I finished off my last post stating that I probably wouldn’t be able to wait until the end of September to do the next post… well, here we are.
I was super excited about the final delivery that I teased in my last post as it’s something I’ve been hunting for a long time (not as long as some members of the community, but long for me!). In my quest for all things Nintendo and my aim to unearth as much of the history of Nintendo’s entry into the arcade world, I was taken in with the Sky Skipper project. An unreleased game (in arcade form) that was play tested by Nintendo in the early 80’s, but never managed a full release. Many collectors have hunted for this game over the years and the game has recently been discovered and brought back to it’s former glory. Now I’ve played the game, and I sort of understand why it never made it into a full release. It feels a little complicated and “all over the place”, when majority of the games around at the time were very linear. Despite this, I knew I needed one for my collection, but so did every Nintendo enthusiast!
After many months of hunting (and many failed attempts at convincing other discoverers to sell me theirs!) I found an auction listing in Japan for a part working Popeye board. I knew that the TNX boards were converted to Popeye and I’m sure I remembered something about the board not inverting colours like all other Nintendo boards (this was one of the main faults listed…). After a frantic few hours and lots of deposits of Yen into my Japan Auctions site, the board was mine! I anxiously awaited the notifications of delivery from the forwarding company in Japan and then paid the necessary shipping to get it over here.
After a rather hefty “ransom” paid to ParcelForce, the boardset was in my hands:
The boardset looks in great, clean condition and even came with a copy of the TPP1 cocktail manual (where I believe a lot of these board sets have been found in Japan).
Unfortunately, I have spent so long trying to find this boardset, that I’ve missed out on getting added to the important list of 12. This means I won’t be able to get the necessary artwork to build a Sky Skipper upright cabinet, but I’m currently looking at options of possibly building a cocktail version…
That’s enough now about Sky Skipper, let me cover the rest of the purchases.
Now I mentioned in my last post that I’d agreed to purchase a Sheriff cocktail from another collector. It was listed as pretty much complete aside from a PCB. I picked this cocktail up this last weekend and it became apparent that this cocktail had had a rough life! Everything looked good from the outside, but once I started looking deeper, things started looking less “good”. Now I knew the control panels had been “altered” to accommodate third part joysticks, which had results in holes being drilled through the control panels (*sobs*), but when I turned them over, the wiring looms were mostly missing and a number of brackets that held switches (also missing) in place:
I have a bag labelled “SHERIFF LOOM” as well, but whilst it contains a number of cables with Nintendo connectors, it also contains other wiring that I have no idea what it belongs to:
Now at this point, I think I would have felt as if I’d made a mistake (as there’s no way I can bring this Sheriff back to it’s former glory, mainly due to the number of missing pieces of the puzzle), but as luck would have it, another Sheriff cocktail appeared for sale and I immediately got in contact with the seller and arranged to collect it.
This cocktail again was missing the PCB and again had had a hard life. The main driver for this purchase was the ID tag on the cocktail:
This was a UK released Sheriff cocktail and from the pictures I had, despite being modified to accommodate a PC running MAME, was in really nice condition:
I picked this up on the same trip as both were down South. Myself and a good friend and fellow collector (Paul M) made the trip and collected both cocktails in one journey (Yorkshire > Southampton > South London > Yorkshire). It was a great trip and it still amazes me the people you bump into in this hobby (the second Sheriff cocktail was purchased from the guy who hit headlines last year for being the first person to complete Pokemon Go in the UK…).
Now my plan is to make one nice Sheriff out of these two cocktails, but more parts will be required.
I think that pretty much covers off my purchases for the last two months. Three big long road trips (Yorkshire > South Wales, Yorkshire > Reading and Yorkshire > Southampton) resulted in the collection of four Nintendo cocktails and lots of fun