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Published on Jun 15, 2014
The Claim Jumper game for Atari Home Computers was designed and programmed by Gray Chang, and sold by Synapse Software in the early 1980s. Synapse sold big hits such as Shamus, Protector, Fort Apocalypse, and Picnic Paranoia.
The Claim Jumper game is set in the California gold rush. Two miners compete to pick up a gold nugget, trade it for cash, and deposit the cash into their respective banks, while avoiding pursuing snakes and tumbleweeds. Getting caught or running into something you shouldn't causes you to be paralyzed for two seconds, during which your opponent can steal your gold or cash.
If you're the pink miner, you can drop snake eggs on the ground, which turn pursuing tumbleweeds into snakes that go after the brown miner. Similarly, if you're the brown miner, you can drop tumbleweed seeds, which turn pursuing snakes into tumbleweeds that go after the pink miner. You can shoot the snakes, tumbleweeds, and your opponent. Getting shot means dropping your nugget or cash and spending a few seconds recovering at the hospital.