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Archive for the ‘Resources’ Category

Willis Donkey Kong cpo

Friday, March 5th, 2010

Here we have the famous, or infamous, Willis Donkey Kong cpo. I think this one went a long way towards creating the bad reputation Willis developed with arcade collectors and its easy to see why.

donkey kong cpo

The original control panel overlay was reverse printed on a thick piece of plexi which made it quite durable but prone to scratching or graffiti. The reproduction was made in the same way Willis made all their products, reverse printed on lexan material with 3M adhesive. (more…)

Bootleg Moon Patrol cpo

Thursday, March 4th, 2010

I’ll be polite and call this one interesting. Someone decided to bootleg a moon patrol control panel overlay, using the reverse screen process, 3M adhesive and die cuts for the buttons and joystick. Unfortunately they neglected the most important part, the artwork.

moon patrol cpo

I’m not sure why so much effort was put into this bootleg, perhaps it was for one of the foreign made knock-off pcb kits that were so popular with some operators. Maybe it was just for a local group of operators that had a half dozen or more Williams Moon Patrols needing fresh overlays. (more…)

NOS Champion Boxing cpo

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

This NOS overlay came with the batch of donated artwork from a fellow collector, check out the original post if you missed it. At first I wasn’t sure what game this cpo was for as I couldn’t find any information about Video Ware, Inc., at the usual sources. I posted a few online inquiries and quickly had an answer.

boxing cpo

The control panel overlay is for Champion Boxing by Video Ware, Inc., licensed by Sega. This game was released in 1983 by Sega, likely in kit form only for conversions. I don’t recall seeing the game on location and considering that Nintendo’s Punch Out was released less than a year later, I imagine Champion Boxing did poorly. (more…)

Bootleg Elevator Action cpo

Tuesday, March 2nd, 2010

Another collector tipped me off about a Willis Elevator Action overlay for sale at the Eldorado Games website. I bought it because I had never seen the Willis version before, only the bootleg Spy Agent version. Well, I still haven’t seen one because this overlay is a bootleg.

EA cpo

How do I know? There are lots of reasons, the first one is that Willis never copied existing work. (more…)

NOS space theme cpo

Monday, March 1st, 2010

Not the most exciting piece, but even boring control panel overlays have a place in arcade history. If you hung out at the arcade back in the late 80’s or early 90’s, you probably saw more than your fair share of generic control panel overlays.

space cpo

This one is a standard space theme overlay, meant to be used with any number of space conversion kits or simply as a cheaper alternative to the pricey OEM* replacement parts. (more…)

Willis Popeye cpo

Sunday, February 28th, 2010

If you haven’t seen it before, this is the Willis version of the Nintendo Popeye control panel overlay. Produced using high quality 3M paper with die cut holes and four or more colors in the silk screening, it was certainly a quality product.

popeye cpo

However, the original was reversed screened on lexan and the artwork was a little more refined than the Willis attempt. I keep thinking about prismacolor markers when I look at the details. (more…)

Big pile of paper and parts from Georgia

Saturday, February 27th, 2010

Fellow collector “Steve23” has been cleaning out his warehouse full of arcade stuff and trimming down his collection. He generously offered to send another batch of arcade paper work and some miscellaneous parts. (Missed the first donation? Check it out here.) Luckily for me he has a customer in the area and was able to piggy back a couple pallets worth of stuff along with a part shipment. I just had to head out to the facility to pick it up. I grabbed an enclosed trailer from Uhaul, which has to be the roughest riding trailer I’ve ever pulled, and headed out. I couldn’t take any pictures at the business, but here is a shot of all the stuff unloaded in my garage.

garage image

I haven’t had a chance to go through every thing, but skimming through the piles there were a couple interesting items. (more…)

Willis Frogger cpo

Monday, January 25th, 2010

OK, simple frog pattern on the right to mimic the original tire tracks, pointing frogs around the joystick to indicate jump direction, got it. But what’s going on with that background? Is that supposed to be pavement or some kind of Rorschach test? I keep staring at it with my eyes a little squinted, hoping the secret message or shape might appear before my eyes.

It does bear the Willis name and even a part no, so there is no doubt that this version is the actual Willis Frogger reproduction overlay. It will hop on over to the archive. Enjoy!

Willis Scramble cpo

Saturday, January 2nd, 2010

Stern did a nice job with the artwork on Scramble, a fun scrolling horizontal shooter. The stainless steel panel, the partially suggestive bezel, stenciled side art and the marquee blend to give the bright yellow cabinet a unified look. While the artists at Willis tried, I think they missed the boat on this replacement overlay. Using the stylized “worms” from the marquee isn’t very original and gives the cpo a flat and boring appearance. Great game, not so great overlay. At least the piece is in excellent shape and will make a good addition to the archive.

Q*bert bootleg CPO

Sunday, December 27th, 2009

When I think about Q*bert, I think distinctive yellow cabinet, hopping orange character and colorful bad guys that might cause the occasional @!#?@! to escape your lips while playing. I certainly don’t think drugged out green guys wearing shades, pink pigs or snakes. Someone did though, as can be seen in this bootleg version of a Q*bert control panel overlay.

While the artwork leaves something to be desired, at least the production quality of the overlay is good. 3M adhesive backed paper and clean die cuts for the buttons and joysticks. There are no markings anywhere on the overlay, so this gets filed under bootleg in the archive. If anyone has more information or has seen one in the wild, drop me a line! Happy gaming.