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The Video Game Newsroom Time Machine is a weekly retro gaming podcast in which we travel back in time to see what was making headlines 40, 30, and 20 years ago in the arcade, video game, and computer gaming business and interview industry veterans. 

We try to put those events into historical context to understand how the industry of today came to be. 

It's fun and educational! (in case you need to justify listening to it to a significant other)

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Jul 23, 2021

Sega introduces conversion kits
Coin-Op breaks financial records
Microsoft buys 86-DOS

These stories and many more on this episode of the Video Game Newsroom Time Machine

This episode we will look back at the biggest stories in and around the video game industry in July of 1981.
As always, we'll mostly be using magazine cover dates, and those are of course always a bit behind the actual events.

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Time Codes:
7 Minutes in Heaven: 10:29
Corrections: 19:42
Time Jump: 42:40

7 Minutes in Heaven:
Video Version -

June 1981 Ep -

Sega/Gremlin introduce their first conversion kits
Replay July 1981, pg. 24, pg. 53
Vending Times, July 1981, pg. 46
December 1979 Ep -
Jim Trucano Interview -

Donkey Kong released in Japan

General Computer Corp. is looking for new software ideas
Play Meter, July 15, 1981 pg. 72

Midway sues Artic over speed-up kits
Replay July 1981, pg. 7,_Inc.

Stern beats Omni in Scramble bootleg case
Replay July 1981, pg. 8
Vending Times, July 1981, pg. 41

Coin Op video games reached $2.8 billion in revenue in 1980
Vending Times Census of the Industry - 1981, pg. 56

Arcades may be putting the pinch on movie theatres

Warner profits soar

Broderbund begins publishing Star Craft

IBM introduces small business computer

Microsoft buys 86-DOS
Pirates of Silicon Valley Trailer -
Pirates of Silicon Valley QDOS scene -

Patent issued for Age Morphing tech

Dutch to broadcast software over shortwave

Summer camps go geek

Recommended Links:
The History of How We Play:
Gaming Alexandria:
They Create Worlds:
Digital Antiquarian:
The Arcade Blogger:
Retro Asylum:
Retro Game Squad:

Sound Effects by Ethan Johnson of History of How We Play and Enzo Maida.