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spacewar: MAME ROM Information.


Space Wars (c) 1977 Cinematronics.

Space Wars is a battle between 2 opposing space ships in a hostile spacefield.


Main CPU : CCPU (@ 5 Mhz)

Players : 2

Buttons : 5



Released in October 1977.

Space Wars was the first vector game, and introduced the concept of 'fuel for money', in which the player could insert more coins and buy more fuel during the current game in play.

Rosenthal began working on Space Wars in 1973. He realized he had a commercially viable product on his hands in December of 1976 when he put the game in a friend's arcade before leaving on a trip to Boston. When he returned, he found that the game had made $500 in 6 days and he began looking for a company to license his game. He hit the streets carrying a demonstration unit (along with a "Lunar Lander" game he'd created) but was rejected by most companies until he struck a deal with Cinematronics, who had been around since 1975 but had produced only 3 games, none of them hits. Space Wars was the hit of the 1977 AMOA show and went on to sell at least 10,000 units (some sources put the figure at 3 times that).

Atari reportedly offered Cinematronics $5 million to license the game but the offer was refused (though Cinematronics would launch an unsuccessful lawsuit against Atari for patent violation after the release of "Asteroids").

A Space Wars unit appears in the 1982 movie 'Tron'.

Michael D. Mize has been the "High Score" holder for this Arcade Unit since 8/21/1982. At 19 points it is considered the "Lowest" High Score of all time.

Original products :

Space Wars (Cinematronics) [USA]

Space War (Vectorbeam) [USA]

Licensed products :

Space Wars (Sonic) [Spain, EUR]

Space Wars (Taito) [Japan]


Once a ship is destroyed : 1 point


* Temporary invincibility : Either ship will become invincible after being hit as long as their pieces are still floating in space. This can be used as an advantage by skimming the edge of the middle star in the middle to knock off a piece of the ship. Then, fly into your opponent while invincible.


Original design (Spacewar!) by : Steve Russell (on a PDP-1 mainframe in 1962).

Hardware design & game program for Cinematronics by : Larry Rosenthal (Founder of Cinematronics).


* Consoles :

GCE Vectrex (1982)


Game's rom.

Machine's picture.

All In Color For a Quarter - Keith Smith

MAME Info:

0.35b6 [Aaron Giles, Zonn Moore, Jeff Mitchell, Neil Bradley]

Artwork available

Samples required


- 0.138u4: f4brice added clone Space Ship.

- 3rd April 2010: f4brice - As far as I know, I'm the only known owner of a SEGA Space Ship cabinet. Game & PCB are (with no doubt possible) original SEGA's. offer to the MAME community to finish my dumping task (I dumped only 20% of the PROMs, needed for my repair) and to add this "new" game to MAME.

- 0.111u1: Robert fixed gfx and random resets.

- 0.106u10: Aaron Giles updated Space Wars to support the new artwork system.

- 23rd May 2002: Zsolt Vasvari fixed the button artwork in Space War.

- 0.37b2: Added 'Unknown' dipswitch.

- 0.36b5: Artwork in Space Wars [Nathan Sturm]. The Cinematronics driver now can handle games with backdrop + overlay. The pngs have to be renamed: backdrop: drivername + b.png and overlay: drivername + o.png [Mathis Rosenhauer].

- 14th September 1999: Mathis Rosenhauer added a new overlay to Space Wars.

- 0.35: Added samples (explode1/2, fire1/2, idle, pop and thrust1/2.wav).

- 0.35RC2: Mathis Rosenhauer fixed reset bug in Space Wars.

- 0.35b6: Added Space Wars (Cinematronics 1978) [Aaron Giles, Zonn Moore, Jeff Mitchell, Neil Bradley].

- 7th March 1999: Brad Oliver has finally sent in the Cinematronics vector games driver with working support for Space Wars, Barrier, Star Castle, Tailgunner, Rip Off, Armor Attack, War of the Worlds, Warrior, Star Hawk and Solar Quest.

LEVELS: 1 (endless)

Other Emulators:


* Cinelator


* Retrocade

Recommended Games (Starfighter 2):

Galaxy Game

Space Wars

Star Cruiser


Star Castle


Omega Race

Solar Quest

Space Fury

Dark Planet


Romset: 5 kb / 8 files / 4.61 zip

MAME XML Output:

       <game name="spacewar" sourcefile="cinemat.c" sampleof="spacewar">
              <description>Space Wars</description>
              <rom name="spacewar.1l" size="2048" crc="edf0fd53" sha1="a543d8b95bc77ec061c6b10161a6f3e07401e251" region="maincpu" offset="0"/>
              <rom name="spacewar.2r" size="2048" crc="4f21328b" sha1="8889f1a9353d6bb1e1078829c1ba77557853739b" region="maincpu" offset="1"/>
              <rom name="prom.f14" size="256" crc="9edbf536" sha1="036ad8a231284e05f44b1106d38fc0c7e041b6e8" region="proms" offset="0"/>
              <rom name="prom.e14" size="32" crc="29dbfb87" sha1="d8c40ab010b2ea30f29b2c443819e2b69f376c04" region="proms" offset="100"/>
              <rom name="prom.d14" size="32" crc="9a05afbf" sha1="5d806a42424942ba5ef0b70a1d629315b37f931b" region="proms" offset="120"/>
              <rom name="prom.c14" size="32" crc="07492cda" sha1="32df9148797c23f70db47b840139c40e046dd710" region="proms" offset="140"/>
              <rom name="prom.j14" size="32" crc="a481ca71" sha1="ce145d61686f600cc16b77febfd5c783bf8c13b0" region="proms" offset="160"/>
              <rom name="prom.e8" size="32" crc="791ec9e1" sha1="6f7fcce4aa3be9020595235568381588adaab88e" region="proms" offset="180"/>
              <sample name="explode1"/>
              <sample name="fire1"/>
              <sample name="idle"/>
              <sample name="thrust1"/>
              <sample name="thrust2"/>
              <sample name="pop"/>
              <sample name="explode2"/>
              <sample name="fire2"/>
              <chip type="cpu" tag="maincpu" name="CCPU" clock="4980750"/>
              <chip type="audio" tag="mono" name="Speaker"/>
              <chip type="audio" tag="samples" name="Samples"/>
              <display tag="screen" type="vector" rotate="180" flipx="yes" refresh="38.000000" />
              <sound channels="1"/>
              <input players="2" buttons="3" coins="1">
                     <control type="joy" ways="2"/>
              <dipswitch name="Time" tag="SWITCHES" mask="3">
                     <dipvalue name="0:45/coin" value="3"/>
                     <dipvalue name="1:00/coin" value="0" default="yes"/>
                     <dipvalue name="1:30/coin" value="1"/>
                     <dipvalue name="2:00/coin" value="2"/>
              <dipswitch name="Unknown" tag="SWITCHES" mask="64">
                     <dipvalue name="Off" value="64" default="yes"/>
                     <dipvalue name="On" value="0"/>
              <driver status="imperfect" emulation="good" color="good" sound="imperfect" graphic="good" savestate="supported" palettesize="0"/>

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