Canine Capers from the Past: Scrapyard Dog Atari Lynx Review

When it comes to the world of video games, there’s always something new and exciting going on. The gaming industry has come a long way since its inception, but it’s also important to remember the classics that helped shape what gaming is today. In particular, we want to take a closer look at old-school video games on the Atari Lynx, a portable gaming console that was popular back in the early 90s. In this article, we’ll specifically be reviewing Scrapyard Dog, a side-scrolling action game where you play as a junkyard dog fighting against mutated creatures and evil robots. We’ll delve into the gameplay and features of Scrapyard Dog and see how it stacks up against other Atari Lynx games. So, let’s jump in and take a step back in time to the golden age of handheld gaming.

History of Atari Lynx

Atari Lynx was a handheld gaming console that was released in 1989. It was the first color handheld gaming console in the world. Atari Corporation developed and released Atari Lynx, which was supposed to revolutionize the gaming world. Unfortunately, it couldn’t compete with Nintendo’s Game Boy, which had been released two years earlier.

The Atari Lynx was revolutionary in many ways. Some of its features, such as its backlit color screen, were only seen in more expensive home consoles. It featured sixteen colors and was powered by a sixteen-bit processor, which was a leap forward for handheld consoles in that era. Atari Lynx was also able to connect to a television to provide a larger viewing experience, which was not available on any handheld console at the time.

Despite the console’s potential, the Atari Lynx failed to meet Atari’s sales expectations and was discontinued in 1995. However, during its six years of availability, it produced some fantastic games, and made a significant impact on the gaming industry.

Atari Lynx paved the way for future handheld consoles, from Game Boy to PlayStation Portable. It influenced the development of future portable devices and provided video game enthusiasts with a completely new way to play video games on the go. Even though the Atari Lynx had a relatively short lifespan, it still holds a special place in the hearts of retro gaming enthusiasts.

A Closer Look at Scrapyard Dog

Scrapyard Dog is an action-packed video game for the Atari Lynx. It takes place in a futuristic scrapyard, where the player controls Louie, a lovable canine protagonist. The game’s story involves Louie trying to find his lost puppy love, Fifi, while avoiding various obstacles and enemies along the way.

One of the game’s most notable features is its unique gameplay mechanics. Unlike other conventional games that involve button-mashing and shooting, Scrapyard Dog features Louie using his bark as a weapon to overcome obstacles and enemies. This gameplay style is refreshing and entertaining, making it stand out from other games of its time.

The game’s story is engaging, with each level presenting new challenges to the player. As Louie makes his way through the scrapyard, he must collect bones to unlock new levels and progress towards finding Fifi. The scrapyard’s varied environments add to the game’s excitement, making each level unique with different obstacles and enemies.

It’s fair to say that Scrapyard Dog’s graphics and sound don’t hold up compared to modern-day games, but the overall experience makes up for it. The game’s vintage graphics and chiptune music add to its charm, making it a lovable game to play even today. Its unique game mechanics and entertaining story make it a must-play game for vintage gaming enthusiasts.

In terms of mechanics, Scrapyard Dog’s difficulty level is on the higher side. The game presents its challenges early on, making it tough for first-time players to progress. However, this adds to Scrapyard Dog’s replayability factor. As players become more experienced with the game, they’ll enjoy diving deeper into the scrapyard, unlocking new levels and discovering new enemies.

Overall, Scrapyard Dog is a fun and entertaining game that’s unique in its mechanics, story, and character. Its difficulty and vintage graphics may not appeal to everyone, but it’s a must-play game for anyone interested in vintage gaming.

Comparison to other Atari Lynx games

Scrapyard Dog is one of the esteemed games in the Atari Lynx game library, but it’s far from alone. Atari Lynx had an enviable library of excellent games, several of which are still beloved today. Let’s explore some of the other popular Atari Lynx games:

  • Blue Lightning: Blue Lightning was one of the most well-known and well-loved Atari Lynx games. It was an air combat simulator that provided an engaging and realistic-looking experience for its time.
  • California Games: California Games was a sports game that was part of a long series of games that spanned multiple consoles. It consisted of sports popular in California, including surfing, skateboarding, frisbee, and more.
  • Klax: Klax was a puzzle game that challenged players’ reflexes and quick-thinking. Players had to match colored boxes as they fell off a conveyor belt.

Compared to these games, Scrapyard Dog certainly had its strengths. The game’s vibrant, eye-catching graphics were a standout, even compared to other Atari Lynx games.

Of course, Scrapyard Dog also had its limitations. It wasn’t as well-known as some other Atari Lynx classics, and its gameplay was relatively simple. However, Scrapyard Dog’s simplicity is also part of its charm – it’s a game that you can pick up and play regardless of your skill level.

Overall, Scrapyard Dog may not have been the most popular or polished game in the Atari Lynx library, but it still holds a special place in the hearts of many gamers. Its unique features and graphics set it apart from other games of its time, and it’s well worth revisiting as a piece of video gaming history.

Legacy and Influence of Atari Lynx

Atari Lynx was a revolutionary gaming system that had a significant impact on the gaming industry. It was the first handheld console to feature a color display and the ability for players to link machines for multiplayer gaming. Although it was not as commercially successful as its competitors, its legacy and influence are still felt today.

Atari Lynx paved the way for modern video games and the gaming industry by introducing innovative features and technologies. Its impact can be seen in several areas, such as:

– Designing gaming consoles with color displays
– Wireless connectivity and multiplayer gaming
– Inventing the idea of portable gaming systems that allow players to play games on the go

Atari Lynx inspired future generations of game developers and enthusiasts who continue to build upon its legacy. Softwares, games, and accessories enabled video game enthusiasts to interact with each other, generating an entirely unique set of circumstances that shaped modern video gaming.

Although Atari Lynx may seem insignificant compared to the cutting-edge gaming consoles of today, it’s important to remember the significance of this piece of gaming history. Atari Lynx was responsible for bringing exciting and innovative gaming experiences to the masses, inspiring a new generation of video game developers.

In conclusion, it’s crucial to pay tribute to the legacy of Atari Lynx and the impact it had on the video gaming industry. It was innovative for its time, introducing concepts we take for granted today, like multiplayer gaming and wireless connectivity. Today’s video game industry would not be the same without Atari Lynx’s contribution.


In summary, we’ve explored the world of Atari Lynx and the game Scrapyard Dog. We discovered how the Atari Lynx gaming system impacted the industry and paved the way for future handheld devices. Meanwhile, Scrapyard Dog showed us how early video games had to rely on challenging gameplay and endearing characters to capture gamers’ attention.

Although the Atari Lynx is no longer in production, its impact on the gaming industry is still felt today. We can see its influence in modern-day handheld gaming devices such as the Nintendo Switch and mobile phones. Atari Lynx and games like Scrapyard Dog will always be relevant as they are a part of gaming history.

We recommend that gamers rediscover the joys of old-school gaming by playing Atari Lynx games like Scrapyard Dog. They may be simpler in design compared to the video games we have today, but they still offer an enjoyable challenge and classic nostalgia.

Get your hands on the Atari Lynx and relive the glory days of handheld gaming!


  1. What is the Atari Lynx?

    The Atari Lynx is a handheld game console released in 1989 by Atari Corporation. It was the first color handheld console and had a backlit screen, which was a significant advancement for the time.

  2. What is Scrapyard Dog?

    Scrapyard Dog is an action-adventure platformer game released for the Atari Lynx in 1991. The player controls a dog named Louie, who is tasked with finding items in a junkyard to help a scientist complete her invention.

  3. What are the gameplay and features of Scrapyard Dog?

    Scrapyard Dog features side-scrolling platformer gameplay with puzzle-solving elements. The player must collect items and use them in creative ways to progress through the game. It also features a unique level system where the player can choose which direction to travel next.

  4. How does Scrapyard Dog compare to other Atari Lynx games?

    Scrapyard Dog is considered one of the best games for the Atari Lynx, with its unique gameplay and charming visuals. It stands out from other games of the time with its puzzle-solving elements and non-linear level design.

  5. Why is the Atari Lynx still relevant today?

    The Atari Lynx was a significant advancement for its time and helped shape the future of handheld gaming. Its legacy can be seen in modern handheld consoles such as the Nintendo Switch. Playing Atari Lynx games today gives players a chance to experience the history of gaming and see how far the industry has come since then.

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