Arcade / Bally|Midway 1982


“Burgertime” is an iconic arcade game developed by Data East and published by Bally/Midway in 1982. In this unique and whimsical platformer, players control a chef named Peter Pepper, whose objective is to complete burgers by walking over the ingredients scattered across a maze of platforms and ladders. The game’s challenge comes from avoiding and outmaneuvering various food-themed enemies like Mr. Hot Dog, Mr. Pickle, and Mr. Egg. Players can use pepper sprays to temporarily stun these enemies. The strategic element of the game, combined with its creative concept and engaging gameplay, made it a standout title in the arcade era.

The development of “Burgertime” was led by Data East, a company known for its innovative approach to arcade games. The concept of a food-themed game was relatively novel at the time and was part of a broader trend in the early 1980s of creating games with unique and playful themes. “Burgertime’s” gameplay mechanics, combining platforming elements with puzzle-like strategies for assembling the burgers, were well received for their originality and creativity.

Upon its release, “Burgertime” was met with positive reception and became quite popular in arcades. Its quirky theme, engaging gameplay, and distinctive characters captured players’ imaginations and made it a memorable title of the early arcade era. The game was especially noted for its challenging levels and the satisfaction of completing the burgers while dodging persistent enemies.

“Burgertime” was ported to various home consoles and computers, including the Intellivision, Atari 2600, and ColecoVision, among others. These ports generally retained the core gameplay but varied in graphics and sound quality due to the differing capabilities of home systems. The game also inspired a few sequels and spin-offs, such as “Peter Pepper’s Ice Cream Factory” and “Diner,” the latter being a direct sequel on the Intellivision platform.

In terms of rarity and collectibility, original “Burgertime” arcade machines are considered somewhat rare and are sought after by collectors of classic arcade games. While exact production numbers are unclear, the game’s popularity suggests that a significant number were produced. The value of an original “Burgertime” arcade cabinet can vary widely depending on its condition, originality, and operational status, with well-preserved units fetching higher prices in the collector’s market.

The hardware specifications of “Burgertime” are reflective of early 1980s arcade technology. Key components include a Z80 CPU, which was a common processor in arcade games of that era, and a two-channel sound chip for audio. Essential parts for repairs include the CPU, ROM chips containing the game’s software, power supply, control panel with joystick and buttons, and the CRT monitor. Due to the age of these components, maintenance often involves replacing capacitors, reflowing solder joints, and repairing or replacing old wiring. Finding replacement parts can be a challenge, often requiring sourcing from other decommissioned arcade machines or specialized suppliers who cater to vintage arcade game restoration.

Arcade Video Game Price and Field Guide:

Dedicated Upright, Cocktail
Genre: Maze, Platformer

Upright (21,000 +/-Manufactured)

Lower – 1000
Average – 1275
Higher – 1850

Cocktail(Estimated 2000 +/- Manufactured)

Lower – 700
Average – 950
Higher – 1150

Data East also released their own version of the game using DECO tape drive system. The Bally-Midway version uses a traditional PCB setup.

Data East version:

Dedicated Upright, Cocktail, Mini, Conversion Kit

Genre: Maze, Platformer

Lower – 725
Average – 800
Higher – 1000

This is the DECO Data East version, which uses small cassette tapes to load the program into the main PCB. Found in a variety of cabinet styles.

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