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Solder Clause is Coming to Town

Good news! The Tempest is broken again.

Ahhh since the school term is over so for the next three weeks I am committing myself to finishing up the endless (and growing) arcade projects I have in the workshop. So lets take a look at what things I might get or not get done in the next three weeks before the next term of school starts.

I picked up this interesting Mat Mania Challenge game that also has the original Mat Mania board set inside. I have no idea what I am going to do with it as of yet, but it's an interesting conversion for sure. Originally it was a game called Red Alert distributed by a company called GDI, and originally made by Irem of Japan. Irem also made the classic games Moon Patrol for Williams, and R-Type for Nintendo. I have no real concrete plans for the game right now, but it was just too good of a deal to pass up. The cabinet is in nice shape and as far as wrestling games go it is pretty fun with lots of custom moves.

Inside you can see both board sets (there is no switcher, you just have to move the harness from one board to the other one), a very clean WG4600 monitor, and the slightest red overspray from the original paint. It uses it's own custom wiring harness, unfortunately I guess this was a bit early for the JAMMA standard wiring harness that would allow many other games to be plugged into it. GDI made only one other game a Centipede inspired (close copy of) game called Slither that bankrupted the company. Slither has somewhat of a cult following now and is a very rare game to find out in the wild.

I've never understood the Lava Guy on the side art... what is he doing?

The Defender is almost ready to go. This has to be the nicest original Defender I have seen in a very long time. We are in the process of cleaning up the front kick plate area a bit as you can see. It had some slight damage probably to people playing the game and kicking it. It's been sanded and filled with some wood putty, and eventually will be painted on the front bottom bit. I'll do some slight touch up on the sides as well, although it doesn't need very much. The photos don't do this game justice, it is just spectacular.

I've rebuilt the main boards, monitor, sound board, and power supply to make them more reliable. It also has all new buttons, a new burn free control panel, and a totally restored joystick. This is going to be an amazing instance of the Defender once it is all done. I wasn't expecting to hang onto this game, but I don't think people are going to want to pay the amount I think I should charge to sell it. How many machines with all matching numbers are in this kind of shape anymore I wonder. Not many I bet, Defender was made in large numbers however so who knows. Either way I won't be a huge rush to sell it if I do.

The Mortal Kombat clean up / semi restoration is almost finished. We are fixing the front of the game due to the typical damage from patrons these kinds of games get. Monitor, and sound board are now factory correct and totally rebuilt. The control panel which, I guess sees the most abuse of these games has been sanded down and repainted. We then applied new art for the front and the sides of the control panel from This Old Game, and all new buttons and joysticks from HAPP controls. The control panel is still original, and it is in A- shape so why change it. So this one much like the Defender, just needs a few finishing touches to be complete. FINISH HER!

Ready to horrify a new generation of parents.

The corner of despair

On the right you see a gaggle of projects on top of the Taito cocktail game which will probably be restored back to a Jungle King at some point. There is also a Sanyo EZ monitor with weak green output, and an Asteroids vector monitor that is in line to be rebuilt. Also of note I broke a monitor tube a few weeks ago by accidentally kicking it while I wasn't paying attention. Make sure you keep those monitors off the ground and safe folks.

Otherwise there is the Simpsons that I still haven't really gotten to. It is working fine except for some reason Lisa won't move left or attack. But she is a pacifist so maybe that is ok. I recently rebuilt the sound portion of the CPU and it sounds amazing, before it wasn't fully working properly in stereo. It also still has occasional sprite issues so I might end up having to send the board off for repair to someone with more knowledge in Konami board repair than I do. These things are pretty tricky to work on and a little bit beyond my repair knowledge.

One of my relatives (not sure which one, since there was no card inside) sent me this boss two sided light up arcade metal sign. I might modify it so the lights "chase", but maybe that would be too much I don't know. As mentioned in the first photo our Tempest WG 6100 monitor is yet again on the fritz. It blew up two resistors like Luke Skywalker blew up the Death Star. I love Tempest but ours seems to have the reliability of a 1970's British car. Hopefully this recent (and seemly unending) round of repairs will give us at least a few months of trouble free service. Honestly there isn't much else to repair or replace on the thing at this point.

There's your problem....

So hopefully the Defender, and Mortal Kombat will be ready to go in the next few weeks. Luckily all the hard stuff and technical nitty gritty on those games is done and looking rock solid. I'm fairly confident the Tempest woes will also be resolved by the time I return to school. After that I might start stripping the Simpsons side are and prepping it for a full paint in the Spring (it is just too cold now to paint a whole cabinet), and replace the joysticks with the proper Wico brand joysticks. I will attempt to not pick up any other projects in the mean time, but I make no promises either. Have a great holiday ya all.

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