There, the game sat. Pulled out from the line up, parts strewn about everywhere as I tried to work in free moments to continue troubleshooting. Kids running in and out of the game room, parts everywhere. As I opened the Nest app one night to set the temperature I saw the B&W footage of the game in the basement and this stirred decision time..
After only a few hours here and there troubleshooting voltages and reseating chips. I decided for now the original boards are not a priority for me. Let's just get it playing..
I could throw hundreds of dollars and dozens of hours at the original board stack and maybe power supply or I could throw hundreds of dollars and a few hours and do a non-permanent Multi-Williams conversion and have not only Robotron but Joust and Defender and Stargate and others..
In what is probably equal parts of impatience and curiosity, justified-after-the-fact: I ordered a bunch of stuff from ArcadeShop. I didn't want to do any permanent conversions to the cabinet or control panel but decided to order a Multi-Williams fPGA board and control panel, related cabling, etc.
I pulled everything, the original wiring harness, control panel, power supply, boards. I have to admit I felt a little guilty for doing this. I made no additional cuts to cabling, I cleaned it all as best I could, wrapped it all in paper, bubble and pallet wrap plastic and stowed it in the cabinet.
It still felt wrong.. like removing the games' vital organs or something? I guess all of these years of watching KLOV threads and watching people get thrashed for multi game conversions has made me sensitive to this.
I kept.. everything. Documented it all with photos and my thoughts are that one day, I might decide to put the game back into an original state. As the KLOV trolls might put it:
You neutered the unicorn but at least you put the balls in a jar, in formaldehyde.