Welcome to M.A.R.S. (Mark's Arcade Retro Site). This is my web page dedicated to those who love coin-op video arcade games. There's lots of information and hopefully some entertaining stuff, too.
2018 has been a pretty slow year for arcade collecting.
I was able to figure out how to convert a regular Arkanoid pcb into a Tournament Arkanoid pcb, and was able to add that game to my multigame by updating the Arduino code that drives my 6 slot JAMMA switcher. Now I can cycle through all three games.
One of the frustrations with Sega G-80 EPROM boards is how to figure out what is wrong with them when they fail. If the game won't even boot or get far enough in the diagnostics to show what is wrong, how you can fix it? Swapping around 24 EPROMs and testing their sockets just won't cut it. So I hooked up an Arduino Mega to an 86 pin edge connector and wrote an EPROM board validation program that would read each EPROM location, cross-checking it with the checksum for each EPROM. This way I was able to determine which EPROMs were bad. Not only that, but using this approach, I was able to fix an EPROM board where one of the addressing chips had failed. By looking at the binary output, I could figure out which address line was stuck. Replacing the addressing chip fixed the board. Troubleshooting this the old fashioned way would have been a nightmare. With this new tool, I was able to go through and repair and repopulate my stack of EPROM boards in short order.
Another project I did this year fulfilled a curiousity of mime. Whenever I played Robotron, I tried to see how quickly I could finish the first level. I decided to automate the tracking process and created the Robotron Speed Tracker! You can see it in action here! In case you haven't noticed the trend, I've been messing with Arduinos a bit.
While I haven't picked up or restored any games this year (as of now), I did get on the sign-up list for the upcoming Kingpin pinball release. Looking forward to it!
Well, another year has come to an end.
Completed The Getaway pinball restoration. Bought new decals for the cabinet, and they just *barely* fit. Did the polyacrylic clear and wet method. No issues, thankfully. Game came out great in the end.
And with that, I have completed my 100th arcade game restoration!
Junkyard had to go to make space for it, unfortunately. Don't have enough room to keep them all.
I picked up a Zeke's Peak that I've been looking for since I played one at California Extreme and decided I needed to pick one up when I got the chance.
Finishing up two more Eliminator 4-player cabinets. A lot of work goes into making these, so I try to build them in pairs.
I've got a few more project ideas up my sleeve; let's see I ever get to them *looks at stack of Universal Sound Boards mocking him*.
My troubleshooting page contains links to repair FAQs, sites, tips, and people who can help you to fix your favorite arcade game or PCB.
Need help remembering an arcade game from your past? You'll most likely find it here. Ignore all the rarity information, however.The Video Arcade Preservation Society (VAPS)
A collection site showing game owner collections all over the world.The Sega Vector Game Page
More selfless promotion of yours truly.The Basement arcade
A great site by a different Mark...he's got the most comprehensive list of video arcade game links I've seen, so instead of replicating them here, I'll just point to his page and he can deal with the maintenance :-)Rick's Game Repair
The man, the myth, the Legend. Now working full time in the restoration business, Rick has done a lot of work for Williams in the past and knows his stuff. Has the BEST quality machines available for purchase and does service as well.
M.A.R.S. is dedicated to providing a quality web page for coin-op video arcade information. This web page is "comment operated", meaning the more comments you send me, the more it changes. Contact with compliments or criticism, comments or corrections, and what you'd like to see (or not see) on M.A.R.S.
Listen to what Arnold says about M.A.R.S.