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History of the Cirqus

Manual Version

Game Version

     The electrifying performances of the circus' of old were very different than today. It has evolved from the early Roman acts of bravery and challenge. The Romans themselves were the greatest audiences holding daily performances in the Arena, which hosted juggling, tightrope walking and fire eating as well as gladiators and chariot races. The word "circus" literally means "ring", and was established to set a boundary for the animals to work within.
     After the fall of Rome in 476 A.D., the performers disbanded and scattered throughout the known World for other places to practice their arts.
     "M. Voltaire" ~ (Francois Marie Arouet) [1694-1778]
     Born in Paris, Voltaire was the most influential writer and philosopher of the French Enlightenment. A man of noble background, he was inclined to aristocracy. He adopted the name Voltaire after his imprisonment in the Bastille (1717-1718) for writing satiric verse. Jailed again briefly in the Bastille in 1726, he was exiled to England for three years, then lived in France and Germany, and returned to Paris in 1772.
     Best known for his classical tragedies, he was also a poet and a correspondent of tremendous value. Voltaire was also known as a fighter for social reform. As a leader of the philosophies, he tried to reform the hierarchical French Ancient Regime, and the system of criminal justice and taxation. Voltaire opposed persecution and rejected materialism in favor of determinism. He pioneered modern historiography with his valuable historical works, such as History of Charles XII, Age of Louis XIV, and Essay on Manners. The frivolity of the Cirqus has always appealed to his manner, and took on the task of forming his own.
     In the most rebellious time during 1771, one of the authors of the new time was indeed Voltaire, a scholarly rascal with a vivid tongue and sharp quill. Along with other men of valor, began a movement of "Enlightenment" based in the scientific revolution of Galileo and Newton from the previous century. They felt the universe was infinite and that the spirit of man should be free to wander as well.
     Voltaire himself then brought together a group of the most talented street performers and philosophers of modern day France and founded the "Troupe des Voltaire" or Voltaire's Group in 1772. The men would speak from inside the masterful "ring" and voice their idea to France and the World through the audience.
     This new name, "Cirqus Voltaire" was adopted and first spoken by Voltaire himself during a tense game of "( Hole" Bagatelle at the Café Procope in Paris. Along with their romantic works of the pen, the Cirqus talent included jugglers, tiger tamers, hire wire fellows, an old lady, and of course the lightning-ball walkers and throwers. The "Group des Voltaire" had the most marvelous acts, those of electricity, fire and passion, the same that willed France toward revolution in 1979
     The mesmerizing cirqus performances of today have evolved from the early Romans and their acts of bravery and challenge. 
     The arena held the greatest daily performances as gladiators riding chariots could be seen alongside jugglers, tightrope walkers and fire eating cows. 
     The word "Cirqus" literally means "Ring", and traditional rings were established as boundaries for horses to gallop within. 
     All cirqus performers disbanded and scattered after the fall of Rome in 476 A.D. 
     1771 was a rebellious time for the famous M. Voltaire, an enlightened philosopher and general scholarly rascal. 
     He was famous for his writings and his spirit for living. 
     His passion grasped the arts and the cirqus, and in 1772 founded a show in Paris with the "Father of the Cirqus", Phillip Astley. Voltaire then brought together a group of the most talented street performers and poets of modern day France, and founded the "Troupe le 
Voltaire" or "Voltaire's Group". 
     The name, "Cirqus Voltaire" was first spoken by Voltaire himself, during a tense game of bagatelle at the Café Procope. 
     Along with their works of the pen, the cirqus talent included tiger tamers, high wire fellows, the lightning-ball jugglers, and powerful cow throwers. 
     The Cirqus Voltaire had the most marvelous acts of bravery and passion, the same that willed France toward revolution in 1789. 
     The rest of the story and passion is... ... well ... To be played by you! 
     So come join the "Cirqus Voltaire"!

Cirqus Voltaire Cows (Spoilers!)This is a known list of 'cows' that appear in the game. If you know of one not listed, tell me!

  • Attract Mode ('History...'; see above)
  • Attract Mode ('Mooo..'; sound)
  • Judge (Heffer)
  • Item to Jump Over in Amazing Roonie
  • Rimgmaster Hit
  • 'Ones' digit score. Occasionally the '0' will flip, showing different images. A cow is one of those images.

Things to Look For Some special artwork on the playfield.. See if you can find where they are:

  • 'Joos TNT'
  • 'Redhawke Grille'
  • 'Thanks for Cleaning Under the Playfield'
  • 'DUKE'
  • 'Hanley Co.' and 'Hanley Cable Co.'
  • 'RRR'
  • 'POP'
  • 'Wreckable Free Zone'
  • 'Bally Pinball King'
  • First Names of Production Team. (Last names are under flippers..)
  • Misprint on early Instruction Card

Troupe Le Voltaire...Full credits for the game, as reported by the game in Attract Mode:

  • Concept/Design: John Popadiuk Jr.
  • Software/Design: Cameron 'Dawn' Silver
  • Mechanical Engineer: Jack Skalon
  • Mechanical Designer: Louis Toy
  • Artwork: Linda Deal
  • Music and Design: Rob Berry, Dave Zabriskie
  • Display Animators: Adam Rhine, Brian Morris
  • Dot Concept: Dr. Flash
  • B/W Neon: Jim Meehan
  • Effects: Buzz Neon
  • Voices: Cathy Schenkelberg, Mark Maclean
  • Voices: Rob Berry, Jon Hey, Cameron 'Dawn' Silver
  • Special Thanks: Terry Pratchett, Mark Weyna, Mike Patla
  • P.C.B Design: Butch Ortega
  • Publications:  Karen Trybula, Nina Clemente, Norma Rodriguez
  • Regulatory: Herb Foss
  • WMS Service: Tom Cahill, Jim Kline, Greg McKay
  • Model Shop: Al Cardinas, Mark Johnson, Ted Chmiola
  • Model Shop: Mike Laporte, Larry Peters, Dwen Larcen
  • Model Shop: Dennis Saunders, One Arm Joe
  • Manufacturing: Jerry Bartol, Laura Polonco
  • Manufacturing: Bob Rapata, Dave Ryon, Emmanuel Kurian
  • Sculptures: John Balogh
  • Electrical Wizards: Chuck Bleich, Brian Magruder
  • Prototype Lab: Jim Shird, Jose Delgado
  • Cables: Bill Thompson
  • C.N.C Models: Wally Roeder
  • Software Support: Larry DeMar, Ted Estes, Bill Grupp
  • Software Support: Lyman Sheats, Dwight Sullivan
  • Software Support: Louis Koziarz, Tom Uban, Matt Coriale
  • Sound Support: Andy Eloff
  • Engineering Support: John McCaffer, Elaine Johnson
  • Purchasing Support: Ron Summers, Dale Prasse
  • Purchasing Support: Thomas Murphy, Randy Melind
  • Prototype Testing: Mike Mendes, Cameron 'Dawn' Silver
  • Cirqus Kings: Ken Fedesna, Neil Nicastro, Larry DeMar
  • Cirqus Kings: Jim Patala, Joe Dillon, Rachel Davies
  • Testing Support: Darren Walker
  • Cirqus Legends: Joe Joos Jr., John Popadiuk Sr., Jerry Pinsler
  • Translations: Global Languages and Cultures, Inc.
  • Translators: Karin Bauchrowitz, Maryl Eubanks, Alan Murillo

Judges      All the judges in the game that you may get..

  • Judy
  • Tommy: He's blind, deaf and dumb.. Not quite sure what the image is, tho.
  • Tommy: The one that can see, hear, and speak..
  • Adam
  • Jo: Looks like the lady from Theater of Magic..
  • Damien
  • Paul
  • Kim
  • Abby
  • Keith: One of the members of a gang that hangs around the production line facility..
  • Heffer: Uh, Moo?
  • Nick: Cock-a-doodle-doo?
  • Roast: Nice, real nice. A good dish, too.
  • Marvin: The OTHER Martian that starred in a recent game...
  • Doho: Ha! '?'
  • Rob
  • John: Hey, he looks familiar..
  • Cameron: ...so does this guy.. Maybe they had something to do with the design? Nahh..
  • Linda: The way she's portrayed on screen, you'd never guess she did the artwork...
  • Arthur: Someone's pet cat.
  • Ron: Drink Bud Ice, but... Beware the Penguin. "Do be do be.."
  • 0110011: Danger Will Robinson, Danger!
  • Tara
  • Eleni
  • Rincewind: Merlin's twin brother.

Other Stuff      Rumor has it that yes, there are some flipper codes for the game. The only hint I can give is that one also gives the same result in Scared Stiff. Also, as far as I know, games were shipped with an orange cannon ball. A replacement order I had placed came in with a smaller, blue ball. This ball looks neater (the blue matches the 'sparks' and such) and also cuts down on the wear on the decal and backglass.

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  • Cirqus Voltaire and the CV logo are © 1998 Williams Electronics Games, Inc.
  • Bally and Cirqus Voltaire are ™ Williams Electronics Games, Inc.

Created/Maintained by:
Craig Hassell

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