Pole Position II [Upright model]

The Arcade Video Game by NAMCO, Ltd.

Pole Position II [Upright model] screenshot


Emulated in MAME ! Coin-Operated Arcade Video Game

Pole Position II © 1983 Namco, Ltd.

Pole Position II is a 1-player game using a color raster-scan video display. Game action takes place at four different raceways - the Fuji Speedway in Japan, the Test Track (an oval track like Indy), the Seaside Speedway (with the Long Beach Pike in the background), and the Suzuka Speedway in Japan. The unique and picturesque scenery around each raceway adds exciting realism to each race!

The player drives a Formula-1 race car on each track. The first objective of the game is to finish the qualifying lap as quickly as possible. If the player beats the time, he or she qualifies for the race. If not, he or she drives the remainder of his time along the qualifying course.

As a qualifier, the player is ranked according to his or her qualifying lap time, from the 1st (pole) position to 8th. The second objective of the game is to race against the clock and other cars to finish the specified number of laps ('Nr. of Laps' dip switch setting; 3 laps is the default) of the race as fast as possible, and to achieve the highest score possible. The player earns points for passing cars, driving on the track, and finishing the race with time remaining. The player is rewarded with an extended-play lap for completing the first lap within a certain amount of time (depending on the 'Extended Rank' dip switch setting).

To start play, the player must first insert the correct number of coin(s) for a game (according to the coin dip switch settings, 1 coin/1 credit is the default for both 'Coin A' and 'Coin B' dips). The player then turns the steering wheel until the track he or she wants to drive on is highlighted in white. The game starts when the player steps on the accelerator. The player's car will appear behind the starting line and a certain amount of time, in seconds ('Game Time' dip switch setting; the default is 90 seconds), will be on the clock. The player's car must finish the qualifying lap within a certain amount of time (which varies depending on the 'Practice Rank' dip switch setting) to be in the race. If the player does not qualify, his or her car continues on the track until the 'Game Time' elapses.

If the player has qualified, just before the race begins, the player's car (flashing on the screen) is placed at the starting line with seven other cars. The position of the car depends on the position earned during the qualifying lap. (The player's car is always placed at the 8th position in the attract mode.)

The starting lights flash from red to green, and the race begins. Racing hazards are other racing cars, sharp turns, water puddles, and road signs. (All of these hazards except for water puddles are also present on the qualifying lap.) As the race progresses, more cars appear on the track. If the player's car hits another car or a road sign, it is destroyed in an explosion (Pole Position II adds flying debris to the visual effect). The player's car reappears in a few seconds and the race continues. Driving through water puddles or off the track slows down the player's car even more than in the original "Pole Position".

Experience will teach the player which turns on which tracks require slight steering (because they're banked) and which turns require fast and forceful steering. The player jockeys for position with the other racers, while keeping his or her eye on the clock at the top of the screen. When time runs out, the race is over. If the player has beaten the racing lap time and has seconds remaining, the remaining seconds are added to the extended lap time, which varies depending on the track and the 'Extended Rank' dip switch setting.

The top score achieved by a player appears at the top of the screen. The time allotted for the lap is displayed under the top score. Increasing lap time (in seconds and hundredths of a second) and the speed of the car appear last. Each track has its own separate high score list.


Pole Position II [Upright model] the  Arcade Video Game
Click to enlarge
(members only)
[Upright model]

Game ID : PP2

Main CPU : Zilog Z80 (also drives the sound), Zilog Z8002 (x2)
Sound Chips : Namco 6-channel stereo WSG, DAC (engine sound), discrete circuitry (crash and skid sounds), custom DAC (speech)

Players : 1
Controls : Steering wheel, gear shifter (Hi and Low)
Pedals : Accelerator only


Pole Position II was released in October 1983 in Japan.

Lloyd Dahling holds the official record for this game on the 'Fuji' track with 75,390 points.
Jeff Peters holds the official record for this game on the 'Seaside' track with 75,390 points.
Jeff Peters also holds the official record for this game on the 'Suzuka' track with 75,660 points.
Jeff Peters also holds another official record for this game on the 'Test' track with 81,870 points.


Points are scored for every foot of track driven.
At the end of the game, 50 points are scored for each car the driver passed.
Finishing the game awards 200 points for each second left on the timer.

Qualifying Lap Placement Bonus :
(Qualifying times vary depending on both the track and the 'Practice Rank' dip switch setting)
Pole Position (1st place) : 4,000 points
2nd place : 2,000 points
3rd place : 1,400 points
4th place : 1,000 points
5th place : 800 points
6th place : 600 points
7th place : 400 points
8th place : 200 points


• Hints for Game Play :
1) Avoid puddles and the sides of the track because these slow you down. In Pole Position II, puddles slow you down even more than in the original "Pole Position".
2) Accelerate before the green light appears, and stay ahead of other racers.
3) Drive to the inside of the track to make the corners.
4) Do not over steer (tracks are banked).
5) Engine sound will cue the driver when to shift to high gear.
6) When sliding, steer into the skid.
7) Drive over water puddles at 370 km/h (230 mph), and you will have turbo charge power.

• Easter Egg :
1) Enter service mode.
2) Turn wheel to 04; Change the shifter from LO to HI.
3) Turn wheel to 45; Change the shifter from LO to HI.
4) Turn wheel to 55; Change the shifter from LO to HI.
5) Turn wheel to 56; Change the shifter from LO to HI.
6) Turn wheel to 91; Change the shifter from LO to HI.
'(c) 1982 NAMCO LTD.' will appear on the screen.


1. Pole Position (1982)
2. Pole Position II (1983)
3. Final Lap (1987)
4. Final Lap UR (1988)
5. Final Lap Twin (1989, NEC PC-Engine)
6. Final Lap 2 (1990)
7. Final Lap 3 (1992)
8. Final Lap R (1993)
9. Final Lap 2000 (2000, Bandai WonderSwan)
10. Final Lap Special (2001, Bandai WonderSwan Color)



NOTE: For ports released in North America, please see the Atari Upright model entry.


Super Cassette Vision japan (1986) "Pole Position II [Model 30 NO.09360]"
Sony PlayStation japan (June 21, 1996) "Namco Museum Vol.3 [Model SLPS-00390]"
Sony PlayStation [AU] (1997) "Namco Museum Vol.3 [Model SCES-00268]"
Sony PlayStation europe (February 1997) "Namco Museum Vol.3 [Model SCES-00268]"
Sony PlayStation 2 japan (January 26, 2006) "Namco Museum Arcade Hits! [Model SLPS-25590]"
Microsoft XBOX europe (March 24, 2006) "Namco Museum - 50th Anniversary"
Sony PlayStation 2 europe (March 31, 2006) "Namco Museum - 50th Anniversary [Model SLES-53957]"
Nintendo GameCube europe (May 5, 2006) "Namco Museum - 50th Anniversary [Model DOL-G5NP-EUR]"
Microsoft XBOX 360 europe (May 15, 2009) "Namco Museum - Virtual Arcade"
Microsoft XBOX 360 [AU] (June 4, 2009) "Namco Museum - Virtual Arcade"
Microsoft XBOX 360 japan (November 5, 2009) "Namco Museum - Virtual Arcade [Model 2RD-00001]"


Commodore C64 europe (1988)
PC [MS Windows, CD-ROM] europe (March 27, 2006) "Namco Museum - 50th Anniversary"
PC [MS Windows, CD-ROM] [AU] (May 19, 2006) "Namco Museum - 50th Anniversary"

Game's ROM.
Machine's picture.

Page last modified on September 20, 2014