Space Duel is an arcade game released in 1982 by Atari, Inc. It is a direct descendant of the original Asteroids, with asteroids replaced by colorful geometric shapes like cubes, diamonds, and spinning pinwheels. Space Duel is the first and only multiplayer vector game by Atari. When Asteroids Deluxe did not sell well, this game was taken off the shelf and released to moderate success.[citation needed]

Space Duel
Space duel flyer.png
American arcade flyer
Developer(s)Atari Inc.
Publisher(s)Atari Inc.
Designer(s)Rick Maurer
Owen Rubin
Steve Calfee
Dave Sheppard
Genre(s)Multidirectional shooter


Gameplay screenshot

The player has five buttons: two to rotate the ship left or right, one to shoot, one to activate the thruster, and one for force field. Shooting all objects on the screen completes a level. Space Duel, Asteroids, Asteroids Deluxe, and Gravitar all use similar 5-button control system.


Space Duel is included within the Atari Anthology[1] for Windows, Xbox, and PlayStation 2 and the PlayStation version of Atari Anniversary Edition. A port of Space Duel was released on the Atari Flashback 2, reproducing only the single-player mode.

A Space Duel cabinet is featured on the cover for The Who's 1982 album It's Hard.[2]

There is a poster for Space Duel hanging in the bedroom of Dustin Henderson in the TV show Stranger Things.

David Plummer holds the official world record for this game with a maximum 623,720 points.[3][4]


  1. ^ Harris, Craig (November 29, 2004). "Atari Anthology". IGN.
  2. ^ Rice, Alex (April 29, 2016). "The Who album covers, ranked". City Pages. Archived from the original on April 30, 2016. 8. It’s Hard (1982) Daltrey’s kid cousin is playing the Atari classic Space Duel behind the band on the cover for It’s Hard
  3. ^ "Space Duel Performances". Twin Galaxies. Archived from the original on December 10, 2020. Dave Plummer Points 623,720
  4. ^ "JoyStik Charts". JoyStik How to Win at Home, Computer & Arcade Games. Vol. 2, no. 3. Louis Weber. December 1983. p. 62.

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