Lost In Translation/Warlords

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This page is a stub for arcade games that are part of the Lost In Translation series using information based on MAME (version 0.113u2).
For an example of preferred content and layout please refer to Out Run or The Ninja Warriors.

Warlords marquee.
No screen shot.
Warlords control panel.
Manufacturer Atari
Released 1980
1 Button(s)
Main CPU M6502 (@ 1.512 MHz)
Sound CPU Mono
POKEY (@ 1.512 MHz)
Raster (Horizontal)
256 x 240 pixels
60.00 Hz
128 Palette colours
Screens 1
ROM Info 8 ROMs
14,592 bytes (14.25 KiB)
MAME ID warlords

About The Game

Warlords is a 2-player arcade video game.

The game depicts a 3rd-person view of 4 castles. The knights and kings use shields to defend their castle walls from the fireballs that ricochet around the play-field.

Players can capture and catapult the fireballs at opposing castles, using their shield control and 'power stone' push-button. When a fireball hits a castle wall, it destroys one or more bricks, depending on its speed.

A position not paid for is played by the computer, with a black knight displayed in the appropriate castle (The upper 2 castles always have black Knights in them). The computer-controlled knights catapult fireballs at the players with increasing accuracy, to provide challenge.

The play mode begins when either start button is pressed and the countdown has ended. The mode ends when the last player's castle (containing a crown) has been penetrated by a fireball. At this point a white cloud envelopes the crown, and the latter disappears.

During the countdown, a dragon flies back and forth across the screen with a fireball in its mouth. At the end of the countdown, a position activated by a start button has its black knight changed to a king's crown. A position not activated remains as a knight and is controlled by the computer. The dragon then spits the fireball from its mouth toward a player's castle.

The objective is to destroy the three other castles, while protecting one's own castle with the moving shield. The LED push-buttons have dual functions: in the ready-to-play mode they work as start switches, and during game play they become 'power stones' to allow players to capture and catapult fireballs at opponents.

The spinning fireballs released from a shield have more destructive force on a castle wall than a fireball simply deflected from another wall or the sides of the play-field. However, players will soon find out that they cannot hold onto a fireball for long, since it slowly destroys their own castle walls adjacent to the fireball.

Additional fireballs appear at predetermined intervals or when a castle is destroyed, whichever comes first. A maximum of 4 fireballs simultaneously appears on the screen.

In 1- and 2-player games, the players' crowns will be accompanied by a zero, to begin scoring. The point-scoring system is printed on each control panel (the black knights do not earn points).

If the black knight has the surviving castle, the game ends. However, if a player (king) has the surviving castle, that player receives bonus points, all castles are rebuilt, and the game continues with a new battle at a higher level.

The subsequent levels begin, as mentioned before, with the fireball thrown out by the dragon. In the higher levels black knights play more accurately and faster.


Released in April 1980.

Also released as "Warlords [Cocktail model]".

Licensed to Sega for Japan market.

A prototype version of this game is known under the name of "Castles & Kings".

Approximately 1,000 Upright units were produced.


Action Points
Damaging a castle wall 125
Destroying any Warlord (any Human player) 1,000
Destroying any Black Knight (any Computer player) 2,500

Surviving player gains 5000 points x current level.


Designed & Programmed By
Greg Rivera
Norm Avalar

Cabinet and Artwork


Atari 2600 (1981)
Atari XEGS
Sony PlayStation (2001, "Atari Anniversary Edition Redux")
Sega Dreamcast (2001, "Atari Anniversary Edition")
Sony PlayStation 2 (2004, "Atari Anthology")
Microsoft XBOX (2004, "Atari Anthology")
Nintendo DS (2005, "Retro Atari Classics")
Nintendo Game Boy Advance (2005, "Centipede / Breakout / Warlords")
Tandy Color Computer (1982, "War Kings")
PC [MS Windows, CD-ROM] (2000, "Atari Arcade hits 2")
PC [MS Windows, CD-ROM] (2001, "Atari Anniversary Edition")
PC [MS Windows, CD-ROM] (2002, as part of "Atari Revival")
PC [MS Windows, CD-ROM] (2003, "Atari - 80 Classic Games in One!")
Atari 10 in 1 TV Game (2002 - Jakk's Pacific)
Atari Paddle TV Game (2004 - Jakk's Pacific)
Atari Flashback Classic Game Console (2005)
Nokia N-Gage (2006, "Atari Masterpieces Volume 2")

The contents of this page are licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.
The sources used include MAME (version 0.113u2) and history.dat (revision 1.28 - 2008-10-18).
Please see http://www.arcade-history.com for credits.