Monday, October 22, 2012

Update On Reiner Foerst's Nurburgring

I just dicovered some excellent new information on Nurburgring here:

The website is Lance Carter's History of Racing Games and had a LOT more info about the game (including quotes fro Dr. Foerst himself).

The first thing I noticed is that I spelled Reiner's name wrong - it is actually Foerst, not Forest.

You can read the articles yourself, but among the many fascinating details

  • The first Nurburgring game was started in 1973, maybe even earlier (it isn't entirely clear from the website, but the idea may have come in 1971, before Pong)
  • Midway co-founder Iggy Wolverton visited Foerst and led him to believe that a licencing deal was in the works (or at least Foerst somehow got that impression)
  • Foerst produced a version of the game in a tilting sit-in cabinet, another in a rotating cabinet, and even a "competition" version that allowed 8 machines to be linked together (and this was in 1983/84).
  • Interesting info about the game's sounds.
  • Foerst claims that after he and Ted Michon met in the Dusseldorf bowling alley (where they bowled together), Michon called his "boss" and then became nervous, told Foerst he had no choice but to end the conversation, and left (though he does say that he and Michon continued to correspond afterwards, which matches what Michon told me).


  1. anyone ever tried to contact Mr. Foerst regarding schematics and rom dumps, for preserving the games through emulation?

    1. I don't think so but the website above might have the address of his company. Emulating the first one (with its 28 PC boards) might not be possible. The later ones might be easier.

      BTW - here are a few of Foerst's US Patents:

      (Filed Dec 19, 1973 for a "game board with color distinguishable" - I think this is the Ring-O-Bang game that Ted Michon mentioned).

      (Filed May 13, 1976 - for a "Driving simulator" - the first of several patents for Nurburgring)

      (Filed April 17, 1978 - for a "Tuning device for musical instruments")

      The oldest German patents I found were:
      * priority date 1/7/1966: for "Control arrangement for securing the stability of an inverter with sliding Höchst Roma end stanchions"
      * priority date 4/24/1972: for a board game
      * priority date 3/17/1973: several patents. I'm not sure exactly what for as Google translate didn't do a very good job with them. Most are assigned to Trakus GmbH & Co)
      * priority date 5/13/1975: for a "fahrtsimulator" (driving simulator)

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