September 11, 2012
In Gadgets, Retro Makes a Comeback
Mark Anderson, IEEE Spectrum
For those who want to go even further back in time, plenty of early arcade games in their original cabinets are available on eBay and sites like the Vintage Arcade Superstore. Although it’s possible, with emulators such as the Multiple Arcade Machine Emulator, or MAME, to run the actual code of classic titles like Asteroids and Space Invaders on modern personal computers, the original software was designed hand in hand with the cabinets and controllers. (The truly ambitious can travel down the path trod by IEEE Spectrum contributing editor Paul Wallich in his July 2011 article, “Building Your Own Arcade Game.”) Games like Missile Command, Battlezone, and Spy Hunter had one-of-a-kind features like outsize trackballs, unusual screen arrangements, or gearshift levers,...