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Vtech 3D Gamate (1983)
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Alex
Mattel Football


Joined: 06 Oct 2013
Last Visit: 31 Oct 2017
Posts: 13
Location: Barcelona

PostPosted: Mon Oct 21, 2013 2:24 pm    Post subject: Vtech 3D Gamate (1983) Reply with quote

Hello!
A few months ago I received two rare Vtech 3D Gamate. It is a very cool handheld game I've never seen before. Actually, I can't find info anywhere.
Some cool facts about it:
- The system was created in 1983 and I am pretty sure is the first cartridge-based 3D handheld game system.
- It was released a year before the Vtech ProScreen and it has the 3 same games. It's box shows 3 other games but I think they were never released.
- It was created in Hong Kong but probably was only released in Europe (the box features english, spanish, french and german languages)
I just created a tumblr that features some pictures and videos (I bought two broken systems but one is almost repaired) Rik, you can use them for the museum!

Enjoy:
http://3dgamate.tumblr.com

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blanka
Atari Cosmos


Joined: 14 Dec 2010
Last Visit: 20 Jan 2018
Posts: 519
Location: Eindhoven, the Netherlands

PostPosted: Tue Oct 22, 2013 2:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cool system. Pretty huge or not?
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Alex
Mattel Football


Joined: 06 Oct 2013
Last Visit: 31 Oct 2017
Posts: 13
Location: Barcelona

PostPosted: Wed Oct 23, 2013 3:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Blanka!
The size of the 3D Gamate is similar to the Tomy/Tomytronic 3D games.
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blanka
Atari Cosmos


Joined: 14 Dec 2010
Last Visit: 20 Jan 2018
Posts: 519
Location: Eindhoven, the Netherlands

PostPosted: Wed Oct 23, 2013 3:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sure, dumb of me. I was imagining size based on the D-pad, but the eye cups are a better indication off course. Does that mean the Pro-Screen is not so big either (same d-pad)?
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Alex
Mattel Football


Joined: 06 Oct 2013
Last Visit: 31 Oct 2017
Posts: 13
Location: Barcelona

PostPosted: Thu Oct 24, 2013 3:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Pro-Screen is much bigger. I will show you a picture of both as soon as I can so you can compare!
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woolfman
Entex Crazy Climber


Joined: 12 Aug 2008
Last Visit: 27 Apr 2016
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Location: AUSTRIA

PostPosted: Thu Oct 24, 2013 10:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cool!

Where did you find it?
_________________
Regards,
Wolf

*** since 8/8/2013 lucky owner of VTech ProScreen NCMIB ***
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Alex
Mattel Football


Joined: 06 Oct 2013
Last Visit: 31 Oct 2017
Posts: 13
Location: Barcelona

PostPosted: Thu Oct 24, 2013 2:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello!
Both systems have the same D-pad but as you can see in the picture, the ProScreen is much bigger.

Woolfman, I bought them to a private collector in Spain.


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blanka
Atari Cosmos


Joined: 14 Dec 2010
Last Visit: 20 Jan 2018
Posts: 519
Location: Eindhoven, the Netherlands

PostPosted: Thu Oct 24, 2013 10:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, but I thought it was humongous. The Pro Screen is like a normal table-top size. I thought it was like 60cm long.
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MADrigal
Gakken Dig Dug


Joined: 20 Mar 2008
Last Visit: 24 Dec 2017
Posts: 190
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Wed Dec 04, 2013 12:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It is an incredible finding!
I am quite an expert on VTech games, but I really missed this one.
I have a question for you: would you kindly tell me:

- which code is printed on one of the box "flaps"? similar to 90-xxxx-yy

- which codes are printed on the cartridge blisters? similar to 95-xxxx-yy

- which codes are printed on the last page of game manuals? similar to 91-xxxx-yy

- is the "includes Formula 500" writing a STICKER on the box, or is it PRINTED on it? does this mean that the 2 boxes are different?

- in such case, please tell me BOTH codes printed on the "flaps", they would be different.

thanks!
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Alex
Mattel Football


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Location: Barcelona

PostPosted: Fri Jan 03, 2014 2:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dear Madrigal,
Sorry my answer took so long!
Here's the codes you are asking for:

- Gamate 3D Box flaps code: 90-0185-00
- Gamate 3D Manual: 91-0187-00
- Cartridge blister: 95-0128-02 (Escape Game Cartridge)
- Cartridge Manual: 90-0190-00 (Escape Game Cartridge)
- The "includes formula 500" is printed on the box so both boxes are exactly the same.

This codes show that this system was created before the Pro-Screen, so I think the 3 games, which are the same in both systems, were first released for the 3D Gamate.

If you need anything else, just ask!

Alex
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MADrigal
Gakken Dig Dug


Joined: 20 Mar 2008
Last Visit: 24 Dec 2017
Posts: 190
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Fri Jan 03, 2014 3:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks much for the kind reply!!

> - Gamate 3D Box flaps code: 90-0185-00

OK!


> - Gamate 3D Manual: 91-0187-00

is that the console manual, or the manual for the game?


> - Cartridge blister: 95-0128-02 (Escape Game Cartridge)

OK!


> - Cartridge Manual: 90-0190-00 (Escape Game Cartridge)

Are you sure it's 90-x instead of 91-x?

question: what's the code for the Formula 500 manual?


> - The "includes formula 500" is printed on the box so both
> boxes are exactly the same.

mmm how is this possible? is it a printing? in such case, box codes must be different - one per each game. please check, thanks!


One last question: what about the copyright year printed on:
- game
- manuals
- boxes ?

Is it always 1983, or 1984 too?
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Alex
Mattel Football


Joined: 06 Oct 2013
Last Visit: 31 Oct 2017
Posts: 13
Location: Barcelona

PostPosted: Fri Jan 03, 2014 3:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello again!

- It is actually the console manual. I don't own the manual for the Formula 500 game.

You can check it here:
http://25.media.tumblr.com/897.....1_1280.jpg

If you haven't seen the tumblr I created for the system:
http://3dgamate.tumblr.com/

- The code for the cartridge is 91-x! Sorry for the mistake.

- Both boxes have the "includes Formula 500" printed (It's not a sticker, like in some Vtech ProScreen boxes, it's just part of the graphic design of the box) and are exactly the same, with the same code.

- About copyright:

3D Gamate:
- Game System:Patent Pending. 1983 VTL.
- Boxes: 1983 VTL.
- Manual: 1983 VTL.
- Cartridge Manual: 1983 VTL.
- Cartridges (printed on the cartridge sticker): 1983 VTL. Patent Pending.

ProScreen (VTECH/ VTL Version)

- I don't own the manual of the game system and the box doesn't show any copyright.

- The 3 games boxes and manuals show this copyright: 1984.

- And the curious thing is that, the copyright printed in the game system is @1983
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MADrigal
Gakken Dig Dug


Joined: 20 Mar 2008
Last Visit: 24 Dec 2017
Posts: 190
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Fri Jan 03, 2014 4:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

OK this is the info I collected about Gamate 3D

- release year 1983 (stated on game, box and manuals)
- box with "Formula 500" printing: 90-0185-00
- console manual: 91-0187-00
- Escape game manual: 91-0190-00
- Escape game cardboard: 95-0128-02 ("-02" means that there are more around!)

Info missing:
- Formula game manual: 91-xxxx-yy


About Pro-screen: do you have games on cartridge, sold in specific boxes? Would you send me details of each box and manual, like:
- box code for each cartridge
- manual code for each cartridge
- year: all of them are 1984, right?

Thanks!

PS please reply my private message and send me an email, I'll send you my current VTech codes database.
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blanka
Atari Cosmos


Joined: 14 Dec 2010
Last Visit: 20 Jan 2018
Posts: 519
Location: Eindhoven, the Netherlands

PostPosted: Fri Jan 03, 2014 11:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you want to be really sure about the production dates, checking component numbers is the most reliable. We all know the Coleco table tops that show way-off dates on boxes and art-work (and thus flooding the internet with wrong information).

Problem with VTL though, is that most of their MCU's are not having regular DIP or FP packages with printed numbers, but the round dot of epoxy to cover the chip on the logic board directly and LCD screens often lack production information.
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Rik
Site Admin


Joined: 07 Oct 2005
Last Visit: 16 Jan 2018
Posts: 1857
Location: California

PostPosted: Fri Jan 03, 2014 12:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, that's just a general problem with most of these games. They obtain a copyright, and then design/test/market the game. Frequently it's off by a year, sometimes two. Like most of the Coleco handhelds were actually initially released in 82/83, but their copyrights are 81/82.

But if they were in production for more than a year, the component dates will no longer be accurate either. Coleco made Pac-Man (and most of the mini-arcades) for at least 3 years, so there will be components from 1981-1984 in them. Components could have also been manufactured far in advance of the release of the game too... Short of having company records reflecting exactly when these left the plant and went to stores, it's mostly just guess-work (although well-educated guess work at least). As long as the copyright is actually the copyright for the handheld game (and not the game being licensed if it's a licensed game), that's generally the best information we have.

Catalogs (either stores or corporate catalogs/flyers) are very helpful too. If the catalog actually says 'New for 1983' or something, then we can be reasonably sure that was the release year regardless of what the copyrights or components show.
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