Click the game marquees below for the game specific pages.
Game #1: In late 2001 I purchased an Atari 720 Degrees arcade game from a local seller via Ebay. I learned from the seller that it had been in a pizza parlor for the past several years. It worked fine electronically and the monitor looked great, but the joystick barely turned and would not line up the skater correctly. The cabinet had several holes, chips and cracks and had been painted completely black at some point. Over the next couple of months I worked to restore it as best I could. Once complete I put up a site dedicated to the restoration. Over time I added gameplay and other aspects of the game to create a comprehensive Atari 720 website.
Game #2: In April 2008 I finally purchased my second game. I picked up an Atari Star wars from another collector. I played this game endlessly in the arcades in the 80ís. Later as a teen I worked in a movie theater which had Star Wars and again played it very often for several years. Thankfully the Star Wars I purchased was in much better condition than my first game, so with only some very small cosmetic upgrades I have as close to a perfect Star Wars as Iíll ever get. See more details on the dedicated Star Wars page.
Game #3: In June 2008 I found my 3rd game. I've actually wanted a Tron longer than any other game. Here is a post to the Usenet from October 1996 when I was first actively looking. Almost 12 years later I finally found a Tron near me on Ebay. Over several weeks I repainted the cabinet, replaced the inner and outer side art, both blacklight covers and capped the monitor. It was otherwise in great shape with a new controll panel overlay, flawless original blue joystick, great monitor shroud, and perfect marquee. Details of the restoration done are on the Tron page. Tron was another of the games I played in the arcades. Once it was removed locally I would make frequent trips up to Disneyland to play Tron in the Starcade.
Game #4: In July 2008 I acquired a dedicated upright Discs of Tron. It needed a new power supply, but is otherwise complete and in great shape. After a long search for a Squawk and Talk board, and much work to get it set up correctly, I was able to add the speech function from the environmental version. I also did several sessions of cleaning and touch-up, as well as some enhancements to the lighting. There's a bit more info in a short video here. In the future I'll add more info to the dedicated Discs of Tron page.
Game #5: I was lucky to pick up a fellow collector and friend's Quantum project in September 2008. The cabinet was completely empty except for the monitor, but along with the deal I got just about everything needed to get the game together. Marquee, speaker assemblies, control panel, new overlay, amplifone boards, trak-ball assembly, a Tempest harness, replacement coin door, monitor glass & bezel. In May 2009 I finally acquired a Quantum PCB. It had some issues and was sent off to Alex Yeckley (Elektron Forge) for repair. While it was being repaired I worked on repairing and assembling the cabinet. I also received a rebuilt ARII board from Francis Mariani to replace the defective one I had. In June I received the working board back and finally have a working Quantum. See more the slideshow on the Quantum Page.
I'm not sure I'd ever admit my arcade is complete (although I'm getting close). As I play other collectors' games and remember my favorites from the past, my want list keeps growing. At some point I'd like all 4 Mortal Kombats in a single MK2 or MK3 dedicated cabinet, an Atari Assault, a shooter like Area 51, possibly a stand-up driver and...... we'll see.
The 720 Zone Garage Arcade as of November 14, 2014
Game #6: In May 2009 I purchased a dedicated 25" Smash TV from long time Colorado collector Jon Jamshid. It was my first experience with shipping a game. It arrived working perfectly and in excellent condition. Smash TV was yet another of the games I played as a teen at the local arcade. The 25" monitor makes it a good neighbor for the 720. Like the other dedicated games in my collection it has a relatively unique control structure, which is why I wanted a dedicated version. Later I obtained a working Total Carnage board and added the ability to switch between the two games in the single cabinet. See the Smash TV Page for more info.
Game #7, brought home in April 2010, is a Pacman cabinet that I fully restored converted to a 60 in 1. I did my best to keep the cabinet as authetic to the original Pacman as possible, but really wanted the ability to play multiple classic games. See many pictures of the progress in the Pacman Album.
Game #8: In May 2011 I picked up a Street Fighter 2: Hyper Fighting. I was a full-on participant in the fighter era arcade resurgence of the early nineties and played a ton of Street Fighter 2. I played lots of Champion Edition and the subsequent bootlegs that came out shortly after. To me, the series peaked with Street Fighter 2: Hyper Fighting when game speed and balance were almost perfectly polished. In my opinion, later SF versions had too many new characters, looked too cartoony, and put too much focus on special graphics and stats associated with the new combo systems. So, I'd wanted to add a Street Fighter 2: Hyper Fighting to my collection for a long time. I finally found a HF edition in a Dynamo HS-9 on Craig's List. Over a few weeks I completely restored the cabinet, and customized the color scheme to loosely follow the Capcom "big-blue" cabinet look. See the full restoration in the Street Fighter 2: Hyper Fighting Album.
Game #9: Iíve had this on my Want List page for many years:
Finally in August 2013 things lined up and I was able to add this game to my collection. Iíve been making good progress toward the goal of a Triple Punch-Out, with Punch Out, Super Punch Out and Arm Wrestling, switchable in a single cabinet. See more on the restoration here: Punch-Out Restoration, and here: Triple Punch-Out Project.
Game # 10: In November of 2014 a Pole Position was added to the garage, satisfying the "stand-up driver" peice that I'd had on my want list for some time. I actually thought I would end up with a newer driving game someday, but after playing so much Pole Position at Grinkfest 2014, I went to the original, classic driver. This is the only cabinet that I've not done any restoration to, it was strictly a "want to play" purchase for me.