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lost retail stores that sold some of the obscure stuff


wiseguyusa
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Back when this stuff was new, where did you see "Coleco Telestar Arcade" or "Xante"?

 

If it weren't for Korvettes I would have never seen an Odyssey, Coleco Telestar Arcade, or an APF system.

 

If it weren't for TG&Y I would have never seen Xante or Gameline.

 

Where did you see the odd/rare stuff for sale? What price tag have you seen on a box from a store that you never heard of?

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Might be obvious, but places like Service Merchandise, Sears, Wards and Kmart sold the Odyssey's, Coleco Telstar units and probably APF as well. You know, the "finer" department stores. lol Or are you talking the smaller, independent stores? Many of which I cannot remember, but a few I still do include Fry's Electronic's, Highland Superstores, Silo, Crazy Eddie's, Playback, Stereo Studio, Child World/Circus World, Camelot, Suncoast and Rex Electronics. I know a few of these carried some/most of the older stuff at one time. I remember places like Zayre & Osco having Atari 2600 games for sale, but not consoles. Venture might have had Atari games too BITD come to think of it, but not consoles IIRC. Besides the Lynx closeout bundles in the early 90's that is.

 

And I'd assume things like the Gameline were marketed at your local video rental stores. Same with the programmable ROMOX carts for the A8, TI, etc. You'd bring up the "blank" cart, pick out a game and said game was then zapped into it. Talk about obscure though!

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That was kind of my point, I only saw Gameline & Xante at TG&Y, I actually bought my Gameline starter kit from Electronic Games Magazine, I got the "Charter Member" bundle, but I saw them for sale at TG&Y!! .

 

I remember the Lynx and Jaguar closeouts at Venture.... good times $75 Lynx with 2-3 games included!

 

I never saw Coleco Telestar stuff anywhere but Korvettes, the only other place that I saw Odyssey stuff was Magnavox DEALERS (remember those?)

 

Fairchild and Bally I only saw at Wards, I don't remember anything but Atari, Commodore and TI stuff at KMart.

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Toys, Girdles, and YoYos! TG&Y, I grew up with those nearby in OKC (The Village, OK). I wish my TG&Y had carried that stuff. And Venture selling Lynx! Wow. The only places that sold the Lynx was Dillards (not cheap) and Electronic Boutique in the Mall in El Paso when I was station at Holloman AFB, NM. I had to have them ship it to my house to get one. I also had to convince my wife that I really "needed" it. Good times.

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There was a place in the suburbs of DC called "The Math Box" that was like a Babbage's in 1978.

 

I got my TI Little Professor from them and a few Atari cartridges.

 

The other "indy" store with a cool name was a high end audio store called "Hi Fi Fo Fum" in the suburbs of St Louis.

Didn't carry anything Atari (MAYBE Video Music in the 1970's) but the had a name almost as cool as "Math Box" LOL

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Venture selling Lynx! Wow. The only places that sold the Lynx was Dillards (not cheap) and Electronic Boutique

 

Venture liquidated stock after the Lynx was discontinued about 1995ish, they didn't carry them when they were new, same for the Jaguars. KayBee did the same with 7800s as well as Lynx & Jaguar

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The only place I ever saw an Odyssey2 was the Magnavox dealer up the street from where we lived, Hephner TV (still in business, just found their website). That was also the only place I ever saw the CD-i for sale.

 

I remember we would walk 2 blocks to Otasco to buy Colecovision games. When I was in college that building became a flea market/antique mall where I occasionally found video game stuff.

 

In the mid to late eighties there was a closeout store called Dock 44 that had a wall of Intellivision games. I didn't pay a whole lot of attention to it at the time, but I'd guess at least some of them were the later INTV releases. You know, the really rare ones.

Edited by KaeruYojimbo
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Most of my Atari buys were from a small shop called L&S Discount on Main Ave. in Scranton, PA. This was back in late 80's-early 90's and was also where I bought my only new games. I had my Sears L6er then and my mother bought a new Jr there for the rest of the family to use. We also bought some Gemsticks as well.

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I took this screenshot from a commercial, this is exactly how I remember Korvettes Video games. A "videwall" of 19 in TV's. I recognize APF TV-Fun "Hockey Jockari" I think I see a Telestar Arcade (in color) and a Telestar b/w Ball & Paddle (Ranger) to the right of it.

 

TX2z0Zw.jpg

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Somebody buy me a DeLorian so I can experience these deals for myself. I remember my friend dragging me to check out the Game cube kiosk at the local Kmart to show me Mario Sunshine (this was before I became a gamer). They had sonic Addventure DX instead; and I had a head scratching moment, "Nintendo sells Sonic games now???" :lolblue:

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Man, I really wish I could go back to the late 80's to early 90's. There were only 2 places that had stacks, and stacks of Atari clearance stock plus games for systems I'd never heard of back then. One was called Bud's, the other was Hills. Bud's was a clearance store of Wal-Mart don't know how many of those existed, they were usually located in older Stores they had vacated for newer locations. It had all kinds of stuff like wrote off returns/exchanges, and they even bought warehouse liquidation stock. Once they acquired in I think 89,or 90 had a crap ton of various games. I do remember the bulk being 7800 games. Hills at that time I thought was just a local small chain that carried any thing you could think of. But, it appears to have been a far reaching chain, I have seen that store mentioned several times on this forum. They had a huge inventory of 2600 to 7800 games, the ones they had the most of were at $.50 each! There was a lot of other systems they had games for, but only the Atari stuff stands out. There were still tons of games there when Hills closed in 90. Bud's did as well, it closed in 92. I know why I didn't get any 2600 games at hills other than California Games for $1 though, I had all the ones they had in stock. But, I thought about getting a 7800, and a bunch of games for it while there once. However my brother wanted to go to the hobby shop before we went home that day. Once I got there, Umm, I no longer had any money for that idea....

Edited by Yellow355F1
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I remember my mom putting Pitfall on Layaway at Gaylords Department store in Montgomery Alabama. I don't recall ever seeing the obscure gaming systems anywhere. Another department store not yet mentioned that carried Atari stuff was Wilsons. I also remember buying Super Breakout at the Family Mart which was a Grocery Store! Fun times!

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We had Hills around here in Western and also Northern New York.

One thing I don't fully remember about them was, were a a retail, or discount store? I used to like going there after my birthday because they not only had about an identical inventory as our local Wal-Mart, and K-Marts. But, they had a lot more stuff that was harder to find, and cheaper.

 

There was a locally owned warehouse store here till the mid 90's it bought up liquidated stuff like the Old Bud's did. I had never seen a Vectrex or heard of one till then. They only had a couple, but the boxes were heavily taped like they were open at some point, so maybe not new? They had a large stack of C64's, they were in huge boxes reminiscent of SMS boxes. We wound up getting one of them it was a Test Plot edition had a bunch of flight sim titles, along with Crazy Cars. Now, you would be lucky to find a 2600 game that resembled a dogs chew toy around my home town...

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Back when this stuff was new, where did you see "Coleco Telestar Arcade" or "Xante"?

 

If it weren't for Korvettes I would have never seen an Odyssey, Coleco Telestar Arcade, or an APF system.

 

If it weren't for TG&Y I would have never seen Xante or Gameline.

 

Where did you see the odd/rare stuff for sale? What price tag have you seen on a box from a store that you never heard of?

 

Wow...Korvettes? I can't remember the last time Korvettes entered my mind. I used to spend my allowance money on Mego action figures at Korvettes. Still remember the day I came home with Batman.

 

Thanks for rekindling the memory. :)

 

Darn...Now I'm going to have to locate an 8" Mego Batman!

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Hills, Ames, Jamesway, they were just cheap department stores, I think... guess kinda like Walmart or K-mart?

 

...oh wait, yeah, you mentioned both of those. :P

LOL!! So, maybe the prices were the same or there abouts. Liked it better than our old Wal-Mart back then, it was choc full 'O pervs, and whack jobs all the time. So, we had to stay by whoever we were with at the time when we were younger.... :) Hills was off the beaten path as it was never as crowded, even the days leading up to Christmas. We got more freedom to look around alone when we were there.

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I remember the old Magnavox TV store in town. They had the original pong systems and I think it was the first place I saw an Odyssey 2.

My brother-in-law bought his Odyssey 2 at a place in the mall called PLAYBACK. I vaguely recall it was a really cool stereo store and very dark...I believe everything was painted black. I do know I bought my copy of Space Invaders there on sale for $23.99.

 

Another place that had a lot of cheaper off the wall type of games was Camelot Music. I remember buying MASH which included a free MASH t-shirt (good quality too, I wore it for years) for only $2.50. I then got a $5.00 rebate; free game, free shirt and they paid me $2.50...the crash was awesome!

Camelot was also the only place that sold the SuperCharger. I saved up and bought mine there for $45.00. Eventually Toys R Us picked it up too.

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I remember the Lynx and Jaguar closeouts at Venture.... good times $75 Lynx with 2-3 games included!

The other day I was reading the thread about where you got your first Lynx. I couldn't place it. I remembered a pallet with a lot of them on it Black Friday style and it seems like there were different options of box styles with what games were included. I remember the one I picked having Batman on it. Anyway, since that thread it has been bugging me because I can visualize that pallet and placement in the store but couldn't place the store where that scenery would make sense. That is because I was thinking of stores from my childhood that still exist but now, yep, it was definitely Venture. It was the one near West Washington Flea Market in Indy where I also did most of my retro gaming shopping. That Venture is now a Good Will Outlet where you buy everything by the pound which sometimes is more retro gaming stuff.

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I remember my mom putting Pitfall on Layaway at Gaylords Department store in Montgomery Alabama. I don't recall ever seeing the obscure gaming systems anywhere. Another department store not yet mentioned that carried Atari stuff was Wilsons. I also remember buying Super Breakout at the Family Mart which was a Grocery Store! Fun times!

We had a Gaylords here in Illinois too - Aurora to be exact. Most of my Star Wars' figures from my collection came from that place.

 

Still remember the outside facade of that place. Earthtone colors with Gaylords' letters encompassed in glitter - shit you not. That place screamed '70s.

 

Wish I had a pic of that store.

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