Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS3337218 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 22, 1967
Filing dateSep 8, 1964
Priority dateSep 8, 1964
Also published asDE1453981A1
Publication numberUS 3337218 A, US 3337218A, US-A-3337218, US3337218 A, US3337218A
InventorsHurley Frederick A
Original AssigneeElliott & Evans Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Amusement apparatus
US 3337218 A
Abstract  available in
Images(6)
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Aug. 22, 1967 Filed Sept. 8, 1964 IF. A. HURLEY AMUSEMENT APPARATUS 6 Sheets-Sheet 2 VAR/48M P0155 w/ w a;

msole/ce 4, H0245;

ATTORNEYS LMWIQIQFQ ERRN RN RF WEIRI QRRI IRRN F. A. HURLEY AMUSEMENT APPARATUS 6 Sheets-Sheet 5 Filed Sept. 8, 1964 Nam N EM rllxll NWN NNN MN N INVENTOR ee-oee/oe 4. A/weLE/ BY %7 m ogaa ATTORN EYS 1967 F. A. HURLEY 3,337,218

AMUSEMENT APPARATUS Filed Sept. 8, 1964 6 Sheets-Sheet 4 INVENTOR FREDA-1Q ICK 4. H PA V BY filW %%,M V

ATTORNEYS Aug. 22, 367 F. A. HURLEY AMUSEMENT APPARATUS 6 Sheets-Sheet 5 Filed Sept. 8, 1964 FIG 4a ATTORNEYS Aug. 22, 1967 F. A. HURLEY 3,337,213

AMUSEMENT APPARATUS Filed Sept. 8, 1964 6 Sheets-Sheet 6 n INVENTOR w Q? ,ZGEOEEICK ,4. ,qwugy '3 BY ATTORNEYS United States Patent 3,337,218 AMUSEMENT APPARATUS Frederick A. Hurley, Miami, Fla., assignor to Elliott & Evans, Inc., a corporation of Florida Filed Sept. 8, 1964, Ser. No. 394,763 24 Claims. (Cl. 27385) This invention relates to amusement apparatus, and While not limited thereto, relates to remotely controlled game apparatus including a selectively illuminated display unit which may be wall mounted.

In the past, most coin-operated amusement devices were of a mechanical nature and therefore required a generally horizontal playing surface. Because of this horizontal playing surface substantial floor space is required, and hence, these prior units could only be installed in establishments where the money taken in was sufficient to justify the loss of floor space. Also, it would be necessary for the players to go to the physical location of the amusement device which, in some cases, would disrupt the normal business operation.

It is an object of this invention to provide amusement apparatus which requires negligible floor space, which can be played from any location within the establishment when installed and which is capable of retaining the continuing interest of the players.

Another object is to provide amusement apparatus, including a unique scoring technique for simulated games of the type which normally would depend upon the players skill in throwing an object toward a target area.

Another object is to provide a game apparatus which is designedto simulate a well known game in a manner which eliminates the need for special instructions to the players.

T hereare many well known games in which the players skill in throwing an object toward a target area plays a significant part in the scoring of the game. Some examples include pitching horseshoes, throwing darts, basketball foul shooting and bowling. Any well known game of this sort can be used as the basis for the game apparatus in accordance with this invention in which the game is simulated on a selectively illuminated display panel.

In a typical installation, the display panel consists of a partially transparent mask and associated electroluminescent panels which are selectively illuminated to pro- FIG. 4a is a perspective view illustrating the electroluminescent panel for the policeman figure and adjacent horseshoe pit;

FIG. 5 is a perspective plan view of a display panel for a dart game showing how individual electroluminescent panels are connected to various contacts and terminals of the control circuits; and

FIG. 6 is a perspective drawing showing the display panel for a dart game and its associated control circuit unit and remote control unit.

Horseshoe game One of the games used as the basis for game apparatus in accordance with this invention is the well known horseshoe game. Nonmally, this game is played outdoors between a pair of horseshoe pits, each having a stake in the center. The players alternate in throwing horseshoes from a location behind one of the pits toward the stake in the other pit. If the horseshoe lands surrounding the stake, the player scores a ringer worth three points; if the horseshoe lands leaning against the stake the player scores a leaner worth two points; and if the horseshoe lands within a certain distance from the stake, the player scores a closeshoe worth one point.

The apparatus used in simulating the horseshoe game is shown in FIG. 1 and includes a pair of display units 1 and 2, a control circuit unit 3, and a remote control unit 4 which is coupled to the control circuits by a radio transmitter-receiver system. The apparatus is actuated by depositing a coin of the proper monetary value via coin slot 5 in remote control unit 4. Thereafter, when push button switch 6 is actuated, the policeman cartoon character on display unit 1 appears to go into motion, first winding up and then releasing a horseshoe which appears to travel toward the horseshoe pit on display unit 2. During the simulated flight of the horseshoe toward the horseshoe pit, the player must actuate the push button switch a second time. When the horseshoe lands in the horseshoe pit on vide the desired animation for the game. The-apparatus is controlled remotely from a unit which includes a player operated push button switch. When the switch is first actuated, a cartoon character on the display panel appears to wind-up and release an object which then appears to travel toward the target area. While the object is in its trajectory toward the target area, the player actuates the push button switch a second time. If the actuation is at the proper time, the player will score a hit, whereas, if the actuation is either too late or too soon, a miss is registered. The manner in which the hit or miss is indicated and scored will vary in accordance with the particular game being simulated.

The manner in which the foregoing and other objects are achieved in accordance with this invention is set forth more fully in the following specification which describes several illustrative embodiments of the invention. The drawings form a portion of the specification wherein:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the display panels for a horseshoe game as seen by the player, along with the associated control circuit unit and remote control unit;

FIGURES 2 and 3 are interrelated and form a single schematic diagram of the control circuits;

FIG. 4 is a perspective plan view of the display panel for a horseshoe game showing how the individual electroluminescent panels are connected to various contacts and terminals of the control circuits;

display unit 2 it will appear as a ringer, leaner, close-shoe, or out of the pit, depending upon the time at which the push button switch is actuated. Upon the next actuation of the push button switch, the cartoon fireman on display unit 2 goes into action, appearing to first pick up the horseshoe, then wind up and thereafter throw the horseshoe back to the horseshoe pit shown on display unit 1. The final location of the horseshoe is similarly determined in accordance with the time at which the push button switch is actuated during simulated flight of the horseshoe. Display units for the horseshoe game FIG. 4 illustrates the various individual areas on display units 1 and 2 which are selectively illuminated to provide the animated game display for the horseshoe game. The cartoon character 10 of a policeman appears on display unit 1 and is presented by means of an electroluminescent panel 11 which is of the appropriate shape to depict the body of the policeman, and four separate electroluminescent panels 12-15 shaped and positioned to depict the arm of the policeman in four different positions. In the animated figure there are actually five different arm positions, but in one of these positions the arm is alongside the body, and hence, the arm does not show. Also included on display unit 1 are six separate electroluminescent panels 1621, which represent six successive positions of the horseshoe after it has been thrown by the policeman. On display unit 2 there are six additional electroluminescent panels 22-27 which represent six additional successive positions for the same horseshoe as it travels from the policeman toward horseshoe pit 28 on display unit 2. Electroluminescent panels 12-27 are energized in a sequence such that the policeman appears to take a short swing back, then a short swing forward, a full swing back, and finally a full swing forward at which time the horseshoe appears to be released. By energizing electroluminescent panels 16-21 in succession, the horseshoe then appears to travel away from the policeman and out of display unit 1. Later, the horseshoe appears to enter display unit 2 and travel toward horseshoe pit 28, this being accomplished by energizing electroluminescent panels 22-27 in succession.

Within the area of horseshoe pit 28 there are four separately energizable electroluminescent panels which, when energized, indicate the four possible positions for the horseshoe at the end of its trajectory. Electroluminescent panel 29 indicates the horseshoe in its ringer position, panel 30 indicates the horseshoe in its leaner position, panel 31 indicates the horseshoe in its close-shoe posltion, and panel 32 indicates the horseshoe outside the pit.

Display unit 2 includes the fireman cartoon 40, formed by an electroluminescent panel 41 in the shape of the body for the fireman. Four electroluminescent panels 42-45 represent the four arm positions so that by properly sequentially energizing the individual panels, the fireman will appear to pick up the horseshoe from pit 28, then take a short swing back, a short swing forward, a full swing back, and then a full swing forward at the end of which the horseshoe is released. Electroluminescent panels 4651 on display unit 2 and electroluminescent panels 5257 on display unit 1 represent various positions of the horseshoe while in its trajectory from the fireman to horseshoe pit 58. Electroluminescent panels 59-62 represent the ringer, leaner, close-shoe, and out of pit positions respectively.

Electroluminescent panels 64 on display unit 2 are used to indicate the firemans score. This is accomplished by energizing a selective one of these panels which then provides a corresponding numerical indication. Electroluminescent panels 65 on display unit 1 similarly indicate the policemans score.

Although the display unit can be constructed in any desired manner, the preferred structure is of the type described in co-pending application Ser. No. 394,858 filed Sept. 8, 1964 such that each display unit would include a printed circuit board upon which the individual electroluminescent panels are mounted, and an associated partially transparent front panel which appears in the form of a mask. A suitable background design, such as that shown in co-pending design patent application Ser. No. D. 82,315 filed Oct. 26, 1964, now design Patent No. 202,794 can be silk screened onto the fnont panel. Certain selected areas of the front panel are left blank so that these areas can be illuminated from behind by energizing the appropriate ones of the electroluminescent panels.

The representations of the horseshoe in its various positions can most easily be achieved by using a small square shaped electroluminescent panel aligned with an associated transparent area on the front panel in the shape of a horseshoe. The various score indications are similarly achieved by using a square shaped electroluminescent panel and an associated transparent area on the front panel in the shape of the desired number.

The separately energizable electroluminescent panels for the cartoon figures and the horseshoes in the pits can be obtained in similar fashion, but in this case it is more convenient to [achieve the display by means of a single electroluminescent panel and a large rectangular transparent area on the front panel. A suitable electroluminescent panel for display unit 1 is shown in FIG. 4a and includes a conductive backing layer 70 covered with a crystalline fluorescent material forming a dielectric layer 72. Translucent conductive layer portions 73 are placed over the dielectric, these portions being in the shape of the body of the policeman, the various arm positions for the policeman, and the four horseshoes in the pit. An individual lead 74 is brought out from each of the con ductive layer portions 73, and a lead 75 is brought out from the conductive backing layer. When an-alternating current signal is applied to the backing layer 70, and one of the translucent conductive portions 73, the portion of the dielectric layer between the energized conductors is excited and emits light through the translucent conductor. An electroluminescent panel for the fireman and associated pit 23 is constructed in similar fashion for display unit 2.

The leads from each of the electroluminescent panels are bent back and are passed through pre-positioned holes in the printed circuit board. After passing through the holes, the leads are bent over and soldered to conductors surrounding holes. The printed conductors con nect the delicate leads from electroluminescent panels to various terminal points to which wires from the control circuits are attached.

The electrical control circuits When FIG. 2 is placed in a vertical position on the left and FIG. 3 is positioned horizontally on the right, they form a single integrated schematic diagram of the control circuits for the horseshoe game.

Switch 91 is part of a conventional coin mechanism and is closed momentarily each time a coin is deposited via coin slot 5 in the remote control unit (FIG. 1).

Switch 91 is connected to a transmitter unit (referred to as the coin transmitter and housed within the remote control unit) so that a radio signal will be transmitted to an associated coin receiver unit 92 each time the switch is closed. Coin receiver 92 is connected to energize an actuating winding 111 of a relay 110 in response to each received radio pulse. Similarly, switch 93 is associated with push button 6 (FIG. 1) and is connected to a player transmitter 94 so that the transmitter sends out a radio signal each time the push button is actuated by the player. An associated player receiver unit 95 is connectable to energize an actuating winding 141 via contacts 122 and 132 in response to each successive radio signal. Although the coupling between switches 91 and 93 and the associated portions of the control circuits is shown as two separate transmitter-receiver systems, it should be obvious that any two channel communication system would sufiice. This could, for example, be a single transmitterreceiver system with a two channel multiplex achieved by the use of different modulation frequencies or different pulse lengths. In some installations switches 91 and 93 can simply be coupled to the control circuits by wire connections.

Relay is referred to as the coin relay since it is energized each time coin switch 91 is closed. Associated with relay 110 is a capacitor 117 which is connected between ground and a movable contact 112 of relay 110. Capacitor 117 is connected to a positive source of potential via movable contact 112 and the associated normally closed stationary contact 114 when the coin relay is energized. When relay 110 is in the de-energized state, capacitor 117 is connected to one end of an actuating winding 121 via movable contact 112, stationary contact 113 and a semiconductor isolating diode 125. The other end of actuating winding 121 is connected to ground via normally closed contacts of relay 110 connected in series with normally closes contacts 133 of a relay 130. Actuating winding 121 is part of a relay referred to as the coin-set relay. The coin-set relay has a holding circuit which is completed from the positive source of potential through normally open contacts 123 of relay 120 and a semiconductor diode 124 connected to the non-grounded end of actuating winding 121.

Thus, when switch 91 is closed momentarily, actuating winding 111 of the coin relay is momentarily energized, and therefore, capacitor 117 is charged by means of the circuit completed through movable contact 112 and stationary contact 114. Thereafter, when the coin relay returns to the de-energized state, capacitor 117 is discharged via diode 125 to initially energized actuating winding 121 which is thereafter maintained in the energized state by means of the holding circuit completed through contacts 123 and diode 124.

The animation of the display unit is controlled primarily by a main stepping switch 100 which is a twenty-six position switch having four banks of contacts designated A, B, C and D. Contact banks A and B are reproduced in FIGS. 4 and 5 to show connections tothe various electorluminescent panels, and contact bank C is reproduced in FIG. 3 to show connections to some of the scoring circuitry. The stepping switch is set in motion in response to an actuation of player switch 93, and advances at rate determined by a multivibrator circuit, including relays 150 and 160. In order to achieve the best animation it is desirable that the main stepping switch advance at a slow rate through the first twelve positions which control the wind up swings of the cartoon figure on the display unit. The stepping switch should advance at a faster pace when advancing from position 13 to position 26, since these positions control the display of the simulated horseshoe appearing to fly from one of the cartoon characters toward the horsehoe pit. This change of pace is achieved by a circuit incdluding relay 170 which is referred to as the pulse width relay. Also, it is desirable that the time required for the simulated horseshoe to travel from one of the display units to the other should vary with each play. This function is achieved by a variable pulse width circuit which includes a relay 180 and a stepping switch 190.

The multivibrator circuit includes relays 150 and 160 which are interconnected so that when one relay changes to the de-energized state, the other relay automatically assumes the energized state. A capacitor 156 is connected between ground and a movable contact 152 of relay 150, and a capacitor 166 is connected between ground and a movable contact 162 of relay 160. The normally open stationary contacts 153 and 163 associated respectively with movable contacts 152 and 162, are each connected to the positive source of potential. The normally closed stationary contact 164 associated with movable contact 162 is connected to one end of actuating winding 151 of relay 150 via an isolating diode 1 65, and normally closed stationary contact 154 associated with movable contact 152 is connected to one end of actuating winding 161 of relay 160 via an isolating diode 155. The other ends of windings 151 and 161 are connectable to ground either via normally closed contacts 206 of relay 200, or normally open contacts 144 of the player pulse relay. The non-grounded end of winding 151 is also connectable to the positive source via normally open contacts 143 and 123.

When relay 130 is de-energized and relay 120 is energized (the conditions existing during a game) player receiver 95 is connected to winding 141 of the player pulse relay, and therefore, relay 140 is energized momentarily each time switch 93 is actuated. When the player pulse relay is energized, winding 151 in the multivibrator circuit is energized via contacts 123 and 143 thereby initiating the operation of the multivibrator circuit. During the initial energization of relay 150', capacitor 156 is charged from the positive source via contacts 152 and 153. Thereafter, when relay 150 returns to the de-energized state, capacitor 156 is discharged via movable contact 152, stationary contact 154 and diode 155 to energize winding 161. Winding 161 remains energized for a period of time determined by the discharge time constant of capacitor 156, and while in the energized state causes capacitor 166 to be charged via movable contact 162. Thereafter, when relay 160 returns to the de-energized state, capacitor 166 is discharged to again energize winding 151 of relay 150. Relay 150 remains in the energized state for a period of time determined by the capacitance connected to movable contact 162. Thus, once operation has been initiated by depressing switch 93, the multivibrator circuit transfers the energized state back and forth between relays 150 and 160 in free-running fashion. Relay 150 includes a set of normally open contacts 157 connected between 6 v the positive source and one end of actuating Winding 105, the other end of winding being connected to ground. Thus, each time relay is energized, winding 105 of the main stepping switch is also energized to thereby advance the stepping switch by one position.

The rate at which the multivibrator circuit operates, and hence, the rate at which the main stepping switch advances, is determined by the capacitance connected to movable contacts 152 and 162 since this determines the discharge time constants. Thus, if the total capacitance connected to movable contact 162 is increased, the multivibrator circuit operates at a slower rate, and if the capacitance is decreased the multivibrator circuit operates at a faster rate.

A capacitor 173 is connectable to movable contact 162 via the normally closed contacts 172 of a relay referred to as the pulse width relay, and thus, when relay 170 is in the de-energized state capacitor 173 is connected in parallel with capacitor 166. Capacitors 173, 166 and 156 are selected to obtain the desired operating speed for the first twelve positions of the main stepping switch, or, in other words, to obtain the desired motion for the cartoon character during the wind up period prior to releasing the horseshoe.

Wiper contact 104 associated with contact bank D of the main stepping switch is connected to the positive source, and contact D13 in that bank is connected to one side of actuating winding 171 of the pulse width relay. The other end of actuating winding 171 is connectable to ground via normally closed contacts 206. A holding circuit for relay 170 is completed via normally opened contacts 174 of relay 170 connected between the positive source and the non-grounded end of winding 171. Accordingly, as the stepping switch advances through the first twelve positions, relay 170 is in the deenergized state and capacitor 173 is connected in parallel with capacitor 166 so that the multivibrator advances the stepping switch at a relatively slow pace. When the stepping switch reaches the thirteenth position, relay 170 is energized via wiper contact 104 and stationary contact D13, and therefore, capacitor 173 is disconnected. The holding circuit is then completed via contacts 174 to maintain relay 170 in the energized state as the stepping switch continues to advance toward the twenty-sixth position. Capacitors 166 and 156 are selected having values which will produce the proper stepping pace to simulate the flight of the horseshoe from the cartoon figure. to the horseshoe pit.

Three capacitors 193, 194 and 195, each of different size, are connected between ground and stationary contacts H1, H2 and H3, respectively, of a three position stepping switch 190. The stationary contacts of stepping switch 190 are disposed radially so that contact H-3 is adjacent to contact H-1, and thus, the stepping switch can continue to advance and need not be reset. The stepping switch advances one position in response to each successive energization of actuating winding 191. Wiper contact 192 is connected to movable contact 162 via a set of normally open contacts 182 of relay 180. One end of actuating winding 181 associated with relay is connected to ground and the other end is connected to contact D-19 of the main stepping switch. A capacitor 184 is connected between ground and movable contact 183 of relay 1 80. The normally open stationary contact associated with movable contact 183 is connected to the positive source, and the associated normally closed contact is connected to ground via actuating winding 191.

Accordingly, when the main stepping switch reaches the nineteenth position, relay 180 is energized via wiper contact 104 and stationary contact D-19. Relay 180 closes contacts 182 thereby connecting one of the capacitors 193-195 in parallel with capacitor 166. This has the effect of increasing the time required for the main stepping switch to reach the twentieth position, or in other Words, it increases the time required for the simulated horseshoe to travel between the display units. The extent of the time increase depends upon which one of the capacitors 1%- 195 is connected via stepping switch 190. When relay 180 is in the energized state, capacitor 184 is charged via movable contact 183, and thereafter when relay 180 returns to the file-energized state, capacitor 184 discharges via winding 191 thereby advancing wiper contact 192 by one position. Thus, the time required for the simulated horseshoe to jump from one display panel to the other varies with each successive play. As will be explained later, this time variation makes it more difficult 'for the players to score a ringer and, thus, makes the game more interesting to play.

Contact D-26 of the main stepping switch is connected to ground via an actuating winding 201 of a relay 200 referred to as the end play relay. As was previously mentioned, the ground circuits for windings 151, 161 and 171 are completed through normally closed contacts 206 of relay 200. Therefore, when the main stepping switch completes its twenty-six step sequence and reaches contact D-26, relay 200 is energized to open the ground circuits for relays 150, 160 and 170. As a result, the free-running multivibrator becomes inactive and supplies no further pulses to the main stepping switch. Also, the hold circuit for relay 170 is released permitting the pulse width relay to return to its de-energized state.

Relay 210 is a two position latching relay which changes to an alternate position each time the associated actuating winding 211 is energized, which takes place upon the completion of each successive play. An AC source 274 (FIG. 3), which supplies electrical energy for the electroluminescent panels, has one terminal connected to the leads connected to the backing conductive layers of the electroluminescent panels via terminals Y and X0. The other terminal from source 274 is connected to movable contact 212 of relay 210. One of the stationary contacts 213 associated with movable contact 212 is connected to energize wiper contact 102 on the main stepping switch and to also energize electroluminescent panel 41 (the body portion of the fireman) via terminal X-l. Referring to FIG. 4, it should be noted that the stationary contacts of contact bank B are connected to electroluminescent panels 42-57 associated with the fireman. Therefore, when the main stepping switch advances at a slow pace through the first twelve positions, electroluminescent panels 42-45 associated with the various fireman arm positions are energized via contacts B-l through B-12. More specifically, contacts B-l, B-5 and 13-11 are connected to panel 42, contacts B-3, B-7 and B-9 are connected to panel 43, contact B-8 is connected to panel 44, and contact B-12 is connected to panel 45. In following the stepping sequence, the fireman first takes a short swing back, a short swing forward, a full swing back and then a full swing forward, the sequence being completed when the stepping switch reaches the twelfth position. Thereafter, the stepping pace increases due to the action of pulse width relay 170 and electroluminescent panels 46-51 are energized successively via contacts B-12 through B-18 to thereby simulate the flight of the horseshoe away from the fireman. The nineteenth position of the main stepping switch, associated with contact B-19, occurs at a time when the simulated horseshoe is traveling between display units 2 and 1. This time interval is variable due to the operation of the variable pulse width circuit. Next, electroluminescent panels 52-57 are energized in succession via contacts B-20 through B-25, respectively, to complete the simulated flight of the horseshoe toward horseshoe pit 58 on display panel 1.

When the main stepping switch reaches the twentysixth position, a circuit is completed from contact B-26 via the scoring circuits (shown primarily in FIG. 3) to energize one of the electroluminescent panels 59-62. If the player actuates 'player push button switch 93 when the stepping switch is in the eighteenth position, that is just before the simulated horseshoe leaves display panel 2,

the player scores a close-shoe and electroluminescent panel 61 is energized via terminal Y-3 when the stepping switch reaches the twenty-sixth position. If the player switch is actuated when the main stepping switch is in the twentieth position, that is just after the simulated horseshoe has entered display panel 1, the player scores a ringer indicated by energizing electroluminescent panel 59, and if the player switch is actuated while the main stepping switch is in the twenty-first position the player scores a leaner indicated by energizing electroluminescent panel 60. It should be noted that the highest scores are registered if the player switch is actuated just after the simulated horseshoe enters display panel 1, which, due to the variable time period associated with position 19, takes both skill and luck.

The other stationary contact 214 associated with movable contact 212 of the player-up relay is connected to apply the AC signal to wiper contact 101 associated with contact bank A of the main stepping switch, and is also connected to apply the AC signal to electroluminescent panel 11 via terminal Y-1 to thereby illuminate the body portion of the policeman. Accordingly, the policeman appears to wind up and then throw the horsesoe as the main stepping switch advances through its twenty-six positions. This is achieved by the connections of contacts A-l, A-5 and A-11 to electroluminescent panel 12, contacts A-3, A-7, and A-9 to electroluminescent panel 13, contact A-S to electroluminescent panel 14 and contact A-12 to electroluminescent panel 15. Contacts A-13 through A-18 are connected to electroluminescent panels 16-21, respectively, and contacts A-20-A-25 are connected to electroluminescent panels 22-27, respectively. The appropriate ones of electroluminescent panels 29-32 are energized through the scoring circuits when the main stepping switch reaches the twenty-sixth position.

The scoring apparatus includes relays 220, 230' and 240 referred to respectively as the ringer, leaner and closeshoe score relays. Stationary contact C-18 of the main stepping switch is connected to one end of actuating winding 241 associated with relay 240, contact C-20 is connected to one end of actuating winding 221 of relay 220, and contact C-22 is connected to one end of actuating winding 231 of relay 239. The other end of winding 221 is normally connected to ground via normally closed contacts 239 of relay 230, normally closed contacts 249 of relay 240 and normally closed contacts 252 of a relay 250, these normally closed contacts being connected in series. The other end of actuating winding 231 is normally connected to ground through normally closed contacts 249 and 252, and actuating winding 241 is connected to ground via normally closed contacts 252. Normally open contacts 228, 238 and 248 are connected between the positive source and the non-grounded ends of actuating windings 221, 231 and 241, respectively, :to complete holding circuits for relays 220, 230 and 240. Wiper contact 103 associated with the C bank of contacts (as shown in FIG. 2) is connectable to the positive source via normally open contacts 142 of player pulse relay 140.

If player push button switch 93 is actuated while the main stepping switch is in the eighteenth position, relay 240' is energized via contacts 142 of the player pulse relay, wiper contact 103, and stationary contact C-18, the relay thereafter being maintained in the energized state by the holding circuit completed through contacts 248. If the player push button switch is actuated while the main stepping switch is in the twentieth position, relay 220 similarly becomes energized, and likewise, if the player push button switch is actuated While the main stepping switch is in the twenty-first position relay 230 is energized.

Contacts 239 and 249 prevent more than one of the relays 220, 230 and 240 from becoming energized at the same time. Accordingly, if the player push button switch is actuated while the main stepping switch is in the eighteenth position thereby energizing relay 240, sub- 9 sequent actuation of the push button switch while the main stepping switch is in the twentieth or twenty-first position will be ineffective since contacts 249 are open. On the other hand, if the player push button switch is first actuated when the main stepping switch is in the twentieth position thereby energizing ringer score relay 220, a subsequent actuation when the main stepping switch is in the twenty-first position energizes leaner score relay 230 which opens contacts 239 to de-energize relay 220 so that the lower of the two scores is registered.

Contact A-26 of the main stepping switch (connection shown in FIG. 2) is connected to movable contact 222 of relay 220, and the associated normally open stationary contact 224 is connected to electroluminescent panel 29 via terminal X-S. The normally closed stationary contact 223 associated with movable contact 222 is connected to movable contact 232 of relay 230 and the normally open associated contact 234 is connected to electroluminescent panel 30 via terminal X-4. Normally closed stationary contact 233 associated with movable contact 232 is connected to movable contact 242 of relay 240 and the associated normally open stationary contact 244 is connected to electroluminescent panel 31 via terminal X-3. Normally closed stationary contact 243 is connected to electroluminescent panel 32 via terminal X-2.

If wiper contact 101 of the main stepping switch is energized via movable contact 212 of player-up relay 210, and if none of relays 220, 230 or 240 is energized when the stepping switch reaches the twenty-sixth position, a circuit is completed via movable contacts 222, 232 and 242, stationary contact 243, and terminal X-2 to energize electroluminescent panel 32 which shows the horseshoe outside the pit, and thus, indicates a miss. Under similar circumstances, if relay 240 is energized when the main stepping switch reaches the twenty-sixth position, the circuit is completed via movable contacts 222, 232 and 242, stationary contact 244 and terminal X-3 to energize electroluminescent panel 31 indicating a close-shoe. If leaner score relay 230 is energized the circuit is complete via movable contacts 222 and 232 to energize electroluminescent panel 30 indicating a leaner, and if relay 220 is energized the circuit is completed only through movable contact 222 to energize electrolumines cent panel 29 indicating a ringer.

Contact B-26 of the main stepping relay is similarly coupled to terminals Y-2 through Y- via movable contacts 225, 235 and 245, along with their associated stationary contacts, to provide similar displays with respect to horseshoe pit 58 when wiper contact 102 associated with contact bank B is energized.

The player score pulse generating circuit shown in FIG. 3 includes an eight position stepping switch having three banks of contacts designated E, F and G, the individual contacts of each bank being disposed radially so that the eight contact is adjacent to the first contact. Wiper contacts 264, 265 and 263 associated with contact banks E, F and G, respectively, advance one position upon each successive energization of actuating winding 261. Contacts G-2 through G-8 are all connected to the positive source, and associated wiper contact 263 is connected to one end of actuating winding 261 via ofi-normal contacts 262. The other end of winding 261 is connected to ground. Olf-norrnal contacts 262 open momentarily each time the stepping switch advances one position. The non-grounded end of winding 261 is also connected to a normally open stationary contact 203 of the end play relay 200 (FIG. 2). A capacitor 205 is connected between ground and a movable contact 202. Stationary contact 204 is connected to the positive source so that capacitor 205 will be charged via movable contact 202 when relay 200 is in the de-energized state. As was previously mentioned, relay 200 is energized when the main stepping switch reaches the twenty-sixth position which in turn connects charged capacitor 205 to actuating winding 261. As a result, stepping switch 260 10 advances to the second position, and is thereafter advanced to complete one revolution by means of the circuits completed via wiper contact 263.

Normally open contact 228 of relay 220 is connected between the positive source and stationary contact 'E*3, ES and E7 of stepping switch 260. Normally open contact 238 of relay 230 is connected between the positive source and contacts E4 and E6, whereas contact 248 is connected between the positive source and stationary contact E2. Wiper contact 264 is connected to one end of windings 271 and 281 associated with stepping switches 270 and 280, respectively. The other end of winding 271 is connectable to ground via stationary contact 217 and movable contact 215 of player-up relay 210, and the other end of winding 281 is similarly con nectable to ground via stationary contact 216 and movable contact 215. Winding 281 is the advance winding for .an eleven position stepping switch having contacts designated J-0 through J-10 associated with a wiper contact 283. Contacts J-1 through F9 are connected to electroluminescent panels 64 (FIG. 4) which are designed so that numerical score indications corresponding to the stepping switch position are presented on display panel 2. One lead from AC source 274 is connected to the backing conductor of each of these electroluminescent panels, and the other lead from the AC source is connected to wiper contact 283. Stepping switch 280 advances one position each time advance winding 281 is energized, and returns to the home position associated with contact J-0 each time the associated reset winding 282 is energized. Stepping switch 270 is the same as stepping switch 280, including an advance winding 2 71, reset winding 272, wiper contact 273, and eleven stationary contacts designated K-0 through K-10. Stepping switch 270 is connected to electroluminescent panels 65 in essentially the same manner as stepping switch 280 is connected to electroluminescent panels 64.

If player-up relay 210 is in the position shown in FIG. 2, thereby conditioning advance winding 281 for actuation, and close-shoe score relay 240 is energized when stepping switch 260 is set in motion, a single pulse will be generated as wiper contact 264 passes stationary contact E2 which is energized via contacts 248. This single pulse is applied to advance winding 281 thereby advancing stepping switch 280 by one position, or in other words, one point is added to the second players score. If instead, leaner score relay 230 were energized, two pulses would be generated, one when the wiper contact passes stationary contact E4 and another when it passes stationary contact E6, and hence, two points are added to the second players score. If ringer score relay is energized, contacts E3, E5 and E7 are energized and, therefore, three points will be added to the second players score. If player-up relay 210 is in the position opposite to that shown in FIG. 2, advance winding 271 is conditioned instead of advance winding 281 and, thus, points would be added to the first players score in a similar fashion.

Wiper contact 265 of stepping relay 260 is connected to the positive source, and associated stationary contact F-8 is connected to ground via actuating winding 251 of relay 250. Therefore, when stepping relay 260 is set in motion and reaches the eighth position, which occurs after the scores have been transferred from relays 220, 230 and 240 over to stepping relays 270 and 280, winding 251 of relay 250 is energized. This releases the holding circuits for windings 221, 231 and 241 thereby permitting the associated relays to return to their de-energized state in anticipation of the next play. Stationary contact F-8 is also connected to ground via winding 211 of player-up relay 210. Accordingly, the player-up relay changes position each time a play is completed as indicated by energization of contact F-8.

Contacts K-10 and J-10 are connected so that actuating winding 131 of game over relay is energized when either one of stepping switches 270 or reaches their tenth position. This opens contacts 132 to prevent any further actuation of the player pulse relay, and also opens Dart game The concept of scoring an animated game in accordance with the time at which a player switch is actuated while an object is in its trajectory toward a target area, is applicable to many types of games other than the horseshoe game. For example, the concept can be used in conjunction with a display panel as shown in FIG. to provide a simulated dart game.

This display panel is controlled by the same control circuits previously described with respect to FIGS. 2 and 3. Contact banks A and B of the main stepping switch, and contact banks J and K of stepping switches 270 and 280 are reproduced in FIG. 5 to show the connections between the various electroluminescent panels of the control circuits. Also, terminal strips X and Y are reproduced to show connections of the electroluminescent panels in the target area to the various portions of the control circuits.

Two cartoon characters 3% and 301 are shown on the display which, when animated, appear to throw darts toward a target shown on the other side of the display panel. An electroluminescent panel 332 forms the body portion of cartoon character 3% and is connected to terminal Xll so that it becomes energized while the character is in play. The individual electroluminescent panels 3t)3307 show the characters arm in five different positions and are connected to contacts A1 through A-12. More specifically, contacts A-l, A5 and A41 are connected to panel 304, contacts A-2, A4, A-6 and A- are connected to panel 305, contacts A3, A-7 and A9 are connected to panel 336, contact A8 is connected to panel 307 and contact A-12 is connected to panel 303. As the main stepping switch advances through the first twelve positions, cartoon character 30% appears to first take a short swing back, then a short swing forward, a full swing back, and finally a full swing forward at which time the dart is released. Electroluminescent panels 308 through 320 are connected to contacts A13 through A25, respectively, so that the panels are energized successively to present a display which simulates the flight of a dart toward a target area 326.

The scoring circuits will energize a selected one of terminals X2 through X-S depending upon the time at which the player push button switch is actuated during the simulated flight of the dart toward the target. Electroluminescent panels 321 through 324, when energized, each show a dart in the target area. Panel 324 shows a dart in the bulls eye area of target 326 worth three points; panel 323 shows a dart in the middle ring of the target worth two points; and panel 322 shows a dart in the outer ring worth one point. Electroluminescent panel 321 shows the dart just outside the target area and indicates a miss. Con- I tacts K-l through K-9 are connected to electroluminescent panels 325 to indicate the first players score.

If the player switch is actuated when the main stepping switch is in the twentieth position, panel 324 is illuminated via terminal X5 and three points are added to the players score as indicated on panel 325. If the switch is actuated when the main stepping switch is in the twenty-first position, panel 323 is illuminated and two points are added to the score, whereas if the player switch is actuated while the main stepping switch is in the eighteenth position, panel 323 is energized and only one point is added to the score. If the player fails to actuate the player switch while the main stepping switch is in either the eighteenth, twentieth or twenty-first positions, panel 321 is energized to show the miss.

With respect to cartoon character 301, terminal Y1 is connected to an electroluminescent panel 302 forming the body portion of the character. Contacts B-l through B12 are connected to electroluminescent panel 333 through 337 which dis-play the five individual arm positions for the cartoon character. Contacts B12 through B-25 are connected to electroluminescent panels 338 through 359, respectively. Thus, when the B contact bank of the main stepping switch is energized, cartoon character 301 appears to first wind up, and then throw the dart toward the target area as the main stepping switch advances through its twenty-six positions.

Contacts J-1 through L9 are connected to electroluminescent panels 355 to indicate the second players score. Terminals Y-Z through Y5 are connected to electroluminescent panels 351 through 354, respectively, to show the various possible positions for the second players darts after reaching the target area.

In the completed apparatus the control circuits are housed in a suitable unit 360 as shown in FIG. 6 and are connected to the display panel by means of a cable 364. The control circuits are controlled from a remote control unit 361 which includes a coin slot 362 and a push button 363 associated with the player switch. The remote control unit is coupled to the control circuits by means of a suitable transmitter-receiver system.

Thus, it can be seen that many different types of games properly fall within the scope of this invention. The invention is more particularly defined in the appended claims.

What is claimed is:

1. Amusement apparatus comprising display panel means disposed for view by players; means defining a target area on said display panel means; first illuminating means associated with said display panel means to provide thereon an illuminated display simulating the movement of an object toward said target area; second illuminating means associated with said display panel means to provide thereon an animated character display; player operated means actuatable by the player; first electrical circuit means operatively connected to control said first and second illuminating means so that said character appears to wind-up and then throw said object toward said target area in response to an actuation of said player operated means; third illuminating means associated with said display panel means to provide thereon a plurality of illuminated displays each representing a different condition which could exist when said object reaches said target area; and second electrical circuit means controllable by the player and operative via said third illuminating means to present a selected one of said conditions.

2. Amusement apparatus in accordance with claim 1 wherein said second electrical circuit means is coupled to said player operated means so that said selected condition presented via said third illuminating means is in accordance with the time in which said player operated means is actuated during said simulated movement of said object toward said target area.

3. Amusement apparatus in accordance with claim 1 comprising a plurality of individually energizable electroluminescent panels and wherein said first, second, and third illuminating means achieve their respective displays by energizing selected ones of said electroluminescent panels.

4. Amusement apparatus comprising a pair of display panels disposed for view by the players; means defining a target area on one of said display panels; first illuminating means associated with the other one of said display panels to provide thereon an animated character display; second illuminating means associated with bothof said display panels to provide thereon an illuminated display simulating the movement of an object from said character to said target area; electrical circuit means operatively connected to control said first and second illuminating means so that said character appears to wind-up and throw said object out of said one display panel and so that said object thereafter appears to enter said other display panel and continue toward said target area in one continuous trajectory; variable time delay circuit means connected to said electrical circuit means to vary the time interval during which the simulated object appears between display panels; and a player operated means actuatable by the player and scoring apparatus adapted to score the maximum score for the play when said player operated means is actuated just after said object appears to enter said one display panel.

5. Amusement apparatus in accordance with claim 4 wherein said simulated object resembles a horseshoe, said target resembles a horseshoe pit and said animated character appears to throw a horseshoe toward said horseshoe pit.

6. Amusement apparatus comprising a pair of display panels disposed for view by the players; means defining a target area on each of said display panels; a plurality of separately energizable electroluminescent panels shaped and located so that an animated character can be displaced on each of said display panels and so that the movement of an object from said characters to the target area on the other of said display panels can be simulated; player operated means actuatable by the players; control circuit means connected to said electroluminescent panels and operable to animate one of said characters and then simulate the movement of said object to the target area on the other display panel in response to a first actuation of said player operated means, and to thereafter animate the other of said characters and then simulate the movement of said object back to the target area of the first one of said display areas in response to an actuation of said player operated means, whereby said object appears to be thrown back and forth between said display panels upon successive actuations of said player operated means.

7. Amusement apparatus in accordance with claim 6 wherein said-target areas resemble horseshoe pits and said characters appear to throw a horseshoe back and forth between said horseshoe pits.

8. Electrical horseshoe game apparatus comprising display panel means disposed for View by the players; means suggesting the position of a horseshoe pit on said display panel means; a first plurality of separately energizable electroluminescent panel members arranged so that an animated character winding-up to throw a horseshoe can be presented on said display panel means by energizing said panel members sequentially; a second plurality of separately energizable electroluminescent panel members arranged so that the flight of a horseshoe from said character to said horseshoe pit can be simulated on said display panel means by energizing selected panel members sequentially; a third plurality of separately energizable electroluminescent panel members arranged to stimulate a ringer, a leaner and a close-shoe within said horseshoe pit, and a horseshoe outside said pit; electrical circuit means connected to sequentially energize said electroluminescent panel members so that said character first appears to Wind-up and then appears to throw said horseshoe toward said horseshoe pit; and a player actuatable switch means connected so that the panel member selected by said player controllable circuit means is selected in accordance with the time at which said switch means is actuated during a simulated flight.

9. Horseshoe game apparatus in accordance with claim 8 wherein said display panel means includes a first and a second display panel, said first plurality of electroluminescent panel members being part of said first display panel, said suggested horseshoe pit being on said second display panel, and said second electroluminescent panel members being split between said display panels.

10. Horseshoe game apparatus in accordance with claim 9 further comprising means suggesting a horseshoe pit on said first display panel, a plurality of additional electroluminescent panels arranged to present a second animated character on said second display panel, and a plurality of additional electroluminescent panels arranged to simulate the flight of a horseshoe from said second character to said horseshoe pit on said first display panel, said electrical circuit means being operably connected to sequentially energize said additional electroluminescent panel members.

11. Horseshoe game apparatus in accordance with claim 8 further comprising scoring apparatus for maintaining the players total score, and means for adding to said total score a number of points related to the particular one of said panel members which is energized at the end of each simulated flight.

12. Horseshoe game apparatus in accordance with claim 8 wherein said switch means is also connected to said electrical circuit means so that a simulated flight will be initiated by a player actuation of said switch means.

13. Horseshoe game apparatus in accordance with claim 8 further comprising a radio transmitter-receiver system for coupling said player actuatable switch means to said circuit means.

14. Horseshoe game apparatus in accordance with claim 13 further comprising coin-operated switch means so that player actuatable switch means is operative only after coins of the proper denomination have been deposited to actuate said coin-operated switch means.

15. Electrical dart game apparatus comprising display panel means disposed for view by the players; means suggesting the outline of a target for darts; a first plurality of separately energizable electroluminescent panel members arranged so that an animated character winding-up to throw a dart can be presented on said display panel means by energizing selected panel members sequentially; a second plurality of separately energizable electroluminescent panel members arranged so that the flight of a dart from said character to said target can be simulated on said display panel means by sequentially energizing said panel members; a third plurality of separately energizable electroluminescent panel members arranged to simulate a dart at various positions in said target; electrical circuit means connected to sequentially energize said electroluminscent panel members so that said character first appears to wind-up and then appears to throw said dart toward said target; player controllable circuit means for energizing a selected one of said third plurality of panel members at the end of each simulated flight; and player actuatable switch means connected so that the panel member selected by said player controllable circuit means is selected in accordance with the time at which said switch means is actuated during a simulated flight.

16. Dart game apparatus in accordance with claim 15 further comprising additional electroluminescent panel members selectively energized by said electrical circuit means and arranged so that a second animated character and the simulated flight of a dart from said second character to said target can be displayed.

17. Dart game apparatus in accordance with claim 15 further comprising scoring apparatus for maintaining the players total score, and means for adding to said total score a number of points related to the particular one of said panel members which is energized at the end of each simulated flight.

18. Dart game apparatus in accordance with claim 15 wherein said switch means is also connected to said electrical circuit means so that a simulated flight will be initiated by a player actuation of said switch means.

19. Dart game apparatus in accordance with claim 18 further comprising a radio transmitter-receiver system for of separately energizable electroluminescent panel members arranged so that by sequential energization, an animated character winding-up to throw an object can be presented on said display panel means; a second plurality of separately energizable electroluminescent panel members arranged so that, by sequential energization, the movement of said object from said character to said target area can be simulated on said display panel means; a third plurality of separately energizable electroluminescent panel members arranged to display said object at various different positions in said target area; electrical pulse generating circuit means; player actuatable switch means for rendering said pulse generating circuit means operative in responsive to a switch actuation; multiple position digital selector means operative to change position in response to each successive pulse from said pulse generating circuit means, said selector means being operatively connected to first sequentially energize panel members of said first plurality and thereafter sequentially energize panel members of said second plurality; circuit means operably connected to energize a selected one of said third plurality of panel members when said digital selector means completes a stepping sequence, said last named circuit means being conditioned to energize a predetermined one of said third plurality of panel members if said switch means is actuated When said digital selector means is in a certain position.

22. Amusement apparatus in accordance with claim 21 further comprising circuit means for controlling said pulse generating circuit means in accordance with the position of said selector means so that pulses are generated at one rate while panel members of said first plurality are being energized and at a different rate while panel members of said second plurality are being energized.

23. Amusement apparatus in accordance with claim 21 further comprising variable time delay circuit means coupled to said selector means to vary the dwell time associated with one of the positions of said selector means which occurs during the sequence in which said second plurality of panel members is energized.

24. Amusement apparatus in accordance with claim 23 wherein said display means includes a first and a second display panel, said first plurality of panel members being part of said first display panel, said target area being part of said second display panel, and said second plurality of panel members being split between said first and second display panels so that said object appears to move out of said first display panel and, after the pause caused by said variable dwell time, enters said second display panel.

References Cited F. BARRY SHAY, Primary Examiner.

RICHARD C. PINKHAM, S. NATTER, Assistant Examiners.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2187422 *Nov 17, 1939Jan 16, 1940Henry Augustus MAmusement apparatus
US2300132 *Sep 21, 1940Oct 27, 1942New Fred MTorpedo shooting game apparatus
US2404653 *May 8, 1944Jul 23, 1946Anthony BirdElectric target game
US2458892 *Oct 26, 1945Jan 11, 1949Theodore A KruseAmusement game apparatus having illuminating means simulating dropping of a bomb from an airplane upon a boat
US3012779 *Dec 12, 1958Dec 12, 1961Friedman SolIcbm game
US3269731 *Aug 2, 1963Aug 30, 1966Chicago Dynamic Ind IncBowling game with sequentially illuminated bulbs simulating bowler and ball movements
GB900104A * Title not available
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3583538 *Mar 24, 1969Jun 8, 1971Funtronics IncElectric ping-pong game and the like
US3604707 *Mar 24, 1969Sep 14, 1971Funtronics IncElectric dart game and the like
US3637212 *Mar 24, 1969Jan 25, 1972Funtronics IncBird shoot game and the like
US4014544 *Mar 8, 1976Mar 29, 1977Torazo KimuraElectrified amusement device
US4249734 *Feb 26, 1979Feb 10, 1981Coleco Industries, Inc.Hand-held two-player electronic football game
US4249735 *Jun 28, 1978Feb 10, 1981Eric BromleyElectronic simulated football game and method
US4249744 *Feb 26, 1979Feb 10, 1981Coleco Industries, Inc.Two-player electronic sports action game
US4324402 *Jan 5, 1979Apr 13, 1982Mattel, Inc.Electronic baseball game
US4346892 *Feb 15, 1980Aug 31, 1982Kitchen Garry EElectronic pool game
US4438926 *Jun 20, 1980Mar 27, 1984Nintendo Co., Ltd.Timepiece apparatus having a game function
US4582322 *Feb 3, 1984Apr 15, 1986Nintendo Co., Ltd.Electronic toy having a game function
US5078399 *May 24, 1990Jan 7, 1992Lennon Jr John RSystem for converting a home video game to a coin-operated video game
Classifications
U.S. Classification463/51
International ClassificationA63H30/00, A63F9/00, A63F9/30, A63F9/02, A63H30/04
Cooperative ClassificationA63F9/0291, A63H30/04, A63F9/305
European ClassificationA63H30/04, A63F9/02S, A63F9/30F