Berzerk is an arcade game released in 1980 in which the player must escape a maze filled with evil robots.


Berzerk is a multi-directional shooter game requiring players to navigate mazes filled with enemy robots. This was one of the first video games to use speech synthesis, featuring robots that talked.

The game also features an infamously bizarre variation of a pressured-on-time element. Occasionally a yellow smiley face called " Evil Otto" would appear and feverishly roam about the mazes in attempt to catch the player, while destroying robots standing it his way.

Other Versions

In addition to the arcade original and the popular Atari 2600 version (1982), Berzerk was also ported by General Consumer Electronics for the Vectrex in 1982, and by Atari to the Atari 5200 in 1983. Stern Electronics made one sequel to the game titled Frenzy, which was only in arcades and ported to the ColecoVision.

Deaths Associated with Berzerk

In 1981, Berzerk became an early example of death by playing a video game. After attaining a score of 1660, a 19 year old named Jeff Dailey died from a heart attack. The very next year, another player named Peter Burkowski also died from a heart attack. This happened shortly after he achieved two high scores within a fifteen minute time span. He was 18 years old.