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Encyclopedia > Vectrex
Vectrex
Manufacturer Smith Engineering
Type Video game console
Generation Second generation
First available 1982
CPU Motorola MC68A09, 1.5 MHz
Media Cartridge
Controller input Two
Top-selling game Minestorm

The Vectrex is an 8-bit video game console developed by General Consumer Electric (GCE) and later bought by Milton Bradley Company. The Vectrex is unique in that it utilized vector graphics drawn on a monitor that was integrated in the console; no other console before or after the Vectrex had a comparable configuration, and no other non-portable game console had a monitor of its own (integrated). It was released in November 1982 at a retail price of $199. As the video game market declined and then crashed, the Vectrex exited the market in early 1984. Image File history File linksMetadata Vectrex_logo. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (1280x1024, 197 KB)from http://fr. ... A console manufacturer is a company that manufactures and distributes video game consoles. ... A video game console is a dedicated electronic machine designed to play video games. ... Although the history of computer and video games spans almost five decades, computer and video games themselves did not become part of the popular culture until the late 1970s. ... This article deals with the history of the second generation video game consoles. ... 1982 (MCMLXXXII) was a common year starting on Friday of the Gregorian calendar. ... CPU redirects here. ... The Motorola 6809 is an 8-bit* microprocessor from Motorola, introduced circa 1979. ... In a variety of electronic equipments, a cartridge (in video game terms, cart, game pack, or Game Pak) can be one method of programming different functionality, providing variable content, or a method by which consumables may be replenished. ... 8-bit refers to the number of bits used in the data bus of a computer. ... A video game console is a dedicated electronic machine designed to play video games. ... The Milton Bradley Company was established by Milton Bradley in Springfield, Massachusetts in 1860. ... Example showing effect of vector graphics on scale: (a) original vector-based illustration; (b) illustration magnified 8x as a vector image; (c) illustration magnified 8x as a raster image. ... 1982 (MCMLXXXII) was a common year starting on Friday of the Gregorian calendar. ... E.T. for the Atari 2600. ...


Smith Engineering briefly considered designing a handheld version of the device in 1988, though the success of the Nintendo Game Boy made such a project too risky. In the mid-1990s, Smith Engineering condoned the duplication of the Vectrex system image and cartridges for non-commercial uses and has expressed joy to see that it has still-thriving developer and user communities. Nintendo (Japanese: 任天堂, ニンテンドー Nintendō; NASDAQ: NTDOY, TYO: 7974 ) is a multinational corporation founded on November 6,[citation needed] 1889 in Kyoto, Japan by Fusajiro Yamauchi to produce handmade hanafuda cards, for use in a Japanese playing card game of the same name. ... The original Game Boys design set the standard for handheld gaming consoles. ...


Unlike other video game consoles which connected to TVs to display raster graphics, the Vectrex included its own monitor which displayed vector graphics. The monochrome Vectrex used screen overlays to give the illusion of color, and also to reduce the severity of the inherent flickering caused by the vector monitor. At the time many of the most popular arcade games used vector displays, and GCE was looking to set themselves apart from the pack by selling high-quality versions of games like Space Wars and Armor Attack. The system even contained a built in game, the Asteroids-like Minestorm. Suppose the smiley face in the top left corner is an RGB bitmap image. ... Example showing effect of vector graphics on scale: (a) original vector-based illustration; (b) illustration magnified 8x as a vector image; (c) illustration magnified 8x as a raster image. ... Space Wars was the first vector-graphics arcade game. ...

The Vectrex controller featuring an analog joystick.
The Vectrex controller featuring an analog joystick.

The two peripherals for the Vectrex were a light pen and 3D imager. Image File history File links Vectrex_controller. ... Image File history File links Vectrex_controller. ... A light pen is a computer input device in the form of a light-sensitive wand used in conjunction with the computers CRT monitor. ...

Contents


Trivia

  • While it is widely believed that the Nintendo 64 was the first home console to include an analog controller, the Vectrex (and Atari 5200) preceded the N64 by over a decade.
  • Even today there are new games in development by homebrew video game programmers. Also new hardware (for example VecVox - speech synthesizer) is available.
  • Newport Cigarettes at one point commissioned a customized version of Web Wars. It just featured "Newport Cigarettes Presents" on the title screen and trophy room screen. Bill Hawkins finished the coding which was sent to Newport, but it isn't known what happened with that, if anything.
The Vectrex: an 8-bit video game console from the early 1980's
The Vectrex: an 8-bit video game console from the early 1980's
  • The liquor company, Mr. Boston, gave out a limited number of customized cartridges of Clean Sweep. The box had a Mr. Boston sticker on it. The overlay was basically the regular Clean Sweep overlay with the Mr. Boston name, logo, and % proof/copyright info running up either side. The game itself had custom text, and the player controlled a top hat rather than a vacuum.
  • The game built in to the Vectrex, Minestorm, would crash at level 13. The consumers who complained to the company about it, got a cartridge in the mail. Entitled "MineStorm II", it was the fixed version of the Vectrex's built in game. But, obviously, not many wrote to the company about it, as MineStorm II is one of the rarest cartridges for the Vectrex system.
  • Was the first system to offer a 3D Peripheral(The Vectrex 3-D Viewer), predating the Sega Master System's SegaScope 3D by about six years.

The Nintendo 64, commonly called the N64, is Nintendos third home video game console for the international market. ... The Atari 5200 is a video game console introduced in 1982 by Atari. ... Homebrew video games are video games written by hobby programmers. ... Speech synthesis is the artificial production of human speech. ... ImageMetadata File history File links Download high resolution version (1024x800, 228 KB) File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... ImageMetadata File history File links Download high resolution version (1024x800, 228 KB) File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... 8-bit refers to the number of bits used in the data bus of a computer. ... A computer game is a game composed of a computer-controlled virtual universe that players interact with in order to achieve a defined goal or set of goals. ... Console may be: An organ term for the area of an organ including the keys, stops, and foot pedals manipulated by the organist. ... 1980 (MCMLXXX) was a leap year starting on Tuesday. ... Look up Vacuum in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...

Technical Specifications

Circuit Board

CPU redirects here. ... The Motorola 6809 is an 8-bit* microprocessor from Motorola, introduced circa 1979. ... MegaHertz (MHz) is the name given to one million (106) Hertz, a measure of frequency. ... Different types of RAM. From top to bottom: DIP, SIPP, SIMM 30 pin, SIMM 72 pin, DIMM, RIMM RAM redirects here. ... A kilobyte (derived from the SI prefix kilo-, meaning 1000) is a unit of information or computer storage equal to either 1024 or 1000 bytes. ... Read-only memory (ROM) is a class of storage media used in computers and other electronic devices. ...

Sound

  • Sound: General Instruments AY-3-8912
  • 3" magnet-driven speaker

A sound chip is an integrated circuit (i. ... The AY-3-8912 was a 3-voice sound chip designed by General Instruments. ...

Display

  • CRT  : Samsung 240RB40 B&W television (9 x 11 inches). Many myths exist about a custom "vector" CRT. The CRT was a standard 240mm (diagonal) black-and-white television picture tube and magnetic deflection yoke, and can be easily replaced with comparable black-and-white television components. However, rather than being driven by a conventional sawtooth deflection system (to generate a raster like a blank TV or monitor has), the Vectrex drove the deflection yoke with a digital-to-analog converter for each of the horizontal and vertical windings on the yoke, allowing dot position to be swept as the software needed. The CRT's beam was simply turned on and off under software control; to make a line on the display appear brighter, it would simply have to be refreshed more often. Unlike a regular TV set or monitor which has a stable horizontal stage to drive the flyback transformer, an independent oscillator was used to drive a regular television flyback transformer. Much of this adaptation of inexpensive off-the-shelf television components is also found in vector-based arcade machines like Asteroids.
  • Display size could theoretically be increased, but would involve a massive redesign of the horizontal and vertical amplifiers, flyback oscillator and transformer, and beam control circuits.
  • No external TV receiver hookup is needed, provided for, or even possible without mapping the display to some form of rasterized video memory.

Cathode ray tube employing electromagnetic focus and deflection Cutaway rendering of a color CRT Electron guns Electron beams Focusing coils Deflection coils Anode connection Mask for separating beams for red, green, and blue part of displayed image Phosphor layer with red, green, and blue zones Close-up of the phosphor... Suppose the smiley face in the top left corner is an RGB bitmap image. ... In electronics, a digital-to-analog converter (DAC or D-to-A) is a device for converting a digital (usually binary) code to an analog signal (current, voltage or charges). ... A flyback transformer or line output transformer (LOPT) is a type of transformer used to generate the high voltage needed for driving a cathode ray tube or picture tube. It converts the input voltage, usually mains voltage in the range 120 to 240 volts, to an output voltage in the...

3D Imager

The 3-D imager spins a disk which is 1/2 black and 1/2 colored bands that radiate from the centre (Usually red, green and blue) between your eyes and the vectrex screen.

The Vectrex 3D Imager
The Vectrex 3D Imager

The Vectrex is synchronized to the rotation of the disk (or vice versa) and draws vectors corresponding to a particular color and/or a particular eye. Therefore only one eye will see the vectrex screen and its associated images (or color) at any one time while the other will see nothing. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (512x768, 83 KB)Vectrex 3d Imager File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (512x768, 83 KB)Vectrex 3d Imager File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ...


A single object that does not lie on the plane of the monitor (i.e. in front of or into the monitor) is drawn at least twice to provide information for each eye. The distance between the duplicate images and whether the right eye image or the left eye image is drawn first will determine where the object will appear to "be" in 3-D space. The 3-D illusion is also enhanced by adjusting the brightness of the object (dimming objects in the background). Spinning the disk at a high enough speed will fool your eyes/brain into thinking that the multiple images it's seeing are two different views of the same object. This creates the impression of 3-D and color.


Supported Games

  • 3D Pole Position
  • 3D Crazy Coaster
  • 3D Minestorm
  • 3D Narrow Escape

Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ...

Screenshot/Overlay Gallery

List of game titles

Original

The introduction of this article does not provide enough context for readers unfamiliar with the subject. ... 3D MineStorm, also known as Mine Storm 3-D, was published in 1982 for the Vectrex game system. ... Berzerk is a shooter video game, released in 1980 by Stern Electronics of Chicago. ... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Scramble (J: スクランブル) is a 1981 horizontally scrolling shoot em up, arcade game. ... Space Wars was the first vector-graphics arcade game. ... Computer Space is a computer arcade game released in 1971 by Nutting Associates. ... Star Castle is a vector-based fixed shooter arcade game, made by Cinematronics in 1980. ... Star Ship was a video game cartridge developed by Atari for its Video Computer System (later known as the Atari 2600). ... Star Trek: The Motion Picture (Paramount Pictures, 1979; see also 1979 in film) is the first feature film based on the popular Star Trek science fiction television series and is released on Friday, December 7. ... Starhawk (J: スターホーク) is a 1977 vector arcade game by Cinematronics. ...

Unreleased Prototypes

  • Berzerk II
  • Cube Quest
  • Mail Plane (requires light pen)
  • Melody Master II
  • Tour De France

Home Brew

  • Vec Sports Boxing
  • Vector Vaders (1996)
  • Patriots (1996)
  • All Good Things (1996)
  • Spike Hoppin' (1996)
  • Vecmania (1998)
  • Vectopia

1998

  • Omega Chase Deluxe (new title developed in 1998, based on Omega Race)

2000

  • Moon Lander (new title developed in 2000, based on Lunar Lander)

Lunar Lander was an early computer game that originally ran on the DEC GT40 graphics terminal (frequently connected to a PDP-10 mainframe computer) in 1974. ...

2001

2002

  • Gravitrex (new title developed in 2002, based on Gravitar)
  • Tsunami/VIX (new title (two games) developed in 2002, based on Tempest and QIX)

Gravitar is a shoot em up arcade game released by Atari in 1982. ... A tempest is a violent storm. ...

2003

  • Protector (new title developed in 2003)
  • War of the Robots (new title developed in 2003)
  • Yasi (new title developed in 2003)

The English word Protector, identical to its Latin root, means he who or that which protects, and specifically refers to : Protector was the second submarine built by pioneering American naval engineer Simon Lake In science fiction, Protector is the title of a novel by American writer Larry Niven, featuring Pak... Yasi is a videogame which was developed in 2003 for the Vectrex video game console. ...

2004

  • I, Cyborg (new title developed in 2004)
  • Revector (new title developed in 2004)
  • Thrust (new title developed in 2004)

Thrust is a computer game originally for the BBC Micro and Acorn Electron. ...

2005

  • Debris (new title developed in 2005)
  • Nebula Commander (new title developed in 2005)

2006

  • Colorclash (New Title Released May 2006)
  • Space Frenzy (New Title Released March 2006)
  • Star Sling (New Title Released May 2006)
  • Vector 21 (New Title Released April 2006)

References

Selected video game consoles
First generation
Magnavox Odyssey | PONG | Coleco Telstar
Early second generation
Fairchild Channel F | Atari 2600 | Magnavox Odyssey² | Intellivision
Later second generation
5200 | ColecoVision | Vectrex | SG-1000
Third generation
NES | Master System | 7800
Fourth generation
PC Engine/TurboGrafx 16 | Mega Drive/Genesis | SNES | Neo-Geo | CD-i
Fifth generation
CD32 | 3DO | Jaguar | Saturn | Playdia | PlayStation | PC-FX | Pippin | Nintendo 64
Sixth generation
Dreamcast | PlayStation 2 | GameCube | Xbox
Seventh generation
Xbox 360 | PlayStation 3 | Wii
This box: view • talk • edit
  • Vectrex Faq 6.0
  • Vectrex rarity guide

This is a list of video game consoles by the era they appeared in. ... This article deals with the history of the first generation video game consoles. ... The Magnavox Odyssey is the first home video game console, predating the Atari Pong home consoles by three years. ... Pong helped bring computerized video games into everyday life. ... The Telstar is a video game console produced by Coleco which first went on sale in 1976. ... This article deals with the history of the second generation video game consoles. ... The Fairchild Channel F is the worlds second cartridge-based video game console, after the Magnavox Odyssey. ... The Atari 2600, released in 1977, is the first successful video game console to use plug-in cartridges instead of having one or more games built in. ... Philips Videopac G7000 shown playing Pickaxe Pete The Magnavox Odyssey², known in Europe as the Philips Videopac G7000, in Brazil as the Philips Odyssey, and also by many other names, is a video game console released in 1978. ... The Intellivision is a video game console released by Mattel in 1980; development of the console began in 1978 (less than a year after the introduction of its main competitor, the legendary Atari 2600). ... The Atari 5200 is a video game console introduced in 1982 by Atari. ... The ColecoVision The ColecoVision is Colecos second generation video game console, released in August 1982. ... The SG-1000, which stands for Sega Game 1000, is a cartridge-based video game console manufactured by Sega. ... In the history of video games, the 8-bit era was the third generation of video game consoles, but the first after the video game crash of 1983 and considered by some to be the first modern era of console gaming. ... NES redirects here. ... The Sega Master System (SMS for short) is an 8-bit cartridge-based gaming console that was manufactured by Sega. ... The Atari 7800 is a video game console released by Atari in 1986 (a test market occurred in June 1984). ... In the history of video games, the 16-bit era was the 4th generation of video game consoles. ... The PC Engine is a video game console released by NEC, a Japanese company, in 1987. ... The Sega Mega Drive was a 16-bit video game console released by Sega in Japan (1988), Europe (1990) and most of the rest of the world. ... The Super Nintendo Entertainment System, also known as Super Nintendo, Super NES or SNES, is a 16-bit video game console released by Nintendo in North America, Brazil, Europe, and Australia. ... The original Neo-Geo console was greatly advanced for its time. ... CD-i or Compact Disc Interactive is the name of an interactive multimedia CD player developed and marketed by Royal Philips Electronics N.V. CD-i also refers to the multimedia Compact Disc standard utilized by the CD-i console, also known as Green Book, which was co-developed by... In the history of computer and video games, the 32-bit / 64-bit era was the fifth generation of video game consoles. ... The Amiga CD32 was a 32-bit CD-ROM based game console. ... 3DO Interactive Multiplayer (most commonly referred to as the 3DO) was a line of video game consoles released in 1993 and 1994 by Panasonic, Sanyo and Goldstar. ... The Atari Jaguar was a video game console introduced in November 1993 against the Sega Genesis and the Super Nintendo Entertainment System as a powerful next generation platform. ... The Sega Saturn (Japanese: セガサターン, Sega Saturn), is a video game console of the 32-bit era. ... The Bandai Playdia console The Playdia was a video game console released in 1994 by Bandai. ... For other versions of PlayStation, please see PlayStation (disambiguation) The PlayStation is a video game console of the 32/64-bit era, first produced by Sony Computer Entertainment in the mid-1990s. ... The PC-FX console The PC-FX was NECs 32-bit sequel to its PC Engine (US:TurboGrafx 16). ... Front of the Apple Pippin Rear of the Apple Pippin The Apple Pippin was a technology for a multimedia title player marketed by Apple Computer in the mid 1990s. ... The Nintendo 64, commonly called the N64, is Nintendos third home video game console for the international market. ... The sixth-generation era (sometimes inaccurately referred to as the 128-bit era; see section below) refers to the computer and video games, video game consoles, and video game handhelds available at the turn of the 21st century. ... The Sega Dreamcast (Japanese: ドリームキャスト; code-named Blackbelt, Dural, and Katana during development) is Segas last video game console and the successor to the companys Sega Saturn. ... The PlayStation 2 (PS2) (Japanese: プレイステーション2) is Sonys second video game console, the successor to the PlayStation and the predecessor to the PlayStation 3 (which is not to be released until November 2006). ... The Nintendo GameCube (Japanese: ゲームキューブ; originally code-named Dolphin during development; officially abbreviated as GCN by Nintendo of America) is Nintendos fourth home video game console, belonging to the sixth generation era—the same generation as Segas Dreamcast, Sonys PlayStation 2, and Microsofts Xbox. ... The Microsoft Xbox is a sixth generation era video game console first released on November 15, 2001 in North America, then released on February 22, 2002 in Japan, and on March 14, 2002 in Europe. ... The seventh generation era is a video game era in the history of computer and video games that began towards the end of 2005, but is not set to really take off until late 2006 with the release of new video game consoles from Nintendo and Sony. ... The Xbox 360 (three-sixty), known during development as the Xenon or Xbox 2, is the successor to Microsofts Xbox video game console. ... The PlayStation 3 ) (abbreviated PS3) is Sonys seventh generation era video game console in the PlayStation series. ... Wii (pronounced we, IPA: ) is Nintendos seventh-generation video game console, their fifth home console, and the successor to the Nintendo GameCube. ...

See also

Here is a list of superlative characteristics for video game consoles: // Firsts Magnavox Odyssey - First game console with interchangeable cartridges. ...

External links


  Results from FactBites:
 
Vectrex - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1067 words)
The Vectrex is unique in that it utilized vector graphics drawn on a monitor that was integrated in the console; no other console before or after the Vectrex had a comparable configuration, and no other non-portable game console had a monitor of its own (integrated).
However, rather than being driven by a conventional sawtooth deflection system (to generate a raster like a blank TV or monitor has), the Vectrex drove the deflection yoke with a digital-to-analog converter for each of the horizontal and vertical windings on the yoke, allowing dot position to be swept as the software needed.
The Vectrex is synchronized to the rotation of the disk (or vice versa) and draws vectors corresponding to a particular color and/or a particular eye.
VECTREX - pearl among the game consoles (1264 words)
The Vectrex at the same moment showed images for the left and the right eye in turn, so that a threedimensional effect was created.
The Vectrex owed its name to the vector technique that was used in the arcades (for instance in Asteroids and Space War), but until then not yet in game consoles.
Probably the Vectrex particularly appealed to hardcore gamers, who knew the advantages of the vector technique from their experiences in the arcades.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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