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Vectrex news: 3/29/2014

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Here is the Vectrex news edition of March 29, 2014!

Pricey sales!Edit

One of the very rare Vectrex bubble display stands was seen in a Dutch auction recently! And two of the limited edition Vectorcade modern day controllers were put up for sale since the last edition of the news as well, one of which was an ebay auction (which we don’t link to, since they disappear over time), the other can be seen here on the vector gaming forums.

New homebrewers/demos/hardware/gamesEdit

There’s been an explosion of new Vectrex games over the last several weeks!

One of which is Death Chase, a clone of a late 1970s arcade game called Death Race, which caused a bit of controversy upon release, as the object was to hit as many people as possible with a car before time ran out. And as it was reported on the September 27, 2013 edition of the news, NOX, a clone of overhead-viewed Atari coin-op racing games, was going to be paired with another auto-themed game for a physical cartridge release...well, Death Chase is the other game! So we finally now know what the second game will be for the cart. (A video of it can be seen here.)

Hex, which has the look of Bedlam with the player’s ship being in the middle while geometric-shaped objects (also looking like the levels in Bedlam) quickly descend on the ship, also had a release recently. However, being based on the Super Hexagon game for mobile devices, the player must turn the nose of their ship so it will fit through the only one opening per shape in order to advance through the game. The game is still a work in progress, but it is simple and addicting and can be read about and downloaded in the vector gaming forums thread here.

Der Luchs has suddenly become a one-man army in regards to creating Vectrex demos and games! The most current of which (at the time of this writing) is SEELENWALZER, a bottom shooter. There is also VECFAHREN, a racing game (which there aren’t many of those in the Vectrex library), and AVE MARIA!, which involves rescuing “souls” that are floating around in space (via beaming them up with a tractor beam) while dodging objects. These are all unfinished demos that are being worked on, along with LICHTBRINGER, having teaser videos for only (although it has also been revealed that the game is about undead zombies, a first for the Vectrex!).

However, even though an early work, N. B. Z. looks to be the most extensive of them all, having a cutscene intro before a game starts, and gameplay involves the player moving their character throughout a couple of screens while dodging projectiles and gathering items, then going back and depositing them for further (unknown) gameplay later. And, BOMBENHAGEL is a complete game that will appear exclusively on an upcoming Madtronix multicart later, having the look of early 1980s Tiger handheld games as the player uses an onscreen cursor to stop a hail of bombs heading for a city at the bottom of the screen. All games have videos of gameplay examples that can be seen at the YouTube channel of Der Luchs.

Also ongoing in development is Veccy Bird, which was influenced by the quickly removed mobile game of Flappy Bird (which can be read about here). There is also a Pong clone in development (VECPONGTREX), although currently with few details, but you can read about it here on the vector gaming forums, along with a rare water-themed game of Big Blue also being worked on (which can be read about here, and videos from YouTube user Chris Parsons can also be viewed in regards to the game). And finally (and last but not least), a Cube Demo was also created (which can be read about here), along with P1X3L-pushr, which is a remake of a Commodore 64 game (which information can be read about here).

And then on the hardware front, further work was done on a custom controller of 50TBRD’s (specifically for Birds of Prey), as it was made into a hobby box. It can be seen in a thread here on the vector gaming forums. Also, a new flash/multicart was also not only released from Juan Félix Mateos (the Mateos Vectrex Rewritable Multigame Cart), along with a ROM burner (the Mateos Vectrex Burner-Dumper), but a second version of the MVRMC was also released as well! The second version increases the amount of games that it can store from four to 16. Videos of the units can be seen on the jfmateos YouTube channel.

New pagesEdit

Since the last news update, a poll was added in regards to how you rank yourself as a Vectrex collector. So, having almost every single thing Vectrex-related or next to nothing, you can vote there!

Also, the first level strategy guide/walkthrough of Gravitrex was created quite some time ago, and since the previous edition of the news, the second level was finally added! Every planet is covered, along with plenty of photos provided if you need some tips for this level under the Links section on that page. And now every single planet on level 3 is done except for one! So hopefully for the next edition of the news that will be added, finally completing the guide!

TWO Vectrex-related publications out?!Edit

Ok, so FURY had announced (and since released, starting in February) his Vectorbolt magazine, being 100% in regards to vector graphic games, both Vectrex- and arcade-related. However, suddenly VectrexMad! Productions also released a similar publication, although this one has 100% Vectrex content! Actually VectrexMad!'s News Corner is an extension of his site, which reports on Vectrex high scores and expands on his Vectrex news that he reports on throughout the year, along with bringing back reviews (also 100% Vectrex-involved), which he used to contribute to various gaming publications. It is currently unknown how regular this free download is going to be, however, but it can be checked out on his site for availability.

New/old Vectrex web site, another extendedEdit

The former Vectrex.nl web site is now continuing as vectrexworld.com, as the former url for it was actually not owned and was only temporary. The site has also had a complete redesign and old dead Vectrex links were removed (along with newer ones added not on the previous incarnation of the site), totally revamping the “docs” section as well.

And, Classic Game Creations is to be back in business sometime this year! Packrat Video Games, LLC has announced it will carry that library at their site! So stay tuned for further details.

Vectrex Wraps are back!Edit

Vectrex Wrap creator Michele Fiori made Protector/Y*A*S*I wraps back in 2007, which are attachments that turn peoples’ Vectrexes into an arcade-like cabinet when applied to their machines, plus they can be removed multiple times without leaving any kind of residue behind.

It was recently announced that not only were the original Y*A*S*I Vectrex Wraps remade, as they were turned into two completely different sets this time around, but also Scramble wraps have been created and are currently being shipped!

And, if that wasn’t enough, wraps are also going to be coming at some point with Berzerk and Vector Pilot themes as well!

(You can see several videos of applying the new wraps onto a Vectrex on the YouTube user Vectrex Wraps' channel, along with photos and information about the Vectrex Wraps/how to order on the official site.)

More D. I. Y. stuff...Edit

A new Y* A* S* I overlay is coming from VectrexMad! Productions! This overlay in particular was created to mimic the overlays used for the original Space Invaders arcade game, what with having strips to make it look like the invaders, bonus saucers, and score were in color. VectrexMad! has been working on it (along with some local printers) for several months as of the time of this writing, along with taking orders for it. If the project is still on schedule, these overlays could be in the shipping process right now! He can be contacted at his site for info and ordering.

Also, on the January 13th entry on the same website, there was a small write-up (along with pictures) about a Vectrex being put into a cocktail arcade cabinet, with nice results.

Helmut Muller is also working on a very extensive Vectrex manual project, preserving the original GCE manuals from back in the day by painstakingly creating high quality PDF files for download. He has currently completed manuals (as of this writing) for Star Castle, Dark Tower, all 3D games (3D Narrow Escape, 3D Mine Storm and 3D Crazy Coaster), and he is currently working on Art Master as well, along with plans to finish the entire GCE catalog!

New videosEdit

Since the last edition of the news, a funny video was posted about odd Vectrex stuff taken out of context from a multicart, seeming spooky (especially with added sound effects), which can be seen from YouTube user TheRetroDemon.

Another YouTube user, pacman80500, put up several Vectrex repair videos, along with sinitration also doing several similar “Vectrex issues” videos. Also, YouTube user Richard Markham put up a 3-D tank demo video of an animation he made on the Vectrex, what appears to be a kind of homebrew multicart video can be seen here, and VectrexRoli was quite busy, making videos of the Madtronix modern day 3D Imager unboxing and a review, along with those being in 3-D AND reviews of several of the Revival Studios slim games as well (all of which can be seen on his channel)!

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