponize his powers.
* LoveableRogue: Pakrat.
* MaternalDeathBlameTheChild: Christopher Champion was believed to be blamed by his father Martin for his mother Lydia's death at birth. It was only years later that Dr. Lucas Orion, the physician present at the birth, realized that Martin blamed the Dark Destroyer for Lydia's death.
* MerchandiseDriven: Played very straight with the first series, as an overt promotional campaign (both Atari Corp. and Creator/DCComics were owned by Warner Communications at the time). Averted by the second series, however, which was a straightforward science fiction comic.
* MrFanservice: Blackjak.
* MultiethnicName: Li San O'Rourke.
* TheMultiverse: Not only can ''Scanner One'' travel to different dimensions, Tempest was born with the ability as well.
* NiceJobBreakingItHero: Played with; Martin Champion thinks he's inadvertently informed the Dark Destroyer as to what dimension humanity has resettled on, and assembles a new team to retrieve the probe to resolve the problem. [[spoiler:In actuality, the Dark Destroyer already ''knew'' where they were, and faked the incident as part of his plan to humiliate Champion before destroying the dimension.]]
* NotQuiteDead: [[spoiler:Blackjak.]]
* ParentalNeglect: Martin Champion does this to his son Tempest, largely because he blames him for the death of his wife.
* ParentalSubstitute: Morphea is this for Babe after he was taken from his homeworld, and Professor Venture became the substitute mother for Christopher Champion.
* PermaStubble: Blackjak, with only a full-grown mustache amid all the stubble.
* PregnantBadass: Taz, with the surprising bit being that [[spoiler:[[SamusIsAGirl nobody knew that Taz was female until Morphea found that out from a telepathic scan]]]].
* PuppeteerParasite
* RecursiveAcronym: According to canon, "Atari" stands for the "Atari Technology and Research Institute".
* RemixComic: "Mission: Phoenix" (pack-in comic #4) was originally written as a story for the spin-off arcade video game ''Liberator'', with the Maglaglon originally resembling frogs.
* SamusIsAGirl: Taz was referred to as being male up until Morphea discovered [[spoiler:[[PregnantBadass Taz was pregnant]]]].
* ShootingGallery: In a Hukka side story, Bob zaps Hukka with his antenna in the same manner as with a bear target in a shooting gallery, with Hukka going back and forth between zaps.
* SigilSpam: The Atari "fuji" logo gets incorporated nearly everywhere, especially in the first series. Even the design of the ''Scanner One'' spaceship is a variation of the logo.
* SiliconBasedLife: Babe's species. Even as big as he is, he's an infant. He'll become a mountain when he grows up.
* SolidGoldPoop: Babe sheds skin scales that turn into crystals, which Pakrat thinks may be valuable, only to find out that after a while [[SchmuckBait they turn into dust]].
* SpinOffspring: In the second series, Tempest is Martin and Lydia's son, while Dart is Mohandas and Li San's daughter.
* StevenUlyssesPerhero: Martin Champion, leader of the Atari Force.
* TitleDrop: Many Atari video games and properties have their names dropped throughout the series.
** The main computer for ''Scanner One'' is the [[UsefulNotes/Atari8BitComputers Atari 8000]].
** Issue #4 of the first series features "Mission: [[http://www.atariage.com/software_page.html?SoftwareLabelID=355 Phoenix]]"
** [[http://www.arcade-museum.com/game_detail.php?game_id=7885 Galaxians]] was mentioned in issue #5 of the first series. Also an alien vaguely resembling a [[http://www.arcade-museum.com/game_detail.php?game_id=7299 centipede]] appears in the same issue.
** Martin and Lydia's son, Christopher, is codenamed "[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tempest_%28arcade_game%29 Tempest]]".
** In the second series, one member of the team is a diminutive alien nicknamed [[http://www.atariage.com/software_page.html?SoftwareLabelID=554 Taz]].
** When the Scanner One re-enters normal space, the pilot of the ship says "[[http://www.arcade-museum.com/game_detail.php?game_id=7216 Breakout]]!"
* TortureTechnician: Psyklops, a psychic vampire working for the Dark Destroyer who feeds off pain.
* UseYourHead: Both Martin and Christopher Champion used head-butts when physically fighting the Dark Destroyer in his humanoid form.
* WhatHappenedToTheMouse: The first series briefly mentions The Co-Op, a collection of government-owned multinational corporations. Though they are presented as a threat to Atari and Project Multiverse, they are never referenced again.
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