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Tomahawk 777 by Data East

Tomahawk 777 was released by Data East in early 1980, but unlike other well recognized classic arcade games, relatively little is known about the history of this game.

For me personally, both versions of the cabinet that were produced for Tomahawk 777 are presentationally stunning. One cabinet is full moon scape in a wonderfully different blue and mauve color palette, and the design and color of the second cabinet evokes the feelings raw speed, and striking colors of a fully decked out race car.

Enthusiasts over the last twenty years have unearthed thousands of arcade machines throughout the US that have been stowed away from operators and put them in collectors hands. But it is still relatively uncommon to come across a Tomahawk 777. One in a long line of games that had similar gameplay to Space Invaders, Tomahawk never became a popular game. Over time, games that aren’t popular dwindle in numbers as games are thrown away or parted out, and cabinets converted into other games.

This page is dedicated to documenting what cabinets still remain. If you have this game, or know something about the history of this game that could be added to this page, please contact me.

November 9, 2015
A seller with the name of go*west*honey in Southend-on-Sea in the UK listed and sold a Taito cocktail cabinet that had a working Tomahawk 777 boardset installed.

Here are the photos of that cocktail cabinet.

Taito Cocktail cabinet with Tomahawk 777 - Photo 1Taito Cocktail cabinet with Tomahawk 777 - Photo 2Taito Cocktail cabinet with Tomahawk 777 - Photo 3Taito Cocktail cabinet with Tomahawk 777 - Photo 4Taito Cocktail cabinet with Tomahawk 777 - Photo 5

Early (Feb/March) 2015
A collector by the name of Ronald (Online handle of Gotya) purchased a complete, dedicated upright Tomahawk 777 from a Justin Cantrell in Boise, Idaho, and had the game shipped from Idaho down to Columbus, Texas.

I have heard that Ronald has an amazing collection, a great addition with this particular game. No photos were posted in the forum showing which version of the game changed hands.

August 2013
A Tomahawk 777 boardset came up for sale on eBay. Here are some photos of the boards:

Tomahawk 777 - Boardsets - Photo 1
Tomahawk 777 - Boardsets - Photo 2
Tomahawk 777 - Boardsets - Photo 3

June 12, 2013
When Paul Swan picked up the Sea Scare, no flyers could be found online. A flyer did surface in a haul of flyers that another collector purchased from an operator. A great look at the complete cabinet, from that sideart its hard to deny that the game is the same as Tomahawk 777.

Sea Scare Flyer - Zaccaria

May 15, 2012
A collector based in Wirral near Liverpool in the UK posted some photos of a cabinet that looks notably similar to a Tomahawk 777 on the Jamma Plus forums. If you look closely at the kickplate, you will notice the lower section for the coin box is recessed, where the actual Tomahawk 777 is not. It is likely that this is a different game, produced largely in the first several years of 1980.

Regardless, similar to the Tomahawk this cabinet is also striking.

Data East Cabinet like Tomahawk 777 - Photo 1Data East Cabinet like Tomahawk 777 - Photo 2

Late 2006
From 2001-2006, John Robertson of John’s Jukes was working with Dale Johnson of Dale Distributing to sell off games from the Time Travel Warehouse, a story that is legendary within the collector’s circle. Time Travel was a chain of arcades, and the Time Travel Warehouse was a multi-level warehouse where there were a significant number of arcade and pinball machines still new in their original boxes.

In late 2006 (Oct. timeframe) John bought out the remains of the warehouse and began to auction off the games. Included in those games, was a Tomahawk 777 and a Tomahawk Missile, which is the same game as a 777 but produced by a company called Electro Sport. Although neither of these were New In Box (NIB), from the photos it appears that both games were in excellent shape.

Here are the photos of those two games (Tomahawk 777 first, Tomahawk Missle is second) that are available from Flippers.com, John’s business website.

Tomahawk Missile photo - John's Jukes
Tomahawk Missile photo - John's Jukes

April 2004
Paul Swan has an amazing collection of Zaccaria arcade games that he documents on Zzzaccaria.com. In early 2004, there was an auction for an arcade game by the name of Sea Scare. In looking at artwork on the side of the cabinet, it was a reasonable leap to believe that Sea Scare was a version of Tomahawk 777, possibly licenses from Data East.

Paul fully documents his sorted restoration of Sea Scare, its an amazing read – I highly recommend it. The following image is of the Sea Scare from the original auction, a far cry from how it looks now restored.

Zaccaria Sea Scare - Similar to Tomahawk 777

Late (Oct/Nov) 2002
A collector by the name of Steven (Online handle of Noice87) purchased a dedicated Tomahawk 777 cocktail in working condition, from a local auction for $75. He purchased it with the intent to pull the monitor, and sell the rest of the parts.

As time went along, Steven commented on how he wished he hadn’t parted the game and later expressed an interest in owning an upright.

Here is a photo taken around that time, the Tomahawk cocktail is shown on the left.

Tomahawk 777 Cocktail

September 2000
Kyle Snyder came across the blue / mauve Tomahawk 777 cabinet off Route 1 in Virginia, at a flea market. Neither working state nor completeness of the game were shared. His post was originally shared on the RGVAC newsgroup.