Cinematronics was an arcade game manufacturer back in the golden age of coin op games (late seventies to early eighties). They put out a wide variety of games, but they are best known for their vector and laserdisc titles. You are probably at least familiar with Dragon's Lair, which was their most popular title.

They were most successful with their early vector based titles. Although by 1983 they had decided that laserdisc based games were the future. They released both Dragon's Lair and Space Ace around this time. These games may be fondly remembered now, but operators hated them because the kids quickly mastered them, and they stopped making money. On top of that the Laserdisc players shipped in most of the original Dragon's Lair cabinets was of a defective design, and prone to early failure.

They tried to bounce back by moving into raster games (normal arcade games). In a horrible business decision, they bought 5000 undocumented 8088 based arcade boards from a Japanese manufacturer. They developed Jack The Giantkiller, Naughty Boy, and Zzyzzyxx on this platform.

They decided to move to larger facilities just as they were putting the finishing touches on Jack The Giantkiller (they were anticipating a big demand for the game). That demand never came. They filed for bankruptcy a few months later, and were over 2 million dollars in debt when they closed their doors.

Leland corp swallowed up their remains in 1984, and kept some of the original employees, but Cinematronics was gone for good at this point.

Cinematronics Games

Cinematronics also produced games under the brand name Vectorbeam, including Warrior, Barrier, and Speed Freak.

First three Cinematronics games:

  1. Pong
  2. Flipper Ball
  3. Embargo

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