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Synapse Software was a computer software company from The ’80s, best known for their Shoot 'em Up games for the Atari 8-Bit Computers and Commodore 64, and at their peak were the biggest third-party developer for Atari computers.

Synapse's first games were for the Atari 8-Bit Computers, typically thinly-disguised copies of popular arcade games of the era. While their early games did reasonably well, it was their second wave of games that provided their biggest hits, such as Shamus, Blue Max, Necromancer, and Fort Apocalypse. Many of Synapse's games were distributed in Europe by U.S. Gold under the "Synsoft" brand, and the company also released an official port of Zaxxon for the Commodore 64.

Heady with success, Synapse began quickly diversifying In 1983, with increased support for the Commodore 64, a series of Interactive Fiction games ("Electronic Novels"), and even a suite of business software titles for the Atari 8-Bit Computers. Unfortunately, that last move led to their downfall — the company had entered into a collaboration with Atari Inc. for the business suite, but when Jack Tramiel purchased Atari's consumer division, he refused to pay for the software.note 

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Synapse ended up being sold to Brøderbund; after attempts to continue the "Electronic Novel" line failed, the company was closed a year later.


Video games developed by Synapse include:

"Electronic Novels" from Synapse:

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Business software developed by Synapse:

  • SynAssembler
  • SynCalc
  • SynComm
  • SynFile+
  • SynMail
  • SynStock
  • SynText
  • SynTrend
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