Joust (ジャウスト)

Released in 1982

Developer: Williams
Manufacturer: Williams
Distributor: Williams

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Joust marquee
game marquee

Game Summary

Who would have thought a game with knights fighting on ostriches and storks could become such a classic? Many people attribute the enormous success of Joust to the fact that it could be played either competitively or collaboratively, making it almost two games in one.

Hardware Info

Controls: 1 Joystick / Button(s)
Horizontal-mounted Raster monitor
292 x 240 Resolution
Colors: 16 Color

Additional Hardware Info (from Mame)

M6809 cpu @ 1 Mhz
M6808 cpu
DAC audio

Mame ROMs

joust, Joust (White/Green label)
joustr, Joust (Solid Red label)
joustwr, Joust (White/Red label)

Game Details

The goal is to duel with enemy knights who travel on vultures via a series of platforms that hang in midair. There are super enemies in the form of a pterodactyl and a lava troll who attempts to pull in a knight that comes too close to the lava pit.

The mechanics of Joust are extremely simple and quite satisfying. The button fired in rapid succession flaps the wings of your vehicular beast as you drift steadily downward as if by gravity.

A flaw in the program design was used to great advantage by knowledgeable players: Two of the platforms on the right side of the screen were arranged in such a way that a player could (if approached at the correct angle) move though the meeting point of the two platforms and end up below the platforms. This proved to be an ingenious attack strategy, and so popular that John Newcomer, the game’s designer, decided to keep it in.

Planned 90's update, Joust X (for PlayStation) was cancelled.

  • Published for Atari 2600, 5200, 7800, 400/800/XL/XE, Lynx by Atari.
  • Published for NES by Hal.
  • Published for Sega Genesis, Saturn, SNES, PC, PlayStation by Williams/Midway in Arcade's Greatest Hits/Williams Greatest Hits.
  • Published for Game.Com by Tiger in Arcade Classics.
  • Published as handheld/keychain LCD game by Tiger.


Joust control panel
control panel


Joust cabinet photo
cabinet photo
Joust title screen
title screen
Joust gameplay screen shot
gameplay screen
Joust promotional flyer
promotional flyer

"Maybe" Images

(fuzzy search, these MAY match the game, or they may not)

Joust - It's cooperation and competition for dual player thrills and dual player earnings!  Ad flyer.

Coinop.org Member Ratings / Comments

***** by droidsattack. Comment: "An addictive multi-player game. The graphics are great, the sounds are awesome, and the controls are amazing. Plus it takes a lot of skill to play. One of my all time favorites." 2003-08-21 17:43:59Z

***** by crappie. Comment: "This game is one of my all time favorites and I just discovered that they carry it on Midway.com As for the game, I was a Joust junkie. I played this game like a madman with my friend Victor from my school boy days... too bad he wasn't as good as I was!! Anyway, I remember the early game glitch where you could endlessly pteryodactyl hunt until Williams fixed it which forced the weenie kids to learn how to really fly! I like to play it today while blasting away with Iron Maiden on the stereo... Aces High, Tailgunner, The Trooper, Flight of Icarius and The Wickerman are favorites. If you're a Joust and Iron Maiden fan, you'll see the irony :P" 2005-04-13 03:58:46Z

***** by ubrokeme. Comment: "This one doesn't get CLASSIC status?? Come ON!! One of the 10 best games ever... EVER." 2008-04-10 19:07:18Z

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This game page was created 8/3/98 12:00:00 AM and last updated 11/3/99 9:35:15 AM