Two very detailed stories related to arcades have popped up on the interwebs so instead of leaving them for the weekend post, let’s take a look at both here.
Atari Gotcha Color Edition Restored
Being a student of arcade history, I’ve long been interested in Atari’s Gotcha. Gotcha was important for a few reasons, being the first maze video game as well as the first video title to experience a little controversy due to the original “boob” controllers(seen in the flyer above). One of the most interesting facts about it was the existence of a color version of the game. While this was known, finding a functional color Gotcha was almost mythical due to rarity. It is also fascinating since a vast majority of games released in the 70s cheated by using color overlays or they just embraced being B&W to begin with.
Fortunately a gentleman with a knack for repairing old arcade hardware was also curious about Gotcha Color and he set about finding one and bringing it back to working order. Ed Fries has a long dissertation on his quest to verify that this edition of the game existed and to see what it looked like. You can check out the full details here. For those that can’t wait, here’s evidence of the game in action:
Arcade Raid Of A Lifetime – Saving Games From A Boat
From another corner of the internet this story has been getting a lot of attention and shares. When you hear the word “raid” used in arcade collecting circles, it is referring to collectors coming across a batch of forgotten or abandoned games and working to pick them up. Most often this occurs in warehouses – personally my first two games were found in a warehouse that was being converted to something else – but sometimes groups of games are found elsewhere. One place you might not expect to find games in reasonable condition – a rusty drydocked boat.
Such was the case with this amazing arcade raid in North Wales, UK and documented in great detail over at The Arcade Blogger by Tony Temple. There the tale is told of the Duke of Lancaster and how it shifted from being a passenger ferry to a car ferry and finally, a dry-docked leisure hotel. The latter project didn’t last very long and the ship has sat around wasting away over the decades with a nice collection of arcade games found inside – including some rarities (the Atari Subs and the two Vectorbeam games: Starhawk & TailGunner were certainly surprises). After a long battle with the owners, the group of collectors finally managed to get the go ahead to salvage the games. It really is a great story and it is good to see that the games were saved as opposed to junked.