Atari's 1985 Peter Pack Rat
You control Peter, a pack rat, through 3 different platform-type levels. Peter's job (and yours) is to collect various objects that are scattered around each level and return them to your nest. Other critters, whose sole purpose it is to stop you from collecting your items, also inhabit each level. To evade these critters you can throw collected items at them to temporarily stun them. Unlike many platform games of the day (Donkey Kong, Kangaroo, etc.) the design of each level is not as linear and offers more free-flowing exploration.
Missing Ingredient
It's hard to say. As with most Atari games, Peter PackRat is a well-playing, good-looking game. The graphics are good, there's nice variety in the levels, and features excellent music that really helps to establish a fun & funky mood for the game. Very simply, it was probably released a few years too late to really contend with the Donkey Kong's and other popular platform games.

Atari did a good job designing the character's graphics and representation on the title screen and game marquee (he looks a little like Chuck E. Cheese.) But perhaps if the Peter character was given a little more personality in the game it could have made a more lasting impact. Through the use of Pac-Man-like cutscenes we could have learned a little more about Peter and his motivation for collecting all the junk. Also while each level is detailed and interesting, a game that debuted almost 4 years after Donkey Kong isn't able to offer us a variety of more than 3 different levels or a clear goal to play towards.

Thanks to Jeffrey Carl at ServInt for providing the space for CinemArcade


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