UPDATE (Mar-09):720 - 2 1/4" Ribbed Black T-Molding Available: For years the large piece of T-Molding that surrounds the base of the 720 cabinet has eluded collectors. Iíve had a small line about the molding on my want page for at least 7 years. After a considerable amount of work and expense, Chris Rhodes has finally made brand new replacement molding available. Click the picture to the left for a comparison of my old molding to his new product. Itís a perfect match and looks great. Send an email to inquire about purchase: firstname.lastname@example.org - Huge thanks to Chris for allowing us to finally finish our restorations! The 2 1/4" Ribbed Black T-Molding is also used for Major Havoc.
EDIT: I received my molding yesterday. It was well packaged and is perfect.
UPDATE (Mar-09):720 Skate Deck: Arcade and skateboard collector Jeff B. was first to point this out to me. I was later sent links to multiple Ebay sellers listing this board as well as Gowindholz here. There are multiple classic arcade game boards available including Pac-Man, Donkey Kong, Galaga and Dig-Dug. I picked mine up from Gowindholz; it arrived as very fast and will someday have a spot on the wall near my 720.
UPDATE (Dec-08):720 Vinyl Available: Most whoíve restored a 720 have opted to refinish and paint their cabinets, matching the paint as close as possible to the original color. Original 720s were covered with grey vinyl that had a reflective quality. Those looking to restore their 720 as close as possible to original ďfactoryĒ quality, now have another option. Rich Lint at ThisOldGame.com, has finally finished a project to offer pre-cut 720 vinyl pieces. Keep an eye on this KLOV thread for lots of information and pictures. The very highest quality 720 restoration Iíve ever seen (and Iíve seen and played it in person) is Francis Marianiís 720 in the Ataricade. He completely stripped an applied new vinyl, and it looks amazing. While it should be noted that the Vinyl he used is not identical to that supplied by ThisOldGame, the newly available set looks to be great quality.
UPDATE (Oct-08):Side Art Returning: The few vendors who sell 720 art have mostly run out of the awesome side art. It was good to hear that Darin of Phoenix Arcade will be printing off a new batch very soon. More details HERE. I purchased my 720 Boom Box overlay, and a complete set of Tron art from Phoenix. The quality of the product and the customer service are superb.
UPDATE (Oct-08):I get the question: "Where can I get a 720?" enough that I've decided to create a page with the info I usually send back via email. If you're not familiar with arcade game collecting, and thinking of looking for a game, hopefully this this info can help you get started: How to Buy a 720 or Other Arcade Game.
UPDATE (Sep-08):I'm very happy to have some great 720 scoring competition going on. For a moment I was just barely back in 2nd place, but was quickly pushed back to third by a great 470K game by Mike Stephenson . For full details on high score progress, keep an eye on the Twin Galaxies Forums Post: "720 Gamers in the House?" Edit: Back to 3rd place for me!!!
UPDATE (Sep-08):720 Art Reproduction - COMPLETE! - I'm a bit late in posting this, but the final, missing piece of 720 artwork has been reproduced. The "720 the ultimate aerial experience" nameplate decal has been redone by Rich at This Old Game. Thanks to Wade Lanham for donating his NOS decal for the reproduction. The final product is excellent quality. I've installed one on my 720 and am very happy.
UPDATE (Aug-08):Dethroned!!. Iíve been surpassed as the 2nd place 720 record holder. Big congratulations to Mike Stephenson for getting a stellar 720 performance accepted. . Heís officially acknowledged as the 2nd place world record holder, but if youíve read my 720 world record theory, you know Iíd consider him the 1st place ďwith verified settingsĒ record holder. Iíll admit a slight disappointment at seeing my score fall, but Iím thrilled to see more respectable scores being added to the record list. Great job Mike. Time for me to go practice!
UPDATE (Aug-08): NEW 720 Opening Video - I've been asked quite a bit about gameplay videos, and plan on uploading more soon. In the meantime, I've improved on my 720 opening video I'd uploaded previously. I'm up to 14K before the first park and 28K leaving. See the new video HERE.
UPDATE (Jul-08):720 @ CAX 2008 - I attended California Extreme 2008 and played quite a bit of 720. The game represented at the show had a rough joystick, but was otherwise in good shape and was for sale for $650. I managed to put the high score up with 398K. the show also had 720 shirts for sale. See my full show review HERE.
UPDATE (May-08):Iíve finally added the Joystick Help Page. 720ís unique joystick was the source of its distinctive style of gameplay, but also a cause of many problems. Any 720 still in existence has had, or will need, joystick repair and maintenance. Hopefully this page can serve as a resource for 720 collectors looking to get their skater spinning smoothly.
UPDATE (May-08):I've uploaded a short video of my 720 opening and first ramp park. It's a good example of 11K before entering the first park and illustrates the ramp lip trick, further described on this page.
UPDATE (Apr-08):Added a page dedicated to my Star Wars arcade game. There are plenty of Star Wars resources on the internet already, so its just a small single page dedicated to my machine, as opposed to the comprehensive 720 page. Check it out here: My Star Wars Page.
UPDATE (Apr-08):My Collection Doubles! After more than 5 years with just the 720, Iíve finally picked up another game. Iíve wanted to own one of these for 2 decades, and am very fortunate to have picked up a very nice Star Wars. The cabinet and artwork are in great condition, its got a rebuilt Amplifone monitor, a brand new Wintron HV unit and plays great! Iím doing some knit-picky restoration items to get it as close to ďmintĒ as I can, and will post more pics when done.
......but of course, my focus will never stray from 720. SKATE OR DIE!!!
UPDATE (Mar-08):I've finally discovered a long sought after glitch in the game, which could explain some otherwise impossible high scores. See the "Invisibility / No Bees" Glitch page.
UPDATE (Mar-08): 720 Registry - Do you own a 720? Please contribute to the 720 Registry. Email me with your name, game serial number, location, and if possible any other comments or a website or picture link..
UPDATE (Mar-08): Atari 720 Degrees Operatorís Manual - I am adding a direct download of the full Operatorís Manual. Hopefully this will assist those whoíve emailed me with specific repair questions. There are detailed instruction and schematics for the always troublesome joystick assembly on pages 15, 16 and 23. There are also very detailed maintenance and repair procedures, and some game play instruction. Edit: This one was my own scan. I've since become very familiar with the Arcade Archive, which has an amazing number of manuals including the 720 Operator's Manual and Schematic Package.
UPDATE (Mar-08):I was amazed I couldn't find any game-play videos of the coin-op 720 on You Tube, so I've uploaded a full run through on my machine. Unfortunately its simply the video camera over my shoulder while I played. The quality is not all that good, I'm way out of practice and have a lot of room for improvement, but hopefully this video at least takes you back to how it was to play 720 back in the day. Enjoy!
UPDATE: Coming Soon - Atari 720 Degrees Inspired Nike Shoes (Feb-08) - No, I'm not making this up.. Apparently Nike is coming out with several pairs of "tribute" shoes, one of which pays homage to the best arcade game of all time. Click the pic below for more info, or Google: "Nike 720 Shoes". EDIT - These shoes are now available and can be found on Ebay and other internet retailers.
UPDATE(Feb-08): I wanted to thank all of those people who've emailed me with questions, comments on my restoration, game play advice, and especially their own 720 stories and memories. I very much appreciate all of the wonderful feedback. Special thanks to Michael Stanton for providing the original 720 distribution flyer, and www.arcadeflyers.com for the alternate flyer. Click the thumbnails for large, printable versions:
UPDATE(Dec-07):I've recently renewed my interest in 720 and decided to try playing a bit again. It's been several years since I played more than a few seconds of the game, so I'm way out of practice. I'll try to get back into the swing of things, and perhaps get some game play content up. In the meantime I've put up a few pictures of my 720's current home in my garage. Picture 1Picture 2.
UPDATE(Nov-06):It's been a long time since I've updated, or even checked on this page. My email contact info is now up to date. I've moved into a new, larger home, and am hoping to begin my next restoration soon!
UPDATE(Mar-03):I've finally found reproductions of the boom box overlay and "ultimate experience" nameplate. These pieces were the only things I was previously unable to restore. They had been "yellowed" by years exposure to smokey restaurants and general grime. I can now consider my 720 complete. To see how it looked with the old boom box and name-plate click here or see the Before & After section of this site.
SITE LAUNCH(Feb-02): I've finally taken the plunge into arcade game collecting. I've started my collection with one of my all time favorite games: 720. In our early teens my buddies and I would ride our bikes to the local arcade and pump quarters into this machine like crazy. 720's unique control, innovative game play, great music, and awesome "boom-box" style cabinet makes it such an epic game. I always had it in the back of my mind that some day I'd like to own one. In college I looked into the collecting scene a bit, and actually went to a couple auctions. Unfortunately, due to the time and expense involved, and the fact that I was constantly relocating, getting a machine wasn't in the cards. Now I'm a bit more settled, so the time was right!
Locating the game was pretty painless. I began looking on ebay and watching the rec.games.video.arcade.collecting newsgroup for someone selling a 720. I eventually ran across a guy selling one about 90 miles from my home. When no one met the reserve on Ebay, I gave him a call and made an offer. The next Saturday, I drove up, slid it into the van, and brought it home. It was in perfect working order, but like so many of its 80's arcade brethren, was "cosmetically challenged." That's when the restoration began.
UPDATE (Jun-09):720 at Coinopspace.com - The great new collecting community site Coinopspace.com includes game specific groups with links to that game's resources and focused discussion. Be sure to check out the 720 Group. The site also includes tons of resources for creating custom pages with pictures and videos, forums and message boards, contests, and even offers chats with classic game creators.
UPDATE (May-09):720 Monitor Flybacks Available - Arcadecup.com has made available a brand new replacement flyback unit for the wells gardner 25" 25K5515 Medium-Resolution arcade monitor board set used in 720. They are currently selling them via Ebay.
UPDATE (Apr-09):720 - Skate City Map: Iíve added a map of Skate City made with MAME screen captures. Iíd been searching for a map without success for quite a while, so I finally decided to take on the small project myself. Iím hoping this will help plan routes between parks and ultimately aid in finding optimum Skate City scoring routines. For newer players it might help with the layout better than the in-game map. Several size options, including a full size version that matches the actual game pixels, are available. Please check it out on the Downloads Page.
UPDATE (Jun-09):Smash TV added to the collection - Another game I played a ton in the arcades as a teen, and have wanted to own for a long time. Smash TV has some of the best two player cooperative gameplay ever. I've since added Total Carnage to the cabinet and am really enjoying the mayhem. More information on the Smash TV Page.
UPDATE (Jul-09):Jeff's 720 Page has been re-launched as 720 Zone with the dedicated 720zone.com URL. In addition to the design update, changes and additions include: * Strategy & Gameplay - Several updates to the page - including the addition of an Advanced Tactics section. * 720 Media - New page: See and hear gameplay videos and the epic 720 soundtrack and effects. * 720 Zone Arcade- New games, as well as updates to the existing game pages and the main collection page. * Art & Spare Parts - New section of the links page dedicated to available 720 restoration materials. * The 720 Hellcade - New page with the worst 720 pictures. Inspired by Brentradio's Hellcade. * 720 on Ebay - New page tracking past 720 sales on Ebay. * High Score - New page with 720 high score related info for myself and other players. * Creative Team - New page dedicated to the creators of 720. * 720 On Screen - New page intended to report instances of 720 appearing in popular media. * Links - Several additions to the links page, and a restructure into 720 specific, and general arcade links. * Wanted - Updated items on the want list and a design change soon. * News - Several news updates below as I'd held off updating the previous site. Older news is now archived.
UPDATE (Jun-09):Quantum Complete - The 10 month saga included: ** Acquiring an empty cab, repro control panel, CPO & marquee, a Tempest harness and adapter, and a box of Star Wars parts, some 9+ months ago. ** A 6 month search for a PCB that finally yielded a partially working board that was later sent out for repair. ** A bunch of sanding, painting, drilling, cutting, bondoíing, cleaning, etc. ** A 2 day session of assembly and wiring (hack-job) to get everything to work with the Tempest harness and adapter I had, along with some work on the deflection board to take care of some very wavy vectors, but I do finally have a working Quantum in the collection. Check the Quantum Page for more info.
UPDATE (Aug-09):720 Mini Scale Model - Inspired by the tiny paper arcade cabinets on the Papercade site, I decided to try my hand at making a scale model 720. Itís a bit smaller than 1/12th scale, and made of balsa wood, grey construction paper, printed stickers and a few LEDs and batteries which light up the marquee, screen and coin door. Iíve already started on a 2nd model that will be slightly bigger and have many more features. Check out a full slideshow of various stages of creation: 720 Mini Model Flickr Slideshow.
UPDATE (Jul-09):720 at CAEX 2009 - Well, from the 720 perspective this year's California Extreme was unfortunately a bust. The 720 represented at the show looked to be in good shape, and had a relatively smooth joystick. During the early part of the first day of the show, it was powered up and appeared to be working, but the controls were unresponsive. It was set on free-play, but would not start a game. By late in the day it had been turned off. On the bright side, this allowed (forced) me to focus my time on other games I donít often have a chance to play. I heard the 720 may have been working by day 2, but I was not there. In terms of the entire show, one non-working game is a tiny inconvenience in an otherwise awesome event. The show was fantastic again this year. For more on my full show opinion, see my KLOV post here. I do hope to be able to SKATE OR DIE!! at CAEX 2010.
UPDATE (Jul-09):720 - The Restoration - One of my favorite things is seeing a battle scarred 720 reintroduced to the world in like-new condition. Kevin ďKillerKadesĒ has done just that. His month long restoration included dismantling the cabinet, sanding, bondo, paint, art and everything in between. The final result is a pristine 720. Check out the full KLOV thread HERE.
UPDATE (Mar-11):720 Featured in New Book - Sean "Gozer5454" Newton has again made a great contribution to the arcade collecting hobby with the new coffee-table book: Bits, Sticks, and Buttons: The Unofficial Guide to the 50 Greatest Arcade Games. It's chock full of content, including detailed articles covering 50 great games, and general info about the hobby. Personally I'd have put 720 much higher up the list, but I am very flattered to be included in the book and highly recommend it to any arcade enthusiast. Click the image to the right to see the 720 pages, which Sean offered as samples for the site.
UPDATE (Jun-11):Game #8 Added to the 720 Zone Arcade - 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.
UPDATE (Jan-11):Atari 720 Design Drawings - Scott Evans again comes through with some more interesting 720 history. This time it's an original design drawing of Skate City. It's interesting to compare this early version with the final layout. The overall map was done, but notice the early versions of the mini-parks, and the swapped location of the Ramp and Downhill parks. Here is the original thread: Atari 720 Design Drawings, and if you haven't seen it, check out www.Atarigames.com.
UPDATE (Mar-11):720 Room at Nike Event - Back at California Extreme 2010 I heard news of a California arcade reseller being asked to quickly provide a restored 720 to Nike for some sort of sponsorship event. I never heard additional details until a recent Craig's List posting for a 720 game and neon sign lead to news about the Nike ďMotel No TellĒ at the US Open of Surfing last summer. At this event Nike decks out a bunch of rooms to match themes for their shoes; one was 720 and included the neon sign and game that showed up on CL. Click the image to the right for a larger version. It's very cool to see 720 alive and well at recent events.
UPDATE (Jul-10):Game #7 Added - Iíve finally finished a full restoration on a Pacman cabinet which Iíve fully jammatized and made it into a 60-1. The Pacman Plus was completely stripped, refinished, repainted, and stenciled. I originally got into this hobby with the intent of having two or three of my all time favorites in the garage, and that was it. The more I learned, the more I wanted a chance to own and play the classics: Pacman, Donkey Kong, Galaga, CentipedeÖetc. I like original cabinets as opposed to MAME or generic multi-cades, so I picked the most original/classic game I could come up with, hence the Pacman. Itís great to finally be able to play so many of the classics.
UPDATE (Oct-10):720 (zone) at California Extreme 2010 - I'm very late in updating, but I did attend the California Extreme Arcade Expo again this year, and am happy to report that 720 was well represented at the show. I met up with several very good 720 players, and had a couple of great 2 player games. I don't recall the final number, but I believe my best at the show was around 460K (with one additional continue beyond tournament settings). The 720 at the show was in excellent condition. The monitor was beautiful and most importantly, the joystick was absolutely flawless. It was smoother than my current joystick, which is in need of some tuning. After a couple of years of bad luck for 720 at the show (non-working or bad joystick conditions) it was so great to finally have an excellent 720 experience at CAX. Overall the show was a blast once again. I continue to be amazed at the quality and sheer number of classic games available. I had a blast playing Warlords. I always love that Punch Out and Arm Wrestling are available, and I really enjoyed playing the rare vector game, Aztarac. ** Here is a YouTube walkthrough of the entire show - see yours truly playing 720 at 1:10 into the video **
UPDATE (Apr-10):720 Restoration - Check out another great 720 restoration by Jedidentist on KLOV. This very thorough job included full vinyl treatment and all new art. Yet another very beat up 720 brought back to like-new condition. The post includes lots of pictures and commentary. A pristine 720 is now part of Jedi's great collection. Jedidentist's 720 Restoration KLOV Post
UPDATE (Jun-10):More Cool 720 History - Just before the Atari facility in Milpitas closed its doors forever, Scott Evans was able to salvage and store much of the history that would otherwise have been lost. In addition to supplying original art for many of the reproduction Atari pieces available, heís created the site: Atarigames.com, to share what he saved. Check it out for lots of Atari documents, pictures and videos. Heís recently shared a couple of cool 720 related items. First is a video of a full size ramp, and pro skater Steve Caballero inside the Atari facility back in the mid 80s. Their skate sessions were taped as research for the 720 game design. Second is a prototype skateboard attachment for 720 that would allow the player to press the kick button by actually ďkickingĒ on the small skateboard. Needless to say it didnít make it to the final design, but is still a very cool piece of history. ** Atari 720 Skaters at Atari Campus Video ** ** 720 Prototype Skateboard Kick Button **
UPDATE (Mar-10):720 Google Sketchup 3D Model Available for Download - If youíve never used it, Google Sketchup is an extremely powerful, well-designed, 3D modeling program that allows even a novice to quickly learn to model precise 3D models from scratch. There is also a huge library of user created components and models that can be downloaded. A while back I taught myself the program and made a scale model of a demolished movie theater from the original plans. I always had it in my mind that Iíd like to create a 720 model, and was finally motivated by this KLOV thread: New Google Sketchup Arcade Models Here is my sketchup model: Atari 720 Degrees Arcade Game
UPDATE (Jan-10): Gameplay - Itís been a while since Iíve had time to devote to the arcade collecting hobby and to my 720, but I do still find time to play on occasion. Last weekend I got through one full game, scoring in the 420K range - not bad, but way off my personal high. Iím still struggling find the secret of the blue flags; if you have any idea, please contact me. 720 #2 - A few months back I purchased a 2nd 720 locally. It works fine, but is of course in need of cosmetic help. When I get the urge again I plan on doing a full restore. Since doing my 1st 720 in 2002, Iíve learned much more about bringing these old games back to their original glory. Iíve got a full set of reproduction artwork, as well as the newly available vinyl and 2 ľ T-Molding for the base. Iím very happy with my current 720, but have always been bothered by the restoration items I could have done better. Site Update - Iíve added a few more recent sales to the 720 Sales Page. Like everything else, the economy has effected classic arcade game sales. 720 is no exception.
UPDATE (Jan-10):Registry Reminder & 720 Total Production Numbers - If you own a 720, please add it to the registry. My goal has always been to record as many of the 720s still in existence today as possible. According to Atari production numbers, originally saved from the Atari offices by Scott Evans (www.atarigames.com), there were a total of 2,265 units of 720 produced. They were originally priced at $2,995. So based on the serial numbers of our registered 720s, It looks like the original range was: UR01000 to UR03265. We currently have UR01005 and UR03262 registered. With 56 registered as of 1/20/2010, we have just under two and a half percent of the original 720s accounted for. I know there are more out there, so please register.
UPDATE (Mar-10):720 Paper Model Available for Download - For some time a few small paper models of arcade games have been available HERE. Recently a huge number of new models have been made by TM520 and posted on KLOV; 720 is one of the new additions. Thanks much to TM520 and a few others for creating an entire arcade worth of paper models, and especially for adding 720 to the mix. The 720 model, and a picture of one I built after printing on regular notebook paper are to the right. Check out the all of the new models in this KLOV post: New paper arcade models.
UPDATE (Jun-12):720 & MAME - It's been a full year since I've had a chance to update the site. Family, work and other interests have kept my 720 and arcade collecting hobby sidelined but I'm thrilled to have some great 720 news to report.
I've often received questions about playing 720 on MAME. I would generally directly people to J. Stooky's site here: http://jstookey.com/arcade/720/index.php. I knew of a few attempts to create a MAME interface that would mirror the unique 720 joystick experience, but hadn't seen much success until longtime 720 player Rob Arreguin pointed me to Mike Reezy's BYOC post and video of an original 720 controller working perfectly with MAME. Rob was able to duplicate Mike's success of getting the original controller to work, then decided to take the project a step further: He created a complete, custom housing for the Joystick assembly which looks as if it was made at the Atari factory right along side the original cabinet. Rob's USB 720 PROJECT video chronicles the building process with plenty of pictures, then explains the Joystick set-up and shows the unit in action.
I really love seeing current interest and new developments in our favorite 25 year old arcade game. Click the video links below to see Rob and Mike's amazing work: