Aztec Princess was a very strangely named arcade game that was released by PMC Electronics back in 1975.

The mid 70s saw a lot of Pong clones being sold by dozens of different manufacturers. Most clones had titles that could at least be somewhat related to the game, titles like Pong Tron, Winner, Puppy Pong, and Leader. But Aztec Princess was a little different, it didn't have anything to do with Aztecs or princesses. Not even the loosest association could possibly be made between the name of the game, and what the game was. They might as well have named it Advanced Dungeons & Dragons, it would have been just as suitable a title.

What the buyer did get was a fairly nice cocktail style Pong clone. It looked sort of like a trash can with a glass top. It supported from 1 to 4 players and could play either "Tennis" or "Hockey". It used a "clutch control" instead of the standard spinner. That control looked like a small lever and there were four of them spaced out around the game, and they were mounted on the side, rather than on top like most Pong games.

Pong-Clones like Aztec Princess are both easy to find, and nearly impossible to find at the same time. Finding a Pong-Clone is easy, as there were literally hundreds of different different titles. In the past I have owned three different Pong clones, and I never paid much for any of them. Finding a specific Pong-Clone is very hard, as most of the indvidual titles had pretty low production runs. In general when shopping for a game like this you should expect to pay $100 - $200 for a decent working example, and $50 at the most for one that doesn't work. You should expect severe screen burn, and controls that need to be rebuilt. Stay away from broken machines unless you know how to fix dead circuit boards, because you will probably never find the correct replacement boards, so the originals will have to be fixed if you want to revive a dead one.

You shouldn't purchase a machine like this expecting it to be a large source of actual fun. If you do that then you will be sorely dissappointed. Pong was fun in the early 1970s because video games were brand new and there was almost nothing to compare them to. In those days your video game choices basically consisted of Pong and some very simplistic racing games. The racing games have actually aged a lot better than Pong did.

There are really only two valid reasons to purchase a Pong clone. The first is simply because you are an arcade game collector, and you want a Pong game to fill out a slot in your collection. You will be quite aware that it won't get played, as you should know that most of your games aren't getting played. Time and time again I have learned that three or four is the maximum number of arcade games a person can own that will actually get played. The second (and perhaps superior) reason to purchase a Pong clone is because you want it as piece of furniture to go with your carefully crafted room. This is actually a pretty good reason to own one. The Pongs I owned in the past spent a lot more time looking cool in my living room than they actually spent being played. Most Pong games only saw a few years on location, so the average working copy will be living room quality.

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