An Unexpected Turn: The White Box of Destiny!

3 04 2011

Today, I was going to introduce you to one of the best retro game system mashups of all time!  A modern retro rumble in the jungle!  But I spent too much time out and about and so I’m going to talk about an unexpected purchase.  Take a look:

What ever could be inside???

And I didn’t even expect to get that white box!  Now, you might not think a white box is very special… but it is!  And what’s in the white box is even more special:

Hello, beautiful!

Yes, that’s a Panasonic FS-A1WX MSX2+ computer made waaaaay back in 1988.  I’d been in the market for an MSX computer for a while now because it has a game library that paved the way for many classics that would later appear on the Famincom (Nintendo) and PC Engine (Turbografx) such as Contra, Metal Gear, Castlevania, Gradius, among others.  But when I’ve found them they either don’t work or are out of my price range (usually around $200 – $300 for an MSX2+).  So when today I saw this Panasonic sitting in a case at a local recycle shop, I was taken aback at the beautiful condition the machine was in and that it had a tag on it that said “Tested, works fine” and that it was priced under $100. I enquired about it, and yes, they said, it worked fine.  So I told them I’d take it.  That’s when they pulled out the white box.  You see, for $90, I not only got a working MSX2+ computer that looked brand new, I also got the box it came in and all manuals and warranty cards; but I also got a printer (the Panasonic FS-PA1 thermal) a programming library, and 3 games: Hydlide 3, Galaxian, and Snatcher.

In 23 years this printer has never been taken out of the box.

Apparently this was a special bundle that Panasonic sold under the model FS-A1WXH.  I’m assuming this because the box has this model number on it, and I can’t find any reference to that model number on the Internet.  This was so complete it even came with labels I can use to print out for my Betamax tapes (Never used, of course) as well as the the cardboard displays they use to put next to the machines in the stores.  Very cool.


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20 05 2011
Mark E

…as well as the the cardboard displays they use to put next to the machines in the stores…

It occured to me that the reason you can’t find reference to the model number is that this may be a special promo package Panasonic put together for their dealers. I mean electronics sold domestically in Japan don’t typically come with cardboard marketing displays, do they?

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