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RCA Studio II GOLD MINE! An interview with the Studio 2 Production Manager!

RCA Studio II Interview

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#401 y-bot OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Aug 14, 2013 11:01 PM

Pretty sure every bit of info about Bingo is from Tempest's story. I have no doubt other people saw it but every mention of it ever points to this story. I think it was some sort of sample myself.

#402 ranger_lennier OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 15, 2013 1:36 AM

It was good hearing the full story from Tempest. I also would have thought someone would take a picture of it. Of course, Philly Classic 3 was in 2002, before everyone carried a camera in their pocket at all times. :) I looked for some convention photos, and this is the only good set I found:

https://atariage.com...2002/index.html

I didn't see any Studio II stuff in the photos. I suppose the Bingo owner could be in some of them, but I'd be impressed if anyone could still recognize him after 11 years.

If anyone else took photos there, could you please check if you have any Studio II photos?

#403 TLD1985 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 15, 2013 1:57 AM

I think the main debate when it comes to the US-Bingo... is: Was it a prototype/sample... or an actual retail copy?



What seems to have been the plan with the "Studio III" was to make games that were backwards compatible.

Both "Biorythm" and "TV School House II" have colour information programmed in the carts. Even tho anyone with a Studio II at the time and even now would not be able to see any colour or even realise it's meant to be in colour.


We know from this topic via a conversation Blazing Lazers had with a Studio II programmer.. that he (the programmer) made "Bingo".

The "Studio III" never came out and it is assumed that they just sold the license abroad and all the games for it abroad. This of course included "Bingo".


What interests me is this question: Was "Star Wars", "Concentration Match" and "Pinball" also programmed by RCA? I personally find it unlikely that these games were made abroad. I think that these were games that had also been developed for the "Studio III" but were never released... unless someone out there has some mystery Prototype.

Edited by TLD1985, Thu Aug 15, 2013 2:46 AM.


#404 ranger_lennier OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 15, 2013 2:29 AM

I don't know about those games. But it does seem likely to me that Sumo Wrestling for the Visicom was made in Japan, since there's no significant fan base for the sport in the other regions.

#405 TLD1985 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 15, 2013 2:43 AM

I think the Visicom was quite different in that sense.. Toshiba obtained the licesed and did their own thing with it.


The euro-aus clones just used what they were given and hoped for the best.

#406 Tempest OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 15, 2013 8:36 AM

Ok after looking at those pictures I think I got the show wrong. Bingo was at Philly Classic 2 not 3. The convention hall was TINY and cramped, not to mention AtariAge wasn't there. It was the show where DP showed off the Pit Fighter demo for the 7800 for the first time. I remember not getting a shirt at that show and regretting it since it was something to do with the arcade game Turtles. I have (had anyway, it died long ago) that PC 3 shirt.

#407 stupus OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 15, 2013 4:46 PM

Found 2 places with some pics from the phillyclassic 2:

http://www.parrygame...illyClassic.php

http://www.handheldm...illy/index.html

I didn't see anything related to the rca s2 from looking quick...

tempest, maybe the pics will jog your memory if this is the right show, or maybe you will spot something or recognize the guy that had the stuff. ;)

#408 TLD1985 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 15, 2013 6:02 PM

I find it also strange that he hasn't made himself known in all these years..

I suppose there is a chance that something happened to him and his Bingo cart is now lost.


The only other missing/rare carts for dumping/preserving are the Demonstration cart (for stores) and the Diagnostics cart.... probably only 1-3 of those left. I know Blazing lazers found someone who owned one.. but they lost their collection due to a Hurricane.

Edited by TLD1985, Thu Aug 15, 2013 6:03 PM.


#409 Tempest OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 15, 2013 6:02 PM

Ok THAT'S the correct show. In fact I think the dork in this picture is me (http://www.parrygame...c/mainRoom1.jpg). Man I was a fat nerd back then. Oh wait, I still am...

I don't see the Studio II unfortunately, but it was there.

#410 stupus OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 15, 2013 6:52 PM

haha, I though you were going to say the dork in this picture is the guy :rolling: haha oh well, at least we narrowed the show down it seems. Maybe this will help anyone elses memory that was at the show.

Tempest you had one of the rare s2 carts, right? You sold it a few months back...I asked about buying it, but you had already sold it off privately...cant remember if it was the tester or demo or diagnostic....

I also just finally dug up a bunch of screenshots my friend gave me a while back from his mustang unit. They seem to look a bit different than the conic shots carllson did. I'll post them shorlty.

#411 ranger_lennier OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 15, 2013 7:37 PM

I found the motherload of Philly Classic 2 photos on the Philly Classic website. Of course, the website isn't actually up anymore, but most of the pictures are on the Internet Archive Wayback Machine.

http://web.archive.o...ssic.com/pc2k1/

I looked through a bunch of pictures and found exactly two with a Studio II in them. The only game I can specifically make out is TV School House I. I wish people had 10 megapixel cameras back in 2001. One of the pictures may show the person who brought the system.

http://web.archive.o...lP/DSCF0035.JPG

http://web.archive.o...nD/philly36.jpg

Here are some other sites with photos from the show (but I didn't see a Studio II in them).

http://cafeman.www9....phillyexpo2001/

http://www.tomheroes... That Grew Huge!

#412 TLD1985 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 15, 2013 7:44 PM

Well there is some kind of white box amongst the games... perhaps a demo/diagnostic box?

#413 stupus OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 15, 2013 7:48 PM

cool you found more pics ranger lennier, I have a feeling thats probably not the dealer tempest was talking about, sounded like that guy had a whole dealer display of rca stuff. Maybe tempest will see something in this new group of pics though :)



Here are the pics my friend from Germany took on his mustang for me some time ago:
ss1.jpg ss2.jpg ss3.jpg ss4.jpg ss5.jpg ss6.jpg ss7.jpg ss8.jpg

#414 ranger_lennier OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 15, 2013 7:58 PM

Well there is some kind of white box amongst the games... perhaps a demo/diagnostic box?


I can't read the title, but that one looks to me like it matches the Biorhythm box.

#415 Tempest OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 15, 2013 8:03 PM

That's Al Backiel, he was just selling his stuff at that show (I got my Compumate off him back before they were common as dirt). This guy had a whole display going. I *think* he was a few tables down to the left and across the aisle (my table was to the right of Al there, but you can't see me in the picture. I was sharing a table with Curt Vendel).

The cart I sold was a programming cart. It was a homebrew from the newsletter group, not an official cart.

#416 slydc OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 15, 2013 8:14 PM

I looked through a bunch of pictures and found exactly two with a Studio II in them. The only game I can specifically make out is TV School House I. I wish people had 10 megapixel cameras back in 2001. One of the pictures may show the person who brought the system.

http://web.archive.o...lP/DSCF0035.JPG

http://web.archive.o...nD/philly36.jpg



Well...i'll be damned...If Matt (aka Tempest) can confirm that the guy in the "DSCF0035.JPG" is the guy who had the Bingo game than his name is Al Backiel (of Digital Press).
He's the one who did the section of the RCA Studio II in the Digital Press guides, and which, i helped Al with the foreign/clones stuffs for the guide.

Al sold me an Atari Stunt Cycle boxed at the Philly 2001 (which you can see me also in the same picture, the guy with the grey shirt with US flag motifs) which he didn't
had the manual with it. 2-3 hours later, his wife gave me the manual since Al went to his house to gave me the manual. Such a nce guy! :)

I don't remember seeing the Bingo game BUT...i do remember discussing with Al about the RCA Studio II stuffs and he told me he was keeping everything since
he was doing the DP guide section. Last time i heard about Al, he did a review about Ms.Space Fury which i contributed with Daniel Bienvenu (Newcoleco)
and Joe Santulli (the head huncho of DP).

Now who has the e-mail adress of Al ?

--- Sly DC ---

#417 TLD1985 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 15, 2013 8:20 PM

I can't read the title, but that one looks to me like it matches the Biorhythm box.


Had a look and appears you maybe right...

#418 ranger_lennier OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 15, 2013 8:28 PM

Hmmm, I never did see a picture with a Studio II set up to play. It's a small enough venue that you'd think the table would almost have to be in some of the photos, though. But you probably couldn't make it out easily unless it was a close-up shot.

SlyDC--do you still have your Philly Classic 2 photos? The Philly Classic site lists 33 photos from you, but some of them were never archived.

#419 slydc OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 15, 2013 8:58 PM

Hmmm, I never did see a picture with a Studio II set up to play. It's a small enough venue that you'd think the table would almost have to be in some of the photos, though. But you probably couldn't make it out easily unless it was a close-up shot.

SlyDC--do you still have your Philly Classic 2 photos? The Philly Classic site lists 33 photos from you, but some of them were never archived.


Hi ranger_lennier,

Yes, i still have all 33 pictures on my hard drive (and backups) with also all three web pages with small picture descriptions.
But i don't have any picture(s) where we can see a RCA Studio II displayed and ready to play. I remember that only Al had
Studio II stuffs and the Philly was intended in a very small room at the Sheraton Suites hotel near the airport (was my 1st
Philly i attended with some CCJVQ fellows). The room was so small that on Saturday, it was so jammed-packed that i
mostly spent time near the bar just beside the room.

What i remember was that i brought from Al an Atari Stunt Cycle SC-450 (complete), a Tron joystick for the Atari 2600
some a vendor and a complete Spider-Man for the Sega 32X for $10 from a guy which he's holding a DP guide beside
his girlfriend. That guy was cursing after he checked the value for the 32X Spider-man in the guide...lol!

I also remember meeting Al and his wife, John Dondzilla also with his wife, Roloff De Jeu, Sean Kelly, Ianoid and Matt.
I did met Joe Santulli and John Hardie in a previous NAVA meeting (in Feb.1999).

Al would be the guy to ask about Bingo. He listed it in the RED DP Guide as a "RARE 9" and $50 value (that's back in 2002).
Here's the complete description in the guide:

Bingo - RCA - $50/R9
TV Casino Series. Includes 20 bingo cards & 150 marker chips.
Comes in a larger box than the normal miniscule RCA game boxes.
#18V601

So there you have it, the comlete list of Bingo and also the model number. Knowing Al, he wouldn't put all this
if he personnaly didn't had it or seen it with his own eyes.

--- Sly DC ---

Edited by slydc, Thu Aug 15, 2013 9:10 PM.


#420 carlsson ONLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 16, 2013 1:29 AM

Interesting colours on the Mustang, much brighter than the ones on my M1200. Of course it can be a matter of TV settings but I doubt he would crank up brightness and colour saturation that much from default settings to take the pictures. In particular the cyan that actually is cyan, not light blue as on my console. The light green/yellow also looks closer to true light yellow on those pictures.

#421 TLD1985 OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 16, 2013 2:11 AM

A Sheen M1200 and 1 game (Fun with numbers) is up for auction on ebay Australia.

It's a bit dubious to what he lists as "factory sealed" tho..
Also the guy is only posting to Australia... so if you have any contacts there you may want to try and grab it...

http://rover.ebay.co...=item2581827cd8

#422 Tempest OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 16, 2013 7:14 AM

Well...i'll be damned...If Matt (aka Tempest) can confirm that the guy in the "DSCF0035.JPG" is the guy who had the Bingo game than his name is Al Backiel (of Digital Press).
He's the one who did the section of the RCA Studio II in the Digital Press guides, and which, i helped Al with the foreign/clones stuffs for the guide.

No no no. I was saying that's NOT the the guy, that was just Al selling some Studio II stuff at the show. I have no idea who the guy with the Bingo cart was, I didn't know him personally.

Racking my brain, I seem to recall that the guy either wasn't there for the whole show or took his stuff down early on Sunday. I also don't remember if he had the display at the show, or was just telling me about it. He might have just had his Studio II stuff on the table with no display setup. I'm trying to remember what the display looked like and I'm kind of coming up with a blank (I want to say it was just a cardboard standee with some Studio II info on it). Like I said, it was a looong time ago.

For what it's worth, I do remember him saying that he was from the area and the store he found the display in was in Pennsylvania. Surely someone else must remember all of this, I can't be the only one.

#423 stupus OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 16, 2013 7:22 AM

It would seem though that since the Al guy was at the show and probably so close to the booth with the bingo cart, and the fact he has great interest in the rca s2 that maybe he would also have some memory or knowledge of seeing the bingo/display as well. Possibly even his own pics, or maybe know who the guy was even...if anybody had any way to contact him for info.

#424 TLD1985 OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 16, 2013 2:01 PM

Here are the Scans of the Apollo 80 games/manuals/box in my possession.

I'm sure someone with some photoshop magic will be able to restore the game box... both boxes I have are in a poor state of health.

The only thing not scanned is the green plastic tray... I'll take a photo of that soon.

Any questions about them I will be happy to answer...


enjoy!

http://www.thelimeyd...ollo80scans.zip

Edited by TLD1985, Fri Aug 16, 2013 2:01 PM.


#425 Blazing Lazers OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Aug 17, 2013 11:31 PM

Hey all, I've been following the thread for the past day or so, but haven't been able to post till now. Ranger, you had exactly my idea of looking through the Internet Archive for pics from PC2K1- and the exact same 2 pictures you posted are also the exact same two I also saw as being the only ones with anything related to the Studio II. I confirm this was done independently from your efforts, as I was about to post links to those same two images when I noticed your post.

Also from the Archive, this page:

http://web.archive.o...001/page10.html

has the following sections with names of those who were there- might any of the following be contactable?:

"It was crowded and a bit warm at times in the main room! I'm not sure who all got into this picture (which I digitally brightened so you could see beyond a meter), but I'll use this page to list some folks who I didn't get a picture of: David Newman, Chuck Whitby, Mark Pallante, Rik Morgan, Joey Holman, Mike Roberts, Mike Dougherty, Ryan Morrison, Mike Gedeon, Mike Chassin, Eli Tomlinson, Jason Hazelwood, Mike Hill, Fred Wagaman, Dan McIntyre, and Curt Vendel."


I can also confirm per the earlier mention that it was Andy Modla himself who confirmed to me that Bingo was among the games he programmed for the Studio II- and that he was not the only programmer of the games. Does anyone know who else programmed games for the Studio II back in the day? I've established some contact with Andy, will try to interview him...

I've also found another contact from the Swannanoa, NC facility where everything(?) was manufactured- there might be another interview coming soon- are there any questions that you might want me to ask please send them to me.

As for trying to find Al Backiel- is he still active in the community? I think I have his contact info- and will try to reach out to him to see if anything more concrete can be nailed down about Bingo if that would be possible...




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