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  • This is the MAME Random Of the Week #84

    The three random numbers for this week are: 1822 1456 1357

    Click here to vote! Which game do you choose for MAME ROW #84?

    The result of the poll is posted on Wednesday, so we have Monday and Tuesday for experimentation.

    Game Name: Star Jacker (Sega)
    Company: Sega
    Year: 1983
    ROM file name:

    Game Name: Quartet
    Company: Sega
    Year: 1986
    ROM file name:

    Game Name: Pinbo
    Company: Jaleco
    Year: 1984
    ROM file name:

    What is the MAME ROW?

    MAME ROW stands for MAME Random Of the Week. We randomly select an arcade game from the 0.78 MAME Reference Set to play on the week. The idea is to play games we've never played before, interact with other forum members, post hi-scores, share game strategies, fun facts, and (the most important) HAVE FUN!


    1. We usually post hi-scores screenshots after playing with only one credit. If you used more than one credit, please mention it on your post.

    2. There's no need to use RetroPie to join the MAME ROW! You can play it on any platform you want.

    3. Feel free to post your hi-score (or any content about the game) anytime you want on the previous rounds topics (link below).

    Every Monday we create a topic at the "General Discussion and Gaming > MAME Random Of the Week" forum section with the 3 random games to be voted. And on Wednesday we check the result.

    These "rules" are constantly being improved!

    Previous Rounds

  • My random thoughts on this week's selection:

    Star Jacker - earlyish vertical shooter. It's not too bad, but I was initially thrown by the fact you start with all three ships at the same time. I actually died the first time thinking that I was still watching the intro sequence.

    I'm not entirely sure that having all three ships at the same time makes sense, as it means that your firepower actually decreases as you lose lives, making the game harder. The two-fire buttons (bullets and bombs) works quite well in this one, as the bombs seem to have a reload delay on them, which means some tactics are required to use them, rather than just hammering the two fire buttons as fast as possible.

    Quartet - I quite liked this one, I liked the idea of having to collect the jetpack before you can use it, and the gun power-ups are quite good (although it took a while before I realised that floating sun thing was a power-up and not an enemy. Some strategy is required to choose the correct gun power-up (by shooting the sun) for whatever enemies you are going to encounter next. I died a lot, but kept gettting another life. And I think this was the main problem with this one - a game goes on for AGES. I wasn't particularly good, and died many times, but the amount of 'health' you get is huge. So while this is a decent enough game, I think for a high score competition it's a poor choice due to the amount of time it takes to play a game, even when you are a poor player (like me!)

    Pinbo - I like the idea of a Pinball game. When I was down in Blackpool earlier this year I was very impressed with a very early attempt at electronic pinball (Video Pinball, Atari 1978):


    However, pretty much all these electronic pinball games ultimately fail to capture the pinball experience. They attempt to make up for the lack of an actual physical rolling ball by adding things that can only appear in video pinball - in this case there are a bunch of mini-games that can be accessed by lighting up all the letters - but they are pretty much always less satisfying than the real thing.

    Pinball Fantasies/Illusions/Dreams on the Amiga 1200 kind of came close, and Future/Visual Pinball on PC nowadays also give a good pinball experience, but still nothing really compares to a real table in my opinion.

    So for 1984, Pinbo is a decent attempt I guess, but it's a poor imitation of the real thing.

    Hmmm, so what to vote for? For me it's a choice between Star Jacker and Pinbo, and Star Jacker is probably the better game. BUT, vertical shooters are two-a-penny, and we very seldom (if ever) have had a Pinball game come up for the MAMEROW, so for that reason, this week my vote goes to....


  • @gtbfilms I like your style in descriping the games. Very valuable!

  • @GtBFilms I was about saying the same as cyperghost.
    I like how you quickly analyze and describe these games in a few sentences. Keep this up! It's always interesting to read.

    This weekend, I will not be in. Simply because I don't like these games and won't include them in my RetroPie system. Although maybe, just maybe I will have a second look into Pinbo (already had a first look a month ago and decided not to include it).

  • I agree.
    I enjoyed Quartet the most out of the 3.
    But was surprised at how long it took to die.
    Usually its the opposite problem.

  • This week's winner is Quartet

    0_1525266075253_Screen Shot 2018-05-02 at 8.24.04 AM.png


  • Oh hey, I actually know this one!

    I found out about it when I was browsing game OSTs on YouTube, and stumbled upon it's soundtrack (which is pretty good by the way!), booted it up in MAME just to check it out, and ended up having a lot of fun with it.

    Just a shame they never ported it to anything. Never mind, apparently there were some home computer versions in Europe and a Master System version.

  • Oh, and also there was apparently a sequel which was more of an expansion kit than a proper second game, but it did have more levels and the ability to select a character.

  • Hey guys, I will be posting my score here, has the "Mame Row" started?

  • also I am a little confused by the rules, can I only play the game once and then post the score here or do I post my highest score?

  • Global Moderator

    @retroprogrammer You can play as many times you want. Mame ROW starts every Wednesday, so whenever the selection is made, it's basically on.

  • @retroprogrammer If you have a good score, then screenshot it and post it. If you beat your own score, then post it. You can do this as many times as you want. This section is not strict and there is no competition. Its just like "post what you got", for the sake of fun, exploring the new randomly found game.

    The reason you may be confused about the "play once" is, you misunderstood the sentence. It is meant for the arcade emulation using only 1 credit/coin. The way I do is, if I lose all my lives, I restart the emulation and put a single coin in, start the game, do my work and screenshot it and then restart again.
    We have to trust you, that you don't cheat. It is just for fun here.

  • @mitu @thelostsoul okay I understand now :)

  • Wow, Quartet, one of the first games I saw in a C64, me and my cousin spent hours on playing the conversion, this, Spy Hunter, Mutant Camels and Frankie Goes To Hollywood.

    Must stop playing with my theme I'm trying to edit and actually play some games.

  • I'm really enjoying Quartet

    My high score is 92,900 so far and I reached stage 5.


  • MAME ROW #85 is now live!

  • Hiya

    I've got 179000 and reached level 6


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