Sunday, 19 December 2021

The unreleased Odyssey model, the YD7001!

 Hi folks,

As i am in touch with Nicholas Broetzman (long time collector friend) these days, he was telling me that Zack Horton (OdysseyNow) has a better picture of the unreleased "Ski Festival" and will eventually release it in a future pack, but also we were talking about the unreleased Odyssey model, the YD7001.

I don't know if some of you remembers that i did slightly talked about it here on this blog but kept this information for another time, well since i fell awful to suspend the OdySim, it is now finally time to reveal this historical information. I did tell that the picture of this model was already floating around the web for quite some years now (at least 15 years) but NOBODY suspected that this picture was indeed the unknown unreleased YD7001 model:

 Even Mr.Baer himself think he didn't knew about this unreleased model as it is also figured in his book: "Videogames: in the beginning"on page.76 (see fig.68). If he knew, why he haven't talked about it in his book ? Same as David Winter Pong-Story website (https://www.pong-story.com/odypics.htm#ody1), if you check out the link, it's the first picture showed. No mention that it's was the YD7001 model. 

You can also add these websites: 

* https://bamgameonline.com/the-magnavox-odyssey/

* https://thedoteaters.com/?attachement_id=9322

* https://thenvm.org/objects/magnavox-odyssey/

Heck...even the National Videogame Museum which is run by Joe Santulli, John Hardi & Sean Kelly has no mention that the picture is in fact the YD7001. 

Well, even myself didn't know about the YD7001 before 2012 and i have to thanks Nicholas Broetzman has he sent me these pictures:




Yes! You are seeing right! Magnavox was going to sell two models of the Odyssey! The one on the top is the YD7001 which was going to be sold at the price of $69.95 and the one on the bottom is the "Deluxe" version (aka the ITL200) and was going t be sold at the price of $99.95.

The YD7001 itself is the same thing as the ITL200 but instead of white, it was beige and the top of it was brown instead of black. Same as both controllers, they are beige and the cords are about half the length. Also, the YD7001 came with 4 game cards instead of six and came with overlays and accessories for 7 games: Table Tennis, Tennis, Hockey, Submarine, Cat and Mouse, Analogic and Simon Says.

Games available separately for the YD7001 were:
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
- Football (YD7124)                - NO CART INCLUDED       cart 3-4
- Ski Festival (YD7172)            - HAS CART               cart 2 (and 2 diff. overlays)
- Haunted House (YD7173)           - NO CART INCLUDED       cart 4
- Roulette (YD7174)                - HAS CART               cart 6
- States (YD7301)                  - NO CART INCLUDED       cart 6
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
- Baseball (ITL700)                - NO CART INCLUDED       cart 3
- Wipeout! (ITL800)                - NO CART INCLUDED       cart 5
- Fun Zoo (ITL900)                 - NO CART INCLUDED       cart 2
- Interplanetary Voyage (YD7175)   - HAS CART               cart 12
- Brain Wave (YD7176)              - NO CART INCLUDED       cart 3
- W.I.N. (YD7302)                  - NO CART INCLUDED       cart 4
---------------------------------------------------------------------------


And games NOT available for the YD7001 were:
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
- Handball (ITL701)                - HAS CART               cart 8     
- Volleyball (ITL702)              - HAS CART               cart 7
- Invasion (ITL801)                - NO CART INCLUDED       cart 4-5-6
- Basketball (YD7123)              - HAS CART               cart 3
--------------------------------------------------------------------------

So a HUGE thanks goes to Nicholas Broetzman for sending me the 3 pictures of the ad/flyer. It's people like him (as many others) that we are preserving the history of video games! ;)

Monday, 13 December 2021

... game over ?!

 Hi folks,

It is with regrets that i have finally decided to stop any new updates for the OdySim until further notice. With what happened this summer (see previous post) and the damn pandemic that won't quit which affects us all in a way or another, finally has taken it's toll. Due to personal problems (health in the past and now economics), i have now 2 jobs so that i pay up the bills and all and a father of two kids, that doesn't leave me with a lot of spare time.

Also, with Zach Horton and his students (OdysseyNow), how can i compete with a bunch of people, a good budget and a top-notch laboratory with 3d printers and all ? Me vs. them, it's a total knock-out! I have NO budget, almost NO spare time, a simple printer and a 8 years rebuilt old computer. Simple to say, it's like a snack bar vs. McDonald just to make a comparison. So i'll be posting/uploading all my source codes of the OdySim by the end of this year on my Archive Library.

I'm not saying good-bye forever for the OdySim, it's that it's difficult to update/maintain a project when you have almost no time to spare. But for now, let's say the OdySim is on "pause" for many months. Maybe the OdysseyNow team could pick up where i left ? And i could help out from time to time. That would be so nice as i still have a lot of ideas and unreleased games. ;)

So thanks to everybody who supported the OdySim (comments, suggestions, bugs, etc) but it is time to leave it in other capable hands (and of course, imagination).

I will not close this blog as i wanted to post some upgrades, mods and hacks so starting next year, this blog will be hosting "Tweaking the Odyssey" and i can't promise that i will post often but will post whenever i can in between work and life.

So have a Happy Xmas everyone and a great 2022! =)

- Sly DC -

Thursday, 1 July 2021

It had to happened...

 Hi folks,

Well this post is gonna be short and sweet as my computer totally crashed (for the ? time) and i mean crashed as before i threw it away by throwing it as far as i can with my right arm (think i may have broken the world records for throwing a desktop computer ** if that exists **) as Sunday my $%"! of computer has tested my patience to it's last drop.

After having so many lags and "not responding" over the last three months, it has displayed 3 times the infamous "blue screen of death" in less than an hour, so i retired it for good (permanently) but not before i pulled out all the hard disks, video card, ram, etc. so the rest of the carcass was good to throw (literally!!....MOUHAHAHAhahahah!!!!!!).

Since i still have a few (old) computer parts, i've built one so i could at least surf (surf ? who the heck says that now ??) on the net.By chance, all the data for the OdySim is preserved but it will take some time before i can retrieve it and re-install all the software so in the meantime, enjoy summer folks! ;)

- Sly -

Sunday, 30 May 2021

Go get your U.S. Mint 2021 $1 New Hampshire edition!!

 Hi folks!

Yes i'm still alive, even after 4 months without posting, updates, replies, etc... and what better to announce that the U.S. Mint will be selling their new 2021 American Innovation® $1 Coin Program.

 Errr..what's this have to do with OdySim/Odyssey ? Well because this year, the U.S. Mint is offering a specific state which is New Hampshire and who lived in New Hampshire for many years and is the Godfather of all game consoles ? Well, check this out:


Yup! You are seeing right! Check out the description on the U.S. Mint web site:

"American Innovation – New Hampshire
Designer: Christina Hess
Sculptor-Engraver: Eric David Custer
The New Hampshire $1 Coin recognizes Ralph Baer and his creation of the first home video game console. This design depicts Ralph Baer’s brown box game “Handball” on the right side of the coin. The left side of the coin features “New Hampshire” and “Player 1” on an incused background. “IN HOME VIDEO GAME SYSTEM” and “RALPH BAER” encircle the outside of the coin in a text that is meant to pay homage to Ralph Baer’s Odyssey game. The design of the coin is also symbolic of an arcade token."

You can read all about it "HERE" and check the pictures of the coin "HERE".

Just to say, since i'm not a resident of the U.S., the next best thing was to order 3 of them from Ebay, which will be sold by June 15, 2021 so i you're not an U.S. resident then i strongly advise that either you ask someone in the U.S. to buy one (family, friend(s), etc) or pre-order them. As for me, i have already paid (in pre-order) from an Ebay seller. 

Can't wait to add these in my Magnavox Odyssey collection! 

Until the next post (which will be wwwaayyy sooner), take care folks! =)

--- Sly (was lost in the multiverse) DC ---

Monday, 25 January 2021

Miscellaneous Overlays

 Hi folks!

Before talking and showing misc. overlays, just wanted to say that i'm still working on the new version of OdySim. Since last time, i finally was able to code an Xbox 360 controller (actually, two) to be played either the D-Pad or the left stick for directions and the Y & A buttons for the English. Next is coding the right stick for the English so you can choose either Y/A buttons or the right stick.

Second, i have in my database a Czech Odyssey clone which figured in a magazine in 1977, but when looking at the schematics and block diagrams you see it pretty much based on the Odyssey. I'm still in the process of translating the eight pages and since they are in a low resolution, i can't OCR them so i have to type all the text and translate with the help of Google Translate. More on this later on...

OK now on the subject: Miscellaneous overlays!

In the past 25 years or so, i have collected a lot of information regarding video game consoles/systems but especially the first and second generations, and today i wanted to talk and show some misc. overlays i have seen over the years. Let's stars with the web site: Classic Videogame Station Odyssey. This Japanese web site is one of the oldest i know that talks about all the game consoles/systems released in Japan which started in 1996 on the web (heck! the same year i started "surfing" on the web) and has the biggest list of all consoles/systems released in Japan.

But if you check out their "Brown Box" section, click on "Game" in the bottom of the page or simply click "HERE". About in the middle of the page there is two overlays that stands-out:


 The first one is "Maze" which was one of the games that was played in earlier version of the Odyssey (TV Games Units: TVG #1 to #8) and the second is "Ski" which the web site made a variation of the released game. I already made a homebrew maze-type game way before started the OdySim project so i think i'll add their maze version with mine in a near future. And i'll also include their Ski version with the new release of Ski which will be pretty soon.

Now the next one:

Now this "Ski" variation was made in 2013 which i find very cool but i don't have the full name of the person who designed it (Christine). You can check out the blog  in about the middle of the page and titled "A Videogame With/out Rules". And i'm also adding this one to the next version of Ski.

Now the magazine "Radiorama" (January 1977 edition) which is a electronic magazine that was published in Italy had this cover:

When i saw this at first, i thought they were going to talk about the GBC Odissea since this clone was released in Italy and the magazine is published in the same country, but no... it's part of a reprint from the magazine "Popular Electronics - April 1976" which has the Pongtronic and Space War TV games to build yourself.

But this is strange as the cover has the "Table Tennis" game with white background, a blue wall and two red spots plus the "Volleyball" overlay with both "boxes" in the upper section and a pink "Roulette" overlay but that was for the DIY electronic roulette game in the magazine. The best is the red "Dogfight" variation as i'll add this one with "Dogfight" in the next release.

And the last variation is one from the book called "Videogames" by Len Buckwalter which is another "Ski" variation called "Olympic Ski Trails" which you can see on page 110:

It shows even how do it yourself this overlay from page 103 to 111 and the best is that they (Len and his wife) uses a Magnavox Odyssey 200 to play with the overlay (lol!)

 Well, that's it for the miscellaneous overlays. If you know other overlay variations, please do let me know but no color variations please (example the Table Tennis above). 

So until next, take care! :)

- Sly -


Sunday, 3 January 2021

Happy (late) New Year + first news update of 2021

 Hi folks!

First, let me wish you a late Happy New Year and all the health to you, family and friends! Hoping that this year will be better than the crappy one we just had ;)

Second, i'm still working on the newest version the OdySim with LÖVE (0.11.3) and upgrading some few things and trying to do the games without bugs (yep...trying!) as i'm updating two games at the same time (Tennis & Table Tennis) as both are practically the same.

As now, i have arrange the scoring for Table Tennis as the ball now starts on the right side of the screen instead in the middle of the screen (same for Tennis) and when you press the reset button on Player 1 or 2, it doesn't add a point to the adversary so finally the scoring is fixed.

The AI which is implanted on certain games (Tennis, Hockey, Handball, etc) and wasn't working when i was doing some changes but now, this is also fixed and found that the AI in the previous version (0.10.1) wasn't able to display the ball speed on screen because that specific code was deleted! And nobody (even me) saw this! LOL!!!

 As you can see in the above picture, we can now view the AI speed (when the AI is activated) in the upper-right corner by pressing the button "F3". If you press "F2" then we can view the status of the Ball Speed in the down-right corner.

Now one of the new option is plugging generic USB gamepads or joysticks (also tried out an Xbox 360 controller and it works) and can view how many gamepad/joystick are detected (0, 1 or 2) in the down-left corner. And i have changed the "pause" feature as now says "pause" in bright red in the middle of the screen instead of a full light dark screen.

Oh and i also added a "reset score" by pressing the "backspace" button so no need to reboot the game!

Table Tennis has now also the CRT shader:

 And added a new overlay:

Yep! Game Boy-style! (for different effect and specially for fun!)

And lastly, here's a video to see the boot/splash screen in action!

 It's way better to see it with your own eyes than on video. So that's it for now folks. Now i need to plug an Odyssey to see some interactions (inbox collision, English, verifying Ball Speed (lowest and highest), and more to be able to make a better simulator.

So until next folks, take care! =)

- Sly -




Friday, 25 December 2020

Xmas News updates

 Hi again folks,

I wanted to show & tell some updates/improvements i have made for the new version of Tennis (0.11.3). 

First, the intro splash screen which fades in and out:

 As per suggestion from JDGP030302, i have added a "memory" code so when the ball leaves the screen left or right, it will return at the same "X & Y" position and also added a cleaner "beep" sound (many thanks to JDGP030302 for the cleaned wav!).

Added a CRT (Cathode Ray Tube) shader which gives an old TV screen look (by pressing F10):


Added the Videojuel overlay:

 And added two USB gamepads but for now you need to plug two USB gamepads to play with them because if only one is connected it won't work (to why, i don't know...). Because at first, when i was plugging only one USB gamepad, the game worked but freezed when no gamepad was connected. At least now we can use both keyboard and two gamepads but not the keyboard and one gamepad. 

I'll check that out later as there is more improvements to add like a reset button for resetting the score and make two kinds of score for Tennis : regular (as the one it has already (by default)) or the real one: 0-15-30-40-etc... (like in real Tennis). Better ball speed as the one coded in OdySim is way to slow (when at speed 05) or way to fast (speed 1000). Add joystick "sticks" for near-real controller simulation (just got the D-pad and buttons coded for now), etc...

So in the meantime, enjoy the little gift in the previous post and take care folks! :)

- Sly -