Jump to content
oldskooler

Castle - 15 mins of fame, unforgotten.

Recommended Posts

Morning everybody, I've probably read everything in the section, with fond memories, and dare I say it, thought I'd might have a quick contribution, and share my hazy recollections, of this brief tech.

 

With a tip of the hat to Cavey..

 

Let me say, I've not played all the Castle machines, Crackerpot, and the club machine being very elusive, but I did play the rest.

 

Late 80's I did the rounds between Liverpool - Southport - New Brighton, and played in most of the arcade in those areas. Southport, was the most interesting, with the biggest arcades, diversity, and there must of been over 20 arcades back in the early 80's.

 

Caesers Palace, was on the main strip (Neville Street), and they had two, a Revolution, and a Tensation. The large LED, screen, was the attraction, sounds where different, seemed taller, and ahead of anything else in the arcade. Reel symbols, where high quality, and well lit. And watching the gameplay, I knew this was going to be dangerous, as I found it very addictive.

 

And it was. There was always something going on, exchanges for feature holds, skill stops, the 20p or £2 exchange. Revolution was very good, with fairly easily skill stops, cash pots, that could be gambled, and a repeat feature afterwards...what more could you ask for?

 

Tensation, was the main pull, with the hint of a £10er with the 1 to 10 cash climb, with ideally the pound or two pound repeater, offered in a way, you thought you had a chance, of guessing the correct window, the win was behind.. Yes it had nothing to do with skill or luck, but you was fooled that it just might. Best streak on this was £5, and I was just hitting the first window each time.

 

The 20p gamble exchange for hi-lo, I had never saw done successfully. Anyone else do it?

 

The Jackpot was not that easily, and always nudges that achieved this. Never gambled to the jackpot, although the cash pot did could fill for the jackpot, or be gambled, once again, I have never seen this done.

 

The cash pot, was an awful feature, never more than a £1, and would wipe out that nice nudge pot you was holding out for. But like I said..there was always something going on to aim for, and it went from 10p a go, to throwing in the pounds, and I could and did lose quite a bit, but all n the name of amusement.

 

Cashbolt for some reason, I played, but would move on to another castle machine, I think there wasn't enough features, and the main feature.."Cashbolt" was a tricky one to complete, for relatively low wins.

 

Drum roll..

 

So this leaves Big 50. This machine with the biggest balls in the arcade. Quite a few in Liverpool started out as £4 jackpot for the bars, but, that was changed quickly to an all cash £2 option. For those who have never seen or played it. The top glass, was lit up with a matrix of 25 £2 notes. So big, it was used to scroll messages in the attract mode. The gameplay was simple. Complete the word "Big Fifty" with overlaid numbers on the reels, and you was offered a yes/no chance to win £2. Get lucky, and it would light one note on the top glass. And it would keep on going until you hit "no" or..the dreaded no credit, where you had to complete repeat feature of yes/no AND THEN continue with yes/no for another note.

 

High rollers where logged on the LED display, with best ever wins, and today's best, similar to Moneybelt / Supatrack from JPM.

 

Personal best was £10, and I witnessed £22.

 

But what happened to these machines?

 

They seemed so popular, different, and must of been good for the operators, but they disappeared, within a few years.

 

Several years later, when ACE, brought out Play It Again, I thought it was a new castle machine, but it was not..well not totally, as I have learnt the tech was warmed over for the SP:Ace platforms?? If this is correct.

 

Anyway, what is other peoples recollections of these machines??

 

Oldskooler.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow Castle machines were amazing, Coral Island in Blackpool had Revolution and Big Fifty, bout 6 of each, along with a circle of Top The Lots and Top Gears, loads of JPM's such as Moneybelt, Supertrack etc, Barcrests were everywhere, Action Notes, All Cash Advance, but the best, ACE's Poundstrecher, bout ten of them.

 

Must have been about 1989, i remember hitting £34 on Big Fifty, never seen a streak that big, paid in 10p's! cashier wouldnt change it up!!! It was an amazing time where u got a good go for your money, and player skill was rewarded rather than today where there is no skill at all, happy times, still visit Coral Island now, but wasnt a patch on the old days.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice write up oldskooler! :) Did you ever play Reel 'Em In?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Nice write up oldskooler! :) Did you ever play Reel 'Em In?

 

No, and I've never heard of it. Was it a Castle machine perchance?!.

 

Thankfully, you have taken on the huge task, of being the sole preserver of these machines.

 

Oldskooler

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here you go, this is the only image I have of Reel 'em In...

 

post-78-0-22556200-1364403468_thumb.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No.. I've never seen or heard of it. Did you ever play it?

 

Oldskooler

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nope, I only realised it existed when I saw that pic, must have been one of the very last ones they made.

 

 

Check this out, I found the old factory building...

post-78-0-46368600-1364472335_thumb.jpg post-78-0-85595600-1364472348_thumb.jpg

 

And how it used to look in 1987...

post-78-0-93698700-1364472353_thumb.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Is that still there in Newark? I've never seen a building with so much asbestos sheeting on it lol.....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

An interesting read Oldskooler. Good to learn more about Castle machines.  Good to see those photos aswell TTX. What I was wondering was how did they go bust. Because as you say there machines did seem ahead of there time. Looking at the article about someone appointed to advice on the awp in Bingo clubs, did they go to much into this at the wrong time instead of keeping it simple with what they were good at. As this would have been well before the decline of arcades.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

An interesting read Oldskooler. Good to learn more about Castle machines.  Good to see those photos aswell TTX. What I was wondering was how did they go bust. Because as you say there machines did seem ahead of there time. Looking at the article about someone appointed to advice on the awp in Bingo clubs, did they go to much into this at the wrong time instead of keeping it simple with what they were good at. As this would have been well before the decline of arcades.

 

They didn't go bust, ACE bought them out just to get the Mach2000 tech, which then evolved into the "sp.ACE" tech. Some of the earlier sp.ACE boards were marked "Mach2000 Version 3 Revision A".

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh right. I suppose that explains the big lcd on machines like Aces Grand National and Twighlight Zone. I must admit those Castle machines always looked way ahead of there time and very playable

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had a CASTLE machine. it had CASH BOLT as one of the features on the LED screen but the machine wasnt called CASH BOLT.

was it MONEY MAKER???? i think that may be it or something like it

 

can you give me a list of names of these . as soon as i read it ill know it. it wasnt revolution. it was after i think

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here goes, games suffixed with * are known to have a Cash Bolt feature...

 

Revolution

Tensation

Cashbolt*

Big Fifty

Cashblaster*

Crackerpot*

Reel 'Em In

Fortunepot*

Ambassador (clubber)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Excellent stuff Oldskooler mate; I thoroughly agree with your assessment. Castle machines were genuinely different and exciting, in great contrast to the (IMO) awful, flat profile MPU4 stuff that was around at that same time. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ahhhhh thank you kind sir.

 

With a little wiping of the rose tinted glasses, just imagine your local arcade, now and how it was 30 years ago (hovis theme in'th background), the talent, and research, that went into every machine, was a lot more diverse, and vibrant. Purely a question of competition, and the never ending goal, of manu's beating each other.

 

Deal or no f**king deal, is all I've seen, in the big boys section, and a glimpse of decent machines, remaining in the £5 section. It's not a question of what people like to play, as Bar X, keeps them coming regardless.

 

As we can all agree, members over 35, can attest, we was spoilt. And now we have a little slice of heaven in our homes, thankfully

 

Eeeee...it wor' grand

 

Oldskooler

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Why are my posts, not in the format I post them??!!..

 

There should be a gap below

 

 

Oldskoler

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 3/26/2013 at 11:40 PM, oldskooler said:

...

Drum roll..

So this leaves Big 50. This machine with the biggest balls in the arcade TTX's front room. Quite a few in Liverpool started out as £4 jackpot for the bars, but, that was changed quickly to an all cash £2 option. For those who have never seen or played it. The top glass, was lit up with a matrix of 25 £2 notes. So big, it was used to scroll messages in the attract mode. The gameplay was simple. Complete the word "Big Fifty" with overlaid numbers on the reels, and you was offered a yes/no chance to win £2. Get lucky, and it would light one note on the top glass. And it would keep on going until you hit "no" or..the dreaded no credit, where you had to complete repeat feature of yes/no AND THEN continue with yes/no for another note.

...

:D:D:D:D:D  Dedicated thread to follow soon!  :D:D:D:D:D

Big50HasArrived.thumb.jpg.1305ba4b40b59a5d9aa7027f78c02dc7.jpg

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

A 6 year old thread, results in something tasty!.  Seek and ye shall find.  Thanks mr TTX..as vibrant as I recall it.

Statto

Edited by oldskooler

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You got it then? 👍😀

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, MikeB said:

You got it then? 👍😀

As the Churchill dog would say, ooooohhhhh yes!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
37 minutes ago, TTX said:

As the Churchill dog would say, ooooohhhhh yes!

Good stuff, Good things come to those and all that! 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's a very long time since I saw one of these - In my local kebab shop about 30(?) years ago. I remember it taking ages to fill up Big Fifty and then I hit it on no and won nothing. I was fucking fuming!!! How can you fill up the feature and not win anything????? :angry:

I tried a good few more times over the coming months and the best I ever got was £8 which was pretty good but I was substantially down on this over the time it was there.

Very glad that you got this and would love to see it emulated. I'd happily thrash a few grand through this and see what I could get it running at percentage-wise.

Well done Tris! :)

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 minutes ago, superbank said:

It's a very long time since I saw one of these - In my local kebab shop about 30(?) years ago. I remember it taking ages to fill up Big Fifty and then I hit it on no and won nothing. I was fucking fuming!!! How can you fill up the feature and not win anything????? :angry:

I tried a good few more times over the coming months and the best I ever got was £8 which was pretty good but I was substantially down on this over the time it was there.

Very glad that you got this and would love to see it emulated. I'd happily thrash a few grand through this and see what I could get it running at percentage-wise.

Well done Tris! :)

 

Cheers, Graham! :) I did a classic layout back in 2016...

 

 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

×