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E > EPOCH > Cassette Vision   

Cassette Vision

The Cassette Vision is a japanese console released on the 30th June, 1981 by Epoch Co. This is for sure an obscure system as little is known about this console. It was one of the first cartridge system released in japan and ha d almost no real competitor until the launch of the fabulous Nintendo Famicom in 1983. It was however clearly a low-end and cheap system.

The graphics are very basic and blocky. The overall aspect of the games and cartridges (size and plastic boxes), is strangely similar to the Hanimex HMG-7900... Though games are not the same, there must be a link between these two obscure systems.

There were not a lot of cartridge released for it. "Kikori No Yosaku" was its killer game. It is a game where you must chop trees! Other games include Grand Champion (car race), Galaxian, Big Sports 12 (paddle games), Baseball, Astro Command, Elevator Panic, Monster Mansion, Monster Block, etc. The machine did cost 13500 yen and games, about 4000 yen.

The controller are in fact two knobs for vertical and horizontal movements (like the Magnavox Odyssey). There are also 4 fire buttons labeled PUSH-1, PUSH-2, PSUH-3 and PUSH-4 (two for each player?). There is also a power on/off switch, SELECT, AUX. and START buttons, a strange switch called COURSE and two others labeled LEVER-1 and LEVER-2... can anyone help us finding the use of these?

In fact, the Cassette Vision hardware only includes controllers, power circuits, and electronic for audio and video outputs. All other components, including the processor, ROM and RAM memories, are included on a single NEC D77?C chip in each individual game cartridges, as follows:

- No.1 : きこりの与作 - Yosaku - NEC D777C-005
- No.2: ベースボール - Baseball - NEC D778C (game already released on the standalone console TV Baseball in 1978) - No.3: ギャラクシアン - Galaxian - NEC D777C-007
- No.4: ビ ッ グ ス ポ ー ツ 12 - Big Sports 12 - NEC D777C-004
- No.5 : バトルベーダー - Battle Vader - NEC D774C (game already released on the standalone console TV Vader in 1980.)
- No.6: パ ク パ ク モ ン ス タ ー - Pakpak Monster - NEC D777C-008
- No.7: ニ ュ ー ベ ー ス ボ ー ル - New Baseball - NEC D777C-002
- No.8: モ ン ス タ ー マ ン シ ョ ン - Monster Mansion - NEC D777C-009
- No.9: アストロコマンド - Astro Command - NEC D777C-010
- No.10: (グランドチャンピオン)- Grand Champion (never released prototype)
- No.11: モ ン ス タ ー ブ ロ ッ ク - Monster Block - NEC D777C-013
- No.12: エレベーターパニック - Elevator Panic - NEC D777C-015

The Cassette Vision was later followed by the Cassette Vision Junior, which was a low-cost version of the Cassette Vision, and then by the Super Cassette Vision, a more well known system since it was also released outside Japan. Worth noting are also two stand-alone consoles which had each a single game included (and no possibility to play any other games). There were released before the Cassette Vision. First one was called TV Vader and played a Space Invaders type game. The second one, TV Baseball, was a system playing only a Baseball game. It is interesting to note that both games would be released later for the Cassette Vision as cartridges.


Thanks to PippoCiccio and Italian Wikipedia for some infos

We need more info about this console ! If you designed, used, or have more info about this system, please send us pictures or anything you might find useful.
Please consider donating your old computer / videogame system to or one of our partners from anywhere in the world (Europe, America, Asia, etc.).


As you can see here ( the console uses a different NEC D77?C chip for every different game. The Cassette Vision is almost an empty shell$ all the logic is inside the chips (CPU/ram/rom) placed in the cartridges. The NEC D778C and NEC D774C chip have been used already used for "TV baseball" and "TV Vader" consoles.

Monday 20th February 2023
PippoCiccio (Italy)

As you can see here ( the console use a NEC D774C. This same chip is also used in one of the cartridge of the Super Vision. Every cartridge of Super Vision contains a different NEC D77?C chip (The Super Vision console is an empty shell...)

Monday 20th February 2023
PippoCiccio (Italy)

I'm pretty darn sure I remember playing with one of these that a friend had imported from Japan back when I was a kid.

Friday 18th June 2004
The Clothist (Seattle, WA)


NAME  Cassette Vision
YEAR  30th June 1981
CONTROLLERS  Knobs built-in the console
CPU  all-in-one dedicated chipset
RAM  Unknown
COLORS  Yes (8?)
SOUND  Beeper?
SIZE / WEIGHT  Unknown
I/O PORTS  Cartridge slot
MEDIA  Cartridges, TV out, External connector
NUMBER OF GAMES  At least 10 cartridges released
POWER SUPPLY  External PSU, 12V DC, 500 mA, + -(o- -
PRICE  Cassette Vision : 13,500 yen (Japan, 1981)
Cassette Vision Jr : 5000 yen (Japan, 1983)

Software for this system!

#4 1981 Epoch
#2 1981 Epoch (publisher)
#12 1984 Epoch (publisher)

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