War Room

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ColecoVision is mapped to use the number keypad on a full keyboard. If you don't have access to a keypad, you can press the TAB key and there is a menu that has options to change settings including remapping the keys. The default key mapping is in the chart bellow:

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How to play War Room

Each game uses different controls, Games can a combination of mouse,keyboard and Joystick.

War Room Description

War Room is a video game version of a fictional nuclear defense that was programmed by Robert S. Harris in 1983 for the Colecovision.

In War Room for the Colecovision, tensions between the United States and Russia have escalated to the point of nuclear warfare. The player controls a system similar to the proposed Strategic Defense Initiative. After skilllevel from 0-9 has been selected, the player will detect waves of attacking satellites on the national radar at the top of the screen.

The player views the larger portion of the playfield, which shows a top down regional view of the action, with your hunter-killer satellite. The player guides the satellite around the United States, hover over enemy satellites, and blast them with a Star Wars type laser. Each enemy is color-coded (black, gray, yellow or red) to indicate how much time is left until impact.
File:War room screenshot.JPG
The main screen, showing some cities and incoming missiles

In addition to knocking out enemy satellites before they can destroy cities, the player must maintain production of goods and services that will keep the country able to defend itself against wave after wave of nuclear attack. Cities produce four types of supplies: food, raw materials, machinery and laser fuel.

To gather supplies, the player must enter cities by positioning the satellite cursor over one of them on national map. The player will then appear as Uncle Sam, in a 2D action sequence that has the collectign icons representing the various resources, while avoiding Russian spies. The Russian spies are represented as animated hammer and sickles. If a spy touches the player, the city is lost to the enemy, and that city will be used as a Russian base to launch additional nuclear missiles, if it is not destroyed.

Some destroyed cities will be rebuilt as the game progresses. A free city is received for every 10,000 points scored and four freebies will be given with every fifth wave attack. Food cities require no help, but in order for the other types of cities to continue producing their specialties, you must provide them with supplies.

Raw materials cities require food, Machinery cities need food and raw materials, and Laser Fuel cities cannot function without food, raw materials and machinery. It is your job to keep your cities well stocked. A special City Status screen helps you check a city's supply needs, and it keeps track of how many supplies are in your satellite.

War Room ends only when all your cities have been destroyed.

Easter Egg: During gameplay, visit cities, in order, with the initials R-O-S-H-A (ROSHA is Bob Harris’ nickname). You’ll then see a screen with the following message:

Rosha, Robert S. Harris, born August 28th 1957, in Boalsburg Pennsylvania, BS Math Carnegie Mellon University 1979, “we should NUKE the lawyers”, buy “Killer Bees”, press any key, “hi dad”.

When the easter egg is activated, (a) all the city names change, and (b) an additional city is added in the far southeast corner (in the ocean). The new city is an infinite producer of laser fuel. The new city names are mostly puns.

Programmer Robert S. Harris explained the game's development history in a 2004 interview:

"The initial idea was to have nuclear attack phases alternating with rebuilding phases. During the latter you would move goods from city to city to control production. I called the two phases nuke and after-nuke and wanted to name the game 'Nuke, After Nuke'. The marketing department decided to have a focus group on our line of Coleco games and found five or six teenagers at the local mall who trade an hour for some food. One of the six was outspoken, the other five pretty much were looking at the clock waiting for it to be over. The group was asked what they thought of the name 'Nuke, After Nuke', and the outspoken kid said something like 'Huh? What is a nuke?' When the focus group report came out, this was translated into 'children in the target age group do not know what "Nuke" means'. So the marketing group decided a better name would be 'Satellite Defense', and this was the name used at the Consumer Electronics Show. I thought that was a pretty lousy name, and insisted on something better. Eventually someone came up with 'War Room'.

"The other interesting info is it was a stroke of fortune that the game ever made it to the market. This game was scheduled for the second manufacturing slot in this series. But the game scheduled for the first slot wasn't ready on time (the guy writing it left). I managed to get War Room ready early, but at the expense of some aspects of the game. Primarily the in-city collection of goods. That part of the game is pretty poor, I think, even by the standards of the day. The sound effects are especially cheesy!

"After the War Room cartridges were made, Magnavox pulled the plug on game production. That line of games was to have included a Pink Panther game, with an Atari VCS version outsourced to a group in Indianapolis. That outfit wasn't able to meet their deadline [possibly due to trouble getting chips for the cartridge], and since that was to be the big seller paying the bills for the line, the whole line was scrapped. The 80,000 (I think that was the number) War Room carts they had made sold quickly, but Magnavox wasn't interested in making any more of them."

Cheats/Hints/Walkthroughs for War Room

No posted cheats for this game yet.

War Room - additional information

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War Room - ColecoVision Cover Art