Developers Activision (original)
neotokeo2001 (hack)
Publishers Activision (original)
Freeware (hack)
System Atari 2600
Release Dates 1982 (original)
2003 (hack)
Modes Single player
2 players alternating
Media Cartridge (original)
ROM file (hack)


At the time of its release, Megamania was one of the very few bottom of the screen shooters for the Atari 2600 where objects that the player(s) had to shoot down had their attack patterns change with every new enemy that was introduced. And rather than the common sci-fi theme where players faced aliens and/or spaceships, a more whimsical route was taken this time around, as players faced the everyday items of Hamburgers, Bow Ties, Steam Irons, etc. instead.

Nitemare is a hack of Megamania, with the player's(/s') mobile blaster being changed into a witch and the objects from the game into Halloween figures.


Players control a witch at the bottom of the screen as various Halloween-related figures appear overhead. Their attack patterns vary, as enemies can horizontally scroll from the left to the right side of the screen, although with every other wave, others (such as with the spiders) can travel horizontally for a few seconds, then dip down closer to the player’s(/s’) witch(es) and reverse direction. Also, if not all of these enemies are destroyed by the time they reach the bottom of the screen, they will reappear at the top.

Once players faced all enemies and make it past the final wave of bats, the game will start back over at the first wave, but at a higher level of difficulty, as attack patterns will change, such as the ghosts, which will start pausing during a wave, then move across the screen at a faster rate for a second or two, rather than just scrolling across the screen horizontally without stopping as they did originally. Other enemies that moved downwards from the top of the screen (like the aforementioned spiders) will dive down this time around, bats will no longer travel straight down vertically any more, but at about a 45 degree angle, etc. And if players can make it through this cycle a second time, dive-bombing enemies begin traveling even faster towards the bottom of the screen, along with their shots moving faster as well.

Players also have a certain amount of fear (displayed at the bottom as a bar) that will constantly drain during a wave, which, if the bar becomes totally depleted, the player will lose that witch. Successfully completing a wave will recharge the bar though. If a player’s(s’) witch comes in contact with any enemy or their missiles, they will also lose a witch and the game will end if there are no remaining witches in reserve.

Game/fire variationsEdit

Games 1-2 allows players to guide missiles after they have been fired, which game two is for two players alternating turns. Games 3-4 allows players to fire straight missiles (with game four being for two players), although players have to press the controller button every time they want to shoot, as holding down the button to fire does not work in these variations as they do for games 1-2.

The players’ firing rate can also be slowed down by setting the Difficulty Switch(es) in the A position.

Controls, startupEdit

  • Select game–Game Select switch
  • Start game–Game Reset switch


  • Move witch–Joystick (left/right only)
  • Steer missile–Joystick (games 1-2)
  • Fire–button
  • Change difficulty level–Difficulty Switch


  • Ghost–20 points
  • Spider–30 points
  • Zombie–40 points
  • Skull–50 points
  • Goblin–60 points
  • Pumpkin–70 points
  • Scorpion–80 points
  • Bat–90 points
  • All objects after first cycle–90 points each
  • Extra base–Every 10,000 points
  • Bonus points at end of wave–Each leftover time unit is worth current enemy point value

Changes with hackEdit

The blaster has been changed into witch, and objects have been changed into Halloween-themed foes. The energy bar was changed to "fear" and the Activision logo to the word "nitemare" (plus the scrolling text first reads "happy Halloween" until it scrolls to nitemare).


The original Atari 2600 cartridge came in a picture and blue label, the latter of which is a bit more rare. This version is a ROM file to be played on flashcarts or Atari emulators only.


Atari Age page for Nitemare (for ROM download and additional photos)

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.