"Gonna get there? I don't know. Seems a common, way to go..." (Skitch Grateful Dead, Thanks.) When I was younger, Unisonic was a brand. Hand held games hadn't become a thing...yet. They were just starting to find ways to make LCD and LED calculators functional, yet entertaining. I guess this would be that. My brother received this as a Christmas gift, only he got the pocket version. I don't remember if the pocket version of this Calcugame had memory, but who cared. This played BLACKJACK. No, not a device usually filled with anything hard and round that evil peeps would clobber innocent peeps with. No, not the licorice candy. No not Jimmy Carl Black, "the Indian of the group" from the Mothers Of Invention. I'll stop there.
This seems like a very functional LED calculator. If you weren't getting a split hand or doubling down on those "face" cards or taking an additional "card" and then staying, hoping the house would be less than you or go over, um, well, that was it. It's not a really good calculator because if you needed more than basic functions, you pounded sand. That's why the portable one was better. You could take it anywhere in your pocket. This one was clunky and took those "C" batteries. If you put those silver Evereadys in it and forgot they were there, forget about playing this again in a year. AciEEEEEEEEEd, AciEEEEEEEEEd. It also doesn't have the best "tactile" feel. More like hammering those "Chiclet" keys on an old TRS-80 Color Computer. So, I'd imagine this being used for the game play and little else.
Because I'd never seen this one in the wild, I bought it instantly when I saw it. A 3.00 purchase. You can't see where the C batteries go, but there is the power port for those cheap adapters you could buy anywhere. Thankfully, cheap universal adapters are going, going, going, but still, there is a ton of junk needing them. You'd use them for 6 months to a year and if you never moved it, you might even get several years from one. However, as a person that had several multi-voltage adapters, especially for tape recorders, the cords usually went bad, or the switches, or sometimes a blade fell off the plug or the adapter just gave up the ghost. It will be nice once we finally live in a 5V world. *End Cheap Universal Adapter Rant* I do like the shape of this "High Tech" gaming device. It looks like a something that would be on the desk of Captain Archer in the "Star Trek: Enterprise" series.
"Hello ship! This is your captain. You won't believe this, but somehow I've leaped into this acting job"
"Hiya Cap. What the hell are you talking into a Unisonic "Jimmy The Greek" 21 calculator for?"
"Can't you see? I pushed the INSURANCE button and now GUSHY and Dean Stockwell are nowhere to be found!"
"Dean Stockwell? He appeared as a guest star on this very show as a lame attempt to get ratings. You're better off beaming back into that chimp."
"Captain, this is T'Pal. When we do the episode where I have exposed belly button giving fanboys everywhere fits, I want to leap with you into television history, or porn..."
"No NO. Damn you all! I lost 200 on that bet. I need to move on. Maybe they will bring back the TV series Gung HO!"
"WELLL! Mon CAPTAIN! You're younger and not BALD ASSED! You're FUTURE is playing blah blah blah in New Orleans!"
"It's character actor John De Lancie as the mischievous Q! Take me too my new career! Maybe I'll work with my old friend Jay Thomas!"
*****Captain Archer suddenly beams out and into the body of a guy that used to throw a football at a meatball on the David Letterman show****
"Oh Boy....GET RID OF EM!"
Yep. This was a "Jimmy The Greek" endorsed card playing calculator. Say what you will about Mr. "The Greek", he was still someone that Unisonic wanted to endorse their nifty calculator devices. Who knows. I guess that was a bit of a bump in Playboy magazine or wherever they promoted this thing. (Yes, old Playboys were great for a younger me when I had just gotten a Atari 2600 and I could find scores of ads from 1977 or 1978 in my step father's old Playboy collection.) Had I known more, I'd have taken a ton of car ads from those old Playboys as well. Hey, my mom was liberal. She used to let my brother and I run around with the centerfold playing "I got the boobies" from dad's playboys when I was just a shaver. Yah. Jimmy was good in his cameo with Dean and Sammy in Cannonball Run... Couldn't act, but it was still fun.
Unisonic. Many a cheap calculator or watch or even a video game system? Every BEST or US Merchandise Or Service Merchandise Or (enter name of your local catalog retailer) had lots of crap from these guys. It says something that this game still plays as I'm sure if the batteries didn't rot in your device, makes a good piece of nostalgia or a conversation piece or a JUNK BLOG post. Split those JJ's. You'll likely win many worthless points. -Ric