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GregDeg
02-19-2017 at 06:50 AM
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Atari 2600 - Night Driver - How to score an "81"

Here's something I wrote a few years back about my Night Driver score:



When the game starts, there is a delay before the time starts to count down. I my case, the 90 seconds clock started ticking down after 5.5 seconds. This delay seems to be random.

It’s this randomness that determines your final score and not how well you drive.

Throughout the course, the cars always appear on the left and appear randomly with every new game. There is no correlation between cars and the score. The score is determined by distance traveled, which is predetermined, but not visibly marked. The course does follow the same path or pattern.

Here is a course breakdown:
Score
Direction
Time
0 - 1
Straight
1.5
2
Left
1.4
3
Straight
1.3
4
Right
1.65
5

0.75
6
Left
0.75
7
Straight
1.1
8
Left
1.4
9
Straight
1.3
10
Right
1.65
11

0.75
12
Left
0.75


The course repeats itself similar from scores 4 thru 9. Right, Left, Straight, Left, Straight.

The time between scores also repeats itself similar from 7 thru 12.

When I hit 81, I did it with 0.2 seconds to spare. I would have needed an additional 1.5 seconds, which seems to be impossible at this point. I think 81 is it!
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Comments
  1. Snowflake's Avatar
    sweet, thx greg. when you say the cars are random though, are they truly random or are they random based on your movements -- RNG with your inputs as a seed. Because I found most of the game i could play by reflexes, but here were a few surprise moments that happened too fast. I just chose to memorize those several suprise moments, that way when they came up i could be at full alert. I guess its possible i just got lucky that my memorization coincidentally worked out the same ay in thos spots. certainly not arguing as you're definitely the atari expert, i'm just confused a little
  2. GregDeg's Avatar
    Bill,

    I think there are several courses available and are randomly selected when you restart the game. The car placement is determined by the course and not based on your movements.

    There is a driving pattern, Right - Left - Straight - Left - Straight, which starts when your score is "4" then repeats itself from then on.

    When the game starts, watch the clock and your score. If you can get a score of "3" (almost 4) when the clock still shows 90... continue with the game. If not.. reset and try again.
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  3. Snowflake's Avatar
    ok thx, i've been meaning to take a break from the arcade and get back to atari. it really killed me giving up on this one, i'll have to give it another try now though
  4. Rogerpoco's Avatar
    Looking at my Night Driver cart now...
    Still no power adapter for my 2600(in the mail).
    Dying...can't wait...

    Thanks for the awesome breakdown!
    This will be the first 2600 game I really get into, I think.

    Well, after I beat ET for the first time in decades, anyway.

    R-L-S-L-S.

    You guys amaze me.
  5. CONSOLEPLAYEROFTHECENTURY's Avatar
    Yeah no way 82 could be done
  6. Marcade's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by GregDeg
    Bill,

    I think there are several courses available and are randomly selected when you restart the game. The car placement is determined by the course and not based on your movements.

    There is a driving pattern, Right - Left - Straight - Left - Straight, which starts when your score is "4" then repeats itself from then on.

    When the game starts, watch the clock and your score. If you can get a score of "3" (almost 4) when the clock still shows 90... continue with the game. If not.. reset and try again.
    THIS...is the magical formula. Think Fire Fighter...Keep reseting the game, and be persistent. Hey, I only did it because I studied Greg's video of what he did. I even compared side to side my video to his. Then I saw the magic formula!!!
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  7. Snowflake's Avatar
    Turns out firefighter ain't random restarting is to deal with the human being random and through dumb luck the humans randomness works out. Once you learn exactly how long to wait you can get firefighter every time
  8. Marcade's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Snowflake
    Turns out firefighter ain't random restarting is to deal with the human being random and through dumb luck the humans randomness works out. Once you learn exactly how long to wait you can get firefighter every time
    I only meant the persistence aspect of it, not the randomness.
  9. CONSOLEPLAYEROFTHECENTURY's Avatar
    [QUOTE=Snowflake;bt4168]Turns out firefighter ain't random restarting is to deal with the human being random and through dumb luck the humans randomness works out. Once you learn exactly how long to wait you can get firefighter every time[/QUOTE]

    well i did it like 3 times in a row
  10. Snowflake's Avatar
    Oh total agree on the persistence took me over an hour to figure it out. How many 6 second games did I fit in that hour? I don't want to think about it
  11. CONSOLEPLAYEROFTHECENTURY's Avatar
    [QUOTE=Snowflake;bt4171]Oh total agree on the persistence took me over an hour to figure it out. How many 6 second games did I fit in that hour? I don't want to think about it[/QUOTE]


    All because you wanted to be sure it was maxed lol
  12. Rogerpoco's Avatar
    Had to revisit.
    Man. I can finish the course, the right hand turn was tough, but I got it now. Four or five 79's(one verified), and I've popped off a couple of 80's this morning(just wait... working on being dangerous, haha!).
    Best I can pick up is that, visually, you have to almost reach the tree on the right before the timer starts.
    Crazy, this game. The timer is giving me trouble, but it only seems 1/2 as insanely fast as it did when I first played it, is a big-time reflex sharpener, evidently.
    Again, Thanks, Greg-couldn't follow your route instructions, but that worked out naturally.
    Knowing about the timer, and the realization that the enemy cars are all actually very polite drivers and stay on their side of the road, haha, is the key.
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  13. Rogerpoco's Avatar
    Ok, NM, the scenery seems random, lol, I guess that proves out that I am playing a little more than I am thinking.
    This was...
    Jeez.
    I really laughed it off, knowing I'll get the 81 any time now.
    Mebbe the only 80 ever...with a crash!!!

    https://youtu.be/I01MVlKojW0

    Man...
  14. Rogerpoco's Avatar
    Got it!
    Again, the pattern came naturally, but looking for the cars coming from the left, and watching the timer was all you, Man, I really appreciate it!
    This isn't a Street Racer game 21 max-out...So happy to have pulled this one off!
    I need my Brown Belt soon...
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