Vectrex

The Vectrex is an 8-bit video game console developed by General Consumer Electric (GCE) and later bought by Milton Bradley Company. The Vectrex is unique in that it utilized vector graphics drawn on a monitor that was integrated in the console. It was released in November 1982 at a retail price of $199 in the USA. As the video game market declined and then crashed, the Vectrex exited the market in early 1984.

Smith Engineering briefly considered designing a handheld version of the device in 1988, though the success of the Nintendo Game Boy made such a project too risky. In the mid-1990s, Smith Engineering condoned the duplication of the Vectrex system image and cartridges for non-commercial uses and has expressed joy to see that it has still-thriving developer and user communities.

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Unlike other video game consoles which connected to TVs to display raster graphics, the Vectrex included its own monitor which displayed vector graphics. The monochrome Vectrex used screen overlays to give the illusion of color, and also to reduce the severity of the inherent flickering caused by the vector monitor. At the time many of the most popular arcade games used vector displays, and GCE was looking to set themselves apart from the pack by selling high-quality versions of games like Space Wars and Armor Attack. The system even contained a built in game, the Asteroids-like Minestorm.

The cathode ray tube was a Samsung model 240RB40 monochrome unit measuring 9 x 11 inches, displaying a picture of 240mm diagonal. A vector display such as the Vectrex does not require a special tube, and differs only in the control circuits. Rather than use sawtooth waves to divert the internal electron beam in a raster pattern, digital-to-analog converters drove the horizontal and vertical deflection magnets. The high-voltage transformers and tube remained the same as a television. Such technology was already established by arcade games such as Asteroids.

The Vectrex did not have any luminance control, but rather brightness was adjusted by drawing some lines more frequently than others. Screen upgrades were hindered by the cost of redesigning the analog circuits. Likewise it was impossible to connect the Vectrex to a home television.

The two peripherals for the Vectrex were a light pen and 3D imager. Even today there are new games in development by homebrew video game programmers. Also new hardware (for example VecVox, a speech synthesizer) is available.

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Vectrex Controller Boxed

Box: 
yes
£55.00
Manual: 
yes
£55.00

The Official Vectrex Controller. This is an official replacement for the controller that comes built in to the Vectrex console. Can be used as a replacement for the existing controller, or a second controller for two player games. This item is boxed and in good working order.

Stepdown Converter Boxed

Box: 
yes
£15.00
Manual: 
no
£15.00

A stepdown transformer to convert 240V to 110V, allowing imported games consoles to be used with a UK power supply. Can be used with any US or Japanese games console. This stepdown has UK plug connector type so it cannot be used in Europe without an adapter. Items is brand new and boxed.

Vectrex Controller Loose

Box: 
no
£40.00
Manual: 
no
£40.00

The Official Vectrex Controller. This is an official replacement for the controller that comes built in to the Vectrex console. Can be used as a replacement for the existing controller, or a second controller for two player games. This item is loose and in good working order.

Vectrex Console Loose

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Box: 
no
£100.00
Manual: 
no
£100.00

An unboxed Vectrex Console. The Vectrex is an 8-bit video game console that it utilises vector graphics drawn on a monitor that is integrated into the console. Comes complete with built in controller and built in game - Minefield.

Rip Off

Notes: 
Complete with overlay
Box: 
yes
£35.00
Manual: 
yes
£35.00

All the excitement of the real arcade version! Beware of the scavenging pirates trying to steal your precious fuel cells! The more pirates you destroy, the faster their successors become. Guard your tanks carefully. you are always outnumbered!

Blitz

Notes: 
Complete with overlay
Box: 
yes
£35.00
Manual: 
yes
£35.00

Enter the fast tough world of American Football. Experience the excitement of a real game as your team's top player. Run, pass, kick field goals and go all out for a touchdown. Play against the computer's tough defence or invite a visiting player to join in a real showdown.

Soccer Football

Notes: 
Complete with overlay
Box: 
yes
£35.00
Manual: 
yes
£35.00

Take the ultimate soccer challenge... without ever leaving your seat! Play with a friend or tackle the computer in an action-apcked game that takesall the concentration, strategy andsplit second reactions of the real thing! Get ready for thebig match - you're in control!

Solar Quest

Notes: 
Complete with overlay
Box: 
yes
£40.00
Manual: 
yes
£40.00

Destroy them, and then attempt to rescue the survivors before they float into the sun. But don't fly too close to the sun - its high temperature can destroy you.

Starhawk

Notes: 
Complete with overlay
Box: 
yes
£45.00
Manual: 
yes
£45.00

Fasten your setabelt. You're the pilot defending the sovereignty of your planet. Don't blink - you might miss one of the alien vessels.

Web Wars (US)

Notes: 
Complete with overlay
Box: 
yes
£30.00
Manual: 
yes
£30.00

Enter a galaxy of the future filled with adventure and danger - a galaxy unlike and you have imagined before. You are the Hawk King - a creature capable of incredible speed and power - as you attempt to capture the amazing creatures that inhabit the speeding Web of Fantasy. All twenty creatures are protected by guardians and the dreaded Cosmic Dragon and each will become progressively more difficult to capture.

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