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Vectrex
"So if you're into video games, forget the TV! Get into Vectrex!"
The Vectrex was a video game console developed by Western Technologies (later Smith Engineering) in November 1982, and distributed by General Consumer Electric (later purchased by Milton Bradley). This was notable for being the first home console to use vector-based graphics instead of pixels, allowing for a more three-dimensional feel. You didn't need to hook it up to a TV due to its integrated monitor. Accessories included a light pen and 3-D imager.

However, the system was never able to reach its full potential due to the Video Game Crash of 1983, and was discontinued in 1984. Its single-color display also didn't help, requiring gamers to attach plastic overlays to produce some color and other decorations. Early units also produced a buzzing sound through the speaker due to the way it was wired near the screen, which was fixed near the end of its life.

Specifications:

Processors
  • CPU: Motorola 68A09 clocked at 1.5 MHz.

Memory
  • RAM: 1 KB (two 4-bit 2114 chips).
  • ROM: 8 KB (one 8-bit 2363 chip).
  • Cartridge ROM: 32KB.

Display
  • 911-inch 240RB40 CRT monochrome monitor manufactured by Samsung.

Sound
  • General Instrument AY-3-8910 sound chip (same as other home computers such as the Atari ST) produced through a 3-inch electrodynamic paper cone speaker.

Games:

  • Animaction (required the Vectrex Light Pen)
  • Armor Attack
  • Art Master (required the Vectrex Light Pen)
  • Bedlam
  • Berzerk (a sequel was planned, but never released)
  • Blitz! Action Football
  • Clean Sweep
    • Clean Sweep, sponsored by Mr. Boston (alternate copy with a Mr. Boston sticker on the box, the Mr. Boston name/logo/copyright info on the overlay, and the game itself having new text and the character is a top hat instead of a vacuum)
  • Cosmic Chasm
  • Crazy Coaster (required the Vectrex 3-D Imager)
  • Fortress of Narzod
  • Heads-Up Action Soccer
  • Hyperchase
  • Melody Master (required the Vectrex Light Pen; a sequel was planned, but never released)
  • Minestorm (built into the system, and loaded if the console was turned on without a cartridge)
    • Minestorm/II (a fixed version only available by mail, and then only if you reported the fact the original crashed at Level 13 to the company)
    • 3-D Minestorm (required the Vectrex 3-D Imager, and was packaged with it)
  • Narrow Escape (required the Vectrex 3-D Imager)
  • Polar Rescue
  • Pole Position (a 3-D version was planned, but never released)
  • Rip Off
  • Scramble
  • Solar Quest
  • Space Wars
  • Spike
  • Spinball
  • Star Castle
  • Starhawk
  • Star Trek: The Motion Picture
  • Web Wars

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