5 Soviet Videogames Copied from American and Japanese Ones

Soviet Videogames Copied from American and Japanese Ones

Posted on May 17, 2014 by tim

“Electronica” is a well-known Soviet brand. Under this brand in Soviet times, different plants produced a wide range of household electrical appliances: TVs, computer systems, calculators, electronic watches, tape recorders, video recorders and other products, but not everyone guessed that many products released under this brand were copied from samples of foreign technology.

Electronica 24-01 “Oh, wait!” Electronic game, the most famous and popular of the first Soviet series of handheld electronic games with liquid crystal screen. It was made from 1984.  Retail price was 25 rubles.

But it turns out that this game was an unofficial clone of Nintendo EG-26 Egg series of Nintendo Game & Watch, 1981.

“Electronics 24-01″ game on screen (Mickey Mouse)

 Nintendo MC-25 Mickey Mouse

“Elektronika IM-03″ Secrets of the Ocean, 1987

Nintendo OC-22 Octopus, 1981

“Electronika EM-04″, Merry cook MG-04, 1989

Nintendo FP-24 Chef, 1981

“Electronika EM-09″, Space bridge MG-09, 1989

Nintendo FR-27 Fire, 1981

In 1985, the Solnechnogorsk electromechanical factory released a toy called “Elektronika IM-11″ – Lunokhod (Moonrover).

“BIG TRAK” – programmable machine, developed and released by Milton Bradley in 1979.

A very rare toy, “Elektronika IM-12″ with replaceable cartridges.

Nintendo CJ-93 Donkey-Kong JR, Panorama Screen Series, 1983.

“Elektronika IM-15″ – electronic football game made in 1990.

World Cup SOCCER by TOMY Electronics, 1979

“Elektronika IM-20″ version 1 Air shooting

Nintendo BU-201 Spitball Sparky Super Color, 1984.

“Elektronika IM-26″ with interchangeable screens in the form of cartridges produced from the end of 1988.

In 1983, the Bandai company released Digi Casse.

“Elektronika IM-27″ Space Adventure (February 1990) – experience a series of games in a binocular stereoscopic image.

Planet Zeon by Tomy Company which was published in 1983, a series of similar games called TOMYTRONIC 3-D.

Elektronika IM-46 – Calculator and music synthesizer made in 1994

Casio VL-Tone (VL-1) issued about a dozen years earlier (1980)

“Electronics ESI-01″ – Auto racing – portable game, 1983.

AUTO RACE from Mattel Electronics, 1977

TV game console “Electronica Videosport”


In 1974, Leningrad NGO “Positron” produced an unprecedented thing – the reel to reel VCR “Electronics-501-video” for recording black and white television in the European standard of 50 Hz, 625 lines and the sound using the television camera, “Electronics-Video”, and the video recording could be viewed using the same TV or the monitor of a television camera.

 Sony DV-3400, 1969.

Large scale production of the VHS format “Electronics VM-12″ VCR began in 1984.

 Panasonic NV-2000, 1975.

“Electronics VIC-8220″, 1987

“Samsung VX-8220″

Turntable “Electronics B1-01″, 1974.


Thorens TD-125, 1972

Home computer “Electronics VI-201″

ZX Spectrum


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5 Responses to “Soviet Videogames Copied from American and Japanese Ones”

  1. Darius says:

    I spoke to a person who worked at an institute of electronics in Soviet times. He told that they had one person there who’s only job was grinding of chips and nothing else. And he was very good at it.

    Once a western chip would be brought in, he would grind the chip layer after layer. The layer structure would be examined by engineers which later would try to recreate the internal structure ant the principle of operation of the chip. Based on this information a copy would be engineered later.

    From my own experience in electronics I can only guess that with years, with advancement of electronic chips (increase of complexity and reduction of size) it was harder and harder to keep up with new products. It would take longer and longer to create a copy.

  2. Richard S. says:

    During soviet times, my guess is that the Soviet manufacturers were immune to copy-write/infringement lawsuits…

  3. Martin says:

    I had red version of NU POGODI when I was little kid. My best score was 999 (after that it starts new game again from 0 and weeery slow). I still have case and screen somewhere. First and BEST “playstation” of my life. You can play flash version of this game on my site http://www.xtechnik.szm.com/Files/Hry/no_pockaj.html
    Original Russian version was much better.

  4. Hah says:

    Look up the BBC documentary “Tetris From Russia with Love”

    there is more to the story than just USSR making some unofficial clones of Nintendo’s Game & Watch.
    They signed a contract. Whether it was before Gameboy or not is unclear, but it definitely influenced it.

  5. jose says:

    The clones are often way better than the originals, many times the clones will come with 40 games or more and be cheaper than the original is with no games.

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