W alter Day always had a dream to organize a Make Trax World Championship. He had been the world record holder of the game during the 1982-1983 period and it was a dream that circled in his mind for nearly 40 years, looking for a place to land. Make Trax is considered by many to be one of the harder maze games created during the early 1980s. Produced by Williams Electronics in 1981, the makers of the game believed it would be their answer to the success of Pac-Man and expected the game to be the successor to Pac-Man’s dominance. Though it was an intriguing game and easy to understand, it never caught on, presumably because of its difficulty.
Fast forward nearly 40 years later; who could believe that Walter Day would meet James, of DJ’s Arcade near Winnipeg, at a local arcade party in Portland during the weekend of the 2019 Portland Retro Gaming Expo? Much to Walter’s surprise, James was the current owner of the mint condition Make Trax machine that Walter had signed at the NW Gameroom & Arcade Show back in 2009. At that time, it was a new-in-the-box machine that was taken out of the box for the sole purpose of having Walter play a few games on it and then autograph the side of the machine.
It turned out that James (and his wife) owned anarcade back in Grand Marais, a summer vacation hot spot near Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. The arcade had been founded in 1975, making it one of the earliest vintage neighborhood arcades in the world. Day decided on the spot that trading cards should be made to honor the legacy of this arcade as well as honor the owners.
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