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The Atari 2600 was first released in North America in September 1977 and featured 9 launch titles: Air-Sea BattleBasic MathBlackjackCombatIndy 500Star ShipStreet RacerSurround and Video Olympics. The final licensed Atari 2600 game released in North America was Secret Quest in 1989, and the final licensed game released in Europe was Klax and Acid Drop in 1990 and 1992. Even with their 1980s limited colors and block graphics these games are still entertaining to play today! We have over 500 Atari 2600 games for you to play online for free using our Atari 2600 Javascript Emulator.

This game is mobile device friendly and Iphone compatible. Enjoy!

Instructions and Keyboard Controls towards bottom of page.
Click “Game Reset” or F12 to Start Game

Star Wars Empire Strikes Back

If you grew up in the 80’s you shouldn’t need instructions!! You might find some help at and look up the game you need assistance playing.

Click “Game Reset” or F12 to Begin/Restart Game
Arrow Keys – Move
Space bar to fire/action button




(C) Lucasfilm Ltd. (LFL) 1982/Trademark owned by Lucasfilm Ltd. (LFL) and
used by Parker Brothers under authorization.


The Empire's revenge has begun!  Right now an army of Imperial Walkers is
marching toward the Rebels' power generator on the Ice Planet Hoth.  If
they reach it, the entire Rebel base will blow sky high!  To stop them, the
Rebels must rely on their missile-firing Snowspeeders.  The Snowspeeders
may be tiny (compared to the gigantic Imperial Walkers) but they're quick
and agile.  And in the hands of a skillful commander, they can destroy the
mighty Walkers!

So climb into your Snowspeeder and be prepared to meet the first of your
deadly enemies!


The object of the game is to destroy as many of the Imperial Walkers as you
can before they reach the power generator at the end of the battlefield -
or before the Imperial Walkers destroy your fleet of Snowspeeders.


1. To select a game number (see Game Selection Box), press down on the GAME
   SELECT switch.  To quickly change the number, hold down both the GAME
   SELECT and GAME RESET switches at the same time.  The game number will
   appear at the bottom of the screen.

2. Press down on the GAME RESET switch - and you're ready to start the

3. Set the DIFFICULTY switch:
   Position A - The landing pad where you repair your snowspeeder is made
   Position B - The landing pad is made larger.

   In a one-player game, use the left DIFFICULTY switch.  In a two-player
game, the 1st player uses the left DIFFICULTY switch and the 2nd player
uses the right DIFFICULTY switch.


Make sure you plug the joystick controllers firmly into the jacks at the
back of your video game system.  Use the LEFT controller jack for
one-player games.

Use the Joystick to fly your Snowspeeder.  Snowspeeders can fly left,
right, up, and down.  Your Snowspeeder can accelerate in all four
directions, too.  To slow it down, simply change directions.  Press the red
button to fire your missiles.

|     /\    /\_     /|
|/\__/  \/\/   \_/\/ | < Mountains,
|__      _____ __    | < Ice Zone,
|  \____/     V  \__/| < Valleys,
|  _________________ |
| |_-_-_-_-_______[] | < Power Generator Location


This is the battlefield on the Ice Planet Hoth.  The entire battlefield is
8 TV screens wide.  The radar band monitors the entire battlefield.


A Rebel commander recieves 5 Snowspeeders per game.  At the start of the
game, the first Snowspeeder is displayed in the Ice Zone.  The remaining
"on deck" Snowspeeders are displayed just under the radar band.

To start the action:
  Fly youy Snowspeeder down screen (move left) to meet the oncoming
  Imperial walkers.  The Walkers approach in a single file from left to
  right.  They can get bunched up one behind the other but they can never
  pass one another.  Although up to 5 Walkers can be seen on the
  battlefield at a time, ony 1 Walker will appear on the TV screen at a

Radar Band:
  Use the radar band to keep an eye on the positions of all 5 Walkers and
  to see which Walker you're presently battling on screen.
  NOTE: When your snowspeeder flies off one end of the radar band, it will
  reappear at the other end.
|     /\    /\_     /|
|/\__/__\/\/ _ \_/\/ |
|__  || ||____ __    |
|  \____/     V  \__/|
|  ________________  |
| |__-__-__-_[-]___| | < Radar Band
  5 walkers  Snowspeeder

Remember:  As soon as the lead Walker reaches the right end of the radar
band, it blows up the power generator and ends the game.  Just before this
happens, however, you'll hear a "warning" sound, then the sky will begin


It takes 48 "hits" to the body to destroy an Imperial Walker.  Each group
of 8 hit weakens the Walker one stage and changes its color.  Each color
change means that the Walker is walking slower, firing less often, and
aiming less accurately.  An Imperial Walker may go through 5 color changes
before it's finally destroyed:  From black to grey, blue, purple, red,
yellow, then - POW! - it's gone!

A snowspeeder can fly around to the back of a Walker and attack it from the
rear.  A Snowspeeder cannot weaken or destroy a Walker by hitting its legs.

There IS a quicker wat to destroy an Imperial Walker by firing a missile
into a "bomb hatch."


Bomb hatches are flashing colored squares that appear from time to time on
a weakened Imperial Walker.  Bomb hatches will appear one at a time in one
of three places: just above the head, just below the head, or on its back. 
Hit a bomb hatch, and it's instant destruction of the Imperial Walker!

When you destroy an Imperial Walker, a new one will enter the battlefield. 
Each new Walker will be even tougher than the last.  It will walk faster,
fire its missiles more rapidly, and aim its fire more accurately.  So, the
longer you stay in the game, the more difficult the battle becomes!


Imperial Walkers fire deadly missiles at Snowspeeders.  The even have the
ability to "track" your Snowspeeder and can aim their missiles by raising
or lowering their heads.  They can fire at Snowspeeders approaching them
from behind as well as head on.


When a Snowspeeder is hit by a Walker's missile, it becomes "damaged." 
Damage is indicated by a color change.  In a damaged state, each succeeding
hit increases the chances that the Snowspeeder will be destroyed.  A
Snowspeeder can take up to 5 hits before it's destroyed.  However, it can
be destroyed in fewer than 5.


Land a damaged Snowspeeder in a "valley," and within a second, it's
repaired!  The Snowspeeder will change back to its original color to show
that it has its full power again.  Each snowspeeder is allowed two repairs.

When your Snowspeeder is destroyed, it explodes.  The NEXT Snowspeeder will
appear on screen (You can start again whenever you're ready by moving the
Joystick.)  The new Snowspeeder will pick up the battle where the last one
left off.  That is, Walkers will be in the same positions and will show any
damage they've already recieved.

So try to stay out of the Walker's line of fire.  Or, if you can, try to
shoot down the Walker's missiles.  That's right!  If you can shoot down a
missile (or get very close to it without it hitting you), then the Walker's
missile will explode.  But watch out!  Sometimes the explosion can backfire
and damage your Snowspeeder!


If you can keep your Snowspeeder alive for two minutes, "The Force will be
with you."  Your Snowspeeder will begin flashing and you'll hear the
Rebels' theme song.  The Force will be with you for 20 seconds.  during
this time, your Snowspeeder is all-powerful.  It cannot be damaged; it
cannot be destroyed.  So when you gain The Force, move right in on an
Imperial Walker and fire away!
NOTE: If you've already had your Snowspeeder repaired, and you gain The
Force, you can have your Snowspeeder repaired twice more.


The game ends when the lead Imperial Walker reaches the power generator -
or - when the last of your Snowspeeders is destroyed.


ThE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK has 32 game variations.  Games 1-16 are one-player
games.  Games 17-32 are two-player games.  See the Game Selection Box for
game number variations.  Game variations are described as follows:

Smart Bombs.
  Sometimes a bomb hatch will release a "smart bomb."  Smart bombs fly in a
  looping pattern and will actually follow your snowspeeder.  You can try
  to shoot it down for points or you can try to outfly it until it
  disappears from the screen.

  If a smart bomb hits your Snowspeeder it will either damage or destroy
  the Snowspeeder.  (Smart bombs do more damage than Walker missiles.  So,
  if your Snowspeeder is already damaged when hit by a smart bomb, the
  smart bomb will probably destroy it!)

Solid Walkers.
  When you play a game with Solid Walkers, you're in for some precision
  flying.  With Solid Walkers, you CANNOT fly your Snowspeeder into the
  Walker's body (although you can fly through its legs).  If you do, your
  Snowspeeder will blow up - but not without weakening the Walker three
  colors.  Fly into a Walker weakened to purple or beyond, and the Walker
  is destroyed!


Games 17-32 are two-player game, players alternate as Rebel Snowspeeder
commanders, flying one Snowspeeder on a turn.  The left player goes first. 
Each player's score is displayed throughout his or her turn.  At the end of
the game, the final scores are displayed alternately.

*  In a two-player game, when your lead Walker blows up the power
   generator, you're out of the game.  Your opponent, however, may continue
   to play as long as he or she can defend the power generator.

*  In a two-player game, you'll start the game over again with each new
   Snowspeeder.  (Five Walkers will begin approacting from the left.)  In
   other words, unlike the one-player games, you second Snowspeeder can't
   pick up where the first one left off.


a) Remember to watch the radar band for the positions of all Walkers
   (especially the lead one) and to keep track of which Walker you're
   battling on screen.

b) Try to weaken the LEAD Walker WITHOUT DESTROYING IT.  If you do, the
   lead walker will slow down the walking speed of all the others.  This
   will give you more time to weaken and destroy the other Walkers before
   the lead one reaches the power generator.

   Also try to weaken and slow down the LAST Imperial Walker on the radar
   band WITHOUT DESTROYING IT.  This will help delay the entrance of new
   and "tougher" Walkers that replace the ones you destroy.

c) Try to get the Walker to track your Snowspeeder in one position, then
   quickly move out of its line of fire and attack it from a safe position.

d) In a game with Solid Walkers, you may want to crash your Snowspeeder
   into the Walker's body if you know you can't destroy the Walker before
   it reaches the power generator.  By doing so, you score 25 points and
   stay in the game - if you have Snowspeeders remaining in the battle.


Your score is displayed at the bottom of the screen throughout each
Snowspeeder's battle.  Points accumulate with each additional Snowspeeder. 
You'll recieve your final score at the end of the game.

Here's how points are scored:

  Hitting Imperial Walker with missile .  .  .  .  .  1 point
  Shooting down a Walker's missile in flight .  .  . 10 points
  Crashing Snowspeeder into Walker
  without destroying Walker   .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 25 points
  Destroying an Imperial Walker  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 50 points
  Hitting a bomb hatch that destroys an
  Imperial Walker .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .   100 points
  Shooting down a smart bomb  .  .  .  .  .  .  .   100 points
  BONUS: For every 2,000 points you score, you'll
         recieve one extra Snowspeeder!


The level of difficulty increases within each group of 4 games.  The higher
the game number, the faster the Walkers approach, the more rapidly they
fire their missiles, and the better they aim their fire.

Once you've selected a game number, one of these symbols will appear on
! indicates a one-player game
!! indicates a two-player game

------------                ---------------

one-player       two-player
   1      easiest   17      No Game Variations
   2                18      No Game Variations
   3                19      No Game Variations
   4      hardest   20      No Game Variations
   5      easiest   21      Smart Bombs
   6                22      Smart Bombs
   7                23      Smart Bombs
   8      hardest   24      Smart Bombs
   9      easiest   25      Solid Walkers
  10                26      Solid Walkers
  11                27      Solid Walkers
  12      hardest   28      Solid Walkers
  13      easiest   29      Smart Bombs & Solid Walkers
  14                30      Smart Bombs & Solid Walkers
  15                31      Smart Bombs & Solid Walkers
  16      hardest   32      Smart Bombs & Solid Walkers

-------------------Atari 2600 Instructions Archive-------------------

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StarWarsEmpireStrikesBack Arcade Game Emulated on the Atari 2600. Play StarWarsEmpireStrikesBack in your web browser or mobile phone. This Atari 2600 console emulator provides very accurate StarWarsEmpireStrikesBack gameplay. StarWarsEmpireStrikesBack is a classic 1980s Atari 2600 video game.