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Vanguard Vanguard - Japanese Logo - Katakana / Kanji

Vanguard - Cabinet - Video Game Marquee


This game is a horizontal and vertical scrolling shooter with four buttons that let you shoot in four different directions. In addition to shooting enemies, you can drive your ship through an "energy" pod that energizes your ship allowing you to crash into enemies without being destroyed.

Vanguard was produced by Centuri in 1981.

Centuri released 14 machines in our database under this trade name, starting in 1977. Centuri was based in United States.

Other machines made by Centuri during the time period Vanguard was produced include: Eagle, Killer Comet, Phoenix, Battle Station, Challenger, Pit, The, Pleiades, Route 16, and Loco-Motion


Name Vanguard
Developer Centuri (United States)
Year 1981
Type Videogame
KLOV/MOG # 10293
Class Wide Release
Genre Space
Conversion Class unique
Game Specific Vanguard Pinout
Dipswitch Settings

Vanguard Dipswitch Settings (user contributed)

# Simultaneous Players 1
# Maximum Players 2
Game Play Alternating
Control Panel Layout Single Player
  • Joystick: 8-way
  • Buttons: 4 - Fire UpFire DownFire RightFire Left
Sound Amplified Mono (one channel)
Cabinet Styles
  • Upright/Standard
  • Cocktail - Cinematronics
  • Wall Hanging - NSM
Control Panel Vanguard Control Panel Image
Side Art Vanguard Side Art Image

Game Play

Your ship moves from zone to zone, accompanied by synthesized speech describing the name of each zone Stick Zone, Rainbow Zone, etc. There is a boss at the end of the level that is protected by two moving barriers with holes in them that you must shoot through. After completing the level, you start over on a new, harder level with a different layout.

Your ship also has a fuel tank, which is depleted as the game proceeds. Each enemy you destroy increases the fuel in your tank. If you run out of fuel, your ship crashes. Your fuel supply can also be replenished by driving through an energy pod a structure labeled "Energy" - you cannot miss it. After running through an energy pod, your ship becomes energized for a short time and can crash into anything enemies, walls, etc.

The game is mostly a horizontal scroller, but it converts to a vertical scroller and your ship rotates 90 degrees for the last zone and when fighting the boss.

Vanguard KLOV/IAM 5 Point User Score: 2.88 (3 votes)

Fun Factor: 2.93

Overall Like 3.00
Fun (Social) 2.67
Fun (Solo) 2.67
Collector Desire 3.33

Technical Rating: 2.83

Gameplay 3.33
Graphics 3.00
Originality 2.33
Sound/Music 2.67

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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More pictures


The game plays a little bit of the Star Trek theme at the start of a game the newer theme used in "Star Trek: The Motion Picture" and "Star Trek: The Next Generation". Also, the game plays "Vultan's Theme Attack of the Hawkmen" from the 1981 "Flash Gordon" movie whenever you get the fuel pod and become invincible. Vanguard also came in a standing table game format tall cocktail which was produced by Cinematronics.

Cabinet Information

The sideart shows an astronaut in a ship being attacked by giant snakes that shoot lasers. The game was also released by Cinematronics in a stand-up cocktail version.


LICENSEE: Cinematronics for the standup cocktail version

The game was originally created by SNK and licenced to Centuri for U.S. distrabution.

Vanguard was also made by Game World Manufacturing in the U.K, under license from SNK of Japan.

VAPS Arcade/Coin-Op Vanguard Census

There are 14,743 members of the Video Arcade Preservation Society / Vintage Arcade Preservation Society, 9,469 whom participate in our arcade census project of games owned, wanted, or for sale. Census data currently includes 164,447 machines (6,893 unique titles).

Very Common - There are 170 known instances of this machine owned by Vanguard collectors who are active members. Of these, 128 of them are original dedicated machines. 2 of them are conversions in which game circuit boards (and possibly cabinet graphics) have been placed in (and on) another game cabinet. 39 of them are only circuit boards which a collector could put into a generic case if desired.

For Sale - There are 6 active VAPS members with a Vanguard machines for sale. There are 2 active VAPS members with a Vanguard circuit boards for sale.

Wanted - There are 9 active VAPS members currently looking for Vanguard. There is one active VAPS member looking for a Vanguard circuit board set.

This game ranks a 41 on a scale out of 100 (100 = most often seen, 1=least common) in popularity based on census ownership records.

This game ranks a 13 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]



The game uses a Z80 CPU and generates speech using a separate add-on board. There is a -5VDC post on the speech board that must be powered in order for the board to work properly. Most of the sounds and music are generated via a SN76477 chip.


  1. Vanguard
  2. Vanguard II


Additional References (logged in members often see more)

  1. 3D Model (External): Upright

See the game at:

This game is available at the following public arcades, bars or museums:

Name Location State Country Details Check-ins
Level One Bar + Arcade 130 Hutchinson Ave, Columbus Ohio United States 0

eBay Listings

Click to search eBay for Vanguard Videogame machines and related items.

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Ebay Compatible Application

Vanguard High Score Save and Free Play Kit - Arcade

Auction ends in: 2 weeks, 6 days


Flyer CAPCOM VANGUARD Arcade Video Game advertisement original see pic

Auction ends in: 1 week, 5 days


Vanguard Arcade Game Marquee Wall Art

Auction ends in: 3 weeks, 6 days


Vanguard Free Play and High Score Save Kit Arcade

Auction ends in: 2 weeks, 3 days


Vanguard Arcade Marquee For Reproduction Header/Backlit Sign

Auction ends in: 3 days, 8 hours


SNK VANGUARD 2 Arcade Video Game flyer- original

Auction ends in: 2 weeks, 4 days


VANGUARD Original 1981 Video Arcade Flyer Vintage Retro Promo Artwork

Auction ends in: 3 weeks, 3 hours


Vintage 1981 VANGUARD Arcade Marquee Centuri

Auction ends in: 1 week, 3 days



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