Nintendo Power

A few months back I had to pass on a pretty rare NOS Playchoice 10 kit for the Nintendo ‘Red Tent’ style Vs Dualsystem table units. Just recently what I’m pretty sure is the same kit resurfaced, without the common but expensive motherboard. Sniping that auction allowed me to acquire some very rare parts for the very reasonable sum of ~$72.

That grab prompted me to drag one of my storage bins out from the depths of the garage and re-test something I’d set aside for quite a while. It’s a complete single-monitor Playchoice 10 kit for a cabaret cabinet that I acquired something like a decade ago when Arctic Music & Vending in Anchorage closed and had its assets auctioned off.

I’d given it a try fairly recently, but thought it was a dud since I didn’t get any video. This time around I took a closer look at the monitor I was using to test it and realized one of the cables between boards on the chassis was disconnected. I reconnected it and the game came right up. Miiiiiight have felt a little dumb after that discovery.

Went through and tested the cartridges I have, and found them all in fine shape. I came to figure out I have an older production motherboard, which means the Reset button on the control panel doesn’t function with the board set to free play mode. A little research revealed that you can hold the Channel Select and Enter buttons together for a few seconds and it’ll pop you back to the channel menu like the Reset button is supposed to. Not pictured on the menu are two more copies of Punch Out, and The Goonies.

I also took the opportunity to test the Vs system board that came in my Red Tent, since the Playchoice 10 harness is close enough to the Vs one to at least boot a board on. Super Mario Bros came right up and played fine, but I wasn’t quite sure how to get to the other ‘side’ of the board with Dr. Mario.

Unfortunately testing the monitors in the Red Tent didn’t go as well. One of them is blowing a fuse at F701 on power up, and the other seems to be working except for the light show that comes out of the flyback cage when you turn it on and the flyback transformer starts arcing. So, some repairs needed there.

Also still need to dig into the R-Type upright cabinet I’ve got. It’s been sitting in a corner since I got it, supposedly it plays but I haven’t had the time to drag it out and see what’s going on with it.

Project updates part 1

Got a bit caught up with other aspects of life so I haven’t been doing much with the blog lately. Got a lot done with the games in the last few months though!

Cleaned a terrifying amount of goop out of the coin door to the Defender cabinet and made that sucker shine again. It also has a monitor bezel now, and by pure happenstance the inner monitor surround too. Snagged the bezel for ten bucks on eBay, and found out after a little bit of comparison with Internet pics that I got three of the Williams style monitor surrounds in a pile of them I picked up a while back.

Got reaaaaally lucky and picked up this lovely thing for $150. Spent a night retrieving it from Hood River, all in all I’d still consider it a killer deal. It comes complete and loaded with Dr. Mario and Super Mario Brothers ROM sets.

While it was supposed to be working as of my purchase, I never got to test it in as found condition. While loading it onto a dolly to bring it in I dropped it on its side. Seems to have caused some damage to the monitors, hopefully that’s the extent of it. Was super bummed about that. Definitely don’t try to move one of these things solo, the size is deceptive… Two monitors and a steel cabinet mean it’ll get away from you in a hurry if you’re trying to muscle it around.