Zaps: Retro Arcade Bar
Retro Arcade Bar | Coming to Bournemouth in 2018

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Pac-Man plays hard-to-get

We had to have an original Pac-Man cab. Not because it's the best version of Pac-Man (it isn't, MS. Pac-Man trumps it, so we'll need one of those too), but because it's one of those arcade icons that has securely munched it's way into cultural immortality.

 Pac-Man with big floppy clown feet. Lovely art, but weird to see.

Pac-Man with big floppy clown feet. Lovely art, but weird to see.

This is another cab we sourced from a UK collector, and turned up (almost) as we expected – the cab itself shows it's age with some scuffing to the paintwork, but no actual damage to the wood-work, while the panel, controls and coindoor have been cleaned, restored or replaced. There was even a bag inside containing a replacement for the Midway sticker missing from the coindoor.

All was good, until we turned it on – we had sound, we had lights. We had no picture. This is one of the perils of moving old machines – it had been sold as working, and we trusted the seller, but somewhere along the way something had shaken loose.

We turned it off, donned our technical hats, removed the back panel, and did our best poking, pushing, pulling and reseating. That didn't work, so we did the only thing we could in the circumstances: we did the same thing again. And then again.

And then it worked. Up popped Pac-Man and we played our first game. We're not entirely sure which particular poke did the job, but the best thing to do will be to remove the monitor chassis at a later date, and give it a thorough once-over.