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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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#601 stupus OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Aug 5, 2015 12:48 PM

Thanks for scanning, my manual is the same too. With the apollo wording on the front and all victory 3 wording on the inside. Sadly mine looks equally poor to yours...probably worse ;)

#602 Blazing Lazers OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Aug 5, 2015 4:40 PM

Excellent work!!! :) Didn't realize that the Blackjack game was built-in to the unit. Neat that they were ale to fit it in the system!



#603 TLD1985 OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Aug 5, 2015 6:17 PM

Excellent work!!! :) Didn't realize that the Blackjack game was built-in to the unit. Neat that they were ale to fit it in the system!

 

Yes Blackjack is in all the clone systems, however if I remember correctly it's a slightly different version (improved version, I assume done by RCA) as you can bet a higher number. (Can compared them in an emulator to check).



#604 Blazing Lazers OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Aug 5, 2015 11:28 PM

 
Yes Blackjack is in all the clone systems, however if I remember correctly it's a slightly different version (improved version, I assume done by RCA) as you can bet a higher number. (Can compared them in an emulator to check).


Andy Modla did mention he also programmed a color version of Blackjack. I've got get that interview...

#605 carlsson ONLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 6, 2015 1:21 AM

Yes, the built-in Blackjack on my Conic M1200 displays in different colours and allows you to bet up to 99 dollars (?) per round, while the cartridge version Blackjack (of which I've got two copies, IIRC identical except for the writing on the cover) is monochrome and only takes bets up to 9 dollars per round. It means you can make far bigger scores on the built-in version, but also lose all your money faster.



#606 TLD1985 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 6, 2015 11:26 AM

Does anyone actually know much about the company "Academy"? As scanning in the manuals for the games I have and Biorhythm has Conic's name in a disclaimer.  It seems that the Apollo 80 is the laziest/cheapest of all the clones I have seen. It looks like they just got all the resources given to them by Conic and then just printed them without changing anything themselves.

 

None of the game manuals mention "Apollo 80", they most say "Victory - 3". All the game manuals are on thin bits of "toilet paper".

 

Apollo 80:

apollo.jpg

 

MPT-02 Victory:

victory.jpg
 

It is interesting that the example dates on the Academy manual differs from the ones on the MPT-02 Soundic Victory manual.  Maybe the Apollo manual is the first/prototype revision (1977) and the Soundic Victory was the final revision (1978)

 

Apollo 80:

apollodate.jpg

 

MPT-02 Victory:

victorydate.jpg


Edited by TLD1985, Thu Aug 6, 2015 12:01 PM.


#607 Blazing Lazers OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 6, 2015 2:31 PM

Does anyone actually know much about the company "Academy"? As scanning in the manuals for the games I have and Biorhythm has Conic's name in a disclaimer.  It seems that the Apollo 80 is the laziest/cheapest of all the clones I have seen. It looks like they just got all the resources given to them by Conic and then just printed them without changing anything themselves.
 
None of the game manuals mention "Apollo 80", they most say "Victory - 3". All the game manuals are on thin bits of "toilet paper".
 
Apollo 80:
apollo.jpg
 
MPT-02 Victory:
victory.jpg
 
It is interesting that the example dates on the Academy manual differs from the ones on the MPT-02 Soundic Victory manual.  Maybe the Apollo manual is the first/prototype revision (1977) and the Soundic Victory was the final revision (1978)
 
Apollo 80:
apollodate.jpg
 
MPT-02 Victory:
victorydate.jpg


Those manuals look remarkably similar to the Sheen ones I've seen... Hey, by any chance do you have a Bingo manual that hasn't been scanned yet? I'm curious as to off any mention extra playing tokens, cards, etc. The foreign versions of the Schoolhouse games too, come to think of it...

#608 TLD1985 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 6, 2015 3:05 PM

Those manuals look remarkably similar to the Sheen ones I've seen... Hey, by any chance do you have a Bingo manual that hasn't been scanned yet? I'm curious as to off any mention extra playing tokens, cards, etc. The foreign versions of the Schoolhouse games too, come to think of it...

 

I have never seen any School House I: Computer Quiz for any clone system... it is possible none were made even tho they are listed as releases... might be 1 or 2 "prototypes made".

 

If any were released... I am going to guess that no question booklets were made and they simply said you had to make your own questions..

 

I've only seen the MPT-02 Victory scan of the Bingo cart. I do not have Bingo for the Academy Apollo, I know one other member on here has a Sheen version of Bingo. I think he would have mentioned if it it came with anything tho.

 

Tennis/Squash is the only other game that's listed for release on clone systems but I have never seen a copy for any clone system.

 

This is what I have scanned so far:

 

apollo80.png

 

One person on here has #4.. so hopefully they can get me scans at some point.  Others are MIA



#609 Blazing Lazers OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 6, 2015 9:07 PM

 

I have never seen any School House I: Computer Quiz for any clone system... it is possible none were made even tho they are listed as releases... might be 1 or 2 "prototypes made".

 

If any were released... I am going to guess that no question booklets were made and they simply said you had to make your own questions..

 

I've only seen the MPT-02 Victory scan of the Bingo cart. I do not have Bingo for the Academy Apollo, I know one other member on here has a Sheen version of Bingo. I think he would have mentioned if it it came with anything tho.

 

Tennis/Squash is the only other game that's listed for release on clone systems but I have never seen a copy for any clone system.

 

This is what I have scanned so far:

 

apollo80.png

 

One person on here has #4.. so hopefully they can get me scans at some point.  Others are MIA

 

Great info- at least we have most of those. What (or who) is the initial source of information for these checklists- the person who originally claimed that certain titles were released for the various clone systems? I wonder in part because one of my means of tracking down the Tester I and Demonstration Cartridges has been to go back through older websites and the Internet Archives and contact various folks listed on older checklists from the 90's. At some point somebody somewhere had to have had these for them to be added to all of the lists.



#610 TLD1985 OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 7, 2015 2:14 AM

The manuals for the MPT-02s list the available games for it

 

and one of the Sheen systems list the available games on the box:

 

M1200-01 - School House 2 / Math Fun
M1200-02 - Biorhythm
M1200-03 - Baseball
M1200-04 - Fun with Numbers
M1200-05 - Star Wars
M1200-06 - Bingo
M1200-07 - Pinball
M1200-08 - Concentration / Match
M1200-09 - Tennis / Squash
M1200-10 - School Hose 1 /Computer Quiz
M1200-11 - Speedway Tag
M1200-12 - Space War Intercept

M1200-13 - Gun Fighter / Moonship Battle

 

 

Sadly the Apollo 80 has no such list anywhere.


Edited by TLD1985, Fri Aug 7, 2015 2:24 AM.


#611 Blazing Lazers OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 7, 2015 4:24 AM

The manuals for the MPT-02s list the available games for it

 

and one of the Sheen systems list the available games on the box:

 

M1200-01 - School House 2 / Math Fun
M1200-02 - Biorhythm
M1200-03 - Baseball
M1200-04 - Fun with Numbers
M1200-05 - Star Wars
M1200-06 - Bingo
M1200-07 - Pinball
M1200-08 - Concentration / Match
M1200-09 - Tennis / Squash
M1200-10 - School Hose 1 /Computer Quiz
M1200-11 - Speedway Tag
M1200-12 - Space War Intercept

M1200-13 - Gun Fighter / Moonship Battle

 

 

Sadly the Apollo 80 has no such list anywhere.

 

So the MPT-02 manuals and a Sheen system box are the origin of the information on the checklists for those two clones? Have all of those titles been confirmed as having been released, or even actually seen by any collectors? Hopefully we're not simply assuming they were all released...



#612 TLD1985 OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 7, 2015 4:36 AM

the only two games I not seen on any clone system are: "School House I: Computer Quiz" and "Tennis/Squash".  All the others have been released on one or more of the systems.



#613 TLD1985 OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Aug 22, 2015 8:00 AM

I got a replacement adapter for the system today and tried it on a TV and it works! So will get some rough video footage soon!.



#614 spaceman OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Nov 15, 2015 8:21 PM

Hi, just caught on this thread as I just acquired a "Victory" from a friend (who found another one in the box!). This thread is a great read, and full unknown facts. But I am left with a few questions.

 

Can the victory be AV modded? Would anyone have the plans to do this?

Is the multicart still in progress? Such a project would be compatible with my model as well as other clones right?

As you can imagine, I really need one (as many of you, I am sure). I only have the built-in game (Bowling) and I think I have never seen games here for sale (and postage just kill any overseas options. Having all the games (and extra homebrew stuff if possible) in 1 cart would be amazing.

 

Anyway, hope this thread keeps going and that this system will stay alive thanks to the retro community! The Retro Gamer magazine article was surely an eye opener!

Thanks



#615 Blazing Lazers OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Nov 16, 2015 3:14 AM

Hi, just caught on this thread as I just acquired a "Victory" from a friend (who found another one in the box!). This thread is a great read, and full unknown facts. But I am left with a few questions.
 
Can the victory be AV modded? Would anyone have the plans to do this?
Is the multicart still in progress? Such a project would be compatible with my model as well as other clones right?
As you can imagine, I really need one (as many of you, I am sure). I only have the built-in game (Bowling) and I think I have never seen games here for sale (and postage just kill any overseas options. Having all the games (and extra homebrew stuff if possible) in 1 cart would be amazing.
 
Anyway, hope this thread keeps going and that this system will stay alive thanks to the retro community! The Retro Gamer magazine article was surely an eye opener!
Thanks


The research continues :)

The plan is still to obtain the US Bingo, Demonstration, and Tester carts for dumping and preservation, along with the unique Japanese titles, for inclusion in the Multicart. So far, we're still looking. These are proving to be fiendishly elusive.

In addition, a visit to the various repositories that contain all of RCA's archives related to the Studio II, III, and beyond is still in the works. Many answers and surprises surely await there.

Interviews with additional personnel from RCA back in the day are also planned. Hopefully there will be more to follow along these lines...

#616 flip OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Nov 19, 2015 11:24 AM

Hi all,

 

Haven't posted in this thread before, but incredible work being done in this group!

 

I've decided to have a go at building a S2 multicart, based on the info on Paul Robson's page

 

Using a 2764 EPROM that holds two games, the protype is working. It also confirms that Paul's design is correct (as if that was in any doubt)!

RCA Studio II Multicart - protoype
RCA Studio II Multicart - prototype
 
Next step is to design a PCB to hold a 27c512 that has 16 game-roms, using a hex decoder switch to select the games.
 
flip


#617 Blazing Lazers OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Nov 21, 2015 9:40 AM

 

Hi all,

 

Haven't posted in this thread before, but incredible work being done in this group!

 

I've decided to have a go at building a S2 multicart, based on the info on Paul Robson's page

 

Using a 2764 EPROM that holds two games, the protype is working. It also confirms that Paul's design is correct (as if that was in any doubt)!

 
 
 
Next step is to design a PCB to hold a 27c512 that has 16 game-roms, using a hex decoder switch to select the games.
 
flip

 

Awesomeness! :) Put me down for a copy whenever they're available. Would there be a way for more than 16 titles to be played via this method?



#618 flip OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Nov 21, 2015 9:58 AM

 

Awesomeness! :) Put me down for a copy whenever they're available. Would there be a way for more than 16 titles to be played via this method?

 

The initial version is designed for 16 titles - for simplicity, it uses a rotary hex switch with 16 positions (0->F) to select the game you want to play. I might try and expand that in a second version, but I'd like to get this one up and running first...

 

PCBs are ordered. I'll post an update when I get them...

 

flip



#619 BassGuitari OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Nov 21, 2015 10:13 PM

 

Awesomeness! :) Put me down for a copy whenever they're available.

This. :thumbsup:



#620 BigO OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Nov 21, 2015 10:17 PM

 

The initial version is designed for 16 titles - for simplicity, it uses a rotary hex switch with 16 positions (0->F) to select the game you want to play. I might try and expand that in a second version, but I'd like to get this one up and running first...

 

PCBs are ordered. I'll post an update when I get them...

 

flip

Two of those switches and you're at 256. That ought to cover it.

As cool as on screen menus are, there's something to be said for it remembering your setting. 

Might also be fun to see what happens if you change the switch in the middle of a game. :)



#621 stupus OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Nov 22, 2015 12:53 AM

I am definitely in for 1 when you get them in production! 

Nice work!

Yeah it would be nice if you could go more than 16 slots, because if all known programs get dumped there would be about 23 titles then....more if you added the few homebrew roms that were made...

:)



#622 stupus OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Nov 22, 2015 1:03 AM

spaceman, on 15 Nov 2015 - 8:21 PM, said:

Hi, just caught on this thread as I just acquired a "Victory" from a friend (who found another one in the box!). This thread is a great read, and full unknown facts. But I am left with a few questions.

 

Can the victory be AV modded? Would anyone have the plans to do this?

Is the multicart still in progress? Such a project would be compatible with my model as well as other clones right?

As you can imagine, I really need one (as many of you, I am sure). I only have the built-in game (Bowling) and I think I have never seen games here for sale (and postage just kill any overseas options. Having all the games (and extra homebrew stuff if possible) in 1 cart would be amazing.

 

Anyway, hope this thread keeps going and that this system will stay alive thanks to the retro community! The Retro Gamer magazine article was surely an eye opener!

Thanks

yeah the clones can be av modded, I think slydc modded his conic, I know he modded his visicom. Maybe try to contact him for how to do so.

I know the clone games don't fit in the rca s2 without taking the cart shell off.

I think the rca s2 carts fit in the clone models though....but cant remember for sure now offhand.

All the games are cart slot compatible except for the visicom...just the rca s2 cart shells are a bit different shape from all the other clone carts shells.


Edited by stupus, Sun Nov 22, 2015 1:03 AM.


#623 flip OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Nov 22, 2015 10:45 AM

I am definitely in for 1 when you get them in production! 

Nice work!

Yeah it would be nice if you could go more than 16 slots, because if all known programs get dumped there would be about 23 titles then....more if you added the few homebrew roms that were made...

:)

 

If I use an 8Mbit EPROM (27c801 or 27c080), I have 256 slots. Using 2 hex encoders, as BigO suggested, would enable those to be selected. Having so many slots could enable some sort of organisation: 0x00-0x1f (32 slots) would be RCA originals; 0x20-0x2F (16 slots) would be Paul Robson's games, etc. Does that make sense? I guess it would even hold the games for other, compatible systems as well...

 

Is there a definitive list of official & homebrew games somewhere that I can copy and paste from?

 

flip



#624 stupus OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Nov 22, 2015 11:49 AM

That would be great!

Here is a nice chart tld1985 made that lists all the programs for the compatible systems:

dumprca.png

23 programs total as bingo is listed twice.
Of course some still are not dumped.

I don't remember how many homebrew Roms Paul Robson made....maybe 3-4?
Someone else might remember and have a list.

:)

#625 flip OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Nov 22, 2015 12:45 PM

That would be great!

Here is a nice chart tld1985 made that lists all the programs for the compatible systems:

attachicon.gifdumprca.png

23 programs total as bingo is listed twice.
Of course some still are not dumped.

I don't remember how many homebrew Roms Paul Robson made....maybe 3-4?
Someone else might remember and have a list.

:)

 

Thanks - I've put the list + other roms I know of into a Google Sheet

 

The top row would be one of the hex encoders, the left column the other. As it stands, 47 slots would be filled (some with duplicates).  Using an 8Mbit EPROM, 209 slot remain empty, which is a lot. So a 4Mbit EPROM would be enough (leaving 81 slots free). 

 

One caveat: I've tried contacting Lee Romanow to ask his permission to include his ROMs, but haven't heard back. I'm not looking to make this a commercial product but his license is nevertheless restrictive (e.g. distribution is only allowed in ST2 format). Not sure he's on this forum or if anyone is in touch with him but if you are, I would be grateful if he could get in touch.

 

flip






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