The company rescuing and restoring retro arcade machines

Retro

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Some of us remember the original coin-op arcade machines from the 80s and 90s which often had cutting edge graphics for the time, much better than what one could get at home. They eventually got replaced by home gaming consoles and PCs, although modern versions still exist at amusement parks and the graphics on these are now pretty much on par with what one can get at home.

Play Leisure are the heroes who restore those retro machines.

For a generation of players, these colourful cabinets house not just ailing electronics, but formative memories. Meet the people who save them from landfill

retro arcades.jpg


 

Tiffany

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What a great story and business to be restoring these memorable arcade machines. So many memories, going to the mall to play at the arcades!
 

Arantor

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much better than what one could get at home
I dunno about that, especially by the late 1980s, where computers like the Amiga had prettty near or actually arcade-perfect ports, though I'll give you by the mid 1990s the arcades (esp Sega's machines) had pulled ahead for a little bit, but it wouldn't take long before home machines caught up again.

There are absolutely 80s arcade machines I want to own but I have no room and the ones I want never seem to go on sale anywhere, I'd almost be better off building my own (even with my lack of skills) out of a CRT display, a Raspberry Pi and some relevant MAME port.

(For the record, it's almost Christmas and I would very much like it if Santa brought me a good condition Rainbow Islands machine, a New Zealand Story machine or a Bubble Bobble machine, not that I have any room for even a single one of these.)
 

Retro

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I dunno about that, especially by the late 1980s, where computers like the Amiga had prettty near or actually arcade-perfect ports, though I'll give you by the mid 1990s the arcades (esp Sega's machines) had pulled ahead for a little bit, but it wouldn't take long before home machines caught up again.
Oh, I dunno, these things were custom built for graphics performance, similarly to how consoles are today, so could really squeeze something special out of the hardware. Anyway, I did say "often", so I'm covered. ;)

I want Santa to bring me a new gaming PC with the most powerful and expensive graphics card in it! Yeah...
 

Tiffany

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May you both get what you wish from from Santa or at least something nice enough :)
 

Arantor

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They're actually not so heavy on the graphics performance as you might think. Seriously, if you compare Rainbow Islands from the original arcade version to the Amiga version, it's damn near identical. (It's not actually perfect but it's certainly very competitive.)

The big killer for these things on home machines of the era is that they were often sporting multiple regular processors - often one for the general CPU and one for the sound (with graphics being CPU bound).

Rainbow Islands for example had a Motorola MC68000, NEC uPD78C11, Zilog Z80 triad for its core CPU handling, and then a YM2151 OPM for its sound. The Amiga was able to replicate it well enough between its CPU and its custom graphics and sound chips, even though it's not technically arcade perfect - the arcade machine runs at 320x224 at 60Hz, the Amiga port is running at 50Hz because PAL, but I'm not sure if it's running at 320x256 or drawing 320x200 and letting the rest fade into the overscan, I'd have to check. But it was certainly very competitively handled.
 

Retro

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The Amiga was one of the few machines that could achieve that level of gaming performance due to its custom chips. On most other home computers, the arcade port was a pale imitation.

Interesting specs on that arcade machine.
 
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