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The Bally Alley Astrocast


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#1 Chris++ OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jun 23, 2016 3:03 AM

Curious about the Bally Professional Arcade / Astrocade?

 

Already into it?

 

The existing 479354849327646493749356764329065109321650932156 classic-game podcasts not enough for you?

 

Or perhaps you simply enjoy incomplete sentences.

 

Well, then, you've clicked on the right thread! I mean -- you know -- the right link to a thread.

 

(You see why I'm not in sales.)

 

Just listen to the damn ASTROCAST! You'll be glad you did! Probably.

 

http://ballyalleyastrocast.libsyn.com/

 

http://ballyalleyast....libsyn.com/rss



#2 Chris++ OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Jul 2, 2016 3:43 AM

Episode 2 has been uploaded. Yay! (we think).

 

 

 



#3 thevnaguy OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Jul 2, 2016 7:49 AM

YAYYYYY!!!!



#4 thevnaguy OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Jul 2, 2016 10:48 AM

Loving the show guys!  I cant wait until you get to the Incredible Wizard and Space Fortress!   At Game on Expo in Mesa AZ last year I showed people in the retro lounge that was set up my Space Fortress skills :P  there is a video on the Bally Astrocast facebook page showing it that someone taped me playing :)


Edited by thevnaguy, Sat Jul 2, 2016 10:48 AM.


#5 Chris++ OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Jul 3, 2016 1:27 AM

Loving the show guys!  I cant wait until you get to the Incredible Wizard and Space Fortress!   At Game on Expo in Mesa AZ last year I showed people in the retro lounge that was set up my Space Fortress skills :P  there is a video on the Bally Astrocast facebook page showing it that someone taped me playing :)

 

Thanks, WC!

 

I'm off to find that video...maybe it should be shown off on the Arcade USA channel!

 

 


Edited by Chris++, Sun Jul 3, 2016 1:27 AM.


#6 thevnaguy OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Jul 3, 2016 12:09 PM

If you have pictures and info I can use to update the Bally Astrocast facebook page, let me know.   I have been sharing the podcast on that page and it needs to be updated to reflect Bally Alley Astrocast as the title, but I dont have a graphic.   I can help manage the page if you want, just send me the info/pics you want on there and I can update it for you :)  You guys dont know how much I am stoked to finally see a podcast on my beloved Bally finally come to be :)

https://www.facebook...93653064007619/



#7 thevnaguy OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Jul 3, 2016 12:11 PM

oh here is the video of my Space Fortress run at Game On Expo 2015 :P  I had been drinking lots of caffeinated beverages that day :P



#8 Chris++ OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jul 4, 2016 1:57 AM

:-o :-o :-o :-o :-o :-o :-o :-o

 

That's some great playing!!

 

I don't think we have a graphic...I'll have Adam check this thread. Thanks!

 

 



#9 ballyalley OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jul 5, 2016 9:41 AM

If you have pictures and info I can use to update the Bally Astrocast facebook page, let me know.

 

I just sent you a personal email about an image that you can use for the Facebook page. I joined Facebook a couple of weeks ago, but I have not yet used it.  I do plan to start using Facebook, so eventually I'll post some information on that page.
 

I have been sharing the podcast on that page

 
Thank you, Willie, for showing support for our podcast-- I really appreciate it!  I've listened to the first four 5200 Super Podcasts.  I was disappointed when you recently told me (via email) that the podcast was gone.  I have five more to listen to before the end... and that's something to look forward to hearing.
 

You guys dont know how much I am stoked to finally see a podcast on my beloved Bally finally come to be :)

 

Maybe we can arrange for a user interview with you.  I'd love to hear your story.  I didn't own the Astrocade as a kid, so it's always interesting for me to hear about people who owned the system when they were growing up.  Just as interesting, but in a different way, are those adults owned the Bally Arcade/Astrocade and used it as a computer rather than a game system.

 

Adam



#10 thevnaguy OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jul 5, 2016 10:00 AM

I updated the facebook page :)

 

My dad brought one home when they came out.   he bought a second white one later one and gave me the original.   Loved that system up until I got my Atari 800 computer, but I still played the astrocade quite a bit for games, no so much for programming once I got into the 800.

 

I spent lots of time making games with the original bally basic using the tape interface box, then really got into making games when the newer astrobasic cart came out with the built in tape interface.

 

I also spent lots of time at my dads work helping repair machines and was able to mess around with the Zgrass expansion a little.   I conbtributed an article to ballyalley.com some time ago on how to fix a astrocade that died due to having the bottom vents blocked and it overheats :)

 

As for the 5200 podcast, yes it was a lot of fun to do.  However with my crazy schedule (not to mention the constant negative feedback we were getting, it is the only podcast i got so many negative feedbacks on for some reason, guess we were not covering the 5200 like some wanted :P) we decided to move on.  We are now doing the Toy Tomb podcast together now :).   Colecovisions Podcast is still going strong even though we have a really wild recording schedule (its hard to coordinate available times).  I am almost done with the Channel F Files (my first home video game console I owned that was mine) and plan on doing the MicroVision Pixelcast next (that will be a very very short series :P)  After that I plan on getting into the Arcadia 2001 :)

 

Let me know what I can do to help out behind the scenes for the Bally Alley Podcast!  I love that machine!



#11 thevnaguy OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jul 5, 2016 10:06 AM

New name approved :)

 

https://www.facebook...93653064007619/



#12 ballyalley OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jul 5, 2016 11:44 AM

I updated the facebook page :)


Thanks, Willie!  It looks great, and I see that the name change to Bally Alley Astrocast has already taken effect.
 

My dad brought one home when they came out.   he bought a second white one later one and gave me the original.

 
Did he have to buy a second one because the first one overheated, or did he get the white one especially for you because you were hogging his machine? ;)
 

Loved that system up until I got my Atari 800 computer, but I still played the astrocade quite a bit for games, no so much for programming once I got into the 800.

 
I used a Commodore 64 as my first home computer, but the Atari 8-bit systems are nowadays my favorite 8-bit home computers.  That's why I like the 5200 podcast-- it certainly gives more coverage to the Atari computers.  I have this urge to start a short podcast covering Atari 8-bit books that cover type-in programs.  However, that might fit best as a segment on some other Atari podcast.
 
I had an Atari 5200 with a very large collection of games, but once I realized all of those games had been ported, in one way or another (officially or unofficially) to the computer line, I dropped the 5200 in a heartbeat.  It's too bad I dropped that system right onto my foot: I smashed it up really good.  As the doctor bandaged me up, he told me that Atari 5200 foot injuries had been very common in the 80s, but it had been several years since he'd seen anyone drop that gigantic system and break so many toes.
 
(Yeah, all right, you caught me: I never actually dropped a 5200 onto my foot... but if I had, then above story likely would have occurred, right?)
 

I spent lots of time making games with the original bally basic using the tape interface box, then really got into making games when the newer astrobasic cart came out with the built in tape interface.

 
Do you still have any of those tapes with your own BASIC programs?  If so, then we'd surely archive them and add them to BallyAlley.com.
 

I conbtributed an article to ballyalley.com some time ago on how to fix a astrocade that died due to having the bottom vents blocked and it overheats [ :)]


Yes, you contributed "Bally Astrocade Repair Procedures #1" to the Astrocade FAQ:
 
http://www.ballyalle...trocade_faq.txt

I'd say people ask more questions about how to repair an Astrocade than about anything else about the system.  Over the years, I've pointed to the FAQ many times.  I'm sure your contribution must have helped many people, Willie.
 

I also spent lots of time at my dads work helping repair machines and was able to mess around with the Zgrass expansion a little.

 
Ah, you're one of the few who got to play with the Z-GRASS expansion. That's pretty cool!  Was it the add-under (low-res hardware) or the UV-1 (hi-res) unit?  We're going to cover the Z-GRASS unit in some (possibly far-off) future episode of the Astrocast.  For a system with such a small library of cartridge games, there is an awful lot to talk about.  I'm not sure we'll ever be able to cover it all.  In a way, I feel as though the BallyAlley website has been leading up to this podcast.  I'm too lazy to have this podcast alone, so thanks (again) to Chris and Paul (the co-hosts/contributors)-- for without them I'd just be some guy who has an Astrocade website that looks like it was made in 2001... because it was made back then!
 

not to mention the constant negative feedback we were getting, it is the only podcast i got so many negative feedbacks on for some reason, guess we were not covering the 5200 like some wanted :P)

 
Negative feedback?  That's too bad.  Your podcasts are more laid-back than others, but who would complain about that?  After all, the price of admission (free!) allows you to do whatever you want.  It's your own show.  You did the right thing by moving on: if you feel you're not appreciated, then it probably wasn't fun anymore.
 

Colecovisions Podcast is still going strong even though we have a really wild recording schedule (its hard to coordinate available times). I am almost done with the Channel F Files (my first home video game console I owned that was mine) and plan on doing the MicroVision Pixelcast next (that will be a very very short series [:P] ) After that I plan on getting into the Arcadia 2001 [:)]

 

I've only listened to the first few Colecovisions podcast.  I had a hard time listening to that one because it wasn't edited.  Now that I've gotten used to your style, I'll likely revisit it, as the Colecovision was a great system-- and it introduced me to Jumpman (via the Jumpman Junior) cartridge.  I have very fond memories of the Colecovision, but it's a system I don't own anymore (though I did get the recent Colecovision flashback-- which is, well, not the same at all).

 

I've never played a real Channel F, although I've used it under emulation.  That's a system that's hard to appreciate for me.  I do love it's huge palette of colors. :D A few years back I played a homebrew version of Space Invaders on that system.  Very interesting.

 

In the 90s, I had a few Microvision systems: only one of them worked correctly. I had about five or six games for it.  I can't remember which ones (Star Trek and the pack-in Breakout clone are the only ones that I remember).  The resolution on that unit was miserable... but workable for, I think, 1979.  I'd listen to this podcast-- and it would be really cool to hear from someone who programmed anything on that system.

 

I have the Arcadia 2001 with quite a few carts, plus the multicart that Ward Shrake made.  Did you know that a new multicart was just released for it?  It was made in Germany.  I had the PCBs mailed to me a few weeks ago.  I forwarded them to Ward and he's going to put them together.  The Arcadia 2001 has some true stinkers, but also some interesting carts too.  Will you be covering the non-US carts?  I hope so, as those are actually some really great game.  I programmed a small program on the Arcadia called "Mothership."  Chris and I pulled out my Arcadia 2001 a couple of months back, I think it he liked it more than he expected.  Certainly I know that he expected the resolution to be lower.  I ended up playing Macross on it quite a bit that evening; I had a really good time with it.  If you need a co-host for this Arcadian 2001 show, then let me know-- I'd be game!
 

Let me know what I can do to help out behind the scenes for the Bally Alley Podcast!  I love that machine!

 

If (more like "when") I think of something, then I'll let you know.  Thanks for all that you do in (and for) the classic gaming community, Willie!

 

Adam



#13 thevnaguy OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jul 5, 2016 12:17 PM

The Zgrass was the one that mounted under the Bally.  I only saw it the one time at my dads work, dont know what became of it.   My dad bought the White Bally for himself due to me constantly hogging the original one :P.

 

I no longer have my games i programmed on the Bally on cassette, I regret not keeping alot of my original Bally items especially those.

 

For the Microvision PixelCast we are going to try to have Jay Smith be on some of the episodes with us.

 

Not familiar with a homebrew space invaders for the Channel F, but I did like Videocart 26 (the last one) Alien Invasion.  not to bad of the space invader game.    When I was running the console room at CGE2K14 I had my channel F hooked up with a multicart.  The most played game was the Pac Man homebrew (which is quite good).

 

Concerning the repair FAQ,   I was interviewing a game store owner (Matts Game Exchange Hartsville SC) some time back for my Arcade USA channel.  his repair guy asked me to look at a Bally Astrocade for not powering on and having a black screen.  He showed me the FAQ he printed off and it was the one from Bally Alley, he asked me if I was the one that submitted the one repair article since it was the same name :P  it was pretty cool to see it again, I had totally forgotten about it.

 

i remember I sent alot of stuff to be scanned in to Rob Mitchell a long time ago concerning Bally items I got from my Dad.  I wish I had kept all the repair parts he had :(.

 

Ya, the Colecovisions podcast was pretty rough in the beginning.  it was my first time ever doing a podcast and it was a learning curve for me.  I still have some down days with ediiting, but not so much :).



#14 Chris++ OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jul 26, 2016 1:27 AM

Episode 3 has been uploaded. We cover the relatively recent Crazy Climber conversion, along with a fast-paced...well, a paced...BASIC game called Missile Defense.

 

http://ballyalleyast....libsyn.com/rss






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