The back story: Flashback to 1993, our local frozen custard shop added a large arcade expansion. They had 8 pins, Black Rose being the newest title. But those were not what caught my eye. To the left was a large cabinet housing G scale model trains in some sort of puzzle game. My admiration for model trains drew me to this new game. I played the best I could, but really didn't understand what I was doing.
Sadly, the arcade closed a few months later when the shop left it's rental building and constructed its own facility with no arcade just up the road. I had never seen another one of these train games in any arcade nor could find any video or info on it. Heck, I didn't even remember the name of it.
Fast forward to a few weeks ago: I was browsing Facebook market place like most of us do looking for the next great bargain. STOP!!! there it is!!! The train game; Trik Trak!! And it's only 2 hrs away!! I can't believe this and the price seems too good to be true. After a few messages back and forth, I'm on my way to Tokens Arcade in Lyndora PA. Chris the owner is a great guy, very friendly and accommodating. Stop by if your north of Pittsburgh. Trik Trak has come home!
How the game works: Basically, you control the locomotive back and forth. The game will display a random set of red, yellow, green signals above three tracks. You must maneuver the three color coded cars into their respective sidings below the identical colored signal before time runs out. There are a few rules. The front 2 tracks can each hold 2 cars. The rear can hold only one. You may only switch the track points when your locomotive is in the tunnel (far left). You may only move one car at a time. Not as easy as you think. Some sequences require several moves and if you mess up, you're low on time before you know it!
The electronics: This game appears very crude when it comes to the circuit boards. There are a lot of hacks, a lot of jumpers, a lot of half hazard connections. I think this may be a sample game. The trains are all modified Playmobil equipment. Each car has a magnet secured underneath and they trigger reed switches between the rails. This is how the game identifies where each car is. Luckily I have a set of hand drawn schematics dated 1986.
Your help: I'd like more information on this game. I know it's built by Future Leisure around 1986. I don't know much more. Any arcade operators ever own or see this game? Anyone in the UK ever see this?? The English style trains lead me to believe this was imported.
Hopefully I kept your interest. I will be adding YouTube videos in the coming months to document this strange, yet fun game.