US 3645529 A
A game device of chance and skill is disclosed wherein electrically conductive game pieces are propelled in electrically contacting relationship between two facing horizontal conductive game board surfaces. One of the game board surfaces is electrically segmented into a plurality of conductive terminals which are electrically related to lights on a display board so that as a game piece moves between the game board surfaces, a visual display is presented on the display board to indicate the relative position of the game piece on the game board.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent [151 3,645,529 Andrews 5] Feb. 29, 1972 [541 ELECTRIC GAME BOARD WITH 2,631,041 3/1953 Zaichick ..273/108 X INDICATOR 2,905,473 9/1959 Giannotti .273/137 A X 3,128,458 4/1964 Romero ..340/339 X  Inventor: Thomas W. Andrews, 2300 Bellfield Avenue, Cleveland Heights, Ohio 44106 FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS  Filed: Apr. 29, 1970 784,040 4/1935 France ..273/108  AppL No 32,904 913,654 6/1946 France ..273/131 A Primary ExaminerAnton O. Oechsle  US. Cl ..273/108, 46/65, ZOO/61.1, Assistant Examiner-Richard J. Apley 273/1 E, 273/127 R, 273/128, 273/138 A Attorney-Synnestvedt & Lechner  Int. Cl. ..A63i 9/00  Field of Search ..273/1 E, 108, 86 R, 102.2,  ABSTRACT 273/130 528,32 A game device of chance and skill is disclosed wherein electrically conductlve game pieces are propelled lll electrically contacting relationship between two facing horizontal conductive  References cued game board surfaces. One of the game board surfaces is elec- UNITED STATES PATENTS trically segmented into a plurality of conductive terminals which are electrically related to lights on a display board so 2,013,958 9/1935 Hughes ..273/ 130 AB that as a game piece moves between the game boat-d Surfaces, 2,591,869 4/ 1 52 Q m y- "340/323 a visual display is presented on the display board to indicate 2,613,266 V1952 R655 "340/337 X the relative position of the game piece on the game board. 3,348,844 10/1967 Lemelson. .....273/1 E X 3,399,896 9/1968 Burnside ..273/138 A 10 Claims, 7 Drawing Figures Patented Feb. 29, 1972 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 INVENTOR THOMAS W. ANDREWS ATTORNEY Patnted Feb. 29, 1912 v I 3,645,529
2 Sheets-Sheet I IFIG.5'
mve n'ron THOMAS W. ANDREWS ATTORNEY ELECTRIC GAME BOARD WITH INDICATOR SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION practice of this invention are illustrated in FIGS. 3, 4 and 5. In FIG. 3, a game piece is shown with a configuration to simulate a rocket 17. The rocket 17 has wheels 18 and a spring-loaded carbon brush 19. When the rocket is between the game sur- Thisinvention relates to a game or toy and, more particu- 5 faces, the brush 19 makes contact with the conductive ceiling larly, to a game device that simulates, on a mock radar screen, the movement of game pieces, such as aircraft, propelled between game board surfaces, and the trajectory of other game pieces, such as missiles, fired in an attempt to hit the aircraft.
A game can also be played by the device of this invention by erecting nonmovable pieces over the game board surfaces in a manner that will cause the mock radar screen to light up fully. A randomly moving game device is then inserted between the game board surfaces in an attempt to knock down as many game pieces and put out as many lights as possible.
Accordingly, it is the object of this invention to provide a game that utilizes both chance and skill.
Another object of this invention is to provide a game device thatrecords the movement of one or more game pieces on a mock radar screen. 7
These and other objects of this invention can best be understood in connection with the description of the following drawings in which:
FIG. 1 is a schematic wiring diagram indicating the general circuitry of this invention;
FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the game device of this invention; v
FIGS. 3, 4 and 5 are views in front elevation of various game pieces that may be used in this invention;
FIGS. 6a and 6b schematically illustrate an arrangement whereby a-three-dimensional effect can be obtained with the display device.
Referring first to FIG. 2, there is generally shown the device of this invention in which a confined space or game box for the movement of game pieces therein is defined by a base game board surface 1 and a corresponding, directly opposed, ceiling game board surface 2. Side members 5 complete the enclosure or box. At the far end of the game device, a display device 3 is vertically mounted which, in this embodiment, is given the outward appearance of a radar screen. Access to the confined space between the game board surfaces is provided by means of hand openings 14, by means of lifting the ceiling surface 2 which is hinged at 15, or by means of a launching device 16.
Referring more particularly to FIG. 1, a simplified version of a wiring diagram for use in this invention is illustrated. The base game board surface 1 is electrically segmented into a plurality of conductive terminals 6-6. Each of the conductive terminals6-6 is in electrical communication via conductors 8-8 to one electrical terminal of a corresponding light 4-4 mounted on the display board. Each of the conductive terminals 6-6 has a corresponding light 4-4, which light is mounted on the display board in the same relative position as is the conductive terminal on the game board surface.
The other electrical terminal of the lamps 4-4 are connected by conductors 9-9 which, by way of a single conductor 11, is in communication via a source of electrical energy 12, here illustrated as a battery, with the ceiling game board surface 2. The ceiling surface 2 of the game device carries a single continuous conductive element in the form of a metal foil or sheet 7 that covers substantially the entire ceiling surface.
From the preceding description of FIGS. 1 and 2, it can be understood that when an electrically conductive element bridges the space between the conductive terminals of the ceiling 7 and one of the conductive terminals 6 located on the base surface 1, an electrical circuit will be completed and the lamp 4 which corresponds to the conductive terminal 6 upon which the conductive element is present will be lighted. By
this means, a visual display of the position of the conductive element between the game board surfaces is given.
Several different types of conductive elements (herein sometimes called game pieces") that may be used in the surface 7 and one of the terminals 6-6 and cause one of the lights 4-4 to light up. It is understood that the body of the rocket and the wheels must be electrically conductive or, in lieu of that, an element in the form of a conductive brush may be depended from the rocket which is electrically attached to brush 19.
A difierent type of game piece is illustrated in FIG. 4. Here the game piece 21 is in the form of a top carrying a springloaded brush 22. A still further variation is shown in FIG. 5 in which the game piece is merely a slender conductive rod 23 carrying a spring-loaded brush 24. This rod 23, unlike the other game pieces, is not capable of movement and is adapted to be stationarily positioned within the game device.
The top 21 may be used, for example to simulate an aircraft passing between the game surfaces. The top (or other gyroscopic device) can be actuated outside of the game box and inserted through a hand hole or it may be inserted from above as by lifting the ceiling surface. Still another method is to position the top 21 within the box and get it started by, for example, pulling a wound string through the hand hole 14. In yet another variation, the top or gyroscopic device may be electrically propelled. This can be accomplished either by inserting a small battery within the top or by utilizing the current that will flow when a circuit is completed between the conductive terminals 6-6 and the conductive terminals of the ceiling 7.
The rocket may be inserted by any of the means described above with respect to the top, but additionally, it may be guided into the interior of the device by means of an aimable rocket launcher 16. The rocket 17 may be impelled either by a spring means (not shown) associated with the rocket launcher, or, as in the case of a top, it may be self-propelled,
either by a self-contained battery or by utilizing the source of power within the device.
In one method of operating this game device, the top is spun and allowed to move at random between the game board surfaces. The movement of the top will be presented on the radar screen 3 by the lights 4-4. If, for the purposes of this game, it is assumed that the top is an enemy aircraft, the missile 17 can be launched toward the line of movement of the top as indicated by the lights 4-4. If the missile is successfully launched in the proper direction and the top is hit, the top will fall over and the light indicating its last position will go out.
In another variation of this game, the ceiling is raised, posts 23-23 are positioned on each of the conductive terminals 6-6, and the ceiling is then closed. The top is started spinning within the box and, as it bumps against the poles and knocks them over, the corresponding lights will go out. The object of this game is to see how many lights a player can put out during his turn.
Another variation of this invention utilizes a three-dimensional display device 3. Referring to FIG. 6a, thereis schematically illustrated an arrangement of lights 4-4 in three rows of three each on each of three planes, A, B and C. Referring to FIG. 6b, there is illustrated a base surface 1 carrying a plurality of conductive terminals 6-6 which cooperate with the display device as illustrated in FIG. 6a. Here there are nine rows of three each of conductive terminals 6-6. The columns numbered I, II and III correspond to similarly designated columns in planes A, B and C of FIG. 6a. The lights of plane A are controlled by the nine conductive elements similarly designated A in FIG. 6b, and the lights in planes B and C by the conductive elements designated B and C respectively in FIG. 611. Thus, it can be understood that as a conductive game piece moves across the base surface 1, the lights lit on the display device will indicate not only the position of the game piece with regard to the game board, but will also provide a three-dimensionaleffect depending upon whether the game piece is within areas A, B or C of the base surface 1.
As illustrated and described in the foregoing, the base surface 1 and the ceiling surface 2 are parallel planar surfaces. In
order to impart a different movement to the gyroscopic game piece, it may be desired to make the base surface concave or slightly dished out. If this is done, it is important that the ceiling surface 2 be given a similar configuration so that, at all points, the two facing surfaces will be spaced equally from each other. This may be necessary to insure proper contact of the brush with the conductive terminal 7.
It is also to be understood that while the conductive terminals 66 are illustrated as being located on the base surface and the single conductive terminal on the ceiling surface 2, these surfaces could be reversed.
By yet another variation of this invention, the base surface 1 may be embossed with little ridges or valleys so that, when the bottom of the gyroscopicdevice engages the embossments it will be guided in a set pattern as it moves between the game board surfaces.
l. A game device comprising:
a first conductive surface;
a second surface in spaced relationship to and generally coextensive and parallel with the first surface and defining a game box therewith, the second surface being electrically segmented into a plurality of electrical terminals;
a visual display device having an array of indicators;
means electrically connecting each one of the electric terminals with at least one of the indicators;
means electrically connecting each indicator with the first surface; conductive game pieces for insertion within said game box and adapted to complete an electrical circuit between the first and second surfaces and energize indicators of said array; andv means in the circuit for providing a source of electrical power. 2. A game device according to claim 1 wherein the game piece is capable of moving between the two surfaces.
3. A game device according to claim 2 wherein the game piece is gyroscopically activated.
4. A game device according to claim 3 wherein the game piece is a top.
5. A game device according to claim 1 wherein the game piece is a wheeled vehicle.
6. A game device according to claim 5 wherein the wheeled vehicle is self-propelled.
7. A game device according to claim 1 wherein the game piece is a conductive rod.
8. A game device according to claim 1 wherein the indicators of the display device are lamps.
9. A game device according to claim 8 wherein the lamps are oriented in a single plane.
10. A game device according to claim 8 wherein the lamps are oriented in a plurality of planes.