Pac-mania isn’t a widely popular game, it draws a lot of it’s following because it is one of the last in the series of Pac-man games. There was a Pac-mania that popped up here locally in Indiana that didn’t fetch much over a $100. But, that doesn’t mean there isn’t any demand out there for sideart, and if you have been looking for a good reproduction, This Old Game is almost ready to make some high quality inkjet prints available to those who need them. (more…)
I had completely forgotten about the Journey sideart project, at least in a sense. I know with some guys up in the Chicago area and north interested in Journey, Jeff P. has created a user interest group to interact over at CoinOpSpace.com. I bet they’ll be thrilled to hear that the Journey sideart reproductions – digital print – are moving along and with amazing artistry. The whole piece is being reconstructed at the pixel level on top of the original scan. Check out the photo inside. (more…)
Every once in awhile I get an email out of the blue about an arcade project that really makes my day. Last week, I got an email from Eric (Vector Zorg). Eric has started tracing Atari’s Space Duel sideart from some great scans he pieced together. Eric posted the Space Duel sideart scans he is working with on his website if you want to check them out.
As you can see in the photo on the right, he has his work cut out for him on Space Duel. The Space Duel artwork is beautiful and complex and would take a ton of time to vectorize.
Eric has started a bunch of projects, and from my experience he is like most artists, they take on more than they can realistically handle. (It’s hard to be passionate and talented, give us a break. We want to be involved in everything when it comes to arcade game artwork.) Check out Eric’s vector projects in progress that at some point will make it onto localarcade.com. Most of the marquees, bezels, and side art he has vectorized look complete. I am not actually sure what the artwork pieces need to be finalized, if it is color matching or something else, but the list of artwork he has worked on is a who’s who list of classic arcade games. Some of this artwork has been reproduced over the years, but my guess would be that Eric’s goal is to make the vector files freely available and accurate to all collectors to do with as they please;
- Jr. Pac-man
- Mario Brothers
- Donkey Kong Jr.
- Donkey Kong
- I, Robot
- Crystal Castles
- Marble Madness
- And the list goes on and on…
The start of the Space Duel Sideart
Here is a small snapshot of what Eric has finished so far. Coming along nicely with two of the detailed side art ships finished and ready to roll.
Here are two small snapshots showing the quality of Eric vector tracing work. A closeup detail of the ship on the left;
And a detail image of the ship on the right. Eric asked my opinion, for what’s it worth. But opinions are like buttholes as they say, I have my fair share of ideas about buttholes, and, well, other stuff.
Looking at the original scan, I would have actually kept the polygon shape edges rounded, at a distance they will appear square which was the original intent. This is a nice scan of some fine detail of the Space Duel sideart, so I would have to go with what I see. Sometimes when you trace arcade artwork, you have to make a best judgement call. But after I gave him my opinion, he agreed and went back and changed this portion.
Silkscreened Space Duel sideart in the future?
We’ll have to see. Not only is Eric vectorizing Atari’s Space Duel artwork, he is also separating his colors properly as he goes (which is smart, a difficult process once the artwork is complete) and is talking about having Rich at This Old Game do a small run. Will it happen? I don’t know, that is anyone’s guess. I would say not for a long time. But the fact that there may be Space Duel sideart available to collectors in the next year is promising enough.
Want to contact Eric about his progress? (Be thoughtful, he is a family man) You can email him at email@example.com about his other great vectorization projects and progress on the Space Duel artwork.
Don’t forget, all of Eric’s work in progress projects are located on his website. The site is in French, but it is still easy to navigate, here is the direct link to any updated images of the Atari Space Duel side artwork.
Of course, check back here and as I am informed I will do my best to add any progress on the Atari Space Duel cabinet artwork.
Atari’s famous Quantum is a highly collectible game among arcade gamers for many different reasons. One of those reasons is that, like most Atari games, Quantum has some great artwork giving a idealized illustration of the gameplay. Most hardcore collectors may know that artwork for most of the game has been reproduced, or is in the middle of reproduction. But for those new collectors out there with big dreams of completely remaking their own Quantum, here are some resources in one place for you to find all of the artwork you need.
Joe Magiera’s reproduction Quantum marquees
Which Quantum marquee is the reproduction and which is the original? It’s hard to tell isn’t it?
Joe had a relationship already with Scott Evans, who just one year prior in 2003, went to the old Atari location (renamed to Midway West and later shut down) and saved artwork films, production artwork, and many other goodies from destruction. Joe got with Scott to borrow the original film for the Quantum marquees to print up a small run. The original Quantum marquees were silk screened on glass, and Joe chose to make these repros out of plexi for two reasons; cost and preserving the value of the original marquees. On Joe’s repro, the light blue color used in the main body of the text is a lighter shade of blue than the original. It’s kind of hard to tell in a .jpg image but if you compare an original with the reproduction you can see the difference. Joe went through so many different blues trying to match it as close as possible, and this was the best possible color choice.
Joe Magiera did an awesome job contracting this reproduction job in 2004, and as of this writing (March 2008) he still has some Quantum marquees left. If you are interested in purchasing a marquee, you can contact him with his email from the Google Arcade Collecting Group.
Quantum Marquees Related Links
Reproduction Quantum Control Panel Overlays
A little history – The vectorlist collectors had been looking for an unapplied NOS CPO for a long time. When one popped up on ebay, Tom McClintock, Noel Johnson and Joe Magiera formed an agreement and bought the control panel overlay togther. At this time in 2000, Atari was still in business so it wasn’t possible to use any original artwork films. They enlisted Roy Kaplan to vectorize the Quantum artwork. Roy had a great reputation from previous work he did on Gravitar, Tempest, Black Widow and Major Havoc.
Tom McClintock did most of the leg work from there getting the control panel overlays printed. But the bad thing was that the printer he took the Quantum artwork to, after they delivered the final CPO’s, went bankrupt and didn’t return any screens or artwork back to Tom. The artwork is lost and would have to be recreated from Roy’s original vectorized file.
Screen printed on 10mil Polycarbonate Velvet Lexan there was only a limited number of control panels available and have long since sold out. I am sure a number of die hard collectors got their hands on one, and if you can find out who owns one, you might be able to pay a premium for theirs. You might also contract one of the original guys involved in the reproductions (Tom McClintock, Noel Johnson and Joe Magiera) to see if they have any extras left. Or, you could make another small run of reproductions yourself, but the demand would probably be very low based on the number of original Quantum’s produced and this run of control panel overlays.
Quantum CPO Related Links
Quantum Kickplate and Sideart Artwork
Archer is also in the process of re-creating the Quantum sideart and kickplate artwork. I can’t find an image on his home website of his progress, but here is a proof of Archer’s Quantum sideart from 2006 that I got from Francis Mariani of Ataricade.
Archer has established himself as one of the most accurate in classic arcade reproduction artwork, up there with any of the printers today like Phoenix Arcade, This Old Game and Prok. However, his artwork is produced with a high end inkjet which makes traditional collectors spew obscenities like Adam Sandler in a McDonalds. Some collectors may not be interested in his inkjet artwork, but when you compare the game’s original artwork with the reproductions side by side, I wouldn’t have any arguements about putting inkjet artwork on my classic cabinets.
Here is a thread from last year on the Klov forums. We see reproduction Red Baron and Black Widow sideart that another collector purchased, and Archer comes in to defend himself and his great work. Here is an image of that Black Widow artwork comparing the reproduction vs. the original, it’s amazing;
Archer is a busy man, but eventually he’ll finish off the Quantum kickplate artwork. I wouldn’t suggest emailing him and bugging him about his projects, but here is Archer’s homepage, and the main directory of all of Archer’s work hosted at Ionpool (in case something isn’t linked up from the previous link. Great way to kill some time and drool on your polo as you look at all of the great classic arcade artwork he has produced / is producing. Apparently there was some work that still needed to be done to finish it, and ready to be printed.
Related Quantum Archer Artwork Links
Additional Quantum Oddities
If you take a look through the Quantum directory on Ionpool, you will see a piece of pre-production kickplate artwork. I don’t know if Archer owns that, or owned it and sold it, but here is that kickplate image. Louissurfer on Klov has a photo of this same piece of pre-production Quantum artwork, or has another copy of it.
There are two different versions of Quantum machines floating around. You will probably try to remake the original, but if you are interested in what the pre-production models looked like, Francis at Ataricade (great resource for this post, thank you) has an awesome webpage with photos showing both sets of Quantum artwork, check it out if you are curious (screenshot below).
Quantum artwork has been done, what else?
So, Quantum marquees have been made, sideart is probably in some stage of production, kickplate artwork has been vectorized and is on it’s way, and there is no artwork on the bezel, Atari just had smoked tempered glass in front of the monitor.
All you need to do is find a cabinet, and all of the electronic parts including a pcb (photo), and well…no one said this was going to be easy or even possible. If you manage to find a Quantum pcb and are willing to pay hundreds of dollars for it, you can contact Mark Spaeth to get one of his Quantum / Tempest harness adapters work with the board until you have your reproduction cabinet up and going.
Differences in Quantum and Space Duel / Gravitar cabinets
You will find information on the internet saying that Quantum had the same Atari cabinet as Space Duel and Gravitar, but this is actually not true. Although the cabinet ‘looks’ the same as Gravitar/BW and Space Duel, it’s actually not, in spite of what’s erroneously reported on various websites.
The Quantum cabinet was modified to allow for the extra bend in the control panel (See photo below). That extra bend was needed to allow space for the trackball, which needs more room than allowed in the Gravitar/BW and Space Duel control panels. (Gravitar/BW and Space Duel all use a button arrangement, which takes up very little interior space).
Also, the smoked monitor glass is longer in Quantum than those found in Gravitar/BW and Space Duel, because Quantum uses a vertically orientated monitor (Gravitar/BW and Space Duel all use a horizontally orientated montitor, and thus the monitor glass used on those cabs is smaller).
Back in August of 2004, Hans O had reproduction Quantum control panels and glass brackets produced. Here is a link to Vectorlist talking a little more about those repros. It appears as if Hans O sold out of the control panels, but if he had enough interest, he might be willing to do another run. Here is a photo of one of those reproduction cpanels; (Thanks Lou)
Good luck with your big dreams, you might be best to track down another collector and try to make an exact replica of the Quantum cabinet.
Know anything else about the Quantum artwork?
So, have any of the collectors heard updates on the Quantum artwork from Archer? Who prepaid for a set of sideart / kickplate artwork? Who bought one or more of the Quantum control panel overlays when Archer produced them a few years back? Anyone have a proof image of the Quantum kickplate reproductions? I would also love to have a photo or two of the reproduction control panel and glass bracket, if you would be willing to submit a photo.
I love little surprises like this.
I had a visitor (Kevin T.) stumble on my post about the Ms. Pac-man stencils that Joymonkey was working on last fall. I haven’t heard anything from Joymonkey, but some BYOAC members have reported that they got their stencils and are just waiting for nicer weather to use them. Kevin was looking for a set because his Ms. Pac-man artwork has the typical fade where there is no longer any pink, only yellow.
I know that many members over the years have probably scanned in the Ms. Pac-man cabinet artwork, and I know Joymonkey scanned it in from scratch when he remade the vector file for the stencils. But as far as I know, there aren’t any websites out there that have the scanned Ms. Pac-man available to download at this time. If you know of any other websites with a good Ms. Pac-man artwork scan, leave a comment and let’s start a list here. Joymonkey said he’d release his Ms. Pac-man vector file, maybe his sideart scan, once his stencils are done. But I don’t know if and when that might be.
Kevin spent a lot of time working on these scans, I mean a ton of time scanning in the Ms. Pac-man cabinet. But anyone who has attempted scanning arcade artwork before, knows how time consuming scanning can be. And not only do I have the composite files of the artwork, I have the individual pieces, all in two zip files. If you get a chance, leave a comment here and thank him for his time. I’ll make sure he gets the thank you. It sounds like he may attempt to also scan the Ms. Pac-man kickplate artwork, so let’s keep our fingers crossed.
The other note I should mention, Kevin expressed to me that these are a touch inaccurate in that some of the lines don’t align correctly. But, at first glance the artwork composite looks good, and if you don’t like the composite, you can remake your own full Ms. Pac-man sideart with the scan pieces. He shared a link on where with me on where the files are hosted, so just click on the images below for start downloading the zip files.
I am posting this brand new today, and don’t know how long it will be online, so get the files while you can. I am sure I may get some sort of nasty email from a nasty company who make a shoddy poor product with someone who would gladly take your money for an incorrect product (read dishonesty) for a President. But for a short while, you’ll have the artwork files available to you at least to do with them as you please.
Has anyone else used MediaFire to host files? It says there isn’t a time limit for hosting, but if the files aren’t downloaded frequently enough, will they remove them? I was able to successfully download the files, is anyone having any problems downloading the zips?
~Edit – In case you have issues downloading the scans of the Ms. Pac-man artwork from the links above at Mediafire, you can try to download them from this website mirror.
Brian Jones at Oleszak Creative picked up on my post the other day on the small inaccuracies in the Pengo Marquee vector artwork available on Local Arcade. As most classic arcade collectors already know, the Ms. Pac-man and Pac-man sideart Illustrator files available for download are also inaccurate, but until today I hadn’t dug any deeper to identify the inaccuracies of the artwork.
Brian sent me a Photoshop file showing just one small piece of the Pac-man sideart that is so wrong, I feel embarassed for tbombaci who originally traced it. A baby jacked up on meth could have done a better job.
The Pac-man artwork area in question is circled here (click on the image for a larger view);
The circled piece of detailed artwork is right below the curving “N” in Pac-man, where there are some black shapes that have the appearance of brush strokes. (You can download the Pac-man sideart Illustrator file here) The Local Arcade Pac-man file looks like this;
At first glance, any artist with a sense of detail should run screaming. If you are considering whether or not to take the Pac-man Side Art file from Local Arcade and print it, or makes stencils from it for your own project, this post is for you. Unless you want to throw the potential resale value of your machine into the toliet, listen up. Here is a detailed scan of that same area on the Pac-man sideart and I have also provided a photo of the same section from my own machine (just in case your a “Doubting Thomas” on the accuracy;
Wow! Seriously. I have frequented the BYOAC and Mame forums, and tbombaci (Tom) is actually very good at tracing classic arcade sideart, so, I don’t know what happened with this particular file. It was uploaded in 2004, so maybe this was one of Tom’s first forays into tracing sideart, maybe he didn’t have an accurate scan to work from, or maybe he just provided an auto trace version quickie for the Mame guys who didn’t really care how true this artwork was to the original Midway Pac-man. But if this single portion was so lazily reproduced, you can just imagine how wrong the rest of the Pac-man artwork is.
I don’t know the original circumstances, hopefully Tom will find this and fill us in. (I just wish that Local Arcade had more of a community, with collectors rating and commenting on the artwork. The usability of that site, including the search, is horrendous. Thank you to Mahuti for starting it, but we as a collecting community need to get more involved to make it a better resource. But that is another topic entirely.)
Here is a good vector trace of the same artwork, and you can see the richer detail that is more true to the original Pac-man artwork;
Like I mentioned in the Pengo marquee post, there is some line irregularity that makes any arcade artwork more interesting.
The point of my post is not a new one, do your research before using any of the artwork on Local Arcade. But in the case of the more popular arcade artwork files, there are no short cuts. You are better to start from scratch and know it is accurate than to take any shortcuts.
A friend brought this post on the klov forums to my attention. He knew that I had started to do some vector work on some Circus Charlie sideart. What the hell though, seriously! Why did this guy destroy multiple machines to scrap off old sideart?
This is original side art set off the video game Circus Charlie. It is fairly good condition. It was peeled off the cabinet and still has some adhesive backing.
The one side could probably still be scanned in and used as great reference. But I know that I am not paying much for this sideart, already the initial bid with shipping is a little high for my tastes. The Circus Charlie sideart project is a fun one, but not for a coin-op machine of my own. I’ll just have to watch it. If the sideart doesn’t sell, maybe the seller will come down in initial price.