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Quantum Quantum - Japanese Logo - Katakana / Kanji

Quantum - Cabinet - Video Game Marquee


Enter a subatomic world. Using the trackball, capture particles by circling them with your probes tail. Player surpassing the high score gets to "draw" his name with the trackball.

Quantum was produced by Atari in 1982.

Atari released 137 machines in our database under this trade name, starting in 1972. Atari was based in United States.

Other machines made by Atari during the time period Quantum was produced include: Neutron Star, Tempest Tubes, Tempest, Triangle, Maze Invaders, Akka Arrh, Atari Force Liberator, Fast Freddie, Black Widow, and Gravitar


Name Quantum
Developer Atari (United States)
Year 1982
Type Videogame
KLOV/MOG # 9189
Class Prototype
Genre Skill
  • Orientation: Vertical
  • Type: Vector
  • Color: Color
Conversion Class unique
# Simultaneous Players 1
# Maximum Players 2
Game Play Alternating
Control Panel Layout Single Player
  • Trackball: Optical
Sound Amplified Mono (one channel)
Cabinet Styles
  • Upright/Standard

Game Introduction

Using only a trackball, capture and destroy particles (Electrons, Nuclei, Photons, Positrons, Pulsars, Splitters and Triphons) by fully encircling them with your probe's tail. The number and speed of particles increases and the length of the probes tail decreases with each passing wave, increasing the difficulty of the task. Colliding with a particle destroys your probe. Circling multiple particles scores double points. On higher levels, the Nuclei join together forming bonds, lethal to your probe when red. A choice of starting levels (based on the previous level attained) is available at game start. A level is selected by circling it with the trackball. Quantum is unique for allowing the highest scoring player to "sign" his name freehand using the trackball. To achieve visually pleasing results requires considerable practice.

Game Play

In each stage, you move your probe with the trackball. As you move, you leave a tail behind. As the attract-mode demo explains, the idea is to circle around and cross your tail to complete a loop. Any particles caught in a closed loop are destroyed. A level is completed by destroying all the nuclei (solid circular particles).

You must avoid contact with any of the particles (except electrons, they are safe) as well as active (red) particle bonds. Otherwise, the scene collapses and destroys your probe. Besides the nuclei, other deadly particles may appear from time to time.

Quantum KLOV/IAM 5 Point User Score: 3.37 (5 votes)

Fun Factor: 3.44

Overall Like 3.40
Fun (Social) 3.20
Fun (Solo) 3.20
Collector Desire 4.00

Technical Rating: 3.30

Gameplay 3.20
Graphics 3.20
Originality 3.80
Sound/Music 3.00

Personal Impressions and Technical Impressions each account for half of the total score. Within the Personal Impressions category, Like carries a little more weight than the other factors.

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Cheats, Tricks, Bugs, and Easter Eggs

It is possible, usually only at the beginning of a new screen, for even a moderately skilled player to quickly circle around the entire screen and move to the next level immediately.



This was one of two games designed for Atari by General Computer Corp. (the other being Food Fight). The agreement was the result of a legal settlement between Atari and GCC. The production run for this game is rumored to be around 500. The game did poorly in the arcades and rumor has it that some disgruntled operators returned the game to Atari. Many unsold/returned units were sold to the public and Atari employees.

Cabinet Information

The game was released as a dedicated upright cabinet only. The machine is notable for its use of front-panel artwork, surrounding the coin slots. The side art is silk-screened.

Although there have been occasional rumors that a cocktail prototype exists, the findings may reveal that this is just a converted Tempest cocktail.

VAPS Arcade/Coin-Op Quantum Census

There are 14,908 members of the Video Arcade Preservation Society / Vintage Arcade Preservation Society, 9,530 whom participate in our arcade census project of games owned, wanted, or for sale. Census data currently includes 165,161 machines (6,929 unique titles).

Very Common - There are 108 known instances of this machine owned by Quantum collectors who are active members. Of these, 88 of them are original dedicated machines. 5 of them are conversions in which game circuit boards (and possibly cabinet graphics) have been placed in (and on) another game cabinet. 15 of them are only circuit boards which a collector could put into a generic case if desired.

For Sale - There are 2 active VAPS members with a Quantum circuit boards for sale.

Wanted - Very Popular - There are 27 active VAPS members currently looking for Quantum.

This game ranks a 26 on a scale out of 100 (100 = most often seen, 1=least common) in popularity based on census ownership records.

This game ranks a 43 on a scale out of 100 (100 = most often seen, 1=least common) in popularity based on census want list records.

Rarity and Popularity independently are not necessarily indications of value. [More Information]



Used the Amplifone XY display (mounted vertically). The game manual refers to a Wells Gardner equipped version, but due to the limited production run, this may not be correct. Boardset is similar in form to other Atari color XY games, though Quantum was Atari's first use of the Motorola 68000 CPU (previous XY games used one or more 6502s). Vector generation circuitry is capable of drawing solid objects.


Foto-Finder® (Books)

  1. The Encyclopedia of Arcade Video Games Kurtz (ISBN 0764319256) Page: 118; Color photo Price guide: No
  2. Encyclopedia of Arcade Video Games Kurtz (ISBN 0764319256) Page: 118; Color photo

Additional References (logged in members often see more)

  1. 3D Model (External): Upright

eBay Listings

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Ebay Compatible Application

4 MINI Arcade Marquee Stickers Atari Xevious Food Fight I, Robot Quantum

Auction ends in: 2 days, 12 hours


Quantum Arcade Marquee/Sign (26" x 8")

Auction ends in: 2 weeks, 4 days


Quantum marquee reprint misprints

Auction ends in: 3 weeks, 5 days


ATARI Regulator/Audio A/R-II-03 AO35435-03 PCB (REPRODUCTION) #AG00107

Auction ends in: 1 week, 1 day


Quantum reproduction wiring harness control panel & midi-track ball

Auction ends in: 6 days, 10 hours


ATARI Regulator/Audio A/R-II-03 AO35435-03 PCB (REPRODUCTION) #AG00102

Auction ends in: 3 weeks, 13 hours


ATARI Regulator/Audio A/R-II-02 AO35435-03 PCB (#830592)

Auction ends in: 10 hours, 3 minutes



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