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Astrocade - "The Professional Arcade" (Commercial, 1982)

Here's a commercial for another game system that never really got off the ground - the Bally Astrocade. I remember I got one of these years ago at a flea market and it had the most awkward controllers I've ever used. "The Professional Arcade" - for those times you want to do your serious business next to a pac-man machine.

Available at:

Team Electronic's - Algonquin, Illinois
Polk Brothers - Chicago, Illlinois

"Available Soon"

This aired on local Chicago TV on Sunday, June 20th 1982.

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This clip aired on Sunday, June 20th 1982, and is included in the following categories:

Viewer Comments

I think the only thing it was good for was a prop for various movies and TV. shows back in the '80's (like "National Lampoon's Vacation"...Russ, don't eat the truckster!).

Never really knew anyone that had this system.

Comment posted by armitagenlowell on Thursday, October 2nd 2008 at 12:15pm.

You can check out the Astrocade and other old home video games at Atari2600.com
Comment posted by Bertonator on Wednesday, October 8th 2008 at 8:41pm.

I wonder why they had to (or decided to) call it the "Incredible Wizard" instead of "Wizard of Wor", which was the actual game name, and what it was called on every other machine.
Comment posted by afdave on Thursday, August 12th 2010 at 8:06am.

It was probably a rip-off or something. Maybe they didn't want to pay the licensing fees or weren't allowed to license it for whatever reason. Perhaps the Astrocade programmers had already started working on the game, anticipating the licensing, but then didn't get it and they didn't want the game to go to waste.
Comment posted by FuzzyMemories on Thursday, August 12th 2010 at 10:29am.

Man that was a great scene, Armitage. :-D
Comment posted by Pete on Thursday, August 12th 2010 at 11:36am.

Actually Fuzzy, I found at least one site that claimed it was licensed (although, maybe they just assumed that). Another thing might be they thought "Wizard of Wor" was just a "weird" name, and thought "Incredible Wizard" would sell better. Shenanigans on that I say! ;)
Comment posted by afdave on Thursday, August 12th 2010 at 11:55am.

I can't believe that the name cache' of "Wizard of Wor" wasn't enough for them no matter how strange they might have thought it was. Game systems were often sold to the public on whether they had the arcade hits or not, so I can't believe they wouldn't take advantage of this.
Comment posted by FuzzyMemories on Thursday, August 12th 2010 at 2:18pm.

Commercials for video game consoles remind me of a televlsion game I once saw in the mid-'80s. It was called 'Starcade' on Channel 60. Bascially its a game show where contestants play various video games to get a certain score before time runs out.
Comment posted by Loyal32Fan on Thursday, August 12th 2010 at 8:36pm.

I loved Starcade. I remember watching it on TBS.
Comment posted by Smctopia on Friday, August 13th 2010 at 7:20am.

The creators of Starcade have a website... starcade.tv, which has a LOT of clips from the original show. Good stuff.
Comment posted by afdave on Friday, August 13th 2010 at 7:30am.

Further update, I asked on the Twin Galaxies board, nobody has a definitive answer yet on "Incredible Wizard" vs. "Wizard of Wor", although they have a link to a typed up version of the manual that clearly shows it was licensed to Bally:

http://forums.twingalaxies.com/viewtopic.php?f=49&t=23558

Comment posted by afdave on Sunday, August 15th 2010 at 6:53am.

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This clip has been viewed 3984 times.
This clip debuted on FuzzyMemories.TV on Thursday, October 2nd 2008.
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William Zbaren is still around; he's now an architectural photographer:
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Recent photo (on the left):
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