Re: [stella] Gameline

Subject: Re: [stella] Gameline
From: "Eckhard Stolberg" <Eckhard_Stolberg@xxxxxx>
Date: Thu, 23 Aug 2001 15:28:33 +0200
> Sure.  The gameline is kinda neat inside actually.  I should scan the PCB
> from one.  It has 1 4K ROM, 4 normal 2K RAM chips, 1 2K RAM chip that is
> battery-backed, and a small (32 byte?) PROM which holds the unit's serial
> number.  There's a hybrid device which I think has some DACs on it for the
> touch tone generation (done with the main 40 pin chip, which also handles
> the banking and other modem functions).  Interestingly, the guy I talked
> told me that you could add another 2K of RAM to the unit by utilizing an
> otherwise un-used pin on the 40 pin chip.  I added this to mine since some
> of his games required it.

OK, thanks for the explainations so far. Do you by any chance have
a (partly) commented disassembly of the Gameline system ROM, that we
could look at? That might be helpfull in figuring out the bankswitching
and the RAM writing.

> To call his server, I had to do this:  pick the phone up, dial his number,
> then turn the 2600 on and let the Gameline "call" while the other end was
> ringing. (Had to do this since the phone number it calls is hard-coded in)
> Took a couple tries to get that to work.  Once it connected, it downloaded
> the menu program to the battery-backed 2K of RAM and played a bar of
> "Revelry" and brought up the screen that let one select the desired game
> via a number (or, let you see the menu of games).  Interestingly, once
> connected, the Gameline "remembered" the proper phone number for when it
> had to call next time and I didn't have to do the special dialing

That's interesting. So you obviously could update the system firmware
through the RAM, that would be used at powerup? Did the Gameline display
a menu screen or something before you connected to the service for the
first time?

Oh, and since you said you lost the contact information for the guy
with the homebuild server, couldn't you track him down with the
new number in your Gameline? ;-) Or has he given up that number for
too long to be usefull information?

Thanks, Eckhard Stolberg

Archives (includes files) at
Unsub & more at

Current Thread