Videomaster Home T.V. Game "Mk III"

This is the third and last version of the Videomaster Home T.V Game. Released in late 1975 as model VM 3, this system used the same circuit board as the Olympic Home T.V. Game (model VM 3-D). Its simpler games only allowed vertical paddle motion with manual serve. The advertisement shown at the bottom was found in the march 1976 issue of Elektor, who already published analog video game construction articles. Our specimen was shipped to its customer on Dec 19th, 1975. The kit included a detailed assembly manual which already had several errata fixed. It was shipped in a brown carton box as pictured below. It is believed that the assembled version of that game was the Olympic Home T.V. Game.

Later in 1976, an add-on circuit, model VM 5, was released. It added sound effects and "follow-me" on-screen scoring (two squares moving step by step each time a point is marked or lost). Additionally, VM 5 flashed the winner's paddle or hole on the screen. Finally, the intelligent design of this kit modulated the sound signals so as to make them sound off the TV set, saving a small speaker that would have not fit into the system. The number of VM 5 kits produced remains unknown and is likely to be small. However, our specimen has its original VM 5 bill showing "Order 310/1838". It is believed that this add-on circuit board was designed after the Videomaster Olympic (model VM 3-D) and Rally (model VM 4). Since no VM 5 advertisement has been found so far, it is also believed that VM5 was advertised by mail to customers who bought an MKIII kit.

Original shipping box

Assembly manual containing very detailed instructions (example on the right)

Unit and its two controllers (vertical paddle motion only)

Inside: discrete components with only 11 chips (version without VM 5 add-on).

Advertisement of the Home T.V. Game Mk III kit
Source: Elektor, march 1976. Click picture for larger view.

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