1) What is a Bally/Astrocade

A short history

 

In 1977 Bally/Midway introduced a home video game system called the "Bally Home Library Computer" Available only through JS&A by mail order.(Original ad) A keyboard expansion was to follow in a few months.(See Computer expansion for more details)

Unfortunatly, Due to production delays, no units were shipped until 1978.


Photo courtesy Andrew Gassmann

In 1978 it was released to a wider distribution as the "Bally Professional Arcade". Sold primarily through Computer & Electronics stores, It didn't get the exposure that a retail store offers.

Due to "stiff competition" they withdrew the system in 1980. A group of users who had enjoyed the system's games & learned its potential through the Basic Programming Cartridge got together & bought the system from Bally.

They reintroduced it in about 1981(?) as the "Bally Computer System". When you purchased this system they gave you a Basic Programming Cart FREE. The New company's name was Astrovision.

In about 1982 the company changed its name to Astrocade and re-labeled its system as the "Astrocade". The system continued till about 1985(?)